On This Day

May 1953 in Music History

Events in Music

Music Premiere

May 7 Cole Porter's musical "Can-Can" opens at the Shubert Theatre, NYC; runs for 892 performances

Birthdays in Music

  • May 1 Felix Hanemann, American rocker (Zebra), born in New Orleans, Louisiana
  • May 1 Glen Ballard, American songwriter and record producer (Alanis Morissette; Michael Jackson), born in Natchez, Mississippi
  • May 2 Valery Gergiev, Russian conductor (Mariinsky Orchestra, 1988 -present; Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, 1995-2008), born in Moscow, USSR
  • May 3 Bruce Hall, American rock bassist (Reo Speedwagon), born in Champaign, Illinois
  • May 8 Billy Burnette, American rock guitarist (Fleetwood Mac, 1987-95), born in Memphis, Tennessee
  • May 8 Alex Van Halen, Dutch-American rock drummer (Van Halen - "Hot For Teacher"), born in Amsterdam The Netherlands,
  • May 8 Andreas P. Nielsen, Danish author and composer, born in Kolding, Denmark (d. 2011)
  • May 10 Steve Thomas, rocker (Shooting Star)
  • May 10 Alex Foster, American jazz and session saxophonist (SNL Band; Mingus Big Band), born in Oakland, California
  • May 12 Phil Beer, English multi-instrumentalist and composer (Show of Hands), born in Exminster, Devon
  • May 14 Tom Cochrane, Canadian rock vocalist and guitarist (Red Rider - "Lunatic Fringe"), born in Toronto, Ontario
  • May 15 Mike Oldfield, British musician and composer (Tubular Bells), born in Reading, Berkshire
  • May 16 Richard Page, American singer and bassist (Mr Mister- "Broken Wings"; "Kyrie"), born in Keokuk, Iowa
  • May 17 George Johnson, rocker (Brothers Johnson), born in Los Angeles, California
  • May 18 (Feliciano) "Butch" Tavares, American R&B singer (Tavares - "Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel"), born in Providence, Rhode Island
  • May 19 Roddy Lorimer, Scottish session and touring trumpeter and flugelhorn player (Waterboys; Blur; Pete Townshend; Spiritualized; Dr. John), born in Glasgow, Scotland
  • May 22 Stuart Elliott, British rock session drummer (Kate Bush; Alan Parsons Project; Al Stewart) born in London, England
  • May 23 Rick Fenn, British rock guitarist (10cc - "I'm Not In Love"; "The Things We Do for Love"), born in Oxford, England
  • May 24 Mark Rivera, American saxophonist, musical director (Billy Joel; Ringo Starr), and corporate entertainment provider born in Brooklyn, New York
  • May 25 Rich Alves, American country guitarist (Pirates of Mississippi - "Feed Jake"), born in Pleasanton, California
  • May 28 Arto Lindsay, American guitarist, composer (Lounge Lizards; Ambitious Lovers), and producer (Caetano Veloso, Gal Costa, Lucas Santtana), born in Richmond, Virginia

Danny Elfman

May 29 Danny Elfman, American singer-songwriter (Oingo Boingo - "Weird Science"), and Emmy and Grammy Award-winning composer (The Simspons Theme; Good Will Hunting; Tim Burton films), born in Los Angeles, California

  • May 29 Rick Henderson, American singer (Mason Dixon - "Karen Comes Around"), born in Beaumont, Texas
  • May 29 Karla DeVito, American stage and screen actress and singer, born in Mokena, Illionis

Deaths in Music

  • May 4 T. Tertius Noble, English composer, dies at 85

Django Reinhardt

May 16 Django Reinhardt, Belgium born Romani-French jazz guitarist and composer considered the most significant European jazz musician, dies at 43

  • May 17 Eric De Lamarter, American organist, composer and conductor (Chicago Symphony), dies at 73
  • May 22 Vaclav Klicka, Czech composer, dies at 70
  • May 26 Albert Spalding, American violinist and composer, dies at 64
  • May 30 Dooley Wilson [Arthur Wilson], American musician and actor (Beulah, Casablanca), dies of natural causes at 67