On This Day

On This Day in Music for March 2

Events in Music

  • 1789 Pennsylvania ends prohibition of theatrical performances
  • 1825 1st grand opera in US sung in English, NYC

Film PremierKing Kong Premieres

1933 "King Kong" film directed by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack, starring Fay Wray premieres at Radio City Music Hall and RKO Roxy in NYC

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Poster for the 1933 film
Poster for the 1933 film "King Kong", the first in a series of movies about the giant gorilla
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Music releaseMusic Single

1956 "Lawdy Miss Clawdy" single cover released by Elvis Presley

Singer & Cultural Icon Elvis Presley
Singer & Cultural Icon
Elvis Presley
  • 1959 Ceremony to mark the start of construction of the Sydney Opera House at Bennelong Point, Sydney
  • 1961 "13 Daughters" opens at 54th St Theater NYC for 28 performances

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1964 Beatles begin filming "A Hard Day's Night", George Harrison meets Patti Boyd

Singer-Songwriter George Harrison
George Harrison

Film release premierFilm Release

1965 One of the most popular musical films of all time, "The Sound of Music", starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer, is released (Academy Awards Best Picture 1966)

Actor Christopher Plummer
Christopher Plummer
Actress and Singer Julie Andrews
Actress and Singer
Julie Andrews

Music awardsGrammy Awards

1967 9th Grammy Awards: "Strangers in the Night" by Frank Sinatra wins best record, "Michele" by The Beatles best song

Singer and Actor Frank Sinatra
Singer and Actor
Frank Sinatra

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1969 Dmitri Shostakovich completes his 14th Symphony

Music awardsGrammy Awards

1974 16th Grammy Awards: Roberta Flack Best Record - "Killing Me Softly", Stevie Wonder Best Album - "Innervisions"

Singer-Songwriter Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder
  • 1976 "Bubbling Brown Sugar" opens at ANTA Theater NYC for 766 performances
  • 1976 Holgate, Kemp & Lopez' musical premieres in NYC
  • 1988 30th Grammy Awards: "Graceland"; "Joshua Tree"; Jody Watley win

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1989 Madonna's "Like a Prayer" premieres on worldwide Pepsi commercial

Pop Star Madonna
Pop Star
  • 1991 "Aspects of Love" closes at Broadhurst Theater NYC after 377 performances
  • 1991 "La Bete" closes at Eugene O'Neill Theater NYC after 24 performances

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1994 Miami begins a Latin walk of fame, 1st star for Gloria Estefan

  • 1995 "Smokey Joe's Cafe" opens at Virginia Theater NYC

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2020 American rap group Public Enemy part ways with Flavor Flav after 35 years over playing for free at Bernie Sanders rally

Rapper & TV star Flavor Flav
Rapper & TV star
Flavor Flav
US Senator Bernie Sanders
US Senator
Bernie Sanders

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2021 Dolly Parton receives the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine she gave $1 million to help develop

Country Singer Dolly Parton
Country Singer
Dolly Parton

Birthdays in Music

  • 1555 Ludovico Spontoni, composer
  • 1755 Antoine-Frederic Gresnick, composer
  • 1759 Johann Christian Friedrich Haeffner, composer
  • 1813 George Alexander Macfarren, British composer and musicologist, born in London, England (d. 1887)
  • 1815 Antonio Buzzolla, composer
  • 1824 [Friedrich] Bedřich Smetana, Czech composer (The Bartered Bride; Má Vlast; Moldau), born in Litomyšl, Bohemia (d. 1884)
  • 1838 David Duffle Wood, composer
  • 1865 Théophile "Théo" Ysaÿe, Belgian composer and pianist, born in Verviers, Belgium (d. 1918)
  • 1884 Léon Jongen, Belgian organist, composer, and academic, born in Liège (d. 1969)
  • 1893 Maxime Dumoulin, composer
  • 1894 Renaat Veremans, Flemish organist, composer, and conductor (Flemish Opera, Antwerp, 1921-44), born in Lierre, Belgium (d. 1969)
  • 1899 Harald Søltoft Agersnap, Danish cellist, pianist, conductor, and composer (Royal Danish Theatre, 1931-66), born in Vinding, Denmark  (d. 1982)
  • 1900 Kurt J Weill, German composer/Bertolt Brecht collaborator (Mahogany), born in Dessau, Germany
  • 1905 Marc Blitzstein, composer (Cradle Will Rock), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • 1909 Hanoch Jacoby, composer
  • 1912 Theodore "Red" Saunders, American jazz drummer and bandleader, based in Chicago, born in Memphis, Tennessee (d. 1981)
  • 1913 Celedonio Romero, Spanish guitarist (d. 1996)
  • 1916 Bernard George Stevens, composer

Person of interestDesi Arnaz

1917 Desi Arnaz, Cuban-American actor and singer (Ricky Ricardo-I Love Lucy), born in Santiago de Cuba (d. 1986)

Actor Desi Arnaz
Desi Arnaz
  • 1917 John Gardner, English classical composer, born in Manchester, England (d. 2011)
  • 1919 Tamara Toumanova, dancer
  • 1920 Enrique Franco, composer
  • 1921 Robert Simpson, British classical composer, and broadcaster (BBC), born in Leamington, Warwickshire, England (d. 1997)
  • 1922 Eric Feldbush, composer
  • 1922 Mario Zafred, composer
  • 1922 Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, American jazz saxophonist (Kenny Clarke/Francy Boland Big Band), born in Culver City, California (d. 1986)
  • 1923 Orrin Keepnews, American jazz producer and founder of Riverside Records label, born in The Bronx, New York
  • 1924 Alexander "Papa" Lightfoot, American blues singer and harmonica player, born in Natchez, Mississippi (d. 1971)
  • 1925 Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis [Charles Thompson], American blues musician (Cold Hands), born in Tippo, Mississippi (d. 1995)
  • 1927 Siegfried Kohler, German composer (Tausend Sterne sind ein Dom), born in Meissen, Germany (d. 1984)
  • 1927 Witold Szalonek, Polish composer (Satire), educator, and musicologist, born in Czechowice-Dziedzice, Poland (d. 2001) [1]
  • 1928 John Manduell, British-based South African composer and educator (Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, 1973-96), born in Johannesburg, Union of South Africa (d. 2017)
  • 1930 John Cullum, American singer and actor (Hamlet; 1776; Hawaii; Northern Exposure - "Holling"), born in Knoxville, Tennessee
  • 1934 Bernard Rands, composer (Wildtrack), born in Sheffield, England
  • 1934 Joyce "Dottie" Rambo (nee Luttrell), American gospel singer and songwriter, born in Madisonville, Kentucky (d. 2008)
  • 1936 Buell Neidlinger, American pop, jazz, and classical session cellist and double bassist (Cecil Taylor; Frank Zappa; Duane Eddy), born in New York City (d. 2018)
  • 1938 Simon Estes, American bass/baritone (Wonton, Don Carlos), born in Centerville, Iowa
  • 1939 Gerard van Tongeren, Dutch singer (Buffoons)
  • 1940 Tony Croatto, Italian-born composer (d. 2005)
  • 1942 Lou Reed, American rock vocalist, songwriter and guitarist (Velvet Underground - "Sweet Jane"; "Walk On The Wild Side"), born in NYC, New York (d. 2013)
  • 1942 Luc Plamondon, French-Canadian musical lyricist, born in Saint-Raymond, Quebec
  • 1943 (Daniel) Tony Meehan, British rock drummer (Vipers; Drifters: Shadows), born in Hampstead, North West London, England (d. 2005)
  • 1943 Stephen Dickman, American composer and librettist (Tibetan Dreams; Rabbi Nathan's Prayer), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1944 Leif Segerstam, Finnish violinist, conductor, and composer of 342 symphonies (...and counting!), born in Vaasa, Finland
  • 1945 Derek Watkins, British trumpet player and composer ("The Spy Who Loved Me"; "Skyfall"), born in Reading, England (d. 2013)
  • 1948 Larry Carlton, American jazz and rock session and touring guitarist (Crusaders; Joni Mitchell; Steely Dan), born in Torrance, California
  • 1948 Rory Gallagher, Irish rock and blues guitarist and songwriter ("Born on the Wrong Side of Time"), born in Ballyshannon, County Donegal, Ireland (d. 1995)
  • 1949 Alain Chamfort [Le Govic], French rock singer-songwriter, and piano player, born in Paris, France
  • 1950 Karen Carpenter, American pop vocalist and drummer ("We've Only Just Begun"; "Rainy Days And Mondays"; "Top Of The World"), born in New Haven, Connecticut (d. 1983)
  • 1953 William Simmons, American R&B saxophonist and keyboardist (Midnight Star - "No Parking On The Dance Floor"; "Operator")
  • 1954 Hunt Sales, American rock drummer (Todd Rundgren; Iggy Pop; Tin Machine), born in Detroit, Michigan
  • 1955 Jay Osmond, American singer and drummer (Osmond Brothers - "One Way Ticket to Anywhere"), born in Ogden, Utah
  • 1955 Jawanza Kobie, American jazz pianist and composer, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • 1956 John Cowsill, American rock drummer (The Cowsills - "We Can Fly"; Beach Boys, 2000-present), born in Newport, Rhode Island
  • 1956 Mark Evans, Australian rock bassist (AC/DC), born in Melbourne, Victoria
  • 1959 Larry Stewart, American country singer (Restless Heart - "Alright Already"), born in Paducah, Kentucky
  • 1961 Simone Young, Australian conductor (Hamburg State Opera and Hamburg Philharmonic, 2005-15), born in Sydney, Australia
  • 1962 Jon Bon Jovi [John Bongiovi], American rock singer-songwriter (Bon Jovi - "You Give Love a Bad Name"; "Who Says You Can't Go Home"), born in Sayreville, New Jersey
  • 1965 Wolfgang Muthspiel, Austrian jazz guitarist, born in Judenburg, Austria
  • 1966 Stevie Rachelle, American hard rock vocalist (Tuff - What Comes Around Goes Around), born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin
  • 1967 Dennis Seaton, British reggae-rock singer (Musical Youth - "Pass the Dutchie"), born in Birmingham, England
  • 1970 Alexander Armstrong, British comedian, TV presenter and baritone singer (Armstrong and Miller, Pointless), born in Rothbury, Northumberland

Person of interestChris Martin

1977 Chris Martin, British rock singer-songwriter, ans piano player (Coldplay - "Viva la Vida"), born in Exeter, Devon, England

Lead Vocalist of Coldplay Chris Martin
Lead Vocalist of Coldplay
Chris Martin
  • 1985 Luke Pritchard, British rock singer and guitarist (The Kooks - Inside In/Inside Out), born in Worthing, West Sussex, England
  • 1988 Keith Jack, British pop and theater singer and actor
  • 1988 James Arthur, British pop singer ("Say You Won't Let Go"), born in Middlesbrough, England
  • 1990 Luke Combs, American country music singer-songwriter ("This One's for You"), born in Huntersville, North Carolina

Deaths in Music

  • 1800 Christian Friedrich Schale, composer, dies at 86
  • 1822 Friedrich Christian Hermann Uber, composer, dies at 40
  • 1868 Carl Eberwein, German composer and violinist, dies at 81
  • 1882 Louis Kufferath, German-Belgian composer, dies at 70
  • 1887 Wilhelm Troszel, Polish operatic bass, composer, and voice teacher, dies at 63
  • 1921 Henryk Pachulski, Polish pianist, composer, and educator (Moscow Conservatory, 1886-1917), dies at 61
  • 1937 Gustav Wohlgemuth, German composer, dies at 73
  • 1938 Ben Harney, American composer and "Father of Ragtime Piano" (You've Been a Good Old Wagon, But You Done Broke Down), dies of a heart attack at 66
  • 1942 Charlie Christian, American jazz and swing guitarist (Benny Goodman Sextet), dies of tuberculosis at 25 [1] [2]
  • 1974 Barbara Ruick, American actress and singer (Jerry Colonna Show), dies from a cerebral hemorrhage at 43
  • 1975 Jean Kurt Forest, German composer, dies at 65
  • 1991 Serge Gainsbourg, Russian-French singer (Ford Mustang), dies at 62
  • 1995 Hugo Cole, British composer and critic, dies at 77
  • 1999 Dusty Springfield [Mary O'Brien], English vocalist (Growing Pains), dies at 59
  • 1999 David Ackles, American singer-songwriter (American Gothic), dies of lung cancer at 62
  • 2003 Hank Ballard [John Henry Kendricks], American rocker (The Midnighters - "The Twist" - pre-Chubber Checker), dies at 75
  • 2003 Malcolm Williamson, Australian composer, dies at 71
  • 2005 Martin Denny, American musician (Exotica), dies at 93
  • 2006 Milton Katims, American violist and conductor (b. 1909)
  • 2008 Jeff Healey, Canadian musician (b. 1966)
  • 2011 Čestmír Gregor, Czech composer, dies at 84
  • 2018 Van McLain [McElvain], American rock guitarist (Shooting Star), dies at 62 from West Nile virus
  • 2021 Bunny Wailer [Neville O'Riley Livingston], Jamaican vocalist and percussionist (The Wailers with Bob Marley), dies of stroke complications at 73
  • 2021 Chris Barber, English jazz trombonist ("Petite Fleur"), dies at 90