On This Day

On This Day in Music for October 15

Events in Music

  • 1886 Modest Mussorgsky's musical fantasy "Night on Bald Mountain" premieres in St. Petersburg's Kononov Hall, Russia

Music releaseMusic Premiere

1905 Claude Debussy's symphonic sketch "La Mer" premieres in Paris

Composer Claude Debussy
Claude Debussy


1917 Dutch exotic dancer Mata Hari is executed by firing squad for spying for Germany during WWI at Vincennes near Paris

Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy Mata Hari
Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy
Mata Hari
  • 1925 Willem Landré's opera "Beatrice" premieres in The Hague
  • 1960 "Laughs & Other Events" closes at Barrymore Theater NYC after 8 performances

Music awardsMusic Awards

1969 3rd Country Music Association Award: Johnny Cash and Tammy Wynette win

Country Singer Johnny Cash
Country Singer
Johnny Cash
Country singer Tammy Wynette
Country singer
Tammy Wynette
  • 1973 7th Country Music Association Award: Roy Clark wins

Music releaseMusic Single

1976 Ringo Starr releases single "A Dose of Rock 'n' Roll"

Beatles Drummer Ringo Starr
Beatles Drummer
Ringo Starr
  • 1977 Debbie Boone's "You Light Up My Life" goes #1 & stays #1 for 10 weeks
  • 1977 "Serpentine Fire" single released by Earth, Wind & Fire (Billboard Song of the Year 1978)
  • 1987 "Late Nite Comic" opens at Ritz Theater NYC for 4 performances
  • 1988 Amnesty International's Global Concert Tour ends in Buenos Aires

Birthdays in Music

  • 1723 Johann Andreas Joseph Giulini, German composer (Canticum Zacharia), baptized in Augsburg, Bavaria (d. 1722)
  • 1761 Peter Grønland, Danish composer, born in Wilster, Germany (d. 1825)
  • 1762 Samuel Adams Holyoke, American composer, born in Boxford, Massachusetts (d. 1820)
  • 1775 Bernhard Henrik Crusell, Swedish-Finnish composer, born in Uusikaupunki, Finland (d. 1838)
  • 1784 Thomas Hastings, American composer, born in Washington, Connecticut (d. 1872)
  • 1799 August Ferdinand Haeser, German composer, born in Leipzig, Germany (d. 1844)
  • 1818 Johann Gungl, Austrian composer and conductor, born in Zsambék, Austrian Empire (d. 1883) (alternatively born March 5 1828)
  • 1852 Wilhelm Posse, German composer, born in Bromberg (d. 1925)
  • 1858 Frank Valentine der Stucken, American-Belgian composer, born in Fredericksburg, Texas (d. 1929)
  • 1874 Otallo Morales, Spanish composer, born in Almería, Spain (d. 1957)
  • 1890 Arcady Dubensky, Russian composer, born in Kirov, Russia (d. 1966)
  • 1898 Gunther Ramin, German organist and composer, born in Karlsruhe, Germany (d. 1956)
  • 1902 William Edmundson, American vocalist (Southernaires), born in Spokane, Washington
  • 1905 Alexey Fedorovich Kozlovsky, Russian composer, born in Kiev, Ukraine (d. 1977)
  • 1905 Dag Wirén, Swedish composer, born in Striberg, Sweden (d. 1986)
  • 1905 Edna Deane, dancer, choreographer and drama teacher, born in Orange Free State (d. 1995)
  • 1922 Lorraine Gordon [Stein], American jazz music advocate and owner of Village Vanguard jazz club, born in Newark, New Jersey (d. 2018)
  • 1924 Colin Romoff, American orchestra leader (Andy Williams Show), born in NYC, New York (d. 2007)
  • 1925 Mickey Baker, American guitar player ("Love is strange"), born in Louisville, Kentucky (d. 2012)
  • 1926 Karl Richter, German composer and conductor, born in Plauen, Germany (d. 1981)
  • 1931 (Lionel) Frederick "Freddy" Cole, American jazz singer and pianist, born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2020) [1]
  • 1932 Jaan Rääts, Estonian pianist, orchestral and film score composer, born in Tartu, Estonia (d. 2020)
  • 1934 N. Ramani, Indian flutist, born in Tiruvarur, Tamil Nadu, India (d. 2015)
  • 1935 Barry McGuire, American singer (Eve of Destruction), born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • 1936 Kari Rydman, Finnish composer, born in Helsinki
  • 1938 Marv Johnson, American gospel and R&B singer (Move 2 mountains), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 1993)
  • 1938 Rafael Aponte-Ledeé, Puerto Rican composer, born in Guayama, Puerto Rico
  • 1938 Fela Kuti, Nigerian Afrobeat musician and composer, born in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria (d. 1997)
  • 1942 Don Stevenson, American rock drummer (Moby Grape), born in Seattle, Washington
  • 1943 Larrie Londin [Ralph Gallant], American session drummer (Motown and Nashville), born in Norfolk, Virgina (d. 1992)
  • 1946 Richard Carpenter, American vocalist (Carpenters-Close to You), born in New Haven, Connecticut
  • 1950 Chris De Burgh, British-Irish rock vocalist (The Lady in Red), born in Venado Tuerto, Santa Fe Province, Argentina
  • 1951 Frank Dimino, American rock vocalist (Angel), born in Washington, D.C.
  • 1953 Tito Jackson, American singer (Jackson 5-ABC, Never Can Say Goodbye), born in Gary, Indiana
  • 1962 Philip Blackburn, British-American composer (Ghostly Psalms), sound artist, musicologist (Harry Partch), and record executive (Innova), born in Cambridge, England
  • 1966 Douglas Vipond, Scottish pop drummer (Deacon Blue) and broadcaster, born in Elderslie, Scotland
  • 1968 Jyrki 69 [Jyrki Pekka Emil Linnankivi], Finnish musician (The 69 Eyes), born in Helsinki, Finland
  • 1970 Eric Benét, American singer and songwriter (Love Don't Love Me), born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • 1973 Dax Riggs, American musician (Acid Bath), born in Evansville, Indiana
  • 1975 Ginuwine [Elgin Baylor Lumpkin], American singer (Ginuwine...The Bachelor), born in Washington, D.C.
  • 1976 Yoon Son-ha, South Korean actress and singer
  • 1977 Erin McKeown, American musician and singer-songwriter, (We Will Become Like Birds), born in Fredericksburg, Virginia
  • 1980 Siiri Nordin, Finnish singer (Killer)
  • 1981 Keyshia Cole, African American R&B singer
  • 1982 Paulini Curuenavuli, Fijian singer
  • 1983 Stephy Tang, Hong Kong singer and actress
  • 1984 Jessie Ware, British pop singer-songwriter (What's Your Pleasure?), born in Hammersmith, London, England
  • 1986 Lee Donghae, Korean singer (Super Junior), born in Mokpo, South Korea

Weddings in Music

LoveWedding of Interest

1963 Folk singer Mary Travers (26) weds photographer Barry Feinstein

Folk Singer Mary Travers
Folk Singer
Mary Travers
  • 2016 Former "Glee" actress Dianna Agron (30) weds Mumford & Sons banjo player Winston Marshall (27) in Morocco

Deaths in Music

  • 1682 John Ferrabosco, composer, dies at 56
  • 1833 Michał Ogiński, Polish politician, violinist, the balalaika player, and composer (Farewell to My Homeland), dies at 68
  • 1883 Francesco Schira, composer, dies at 74
  • 1900 Zdenek Fibich, Czech classical composer (Šárka, The Bride of Messina), dies at 49
  • 1914 Aleksander Różycki, Polish pianist, composer, and music teacher dies at 59

BattleMata Hari

1917 Mata Hari [Margaretha Geertruida Zelle], Dutch dancer, courtesan and convicted German WWI spy, executed by firing squad at 41

Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy Mata Hari
Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy
Mata Hari
  • 1955 Fumio Hayasaka, Japanese film score composer (Rashomon; Seven Samurai), dies of tuberculosis at 41

Person of interestCole Porter

1964 Cole Porter, American composer and lyricist ("Anything Goes"; "Night And Day"; "I've Got You Under My Skin"), dies at 73

Composer and Lyricist Cole Porter
Composer and Lyricist
Cole Porter
  • 1965 Carl Hoff, orchestra leader (Music Hall), dies at 60
  • 1968 Franz Reizenstein, German-British pianist, composer, and educator (Concerto Popolare), dies at 57
  • 1985 Ted Steele, American orchestra leader (Cavalcade of Stars), dies at 68
  • 1988 Kaikhosru Shapurji Sorabji [Leon Dudley Sorabji], Parsi-British pianist and composer (Opus clavicembalisticum), dies of heart failure at 96
  • 1993 Ken E Jones, musician (New Amsterdam Symph Orchestra), dies of AIDS at 34
  • 2008 Edie Adams [Edith Enke], American businesswoman, singer, actress and comedian (Murial Cigar), dies at 81
  • 2011 Elizabeth "Betty" Driver, British singer and actress (Coronation Street, Pardon the Expression), dies from pneumonia at 91
  • 2013 Gloria Lynne [Wilson], American jazz vocalist (Dell Tones), dies of a heart attack at 83
  • 2019 Hossein Dehlavi, Persian composer, conductor and teacher (Sarbaz; Plectrum Orchestra), dies of Alzheimer complications at 92
  • 2020 Gordon Haskell, British pop, rock and blues musician (Fleur De Lys; King Crimson, 1970; Harry's Bar), dies of cancer at 74