Deaths in Music in 1939

  • Jan 9 Johann Strauss, Austrian conductor/Royal ball director, dies at 72
  • Jan 10 Julius Bittner, Austria composer (Missa Austriaca), dies at 64
  • Feb 11 Franz Schmidt, Austrian composer, dies at 64
  • Feb 17 Willy Hess, German violinist, dies at 79
  • Feb 18 Ludwig Bonvin, composer, dies at 89
  • Mar 7 Amadeo Roldan, composer, dies at 38
  • Mar 21 Evald Aav, Estonian composer, dies at 39
  • Apr 9 Emilio Serrano y Ruiz, composer, dies at 89
  • Apr 21 Herman Finck, composer, dies at 66
  • Apr 24 John Foulds, English composer, dies at 58
  • Jun 4 Tommy Ladnier, American musician (b. 1900)
  • Jun 16 Chick Webb, American jazz drummer and big band leader (b. 1905)
  • Jun 18 Frans "Sas" van Aerschot, Flemish operetta actor (Paljas), dies at 73
  • Jul 18 Witold Maliszewski, composer, dies at 65
  • Aug 3 Eugust Enna, composer, dies at 80
  • Sep 28 Felicjan Szopski, composer, dies at 74
  • Oct 10 Eleanor Rigby, a real person whose name may have suggested the title to The Beatles song (b. 1895)
  • Oct 16 Carl Henrik Ludolf Nielsen, composer, dies at 63
  • Nov 4 Charles Arnold Tournemire, composer, dies at 69
  • Nov 20 Marie Joseph Leon Desire Paque, composer, dies at 72
  • Dec 1 Max Fiedler, German composer, dies at 79
  • Dec 8 Ernest Schelling, American composer and conductor (Victory Ball), dies at 63
  • Dec 10 Wilhelm Grosz, composer, dies at 45
  • Dec 19 Eric Fogg, English composer, dies under a train at 36
  • Dec 22 Ma Rainey, "Mother of the Blues", US blues singer/composer, dies at 53