Deaths in Music on December 17

  • 1562 Adrian Willaert, Flemish singer/bandmaster/composer, dies at about 82
  • 1651 Wolfgang Schonsleder, composer, dies at 81
  • 1811 John Antes, American composer and missionary , dies at 71
  • 1811 Louis-Abet Deffroy de Reigny, composer, dies at 54
  • 1829 Bernard Jumentier, composer, dies at 80
  • 1870 Giuseppe Saverio Raffaele Mercadante, composer, dies at 75
  • 1913 Stefano Gobatti, Italian composer, dies at 61
  • 1926 Alexandr Dmitriyevich Kastal'sky, composer, dies at 70
  • 1930 Peter Warlock [Philip Heseltine], British composer, dies of a probable suicide at 36
  • 1948 Edgar Istel, German composer, dies at 68
  • 1949 David Stanley Smith, American composer (Merrymount), dies at 72
  • 1965 Tito [Raffaele A] Schipa, Italian tenor/composer (Rondine), dies at 76
  • 1966 Gustaf Paulson, composer, dies at 68
  • 1972 Erwin Dressel, composer, dies at 63
  • 1973 Patrick Hadley, composer, dies at 74
  • 1975 Noble Sissle, jazz musician, dies at 86
  • 1975 Hound Dog Taylor [Theodore Roosevelt], American Chicago blues guitarist and singer, dies of lung cancer at 60
  • 1978 Don Ellis, American jazz band leader (b. 1934)
  • 1982 Philipp Jarnach, composer, dies at 90
  • 1996 Francesco Siciliani, opera administrator, dies at 85
  • 1996 Irving Caesar, American songwriter (Sometimes I'm Happy), dies at 101
  • 1996 Ruby Murray, Irish singer (Softly Softly), dies at 61
  • 1999 Grover Washington Jr., US jazz saxophonist (Mr Magic), dies at 56
  • 1999 Rex Allen, American actor and singer-songwriter known as the "the Arizona Cowboy" (Dr Baxter-Frontier Doctor), dies at 78
  • 2004 Dick Heckstall-Smith, English jazz-blues saxophonist, dies at 70
  • 2008 Freddy Breck, German schlager singer, composer, record producer and news anchor (b. 1942)
  • 2010 Captain Beefheart, American musician (b. 1941)
  • 2011 Cesária Évora "the Barefoot Diva", Cape Verdean morna singer, dies at 70
  • 2017 Kevin Mahogany, American jazz vocalist (Double Rainbow), dies at 59