Musicians Who Died on February 15

  • 1621 Michael Praetorius [Schultze], German organist and composer (Syntagma; In Dulce Jubilo), dies at 49
  • 1701 Adam Drese, German Baroque viola da gamba player, composer, and kapellmeister dies at 80
  • 1744 František Václav Míča, Czech conductor and composer, dies at 49
  • 1761 Carlo Cecere, Italian composer, dies at 54
  • 1778 Johann Gottlieb Gorner, German composer, dies at 80
  • 1832 Hardenack Otto Conrad Zinck, German-Danish composer, dies at 85
  • 1857 Mikhail Glinka, Russian composer (Kamarinskaya; Ruslan and Ludmilla), dies at 53
  • 1885 Leopold Damrosch, German-American composer, and conductor (New York Oratorio Society; New York Symphony), dies at 52
  • 1910 Albert Fuchs, Swiss-German composer, dies at 51
  • 1916 Nikolay Nikolayevich Lodizhensky, Russian diplomat and composer, dies at 73
  • 1918 Vernon Castle [Blyth] English-American vaudeville, stage, and screen ballroom dancer, and fighter pilot, dies in a plane crash at 30
  • 1921 Hans Haym, German conductor, dies at 60
  • 1924 Lionel Monckton, British composer (Edwardian musical comedy), dies at 62
  • 1942 Guido Adler, Bohemian-Austrian musicologist (Still in the Music), dies at 91
  • 1942 Stanislav Binički, Serbian composer, dies at 69
  • 1943 William Victor Harris, American composer, dies at 73
  • 1946 Louis "Putney" Dandridge American jazz pianist and singer (Heatin' Up Harlem), dies at 44
  • 1961 Jack Whiting, American actor and singer (Marge & Gower Champion Show), dies at 59

Nat King ColeNat King Cole (1919-1965)

American jazz pianist and pop vocalist ("Unforgettable", "Mona Lisa"), dies of cancer at 49

  • 1968 Little Walter [Marion Walter Jacobs], American blues singer-songwriter and harmonica player, dies as the result of a fight at 37
  • 1969 Charles "Pee Wee" Russell, American jazz clarinet and saxophone player, dies at 62
  • 1971 Marian Koval, Soviet Russian composer, dies at 63
  • 1974 Kurt Magnus Atterberg, Swedish composer, dies at 86
  • 1978 Alex Bradford, American gospel composer and singer (Your Arms Too Short To Box With God), dies of a stroke at 51
  • 1981 Karl Richter, German composer and conductor, dies at 54
  • 1981 Mike Bloomfield, American musician (Electric Flag), dies of a drug overdose at 37
  • 1981 Thomas Beversdorf, American classical composer ("Of Walruses, Cheesecake, and Morse Code"), and educator (Indiana University, 1949-80), dies of asthma complications at 56

Ethel MermanEthel Merman (1908-1984)

American Tony and Grammy Award-winning stage and screen singer ("There's No Business Like Show Business"), and actress (It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World), dies of brain cancer at 76

  • 1987 Jimmy Holiday, American soul singer ("How Can I Forget"; Baby I Love You"), and songwriter ("Put A Little Love In Your Heart"), dies of heart failure at 42
  • 1987 Osmo Lindeman, Finnish jazz pianist, film score composer, pedagogue, and electronic music pioneer, dies at 57
  • 1992 William Schuman, American composer (Pulitzer Prize, 1943), and administrator (Juilliard, 1945-61; Lincoln Center, 1961-68), dies at 81
  • 1993 George Wallington [Giacinto Figlia], Italian-American jazz pianist, composer ("Lemon Drop"; "Godchild"), and bandleader, dies at 68
  • 1996 Margaret Courtenay, Welsh actress, singer and entertainer (Royal Flash, Duet for One), dies of cancer at 72
  • 1998 Arthur Cohn, American composer and writer on music, dies at 87
  • 1999 Big L [Lamont Coleman], American rapper (Lifestylez Ov Da Poor & Dangerous), murdered at 24 after being shot 9 times in the face and chest in a drive-by shooting
  • 1999 Jan Masseus, Dutch composer, dies at 86
  • 2001 Boris Goldovsky, Russian-American conductor, educator (Tanglewood, 1942-62), and opera broadcast commentator (Metropolitan Opera, 1946-85), dies at 92
  • 2005 Pierre Bachelet, French singer and songwriter, dies of lung cancer at 60
  • 2006 Andrey Petrov, Soviet-Russian classical and film score composer (Creation of the World), dies at 75
  • 2007 Ray Evans, American lyricist ("To Each His Own"; "Mona Lisa"; "Silver Bells"; "Mister Ed"), dies at 92
  • 2009 Joe Cuba [Gilberto Calderón], Puerto-Rican-American salsa and boogaloo conga player and bandleader, dies at 77
  • 2010 Adam Kaczyński, Polish pianist and composer, dies at 76
  • 2010 Art Van Damme, American jazz accordionist (Chicago Jazz), dies at 89
  • 2012 Charles Anthony [Caruso], American tenor, dies from kidney failure at 82
  • 2016 George Gaynes, Dutch-Finnish-American singer, stage and screen actor (Tootsie; Police Academy; General Hospital), dies at 98
  • 2016 Louis Lane, American conductor (Akron, 1959-83; Lake Erie Opera, 1964-72), and educator (Cleveland Institute, 1982-2004), dies at 72
  • 2016 Vanity [Denise Matthews], Canadian R&B singer, Prince protege ("Nasty Girl"), actress (52 Pick Up), and evangelist dies of kidney failure at 57
  • 2018 Vaclovas Paketūras, Lithuanian composer (The Sun Is Setting; Polyphonic Pieces), dies at 90
  • 2019 Kofi Burbridge, American blues-rock keyboardist and flute player (Derek Trucks Band, 1999-2019; Tedeschi Trucks Band, 2010-2019), dies of heart issues at 57
  • 2021 (Juan) "Johnny" Pacheco, Dominican-American salsa flutist, bandleader, composer, record producer and label executive (Fania Records), dies at 85 [1]
  • 2022 (Alokesh) "Bappi" Lahiri, Indian disco and film music composer, singer, and record producer, dies of a lung infection at 69