On This Day

Musicians Who Died on October 20

  • 1676 Christopher Gibbons, English composer, dies at 61
  • 1819 Lambert-Francois Godecharle, Belgian composer and singer, dies at 66
  • 1870 Michael William Balfe, Irish violinist and composer (The Bohemian Girl), dies at 62
  • 1904 Henry Hiles, English composer, dies at 77
  • 1913 Leander Schlegel, Dutch composer, dies at 69
  • 1927 Mikhail Ivanov, Russian composer, dies at 78
  • 1931 Emánuel Moór, Hungarian composer, pianist, and inventor of musical instruments, dies at 68
  • 1944 Gabriel Grovlez, French pianist, conductor (Opéra de Paris, 1914-34), and composer (L'Almanach aux images), dies at 65
  • 1955 Eino Roiha, Finnish composer, dies at 51
  • 1977 Cassie Gaines, American rock singer (Lynyrd Skynyrd), dies in a plane crash at 28
  • 1977 Ronnie Van Zant, American rock musician (Lynyrd Skynyrd), dies in a plane crash at 29
  • 1977 Steve Gaines, American rock vocalist and guitarist (Lynyrd Skynyrd), dies in a plane crash at 28
  • 1983 Merle Travis, American country singer, dies at 75
  • 1992 Werner Torkanowsky, German conductor (New Orleans Symphony, 1963-77; Bangor Symphony, 1981-92), dies of cancer at 66
  • 1994 Robert Medley, English artist and theater designer, dies at 88
  • 1995 Raymond Rasberry, American gospel pianist and singer, dies at 65
  • 1997 Henry Vestine, American guitarist (Canned Heat), dies of heart and respiratory failure at 52
  • 2005 Shirley Horn, American jazz pianist and vocalist (Embers and Ashes), dies from complications of diabetes at 71
  • 2006 Frank Vicari, American jazz, session, and touring saxophonist (Maynard Ferguson; Woody Herman; Tom Waits; Saturday Night Live), dies at 75
  • 2007 Paul Raven, British bass-player (Killing Joke, Ministry), dies of a heart attack at 46
  • 2008 Pierre Sancan, French composer (Sonatine for flute and piano; La Légende de Icare), pianist, conductor, and teacher (Conservatoire de Paris, 1956-85), dies at 92
  • 2010 Harvey Phillips, American tubist (NYC Ballet Orchestra), dies at 80
  • 2011 Barry Feinstein, American portrait photographer and album cover designer (Bob Dylan; Peter, Paul & Mary; Janis Joplin; George Harrison), dies at 80
  • 2014 Pavle Merku, Italian-Slovene composer and ethnomusicologist, dies at 87
  • 2015 Cory Wells [Emil Lewandowski], American rock vocalist (3 Dog Night-Joy to the World), dies at 74
  • 2015 Don Rendell, English jazz musician and arranger, dies at 89