This Day In Music: January 17
January 16 ~ Birthdays/All ~ January 18
 
January 17, 2022 ~ Guitar amplifier builder Alexander Dumble, full name Alexander Howard Dumble, passed away ~ Revered boutique guitar amplifier builder, building as little as two or three amps per year. Dumble amps are among the most expensive and sought-after in the market, second-hand amps fetching up to $150,000. Has catered to artists such as Eric Clapton, Sonny Landreth, Robben Ford, Carlos Santana, Stevie Ray Vaughan, David Lindley, John Mayer, Ben Harper, Kirk Hammett, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Jackson Browne and Joe Bonamassa ~ Dumble was born ca.1945
January 17, 2022 ~ Pop singer, pianist, songwriter Armanda Gama, full name Armando António Capelo Diniz da Gama, passed away ~ Revered in his native Portugal, selling over some 5 million records. Internationally best known for Esta Balada Que Te Dou, Portugal's 1983 Eurovision Songfestival entry reaching 13th place ~ Gama was born in 1954
 
January 17, 2021 ~ Guitarist Joan Eloi Vila, full name Joan Eloi Vila De Paz, passed away ~ In-demand collaborator and backing musician. Member of children's group Els Xipis. Has collaborated with the Barcelona Orchestra on La Salseta Del Poble Sec. Has backed artists such Jimmy Page, Joan Baptista Humet, Joaquin Sabina and Joan Isaac on tours ~ Vila was born in 1959
January 17, 2021 ~ Julian Clifford Mance Jr, commonly known as jazz pianist, composer Junior Mance, passed away in New York, New York, USA ~ Active since the late 1940s. Sideman and leader. Debuted as a leader in 1959. Played with Gene Ammons, Lester Young, Israel Crosby, Buddy Smith, Charlie Parker, Coleman Hawkins, Eddie Lockjaw Davis, Sonny Stitt, Dinah Washington, Clifford Brown, Clark Terry, Maynard Ferguson, Herb Geller, Harold Land, Richie Powell, Keter Betts, George Morrow, Max Roach, Benny Carter, Dexter Gordon, Al Grey, Johnny Griffin, Joe Gordon, Buddy Guy, Red Holloway, José James, Eddie Jefferson, Etta Jones, Irene Kral, Jay Leonhart, Les McCann, Howard McGhee, James Moody, Sandy Mosse, Ken Peplowski, Aretha Franklin, Dizzy Gillespie, Paul Gonsalves, Wilbur Ware, Ben Webster, Leo Wright, Cannonball Adderley, and with others ~ Mance was born in 1928
January 17, 2021 ~ Samuel Louis Nistico, commonly known as composer, arranger Sammy Nestico, passed away ~ Best known as arranger for Count Basie ~ Nestico was born in 1924
 
January 17, 2020 ~ Jazz trumpeter Claudio Roditi passed away in South Orange, New Jersey, USA ~ Leader and sideman. Worked with Klaus Ignatzek, Greg Abate, Michael Carvin, Dizzy Gillespie, Herbie Mann, Mark Murphy, Paquito d'Rivera, Charlie Rouse, McCoy Tyner, Kenny Barron, Michael Franks, Jimmy Heath, Horace Silver, and others ~ Roditi was born in 1946
 
January 17, 2019 ~ Guitarist Eddie Benitez passed away ~ Latin jazz, world music guitarist signed to Fania while still in his teens. Played with Nebula and the Fania All-Stars, Tito Puente, Mongo Santamaria, and others. Benitez would be the first Latin artist to play the legendary punk club CBGB New York ~ Benitez was born in 1956
January 17, 2019 ~ Guitarist Reggie Young passed away in Leiper's Fork, Tennessee, USA ~ Session man for artists including Elvis Presley, BJ Thomas, the Memphis Boys, John Prine, JJ Cale, Willie Nelson, the Box Tops, Jerry Lee Lewis, and George Strait ~ Young was born in 1936
January 17, 2019 ~ Singer, keyboardist, cellist Tara Simmons, full name Tara Emily Simmons, passed away ~ Known for using bedroom, bathroom and kitchen items to sample sounds. Debuted with the EP Pendulum in 2006. A full-length debut album, Spilt Milk, would be released in 2009, and a sophomore album, It's Not Like We're Trying To Move Mountains in 2012 ~ Simmons was born in 1984
 
January 17, 2018 ~ Composer Augusto Polo Campos passed away in Lima, Peru ~ Self-taught composer. Does not play any instrument. Known among others for his composition Lucha Reyes, an international hit for Lucha Reyes, later also covered by Madre Matilda ~ Campos was born in 1932
January 17, 2018 ~ Drummer, vibraphonist, keyboardist Christian Burchard passed away ~ Co-founded Embryo in 1969, once described as “the most eclectic of krautrock bands.” The band has released over 40 albums in ever-changing line-ups with an estimated over 400 musicians at one time or another in its line-up ~ Burchard was born in 1946
 
January 17, 2016 ~ Clarence Henry Reid, commonly known as singer, songwriter, producer Blowfly passed away in Lauderdale Lakes, Florida, USA ~ As a solo artist known for songs such as Nobody But You. Best known for his sexually explicit lyrics, often wordplay on existing phrases or songs. During the 1960s and 1970s Reid also worked as a producer and writer for artists such as Betty Wright, Sam & Dave, Gwen McCrae, Jimmy Bo Horne, Bobby Byrd, KC & the Sunshine Band, and others ~ Reid was born in 1939
January 17, 2016 ~ Terence Dale Griffin, commonly known as drummer, producer Dale Buffin Griffin, passed away ~ Co-founding member of Mott The Hoople, known best for their 1972 David Bowie-produced All The Young Dudes album. Its All The Young Dudes title track would reach the uK top 10. Griffin is also known as a producer, notably producing many of the John Peel sessions from 1981 through 1994 ~ Griffin was born in 1950
January 17, 2016 ~ Trombonist, trumpeter Mic Gillette passed away in Concord, California, USA ~ Best known as longtime member of Tower Of Power hornist. Also a member of Cold Blood and of Sons Of Champlin ~ Gillette was born in 1951
 
January 17, 2014 ~ Jazz saxophonist Joe Evans, full name Joseph James Evans, passed away in Richmond, Virginia, USA ~ Active from the late 1930s through the mid 1960s. In-demand sideman, serving in big bands led by the likes of Jay McShann, Jimmy Forrest, Gene Ramey, Don Redman, and Louis Armstrong ~ Evans was born in 1916
 
January 17, 2013 ~ Betty Ethel Holton, commonly known as soprano singer, stage actress Lizbeth Webb, passed away in London, UK ~ Best remembered for her recording of This Is My Lovely Day. Dance band singer entertaining British troops during World War II. Starred in West End musicals after the war ~ Holton was born in 1926
 
January 17, 2012 ~ Bandleader, producer Johnny Otis passed away in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ Singer, pianist, vibraphonist, percussionist, bandleader, composer, arranger, talent scout, radio DJ, TV host of The Johnny Otis Show. Lovingly dubbed “the Godfather of R&B”, pivotal in American R&B and rock & roll. As a talent scout discovered numerous artists early in their career including Esther Phillips, Etta James, Big Mama Thornton, Johnny Ace, Big Jay McNeely, Jackie Wilson, Little Willie John, Hank Ballard, and the Coasters. Wrote the Royals' 1952 hit Every Beat Of My Heart, later also a hit for Gladys Knight & the Pips. As a bandleader and collaborator known for songs such as Double Crossing Blues and Cupid's Boogie (1950), Call Operator 210 and, reportedly the first recorded mambo, Mambo Boogie (1952), and for his signature song Willie & The Hand Jive (1958). Entered into politics in the early 1960, making a run for a California State Assembly, which he did not win, and serving as deputy chief of staff to Assemblyman Mervyn Dymally. Founded and preached at the New Landmark Community Gospel Church, Santa Rosa, Caligornia. ~ Otis was born in 1921
 
January 17, 2011 ~ Producer, label executive Don Kirshner, full name Donald Clark Kirshner, passed away in Boca Raton, Florida, USA ~ Best known for managing songwriting talent as well as a number of popular pop acts including the Monkees, Kansas, and the Archies. Along with partner Al Nevins co-owner of Aldon Music music publishers, which employed staff songwriters such as Carole King, Gerry Goffin, Neil Sedaka, Neil Diamond, Paul Simon, Phil Spector, Howard Greenfield, Barry Mann, Cynthia Weil, Jack Keller, and others ~ Kirshner was born in 1934
 
January 17, 2007 ~ Gary Philippet, commonly known as keyboardist, guitarist, singer Gary Phillips, passed away ~ Member of Greg Kihn Band, including on the band's biggest hits The Breakup Song (They Don't Write)and Jeopardy. Has also worked with Freedom Highway, Earth Quake, and with Copperhead alongside John Cipollina ~ Philippet was born in 1947
 
January 17, 2004 ~ Czeslaw Juliusz Wydrzycki, commonly known as rock, psychedelic rock, progressive rock, avant-garde jazz singer, songwriter Czeslaw Niemen, passed away in Warsaw, Poland ~ Considered one of the most important Polish singers of the 20th century singing mainly in Polish. Has worked with bands such as Akwarele, Enigmatic, Grupa Niemen, Aerolit, the Silesian Blues Band, and has released solo records starting in the late 1960s ~ Wydrzycki was born in 1939
 
January 17, 2002 ~ Rapper, singer Samuel, full name Samuel Kim Arredondo, born in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ Half of the short-lived hip-hop duo 1Punch, the other half being ONE. After the duo disbanded Samuel participated in the 2017 reality TV talent contest Produce 101 but would fail to make the cut. Would release his solo debut album, Eye Candy, later the same year which would reach the top 10 of the Korean charts
 
January 17, 2001 ~ Flutist, saxophonist Norris Turney passed away in Kettering, Ohio, USA ~ Leader and sideman. Worked with the Jeter-Pillars Orchestra, Tiny Bradshaw, Billy Eckstine, Ray Charles, Duke Ellington, Johnny Hodges, the Savoy Sultans, he Newport All-Stars, Oliver Jackson, Roy Eldridge, Red Richards, Randy Weston, Sam Woodyard, Walter Booker, Jimmy Cobb, and others ~ Turney was born in 1921
 
January 17, 2000 ~ Trumpeter, bandleader Philip Jones passed away ~ Led the Philip Jones Ensemble, one of the first brass ensembles founded in 1951. Also worked with the Royal Philharmonic, the BBC Sympony Orchestra, Elgar Howarth, Ifor James, Raymond Premru, John Fletcher, and others ~ Jones was born in 1928
 
January 17, 1998 ~ David Kimbrough Jr, commonly known as blues, country blues singer, guitarist Junior Kimbrough, passed away in Holly Springs, Mississippi, USA ~ Influenced by Lightnin' Hopkins and Mississippi Fred McDowell. Best known for Keep Your Hands Off Her and All Night Long ~ Kimbrough was born in 1930
 
January 17, 1996 ~ Henry Macleod Robertson, commonly known as bandleader, composer, arranger Harry Robertson, passed away in London, UK ~ Led Lord Rockingham's XI, known for their 1958 hit Hoots Mon. Musical director for British TV. Arranged, conducted, co-wrote stage shows. Arranged for Nick Drake, notably River Man, and for Sandy Denny ~ Robertson was born in 1932
 
January 17, 1994 ~ Jazz trumpeter, saxophonist Noel Chiboust passed away in Pau, France ~ Worked as violinist with Ray Ventura, as trumpeter with Freddy Johnson, Michel Warlop, Coleman Hawkins, Guy Paquinet, and as saxophonist with Bill Coleman, Joe Keyes, Serge Glykson, Raymond Wraskoff, Fred Adison ~ Chiboust was born in 1909
 
January 17, 1992 ~ Charles Venturo, commonly known as saxophonist Charlie Ventura, passed away in Pleasantsville, New Jersey, USA ~ Worked with Gene Krupa, Teddy Powell, Conte Candoli, Bennie Green, Boots Mussulli, Ed Shaughnessy, Kacie Cain, Roy Kral, Buddy Rich, Marty Napoleon, Chubby Jackson, and others ~ Ventura was born in 1916
 
January 17, 1991 ~ Breagh MacKinnon, commonly known as singer, guitarist, songwriter Breagh Isabel, born ~ Formed Port Cities with Dylan Guthro and Carleton Stone, acclaimed for their eponymous 2017 Port Cities debut album. MacKinnon left the band in 2019 to focus on a solo career and write and produce for other artists. Her songs have been recorded by the likes of Banners, Donovan Woods, Classified, Jocelyn Alice, Ria Mae, Mint Simon, and others
 
January 17, 1989 ~ Jazz, soul singer, pianist Kandace Springs born in Nashville, Tennessee, USA ~ Daughter of session singer Scat Springs. Released her full-length debut album Soul Eyes in 2016, produced by Larry Klein and with backing from Terence Blanchard, Dean Parks, Jesse Harris and Vinnie Colaiuta. Has also worked with Karriem Riggins, Roy Hargrove, Ghostface Killah, Black Violin, Lang Lang, Ambrose Akinmusire, and with the Kings Of Tomorrow
 
January 17, 1987 ~ Pop, R&B, dance-pop singer Sian Charlesworth born in Bolton, UK ~ Member of girl group Parade, known for their 2010 debut single Louder which reached the UK top 10. The band has opened for Shakira, Alexandra Burke, and for Shayne Ward in the early 2010s
 
January 17, 1986 ~ Indie folk, folk rock drummer, keyboardist, mandolinist, songwriter Jeremiah Fraites born in Ramsey, New Jersey, USA ~ Co-founding member of the Lumineers, known for songs such as Ophelia, Cleopatra, Gloria, Life In The City and their best-known Ho Hey, the latter a Billboard top 10 hit in 2012
 
January 17, 1984 ~ Adam Richard Wiles, commonly known as producer, DJ Calvin Harris born in Dumfries, UK ~ Internationally best known for his collaboration with Rihanna on the 2011 international hit We Found Love. Other well-known songs include Acceptable In The 80s, I'm Not Alone, Bounce featuring Kelis, Feel So Close, Let's Go featuring Ne Yo, Sweet Nothing featuring Florence Welch, Summer, Outside featuring Ellie Goulding, My Way, Feels featuring Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry & Big Sean, Giant featuring Rag'n'bone Man, and others
 
January 17, 1982 ~ Metalcore, post-hardcore singer Alex Varkatzas born ~ Co-founding member, lead singer of Atreyu, remaining with the band from 1998 through 2020. Collaborated with Brandan Schieppati in the side project I Am War, releasing the Outlive You All in 2012. Founded Dead Icarus in 2021
January 17, 1982 ~ Country singer Amanda Wilkinson born in Belleville, Canada ~ Member of sibling country band the Wilkinsons, known for a string of late 1990s, early 2000s songs such as 26 Cents, Fly (The Angel Song), Boy Oh Boy and Shame On Me, all of which reached the top 10 of the Canadian country charts. Amanda has also recorded as a solo artist, releasing a full-length album, the eponymous Amanda Wilkinson, in 2005. Also founded a new country group, the Small Town Pistols, with her brother Tyler Wilkinson in 2012
January 17, 1982 ~ Kristina Beaty, commonly known as roots music singer, violinist, songwriter Kristina Train born in New York, New York, USA ~ Classically trained from an early age. Draws from country, soul, gospel, blues, folk, jazz. Member of soul band the Looters, backing singer Rosa King. Debuted as a solo artist with the Jimmy Hogarth-produced Spilt Milk album in 2009. Has collaborated with Ed Harcourt, Scrapomatic, Herbie Hancock, Marc Cohn, and others
 
January 17, 1981 ~ William Ray Norwood Jr, commonly known as singer, rapper and reality star Ray J, born ~ Brother of Brandy
 
January 17, 1980 ~ Actress, model, singer, songwriter Zooey Deschanel, full name Zooey Claire Deschanel, born in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ Best known as an TV and film actress, debuting in the the 1999 film Mumford. Performed in the jazz cabaret act If All The Stars Were Pretty Babies alongside actress Samantha Shelton. Formed the duo She & Him with M Ward, releasing their debut album Volume One in 2008
 
January 17, 1978 ~ Alternative rock singer Ricky Wilson, full name Charles Richard Wilson, born in Keighley, UK ~ Co-founding member, frontman of Kaiser Chiefs, known for songs such as Oh My God, I Predict A Riot, Ruby and Never Miss A Beat, all of which reached the British top 10
 
January 17, 1975 ~ Elzadie Wallace, commonly known as blues singer, songwriter Elzadie Robinson, passed away in Flint, Michigan, USA ~ Known for a number of late 1920s recordings, some of them self-penned, such as Barrelhouse Man, Sawmill Blues, Wicked Man, Cheatin' Daddy and Arkansas Mill Blues ~ Wallace was born ca.1900
 
January 17, 1973 ~ Songwriter, lyricist Ted Koehler passed away in Santa Monica, California, USA ~ Frequent songwriter collaborator of Harold Arlen. Also worked with Rube Bloom, Harry Warren, Sammy Fain. Well-known songs co-written by Koehler include Stormy Weather (Ethel Waters, Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday), Get Happy (Ruth Etting, Ted Wallace, Frankie Trumbauer), Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea (Aida Ward, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald), When The Sun Comes Out (Jimmy Dorsey, Don Cherry, Mel Tormé), I Gotta Right To Sing The Blues (Lillian Shade, Benny Goodman, Sam Cooke), and Wrap Your Troubles In Dreams (Bing Crosby, Mildred Bailey, Erskine Hawkins) ~ Koehler was born in 1894
 
January 17, 1972 ~ Matt Hales, commonly known as songwriter, producer Aqualung, born in Southampton, UK ~ Worked with Lianne La Havas, Bat For Lashes, Tom Chaplin, Mika, Daniel Wilson, Kine Grannis, Andreya Triana, the Fray, Jason Mraz, Reignwolf, Sara Bareilles, Jacob Banks, Paloma Faith, Disclosure, Alex Clare, Mansionair, Mikky Ekko, For King & Country, Tiësto, Leona Lewis, Brooke Fraser, Christophe Willem, Boyzone, Amy Meredith, Lucy Schwartz, Diane Birch, Tom Chaplin, Laura Jansen, Katherine McPhee, Birdy, Ginny Blackmore, Matt Nathanson, Ximena Sannana, Lyonheart, and others
January 17, 1972 ~ R&B, pop singer Ken Hirai born in Osaka, Japan ~ Debuted in 1995 with the album Un-balanced. Broke through in 2000 with the single Lakuen of his The Changing Same and has recorded to commercial success since, scoring numerous No.1 hits in Japan with every album reaching top 5 of the album charts
 
January 17, 1971 ~ Robert James Ritchie, commonly known as singer, rapper, songwriter Kid Rock, born in Romeo, Michigan, USA ~ Debuted in 1990 with the Grits Sandwiches For Breakfast album. Merges elements of hip-hop, country, rock and heavy metal. Broke through with the album Devil Without A Cause in 1998 spawning the hit single Cowboy, considered a pioneering song in the country rap genre. Also known for songs such as Picture and All Summer Long
January 17, 1971 ~ Jonathan Smith, commonly known as songwriter, singer and rapper Lil' Jon, born in Atlanta, Georgia, USA ~ Influenced by 2 Live Crew, 8Ball & MJG, Three 6 Mafia, OutKast, Geto Boys, UGK, NWA, Dr Dre, and Sir Mix-a-lot. Fronted rap group East Side Boyz. Instrumental in development of the hip-hop subgenre crunk. In-demand collaborator and producer, known for hits such as his own Get Low, Ciara's Goodies, Baby Bash's Cyclone, Petey Pablo's Freek-a-leek, and Usher's Yeah
 
January 17, 1970 ~ Pianist, singer Billy Stewart, full name William Larry Stewart, passed away in Neuse River, North Carolina, USA ~ Popular 1960s R&B pianist known for songs such as Fat Boy, Reap What You Sow, Strange Feeling, I Do Love You, Summertime, and Secret Love ~ Stewart was born in 1937
January 17, 1970 ~ Dejuan Walker, commonly known as rapper Suga Free, born in Pomona, California, USA ~ Pimp and rapper. Debuted in 1997 with the DJ Quik-produced Street Gospel album. Has collaborated with Xzibit, Snoop Dogg, Pimpin' Young, Mac Dre, Dru Down, E-40, B-Legit, Lil' Jon, Kurupt, Schoolboy Q, Daz Dillinger, and others
 
January 17, 1965 ~ Jazz pianist Joe Robichaux passed away in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA ~ Worked with Tig Chambers, Papa Celestin, Earl Humphrey, Lee Collins, the Black Eagles, Jones & Collins Astoria Hot Eight, Christina Gray, Eugene Ware, Alfred Guichard, Gene Porter, Ward Crosby, Chick Bullock, George Lewis, and others ~ Robichaux was born in 1900
 
January 17, 1963 ~ Jazz pianist Cyrus Chestnut born in Baltimore, Maryland, USA ~ Leader and sideman. Worked closely with bassist Michael Hawkins and drummer Neal Smith. Has also worked with Christian McBride, Clarence Penn, Steve Kirby, Antonio Hart, Joe Lovano, Eric Alexander, Michael Brecker, Kenny Garrett, Wycliffe Gordon, Gary Bartz, Russell Malone, Dezron Douglas, Gerald Albright, Carl Allen, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ronnie Burrage, Betty Carter, Freddy Cole, Carla Cook, Dr John, Roy Hargrove, Vincent Herring, Wynton Marsalis, George Mraz, Tim Warfield, and others
January 17, 1963 ~ Jazz singer Kate McGarry born in Hyannis, Massachusetts, USA ~ Known among others for jazz interpretations of pop songs originally by Peter Gabriel, Björk and Joni Mitchell. Member of Moss. Has worked with Kurt Elling, Fred Hersch, John Hollenbeck, Maria Schneider, Brian Byrne, Mike Holober, Kenny Loggins, and others
 
January 17, 1962 ~ Ariane Danielle Forster, commonly known as singer, keyboardist Ari Up, born in Munich, West Germany ~ Best known as member of the Slits, co-founded with drummer Palmolive. Brought the reggae and dub influences to the band. Member of the New Age Steppers. Has collaborated with Lee Scratch Perry, Mark Stewart, Vic Ruggiero, and others ~ Forster passed away in 2010
January 17, 1962 ~ Jazz, swing trombonist Claude Jones passed away in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ Worked with mcKinney's Cotton Pickers, Fletcher Henderson, Don Redman, Alex Hill, Chick Webb, Cab Calloway, Jelly Roll Morton, Louis Armstrong, Sidney Bechet, Coleman Hawkins, Zutty Singleton, Joe Sullivan, Benny Carter, Duke Ellington, and others ~ Jones was born in 1901
 
January 17, 1958 ~ Reggae, lovers rock singer, songwriter, actress Janet Kay born in Willesden, UK ~ Best known for Silly Games, a 1979 top 10 hit across Europe
 
January 17, 1956 ~ Pop, new wave, blue-eyed soul singer, guitarist, bassist, songwriter Paul Young, full name Paul Antony Young, born in Manchester, UK ~ Previously frontman of Kat Kool & the Kool Cats, the Streetband and the Q-Tips. Sang backup on the Squeeze single Black Coffee In Bed. Rose to fame in the 1980s as a solo singer, debuting in 1983 with the album No Parlez and scoring hits with songs such as Wherever I Lay My Hat, Love Of The Common People, I'm Gonna Tear You Down and Every Time You Go Away. Duetted with Zucchero on Senza Una Donna (Without A Woman) and with Paul Carrack on Don't Dream It's Over
 
January 17, 1955 ~ Singer, guitarist, songwriter Steve Earle born in Fort Monroe, Virginia, USA ~ Father of singer Justin Townes Earle. Rose to fame with his 1986 debut album Guitar Town and has recorded well over a dozen albums since. Had his songs recorded by Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Levon Helm, Travis Tritt, Vince Gill, Patty Loveless, Shawn Colvin, Bob Seger, Emmylou Harris, and others. Known for songs such as Guitar Town, Goodbye's All We've Got Left, I Ain't Never Satisfied, Copperhead Road, Transcedental Blues, Days Aren't Long Enough with Allison Moorer, and others
 
January 17, 1953 ~ Blues guitarist, singer Carlos Johnson born in Chicago, Illinois, USA ~ Worked with Billy Branch, the Sons of Blues, Son Seals, Valerie Wellington, Otis Rush, and others. Released his solo debut, My Name Is Carlos Johnson, in 2001 and has been recording since
 
January 17, 1952 ~ Singer, producer, actor, songwriter Ryuichi Sakamoto born in Tokyo, Japan ~ Both as a solo artist and as a member of Yellow Magic Orchestra, along with bandmates Haruomi Hosono and Yuhikoro Takahashi, considered a pioneer of electronic music. Especially acclaimed for his 1978 solo album A Thousand Knives and 1980's B-2 Unit, the latter cited as a major influence on electro and hip-hop
 
January 17, 1951 ~ Jazz, pop singer Patti Page records Mockin' Bird Hill in New York, New York ~ Written by Calle Jularbo and George Vaughn Horton. Closely based on a Swedish waltz, Livet i Finnskogarna, recorded by Jularbo in 1915. First recorded by the Pinetoppers and subsequently by Les Paul & Mary Ford. Page skipped her flight while on a stopover after a Chicago nightclub performance, Mercury Records A&R man Art Talmadge had just learned of the song and called the gate for Page to wait while he rushed over with a portable record player to play the Paul/Ford recording. Talmadge suggested she'd record the song immediately when she got to New York, and so she did. The single would reach No.2 the next month. Later recorded by numerous others including George Jones and Gene Pitney on their 1965 collaborative album It's Country Time Again, by disco outfit Silver Convention member Linda Thompson in 1979 and by Dutch reggae band Roots Syndicate in 1993 used in a Centraal Beheer commercial
 
January 17, 1950 ~ Singer Cheryl Bentyne born in Mount Vernon, Washington, USA ~ Best known as member of the Manhattan Transfer, joining the band in 1979 as replacement for Laurel Massé. First appeared on the album Extensions. Has also recorded as a solo artist, starting with 1992's Something Cool produced by Mark Isham. Has worked with Kenny Barron, David Fathead Newman, Chuck Mangione, Rob Wasserman, and others
 
January 17, 1945 ~ R&B singer William Poogie Hart born in Washington DC, USA ~ Lead singer of the Delfonics, a key band in late 1960s, early 1970s soul, Philly soul. Most of the band's material was written by Hart and producer Thom Bell. Well-known songs include Didn't I Blow Your Mind This Time, La La Means I Love You, I'm Sorry and Ready Or Not Here I Come (Can't Hide From Love). The latter, a 1968 Billboard R&B top 20 hit in its original form, would be used as the basis for the chorus of Ready Or Not, a mid-1990s hit for the Fugees. Others who have covered or sampled their songs include Booker T & the MG's, the Jackson 5, Aretha Franklin, and Notorious BIG ~ Hart passed away in 2022
 
January 17, 1944 ~ Singer, actress, songwriter Françoise Hardy, full name Françoise Madeleine Hardy, born in Paris, France ~ Leading figure of yé-yé movement known for songs such as Tous Les Garçons Et Les Filles
 
January 17, 1943 ~ Tenor saxophonist Billy Harper born in Houston, Texas, USA ~ Influenced by John Coltrane. Leader and sideman. Member of the Cookers. Has worked with Art Blakey, Elvin Jones, Max Roach, Randy Weston, Louis Armstrong, Horace Arnold, Joe Bonner, Stanley Cowell, Charles Earland, Gil Evans, Lee Morgan, Woody Shaw, Leon Thomas, Malachi Thompson, and others
January 17, 1943 ~ Ezekiel Christopher Montanez, commonly known as singer, guitarist Chris Montez, born in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ Best known for his 1962 single Let's Dance, which reached Billboard top 10. His early recordings would tend to rock & roll, in later years he would venture into soft ballads and easy listening evidenced in releases such as The More I See You and Call Me
January 17, 1943 ~ Composer, experimental electronic musician Malcolm Clarke passed away ~ Best known as member of the BB Radiophonic Workshop from 1969 to 1994 ~ Clarke passed away in 2003
 
January 17, 1938 ~ Jazz saxophonist, composer Alf Kjellman born in Tromsø, Norway ~ Worked with Kjell Karlsen, Ditler Eckhoff, Atle Hammer, Frode Thingnæs, Mikkel Flagstad, Eilif Holm, Einar Iversen, Erik Amundsen, Egil Johansen, Kjell Bartholdsen, Ola Calmeyer, Søyr, Frode Nymph, Harald Johnsen, Inge Stangvik, Jørn Øien, Ole Jacob Hansen, Øystein B Blix, and others ~ Kjellman passed away in 2010
 
January 17, 1937 ~ Jazz guitarist, composer Ted Dunbar born in Port Arthur, Texas, USA ~ Worked with Gil Evans, Roy Haynes, Jimmy Heath, Sonny Rollins, McCoy Tyner, Tony Williams, Gene Ammons, Kenny Barron, Richard Davis, Curtis Fuller, Willis Jackson, Charles McPherson, Buddy Montgomery, David Fathead Newman, Don Patterson, Sam Rivers, Bernard Pretty Purdie, and others
 
January 17, 1934 ~ Cedar Anthony Walton Jr, commonly known as hard bop pianist, composer Cedar Walton, born in Dallas, Texas, USA ~ Revered pianist who composed several jazz standards including Mosaic, Bolivia, and Fantasy In D. Walton cited Nat King Cole, Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk, and Art Tatum as major influences. Walton played with artists such as Leo Wright, Don Ellis, Eddie Harris, Art Blakey, Kenny Dorham, JJ Johnson, Gigi Gryce, the Jazztet (led by Benny Golson and Art Farmer), Freddie Hubbard, Wayne Shorter, Sonny Criss, Pat Martino, Eric Kloss, Charles McPherson, Abbey Lincoln, Lee Morgan, Etta James, and others ~ Walton passed away in 2013
 
January 17, 1933 ~ Lolanda Cristina Gigliotti, commonly known as singer, actress Dalida, born in Cairo, Egypt ~ Won the 1954 Miss Egypt beauty pageant and would go on to pursue a singing career, especially popular in France, selling over 150 millions records ~ Gigliotti passed away in 1987
 
January 17, 1931 ~ Jazz, R&B clarinetist, saxophonist Clifford Solomon born in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ Active since the late 1940s Solomon has played with T-Bone Walker, Pee Wee Crayton, Roy Porter, Lionel Hampton, Floyd Ray, Art Farmer, Annie Ross, Gigi Gryce, Clifford Brown, Charles Brown, Roy Milton, Onzy Matthews, Ike & Tina Turner, Johnny Otis, Lou Rawls, Preston Love, Mel Brown, Maxine Weldon, Billy Brooks, Esther Phillips, John Mayall, and with Big Joe Turner ~ Solomon passed away in 2004
January 17, 1931 ~ Engineer, producer Jim Dickson born in Los Angeles, California ~ Discovered the Dillards, producing the albvums Back Porch Bluegrass, Live Almost and Pickin' And Fiddlin'. Worked with Lord Buckley, the Greenbriar Boys, Dian James, Glen Campbell, the Hillmen, the Byrds, the Flying Burrito Brothers, the Barracudas, and others ~ Dickson passed away in 2011
January 17, 1931 ~ Edith Zuser, commonly known as schlager, folk singer Lolita born in St Pölten, Austria ~ Best known for Seemann Deine Heimat Ist Das Meer, an international hit including in America in 1960. It would be translated to various other languages including English, French and Dutch, and be covered by numerous artists. Notable covers include versions by Petula Clark, Anne Shelton, Caterina Valente ~ Zuser passed away in 2010
 
January 17, 1929 ~ Guitarist Grady Martin, full name Thomas Grady Martin, born in Chapel Hill, Tennessee, USA ~ In-demand session musician. Member of the Nashville A-Team. Worked with artists such as Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, Marty Robbins (El Paso), Johnny Burnette, Loretta Lynn (Coal Miner's Daughter), Don Woody, Arlo Guthrie, Sammi Smith (Help Me Make It Through The Night), Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Bing Crosby, and others ~ Martin passed away in 2001
 
January 17, 1927 ~ Eartha Mae Keith, commonly known as jazz, torch singer, actress Eartha Kitt born in South Carolina, USA ~ Known for hits such as Uska Dara, I Want To Be Evil, Just An Old Fashioned Gil, Santa Baby, Where Is My Man and perhaps her best known C'Est Si Bon ~ Kitt passed away in 2008
 
January 17, 1921 ~ Choral conductor Lorna Cooke DeVaron born ~ One of the most important choral conductors of the 20th century. Premiered works by Benjamin Britten, Leonard Bernstein, Samuel Barber, Aaron Copland, Irving Fine, Gunther Schuller, Daniel Pinkham, and others ~ DeVaron passed away in 2018
 
January 17, 1920 ~ Arranger, pianist, bandleader George Hendleman, commonly known as George Handy, born in New York, New York, USA ~ Worked with Boyd Raeburn, Zoot Sims, Alvino Rey Orchestra, and others ~ Hendleman passed away in 1997
January 17, 1920 ~ Accordionist, flutist John Meredith, full name John Stanley Raymond Meredith, born in Australia ~ Pioneer folklorist, author, collector of Australian folk music. Founded the Heathcote Bushwhackers ~ Meredith passed away in 2001
 
January 17, 1918 ~ Singer Irene Daye born in Lawrence, Massachusetts, USA ~ Big band singer who worked with Jan Murphy, Mal Hallett, most notably Gene Krupa, and with Charlie Spivak ~ Daye passed away in 1971
 
January 17, 1910 ~ Jazz, bebop drummer Big Sid Catlett born in Evansville, Indiana, USA ~ One of the most versatile drummers of his generation. Influenced by Zutty Singleton, Baby Dodds, Jimmy Bertrand. Worked with Benny Carter, mcKinney's Cotton Pickers, the Jeter-Pillars Orchestra, Fletcher Henderson, Don Redman, Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, Ruth Brown, and others ~ Catlett passed away in 1951
 
January 17, 1896 ~ Banjoist, bandleader Harry Reser, full name Harrison Franklin Reser, born in Piqua, Ohio, USA ~ Regarded by some as the best banjoist of his day. In 1934 recorded the first version of Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town, written by J Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie. The song would become a Holiday classic and over time be recorded by over 200 artists. As a composer Reser is best known for The Cat And The Dog, Cracker Jack and Lolly Pops, all written for tenor banjo. Reser has collaborated with artists such as the Clicquot Club Eskimos, Ben Selvin, Benny Krueger, Sam Lanin, Nathan Glantz, Mike Markel, Peg LaCentra, Ray Heatherton, Bing Crosby, Peggy Lee, and others ~ Reser passed away in 1965