This Day In Music: July 17
July 16 ~ Birthdays/All ~ July 18
July 17, 2024 ~ Harry Peter Traum, commonly known as folk singer, guitarist, songwriter Happy Traum, passed away ~ Traum began playing guitar and banjo in his teens, including taking lessons from noted blues musician Brownie McGhee. Though Traum never became a household name like his contemporaries Pete Seeger, Phil Ochs, and longtime friend and collaborator Bob Dylan, Traum is considered a key figure on the Greenwich Village scene pivotal to the development of folk and one of the most gifted musicians to keep the genre alive past its heyday. Reportedly, Traum with his early 1960s group the New World Singers was the first to release a version of Bob Dylan's Don't Think Twice It's Allright. Traum also regularly recorded with his brother guitarist Artie Traum, the siblings perhaps best remembered for their highly acclaimed 1970 Happy & Artie Traum album. Over the course of his lengthy career, Traum has recorded as a solo artist starting with Relax Your Mind released in 1975, played with several groups, notably the Woodstock Mountain Revue, and served as contributing writer for magazines such as Rolling Stone, Acoustic Guitar, and Guitar Player ~ Traum was born in 1938
July 17, 2024 ~ Folk singer Heather Wood, full name Arielle Heather Wood, passed away in New York, New York, USA ~ Member of the Young Tradition alongside Peter Bellamy and Royston Wood, no relation. The trio recorded three albums through the late 1960s, The Young Tradition, So Cheerfully Round, and Galleries, and unlike other British folk outfits of the era are known for their traditional material and stripped down sound. The group would split in 1969 over artistic differences, with Bellamy wanting to pursue pure traditional music. Heather and Royston continued to work together, the duo especially known for their aptly titled 1977 No Relation album ~ Wood was born in 1945
July 17, 2023 ~ João Donato de Oliveira Neto, commonly known as pianist, accordionist, composer João Donato, passed away in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil ~ Leader and sideman. Helped shape Brazilian jazz and bossa nova. Active since the early 1950s. Well-known songs include Sambou Sambou, Vento Do Canavial (Sugarcane Breeze), Amazonas (Amazon), and Até Quem Sabe. Especially acclaimed for his 1965 The New Sound Of Brazil album. Has guested on albums by Mongo Santamaria, Astrud Gilberto (The Astrud Gilberto Album), Sérgio Mendes, Nana Caymmi, Gal Costa, Caetano Veloso, Eddie Palmieri (Eddie's Concerto), and Milton Nascimento ~ De Oliveira was born in 1934
July 17, 2023 ~ Marc Holtz, commonly known as musical director, bandleader, singer, songwriter Marc Herrand, passed away in Strasbourg, France ~ Adopted the pseudonym Herrand to escape enlistment in the Hitler Youth. Co-founder and musical director of vocal harmony group Les Compagnons De La Chanson, a group best known for backing Edith Piaf on her 1946 recording Les Trois Cloches. The group have also backed Piaf on songs such as Celine, Dans Les Prison De Nantes, and C'Est Pour Ca. Herrand would depart the group in the early 1950s to become conductor, pianist, arranger for Yvette Giraud, whom he would later marry. The couple would publish their autobiography, La Route Enchantée, in 2005 ~ Holtz was born ca.1925
July 17, 2021 ~ Pianist, composer Dolores Claman, full name Dolores Olga Claman, passed away in Spain ~ Best known for composing The Hockey Theme, long used as the theme song for CBC's A Hockey Night In Canada TV show, and for A Place To Stand, initially used for the film of the same name that accompanied Montreal Expo '67 and over time regarded as Ontario's unofficial provincial anthem ~ Claman was born in 1927
July 17, 2021 ~ Rock, progressive violinist, tambourinist, singer Robby Steinhardt, full name Robert Eugene Steinhardt, passed away ~ Co-lead singer of Kansas from 1973 to 1982, rejoining in 1997. Present on the band's best-known including Carry On Wayward Son, Point Of Know Return and Dust In The Wind. Also worked with Steinhardt-Moon and with the Stormbringer Band ~ Steinhardt was born in 1950
July 17, 2016 ~ Singer, songwriter Fred Tomlinson passed away ~ Best known for his association with Monty Python, writing and singing, along with his backing unit the Fred Tomlinson Singers, several of their songs including The Lumberjack Song and Spam ~ Tomlinson was born in 1927
July 17, 2016 ~ Larry Wayne Stevens, commonly known as producer, songwriter Gary S Paxton, passed away in Branson, Missouri, USA ~ First gained attention as the “Flip” in the duo Skip & Flip, the other being Clyde Battin, scoring the hits It Was I and Cherry Pie before splitting up. Would go on to work with the Association, Paul Revere & the Raiders, the Four Freshmen and with Tommy Roe. Perhaps best remembered for producing two unexpected hits, namely Alley Oop for the Hollywood Argyles in 1960 and Monster Mash for Bobby Pickett in 1962 ~ Stevens was born in 1939
July 17, 2015 ~ Pianist John Taylor passed away in Segre, France ~ Co-founded Azimuth, teaming up with Norma Winstone and Kenny Wheeler. Also worked with Jan Garbarek, Enrico Rava, Gil Evans, Lee Konitz, Charlie Mariano, Tony Coe, Steve Argüelles, Maria Pia de Vito, Ralph Towner, Joey Baron, Marc Johnson, Stan Sulzmann, John Surman, Chris Pyne, Chris Laurence, Mick Hutton, Palle Danielsson, Martin France, Arild Andersen, Stan Tracey, Tore Brunborg, Hayden Chisholm, Graham Collier, Paolo Fresu, Mike Gibbs, Evan Parker, Cleo Laine, Johnny Dankworth, Frank Ricotti, Ronnie Scott, Alan Skidmore, Joe Lovano, Louis Stewart, Barre Phillips, Steve Swallow, Eric Vloeimans, Miroslav Vitous, and others ~ Taylor was born in 1942
July 17, 2013 ~ Jazz vibraphonist, percussionist, composer Peter Appleyard passed away in Eden Mills, Canada ~ Leader and sideman. Toured with Benny Goodman in the 1970s. Has also worked with Duke Ellington, Skitch Henderson, Peanuts Hucko, Sherrie Maricle, Bucky Pizzarelli, Lenny Solomon, Slam Stewart, Mel Tormé, and others ~ Appleyard was born in 1928
July 17, 2012 ~ Contemporary, electronic composer, producer Ilhan Mimaroglu, full name Ilhan Kemaleddin Mimaroglu, passed away in Manhattan, New York, USA ~ Staff producer for Atlantic Records. Notably worked with Freddie Hubbard, produced Charles Mingus's Changes One and Changes Two, and contributed to the soundtrack of Fellini's Fellini Satyricon ~ Mimaroglu was born in 1926
July 17, 2011 ~ Rock & roll, R&B, pop saxophonist, singer Gil Bernal passed away in Glendale, California, USA ~ In-demand session and touring saxophonist. First gained attention backing Lionel Hampton in the 1950s, alongside Quincy Jones and Jimmy Scott. Notable credits include the Coasters' 1957 hit single Searchin', the Robins' Riot In Cell Block No.9, and Duane Eddy's Rebel Rouser. Has also recorded a number of 1950s singles as a solo artist, notably The Eyes Of Love, It Sure Is Groovy and This Is Worth Fighting For ~ Bernal was born in 1931
July 17, 2010 ~ Guitarist, mandolinist, bassist Fred Carter Jr passed away in Nashville, Tennessee, USA ~ Among a group of first call session musicians collectively dubbed the Wrecking Crew. Worked with Slim Whitman, Floyd Cramer, Sonny James, Hank Snow, Faron Young, Johnny Horton, Jim Reeves, Roy Orbison, Dale Hawkins, Ronnie Hawkins, Simon & Garfunkel (The Boxer), Bob Dylan, John Anderson (I'm Just An Old Chunk Of Coal), Levon Helm, Booker T Jones, Dr John, Waylon Jennings (I've Always Been Crazy), Donald Duck Dunn, Joan Baez, Ronnie Hawkins, and Kenny Rogers ~ Carter was born in 1933
July 17, 2006 ~ Swing drummer Johnny Blowers, fuill name John G Blowers Jr, passed away ~ Worked with Bunny Berigan, Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, Perry Como, Bing Crosby, Sidney Bechet, Eddie Fisher, Ella Fitzgerald, Judy Garland, Billie Holiday, Mel Tormé, and others ~ Blowers was born 1911
July 17, 2006 ~ Blues harpist, singer Sam Myers, full name Samuel Joseph Myers, passed away in Dallas, Texas, USA ~ Worked with Jimmy Rogers, Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Little Walter, Hound Dog Taylor, Robert Lockwood Junior, Elmore James. Wrote Sleeping In The Ground, which was covered by Blind Faith, Eric Clapton, Robert Cray, and others. Resurged in the mid 1980s, joining Anson Funderburgh & the Rockets and staying with the band for the two decades until his death ~ Myers was born in 1936
July 17, 2003 ~ Trumpeter Alvin Alcorn passed away in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA ~ Worked with the Sunny Side Syncopators, Don Albert, Paul Barbarin, Sidney Desvigne, Papa Celestin, Octave Crosby, Kid Ory, Chris Barber, Louis Cottrell Jr, and with the Olympia Brass Band on the Bond Live & Let Die soundtrack. Alcorn would also play a minor part in the film as a killer. ~ Alcorn was born in 1912
July 17, 2002 ~ Otis Leavill Cobb, commonly known as R&B singer, songwriter, producer, label executive Otis Leavill passed away in Chicago, Illinois, USA ~ Known for a handful of reasonably successful songs such as Rise Sally Rise, the Curtis Mayfield-penned I Gotta Right To Cry, Let Her Love Me and perhaps his best-known I Love You. Also known as a songwriter for Major Lance, Tyrone Davis, Gene Chandler ~ Cobb was born in 1937
July 17, 1996 ~ Blues pianist Roosevelt Williams, also known as Grey Ghost, passed away in Austin, Texas, USA ~ Enjoyed a career spanning seven decades, ranging from the 1920 through the 1990s though most of it was spent in obscurity. Would be tracked down by archivist Tary Owens in the mid-1960 resulting in several of his old recordings being reissued and again in the late 1980s, this time leading to his full-length eponymous Roosevelt Williams debut album introducing Williams to a new generation of listeners. Williams would continue to perform until his death at 92 ~ Williams was born in 1903
July 17, 1992 ~ Jazz trumpeter Johnny Letman passed away ~ Worked with Jerry Valentine, Scatman Crothers, Jimmy Raschelle, Delbert Bright, Bob Tinsley, Nat King Cole, Horace Henderson, Red Saunders, Teddy Buckner, John Kirby, Lucky Millinder, Cab Calloway, Count Basie, Stuff Smith, Chubby Jackson, Panama Francis, Dick Wellstood, Hal Cornbread Singer, Sam Taylor, Eddie Condon, Wilbur de Paris, Claude Hopkins, Tiny Grimes, Lionel Hampton, Cozy Cole, Earl Hines, and others ~ Letman was born in 1917
July 17, 1989 ~ Jazz, rock & roll pianist, arranger, composer Dudley Brooks passed away in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ In-house pianist for Paramount Studios, for whom he worked closely with Elvis Presley on a number of albums and films including GI Blues, Blue Hawaii, and Girls Girls Girls. Brooks, one of several African Americans who worked with Presley, downplayed allegations that Presley was racist. Brooks is also well known for co-writing the Christmas classic (Everybody's Waiting For) The Man With The Bag, first recorded by Kay Starr in 1950 and covered by over 70 artists ~ Brooks was born in 1913
July 17, 1987 ~ Trumpeter Howard McGhee passed away in New York, New York, USA ~ One of the first bebop trumpeter. Influenced Fats Navarro. Leader and sideman. Worked with Lionel Hampton, Andy Kirk, Count Basie, Charlie Barnet, Charlie Parker, Milt Jackson, Illinois Jacquet, Horace Parlan, Kenny Clarke, Benny Bailey, Billy Eckstine, Johnny Hartman, Coleman Hawkins, Chubby Jackson, James Moody, André Previn, Mel Tormé, Wardell Gray, Eddie Lockjaw Davis, Gerry Mulligan, Eddie Jefferson, Sonny Criss, Slim Gaillard, Gene Ammons, Woody Herman, Wynonie Harris, and others ~ McGhee was born in 1918
July 17, 1987 ~ Jeremy Phillip Felton, mononymously known as R&B, hip-hop singer, rapper, songwriter Jeremih, born in Chicago, Illinois, USA ~ First gained attention in 2009 with his Billboard Hot 100 top 10 hit Birthday Sex of his eponymous Jeremih debut album. Would also reach the top 10 with his 2010 single Down On Me featuring 50 Cent and again in 2014 with Don't Tell 'Em featuring YG. Has also collaborated with Ludacris, Lil' Wayne, J Cole, Zaytoven, Ty Dolla $ign, Chance the Rapper, Fabolous, Lloyd Banks, Wale, DJ Drama, DJ Khaled, French Montana, Nelly, and others
July 17, 1987 ~ Pianist, composer Tigran Hamasyan born in Leninakan, Armenian SSR ~ Revered pianist active in jazz, classical, and indie pop, active since the mid-2000s. Over a dozen albums to his name including the acclaimed Red Hail album released in 2009. Has collaborated with the likes of Dhafer Youssef, Ari Hoenig, Lars Danielsson, Stephane Galland, and Serj Tarkian
July 17, 1985 ~ Guitarist, singer, songwriter Tom Fletcher born in Harrow, UK ~ Co-founding member, co-lead singer, rhythm guitarist of McFly, known for UK charttoppers such as 5 Colours In Her Hair, Obviously, All About You, You've Got A Friend, I'll Be OK and Star Girl
July 17, 1985 ~ Winford Lindsey Stewart, commonly known as country singer, guitarist, songwriter Wynn Stewart, passed way ~ Though never a household name important to what would later become known as the Bakersfield sound and major influence on artists such as Merle Haggard and Buck Owens as well as on rockers such as Nick Lowe. Known for songs such as The Waltz Of The Angels, Wishful Thinking, Big Big Love, It's Such A Pretty World Today, Cause I Have You, Love's Gonna Happen To Me and Something Pretty ~ Stewart was born in 1934
July 17, 1983 ~ Blues, boogie-woogie pianist, singer, songwriter Roosevelt Sykes passed away in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA ~ Known best for Driving Wheel, Night Time Is The Right Time and perhaps his best-known 44 Blues, the latter becoming a signature song and a blues standard. Worked with Big Joe Williams, St Louis Jimmy Oden, Homesick James, Charlie Specks McFadden, and others ~ Sykes was born in 1906
July 17, 1981 ~ Metalcore, noise rock, Christian hardcore guitarist, singer Josh Scogin born in Douglasville, Georgia, USA ~ Lead singer, guitarist of 68. Previously co-founding member and frontman of the Chariot. Has also worked with Luti Kriss, Norma Jean, the Showdown, As Cities Burn and with Bring Me The Horizon
July 17, 1978 ~ Electronic, trip hop, experimental singer, songwriter Emilie Simon born in Montpellier, France ~ Released her eponymous Emilie Simon debut album in 2003 to critical acclaim. Best known for songs such as Désert and Flowers. Also known for composing the soundtrack for the 2005 La Marche De L'Empereur documentary film
July 17, 1978 ~ Noah Benjamin Lennox, commonly known as experimental pop, neo-psychedelia, indie rock, bedroom pop singer, songwriter Panda Bear, born in Baltimore, Maryland, USA ~ Co-founding member of Animal Collective, known for songs such as Peacebone, Summertime Clothes, Honeycomb and Applesauce. Has also recorded as a solo artist, starting with the eponymous Pannda Bear released in 1999
July 17, 1976 ~ Thomas Luther Bryan, commonly known as country singer, songwriter Luke Bryan, born in Leesburg, Georgia, USA ~ Started as a songwriter for artists such as Travis Tritt and Billy Currington. Released his I'll Stay Me debut album in 2007 and has recorded to commercial success since, racking up numerous Billboard Country top 10 hits. Known for songs such as Rain Is A Good Thing, I Don't Want This Night To End, Drunk On You, That's My Kind Of Night, Roller Coaster, Kick The Dust Up, Sunrise Sunburn Sunset, One Margarita, and others
July 17, 1974 ~ Donald Eugene Ulrich, commonly known as country guitarist, fiddler Don Rich, passed away in San Luis Obispo, California, USA ~ As a member of Buck Owens' backing unit Buckaroos helpful in developing the Bakersfield sound. Present on songs such as Above And Beyond, Foolin' Around, Act Naturally, Love's Gonna Live Here, Waitin' In Your Welfare Line, Think Of Me, Tall Dark Stranger and others, many of which co-written by Rich ~ Ulrich was born in 1941
July 17, 1973 ~ Singer, pianist, guitarist, songwriter Amy Steinberg born in Boston, Massachusetts, USA ~ Folk- and pop-oriented singer with a bent toward female empowerment and spiritualism. Influenced by Bette Midler, Ani DiFranco, and Christy Snow. Over half a dozen albums to her name, especially noted for her Fall Down To Fly album released in 2007
July 17, 1972 ~ Country, Americana, honky-tonk singer Elizabeth Cook born in Wildwood, Florida, USA ~ Actively recording since the early 2000s. Had her 2007 Balls produced by Rodney Crowell. Crowell, as well as Dwight Yoakam and Buddy Miller, guested on her 2010 Welder. Cook has also worked with Carlene Carter, Aaron Watson, Todd Snider, Asleep At The Wheel, Doug Seegers, and others
July 17, 1971 ~ Jazz guitarist Liberty Ellman born in London, UK ~ Worked with Vijay Iyer, Miya Masaoka, Ledisi, Steve Coleman, Omar Sosa, the Coup, Midnight Voices, Ben Goldberg, Steve Lehman, Joe Lovano, Barney McAll, Butch Morris, Greg Osby, Matana Roberts, Michele Rosewoman, Wadada Leo Smith, Henry Threadgill, Groove Collective, Chico Hamilton, Joel Harrison, and others
July 17, 1971 ~ Clifton Avon Edwards, commonly known as singer, ukulele player, actor Ukulele Ike, passed away in Hollywood, California, USA ~ Singer, popular in the 1920s and 1930s with jazzy renditions of pop standards. Scored a No.1 hit in 1929 with Singing In The Rain. Also known as a voice actor in several Walt Disney films including Pinocchio, Dumbo and Fun And Fancy Free ~ Edwards was born in 1895
July 17, 1967 ~ Bebop, hard bop, free jazz saxophonist John Coltrane, full name John William Coltrane, passed away in Huntington, New York, USA ~ Pioneering jazz saxoponist. Present, either as a sideman or as a leader, on several albums considered pivotal to the development of jazz. Especially acclaimed for his 1958 Blue Train album, 1965 A Love Supreme album and 1966 Ascension album. Worked with Johnny Hodges, Elmo Hope, Miles Davis (Milestones, Kind Of Blue), Thelonious Monk (Monk's Music), Art Blakey, Cecil Taylor, Cannonball Adderley, and others ~ Coltrane was born in 1926
July 17, 1967 ~ Hardcore punk drummer, guitarist Paul Birnbaum born in Boise, Idaho, USA ~ Member of 1980s punk band Septic Death, obscure during their existence but in hindsight recognized as pioneers of the thrashcore subgenre. Has subsequently played wth Attitude Adjustment, Gordie Howe, Little Miss & the No-names and RAID, the latter two also featuring Septic-bandmate Jon Taylor
July 17, 1967 ~ R&B singer, drummer Stokley Williams born in St Paul, Minnesota, USA ~ Influenced by Cliff Alexis Sr, Prince, Maurice White. Lead singer, drummer of Mint Condition, one of the last major funk bands to chart before the rise of hip-hop and new jack swing in the 1990s. The band is best known for their 1992 Billboard Hot 100 top 10 hit Breakin' My Heart (Pretty Brown Eyes). Williams has also worked with the Boys, Karyn White, Janet Jackson, Johnny Gill, Color Me Badd, Soultry, New Edition, Jon Secada, Jordan Knight, Yolanda Adams, Usher, Blu Cantrell, Deborah Cox, Toni Braxton, Kelly Price, Brian Culbertson, Wale, Boney James, PJ Morton, and others
July 17, 1967 ~ Susan Rae Hill, commonly known as Christian, country singer Susan Ashton, born in Irving, Texas, USA ~ Debuted in 1991 with her Wakened By The Wind album. Has since scored over a dozen No.1 hits on the Christian charts. To country audiences best known for her 1999 single You're Lucky I Love You
July 17, 1966 ~ Alternative rock, indie rock guitarist, singer, songwriter Lou Barlow, full name Louis Knox Barlow, born in Dayton, Ohio, USA ~ Helped pioneer the lo-fi sound of the late 1980s and early 1990s. Founding member of Dinosaur Jr, Sebadoh, and of the Folk Implosion. Has also recorded as a solo artist, starting with the Emoh album in 2005. Has collaborated with Sentridoh, Rudy Trouvé, Sharon Stoned, the 6ths, the Supreme Dicks, Deep Wound, and others
July 17, 1965 ~ Country singer, guitarist Craig Morgan born in Kingston Springs, Tennessee, USA ~ Released his eponymous Craig Morgan in 2000 and has recorded to commercial succes since. Best known for songs such as Almost Home, That's What I Love About Sunday, Redneck Yacht Club, Little Bit Of Life, International Harvester, Love Remembers and Bonfire, all of which reached top 10 on the Billboard Country charts
July 17, 1963 ~ R&B, soul, pop, jazz, gospel singer Regina Belle, full name Regina Elaine Belle, born in Englewood, New Jersey, USA ~ Influenced by Phyllis Hyman, Billie Holiday, Shirley Caesar, Patti Labelle, Nancy Wilson. Best known for a number of 1980s songs such as Baby Come To Me, Make It Like It Was and Without You, the latter a duet with Peabo Bryson. Has also collaborated with Johnny Mathis, the Manhattans, Jeffrey Osborne, and others. Married to saxophonist Horace Alexander Young from 1985 through 1990, with whom she has one daughter
July 17, 1961 ~ Keith Edward Elam, commonly known as MC, rapper Guru, born in Roxbury, Massachusetts, USA ~ Founding member of the Gang Starr collective. As a solo artist best known for his Jazzmatazz series, collaborating with artists such as Donald Byrd, N'dea Davenport, MC Solaar, Roy Ayers, Chaka Khan, Branford Marsalis, Jamiroquai, Freddie Hubbard, Courtney Pine, Ronny Jordan, and others. Especially the first two of eventually four volumes, 1993's Jazzmatazz (Volume 1) and 1995's Jazzmatazz (Volume 2 A New Reality), would receive critical acclaim for fusing jazz, hip-hop and rap and later prove to be hugely influential ~ Elam passed away in 2010
July 17, 1959 ~ Eleanora Fagan, commonly known as jazz, swing singer Billie Holiday, passed away in New York, New York, USA ~ Iconic singer pioneered jazz singing. Active from the mid-1930s until her death at age 44. Known for her emotive voice, tragic lifestory and struggles with men and substance abuse. Well known songs include What A Little Moonlight Can Do, A Fine Romance, I Can't Give You Anything But Love, Carelessly, Mean To Me, I'm Gonna Lock My Heart, Lover Man (Oh Where Can You Be) and perhaps her best-known Strange Fruit ~ Fagan was born in 1915
July 17, 1959 ~ Christian rock singer, guitarist, songwriter Margaret Becker born in Bay Shore, New York, USA ~ Sang backup for Rick Cua and Steve Camp. Released her Never For Nothing solo debut album in 1987. Has also worked with Susan Ashton, Christine Denté, Moya Brennan, Joanne Hogg, Kristyn Getty, Jennifer Knapp, and others
July 17, 1957 ~ Guitarist, songwriter Julián Infante, full name Julián Infante Martin-Nieto, born ~ Rose to fame as member of Tequila, Spanish-Argentine rock group influenced by Chuck Berry and the Rolling Stones. They were active from the late 1970s through the early 1990s and are best known for songs such as Quiero Besarte, Me Vuelvo Loco and Rock And Roll En La Plaza Del Pueblo. Member of Los Rodriguez in the 1990s, which also included Tequila bandmate Ariel Rot, known for merging flamenco, rumba, bolero, ranchera, milonga, funk and blues and credited with revitalizing Spanish-language rock ~ Infante passed away in 2000
July 17, 1954 ~ Singer, guitarist, songwriter Hugh Macdonald born ~ Not to be confused with American bassist Hugh MacDonald. Best known as guitarist for Redgum from 1981 through 1990. He also took the role of lead singer after John Schumann in 1986. McDonald also played with the Bushwhackers, the Sundowners, Banshee, Des Animal McKenna, Moving Clouds, and with the Colonials ~ McDonald passed away in 2016
July 17, 1952 ~ Drummer, percussionist, vibraphonist Chet McCracken, full name Chet Eugene McCracken, born in Seattle, Washington, USA ~ Member of the Doobie Brothers during the late 1970s and early 1980s replacing original drummer John Hartman. Present on albums such as One Step Closer, Can't Let It Get Away, and Olana. In-demand session musician, appearing on albums by America (Hat Trick), Nick Gilder, TG Sheppard, Stevie Nicks (The Wild Heart), Joe Walsh, and Warriors Path. Has recorded about half a dozen albums as a solo artist, starting with Flight To Moscow, released in 1990 ~ McCracken passed away in 2022
July 17, 1952 ~ Actor, singer David Hasselhoff, full name David Michael Hasselhoff, born in Baltimore, Maryland, USA ~ Best known as an actor with long-running roles on The Young & The Restless, Knight Rider, and Baywatch. As a singer enjoyed popularity in Europe, especially Germany, with over a dozen albums to his name starting with Night Rocker released in 1985
July 17, 1952 ~ Rock bassist, producer Fran Smith Jr born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA ~ Father of singer Graham Alexander. Best known as a member of the Hooters since 1987, first appearing on the 1989 Zig Zag album. Has also worked with Blake Thompson, Glen Burtnik, David Uosikkinen, TJ Tindall, and others
July 17, 1952 ~ Pop, rock, country singer, guitarist Nicolette Larson born in Helena, Montana, USA ~ Member of Commander Cody & his Lost Planet Airmen. As a solo artist best known for her 1978 hit Lotta Love. In-demand backing vocalist. Worked with Neil Young, Steve Wariner, Guy Clark, Hoyt Axton, Mary Kay Place, Rodney Crowell, Billy Joe Shaver, Jesse Colin Young, Jesse Winchester, Gary Stewart, Emmylou Harris (notably on Hello Stranger from the 1977 album Luxury Liner), Linda Ronstadt, Norton Buffalo, the Doobie Brothers, Christopher Cross, Dirt Band, Tom Johnston, Graham Nash, Albert Hammond, Rita Coolidge, Van Halen, and others ~ Larson passed away in 1997
July 17, 1952 ~ Matheus Josephus Lau, commonly known as singer, guitarist Thé Lau, born in Bergen, the Netherlands ~ Became a household name as the Scene frontman in the early 1990s scoring hits such as Blauw and Iedereen Is Van De Wereld. Debuted as an author in 2000 with Sterren Van De Hemel, a collection of short stories, publishing his first novel, Hemelrijk, in 2004 ~ Lau passed away in 2015
July 17, 1951 ~ Singer Tony Bennett records Blue Velvet at Columbia 30th Street Studio, New York, New York ~ Penned by Bernie Wayne and Lee Morris. Bennett would be the first to record the song, released as a single paired with Solitaire on the flip side the following September. Later versions would include recordings by Arthur Prysock and by Bill Farrell the same year, by the Clovers in 1955, and notably by Bobby Vinton in 1963, the latter taking it to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart
July 17, 1950 ~ R&B, soul singer Damon Harris, full name Otis Robert Harris Jr, born in Baltimore, Maryland, USA ~ Best known as a member of the Temptations from 1971 through 1975, singing lead on songs such as Superstar (Remember How You Got Where You Are), Take A Look Around, Papa Was A Rollin' Stone, and Masterpiece. After leaving the group, Harris formed Impact, known for a number of minor disco hits including Happy Man and Give A Broken Heart A Break ~ Harris passed away in 2013
July 17, 1950 ~ Phoebe Ann Laub, commonly known as singer, guitarist Phoebe Snow, born in New York, New York, USA ~ Jazzy soft-rock singer, songwriter with about a dozen albums to her name, especially acclaimed for her eponymous Phoebe Snow debut album and its follow-up Second Childhood. Best known for her 1974 Billboard Hot 100 No.5 hit Poetry Man, covered by over a dozen artists including Zap Mama and Queen Latifah. Other songs written by Snow have been covered by Bette Midler (I Don't Want The Night To End), Dianne Brooks, Renée Tannenbaum (Harpo's Blues), and Polly Gibbons. Snow also appeared on albums by Paul Simon (Still Crazy After All These Years), Janis Ian, David Sanborn, David Bromberg, Garland Jeffreys, Bobby McFerrin, Dave Grusin, Laurie Anderson (Mister Heartbreak), and Joe Cocker ~ Laub passed away in 2011
July 17, 1949 ~ Earl Lavon Freeman Jr, commonly known as jazz saxophonist, clarinetist Chico Freeman, born in Chicago, Illinois, USA ~ Son of jazz saxophonist Von Freeman, with whom he has also recorded several albums. Steeped in the traditions of jazz, yet also covering compositions by modernists such as John Coltrane, Freeman came to prominence in the late 1970s alongside frequent collaborators Wynton Marsalis and Cecil McBee, and has recorded well over two dozen albums as leader or co-leader. Freeman is especially acclaimed for the albums Beyond The Rain, The Outside Within, which helped him win the New York Jazz Award, and Peaceful Heart Gentle Spirit. Freeman is also known as co-leader of the Leaders, with whom he recorded close to half a dozen albums, and as a sideman on albums by Ahmed Abdullah, Jack DeJohnette (Tin Can Alley), Edward Vesala, McCoy Tyner (13th House), Kip Hanrahan (Coup De Tête), Kirk Lightsey, Carmen Lundy, Dom Um Romão, Hilton Ruiz, and Avery Sharpe
July 17, 1949 ~ Terence Michael Joseph Butler, commonly known as bassist Geezer Butler, born in Birmingham, UK ~ Best known as co-founding and longtime member and primary lyricist of pioneering metal band Black Sabbath, initially remaining with the band through 1985 and rejoining on several occasions in later years. Present on most of the band's best-known including the pivotal early 1970s albums Paranoid and Master Of Reality. Has also worked with GZR, Heaven & Hell, Apartment 26, and others
July 17, 1949 ~ Bassist Mike Vale born ~ Member of Tommy James & the Shondells, best known for their 1966 Billboard Hot 100 No.1 hit Hanky Panky. The group would score about half a dozen more top 10 hits through the end of the decade, establishing themselves as one of the premier bubblegum outfits of the era. Well known songs include I Think We're Alone Now, Mony Mony, later notably covered by Billy Idol, Crimson And Clover, and Crystal Blue Persuasion
July 17, 1948 ~ Kerry Byles Jr, commonly known as reggae, rocksteady, ska singer, songwriter Junior Byles, born in Kingston, Jamaica ~ Also known under the moniker King Chubby. Formed the trio the Versatiles in 1967 with Dudley Earl and Ben Louis Davis, known for The Time Has Come. After the band disbanded in 1970 Byles would go on to record as a solo artist. Known for songs such such as What's The World Coming To, Beat Down Babylon, Place Called Africa, Joshua Desire, Pharaoh Hiding, Fever, Curley Looks and Fade Away. Due to a declining health Byles' career would slow down by the end of the 1970s, yet he would continue to record new material from time to time
July 17, 1948 ~ Guitarist Ron Asheton, full name Ronald Franklin Asheton, born in Washington DC, USA ~ Co-founded the Stooges with Iggy Pop, Dave Alexander, and his brother Scott Asheton. Also worked with the New Order, Destroy All Monsters, Dark Carnival, New Race, the Empty Set, Wylde Ratttz, Thurston Moore, and others ~ Asheton passed away in 2009
July 17, 1947 ~ Pianist, composer Anders Koppel born in Copenhagen, Denmark ~ Father of saxophonist Benjamin Koppel and of gospel, soul, jazz, singer Marie Carmen Koppel. Co-founded rock group Savage Rose. Member of Bazaar. Composed music for ballets, over 150 movies, theatrical plays, musicals, classical ensembles, and for chamber orchestras
July 17, 1947 ~ Percussionist Wolfgang Flür born in Frankfurt, Germany ~ Best known as member of pivotal electronic band Kraftwerk from 1973 through 1987, present on some of the band's most acclaimed albums including Autobahn, Radio-Activity and Trans-Europe Express. Following his departure from the band Flür formed Yamo
July 17, 1942 ~ Singer, writer, actress Gale Garnett, full name Gale Zoe Garnett, born in Auckland, New Zealand ~ Best known for her self-penned We'll Sing In The Sunshine, a hit in 1964. The song would later be covered by the Lancastrians, Sonny & Cher, LaWanda Lindsey, Helen Reddy, and by Dolly Parton
July 17, 1942 ~ Spencer David Nelson Davies, commonly known as rock, pop, R&B guitarist, singer, songwriter Spencer Davis, born in Swansea, UK ~ Best known as eponym of the Spencer Davis Group, which also included Steve Winwood, Muff Winwood, Pete York, known for hits such as Keep On Running, Somebody Help Me and I'm A Man ~ Davies passed away in 2020
July 17, 1942 ~ George Bruno Money, commonly known as keyboardist Zoot Money, born in Bournemouth, UK ~ Took his stage name “Zoot” from jazz saxophonist Zoot Sims. Best known as keyboardist, organist of the Animals. Has also worked with Steve Marriott, Kevin Coyne, Humble Pie, Kevin Ayers, Alexis Korner, Snowy White, Spencer Davis, Dantalian's Chariot, Vivian Stanshall, Geno Washington, Brian Friel, the Hard Travelers, Widowmaker, Georgie Fame, Alan Price, and others
July 17, 1939 ~ Maria Ilba Biolcati, commonly known as singer, actress, TV personality Milva, born in Goro, Italy ~ Dubbed “La Rossa”, the Redhead, for the colour of her hair and for her leftist political views. Popular stage and musical singer, actress. Has worked with orchestras such as La Scala, the Deutsche Oper, the Paris Opera, and others. Actvely recording as a solo artist since the early 1960s, drawing from a wide array of genres including pop, schlager, chanson. Acclaimed as interpreter of the oeuvre of singer Edith Piaf. Has collaborated with composers, songwriters such as Ennio Morricone, Mikis Theodorakis, Enzo Jannacci, Vangelis and Franco Battiato ~ Biolcati passed away in 2021
July 17, 1938 ~ Soul, R&B, pop singer Grant Kitchings born ~ Best known for his 1970s stint in the Drifters, then led by Johnny Moore. Co-wrote Country To The City, She Never Talked To Me, and Beautiful Music. Present on hits such as Kissin' In The Back Row Of The Movies and Down On The Beach Tonight ~ Kitchings passed away in 2005
July 17, 1937 ~ Pianist, organist, conductor, composer Gabriel Pierné, full name Henri Constant Gabriel Pierné, passed away in Ploujean, France ~ Composed operas, chamber music, and choral and symphonic pieces. Perhaps best known for the oratario La Croisade Des Enfants. Other well-known pieces include Introduction Et Variations Sur Une Ronde Populaire for saxophone quartet, and the ballet Cydalise Et Le Chevre Pied which included Marche Des Petits Faunes ~ Pierné was born in 1863
July 17, 1936 ~ Singer Bing Crosby records I'm An Old Cowhand (From The Rio Grande) ~ Written by Johnny Mercer for the 1936 Rhythm Of The Range film starring Crosby. Released as a single, paired with I Can't Escape From You on the flip side, it would reach No.2 on the pop charts. Over the years the song would be covered by Bobby Darin, Patsy Montana, Frank Sinatra, Sonny Rollins, Dan Hicks, Harry Connick Jr, and others
July 17, 1935 ~ Carol Diahann Johnson, commonly known as actress, singer, model Diahann Carroll, born in the Bronx, New York, USA ~ Rose to prominence in the 1950s starring in film editions of Carmen Jones and Porgy & Bess. Awarded a Tony Award for her role in the 1962 Broadway musical No Strings, making her the first African-American woman to receive the award ~ Johnson passed away in 2019
July 17, 1933 ~ Jazz drummer Ben Riley, full name Benjamin Alexander Riley Jr, born in Savannah, Georgia, USA ~ Best known for his association with Thelonious Monk, even though he only played briefly with the pianist. Member of Sphere. Member of the New York Jazz Quintet. Later on in his career, Riley recorded a handful of albums as a leader including the acclaimed 1996 Weaver Of Dreams album. An excellent bop, hard bop drummer, Riley has guested on recordings by Gene Rodgers, Johnny Griffin (Tough Tenors), Eddie Lockjaw Davis, Dick Morgan (Settlin' In), Junior Mance (At The Village Vanguards), Ken McIntyre, Sonny Rollins (The Bridge), Sam Jones (Down Home), Andrew Hill, Alice Coltrane (World Galaxy), Hugh Lawson, Charlie Rouse, Hank Jones, and Roland Hanna ~ Riley passed away in 2017
July 17, 1930 ~ Composer Toshimitsu Tanaka born in Aomori, Japan ~ Expontent of the Japanese marimba repertoire. As a composer perhaps best known for his 1965 composition Two Movements For Marimba. Has taught at the Kunitachi College of Music, Kunitachi, where he also studied, and at the Kyiv National University of Culture and Arts, Kyiv ~ Tanaka passed away in 2020
July 17, 1928 ~ Jazz drummer Joe Morello, full name Joseph Albert Morello, born in Springfield, Massachusetts, USA ~ Declined invitations from both Benny Goodman and Tommy Dorsey, favoring a temporary two-month tour with Dave Brubeck. Two months turned into a decade. Present on most of the Dave Brubeck Quartet's best-known including songs such as Take Five and Blue Rondo A La Turk. Morello had previously played with Marian McPartland, Urbie Green (Blues And Other Shades Of Green), Tal Farlow, Sal Salvador, Chuck Wayne, and Helen Merrill. Following his stint with Brubeck became an in-demand bandleader and teacher, his students including Danny Gottlieb, Max Weinberg, Rich Gallison, Gary Feldman, Tony Woo, Jerry Granelli, and Tico Torres ~ Morello passed away in 2011
July 17, 1926 ~ Jazz, swing, hard bop trumpeter Ray Copeland born in Norfolk, Virginia, USA ~ Father of jazz drummer Keith Copeland. Worked with Thelonious Monk, Specs Powell, Randy Weston, Jimmy Witherspoon, Ernie Wilkins, Lionel Hampton, Oscar Pettiford, Cat Anderson, Betty Carter, Bob Brookmeyer, Betty Carter, Art Farmer, Booker Ervin, Archie Shepp, and others ~ Copeland passed away in 1984
July 17, 1922 ~ Saxophonist, clarinetist, flutist Danny Bank, full name Daniel Bernard Bank, born in New York, New York, USA ~ Early on in his career served in ensembles led by Charlie Barnet, Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, and Paul Whiteman. Well-known for his association with Miles Davis, appearing on albums such as Miles Ahead, Porgy & Bess and Sketches Of Spain. Also present on albums by Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie (Afro), Ben Webster, Urbie Green, Betty Carter, Sylvia Syms, Oscar Pettiford, Chubby Jackson, Charles Mingus, Sonny Rollins (Alfie), Lee Morgan, Jimmy Smith, Maynard Ferguson, Oliver Nelson (Black Brown & Beautiful), Quincy Jones, and Randy Weston ~ Bank passed away in 2010
July 17, 1921 ~ Guitarist George Barnes, full name George Warren Barnes, born in Chicago Heights, Illinois, USA ~ Leader and sideman. Worked with Big Bill Broonzy (Sweetheart Land, It's A Lowdown Dirty Shame), the NBC Orchestra, Blind John Davis, Jazz Gillum, Merline Johnson, Curtis Jones, Washboard Sam, Raymond Scott, Dorothy Collins, Patsy Cline, the Coasters, the Drifters (This Magic Moment, Lonely Teardrops), Bucky Pizzarelli, the Lawson-Haggart Band, Ruby Braff, Tony Bennett, Louis Armstrong, Ben E King, Big Joe Turner, Boyd Raeburn, Buddy Holly (on the 1958 eponymous Buddy Holly album), Cootie Williams, Dinah Washington, Solomon Burke (on the quintessential 1963 album If You Need Me), Dick Hyman, Bob Dylan (on the 1963 album The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan), Doris Day, and others ~ Barnes passed away in 1977
July 17, 1908 ~ Alfons Candrix, commonly known as jazz saxophonist, violinist Fud Candrix, born in Tongeren, Belgium ~ Brother of bandleader Jeff Candrix, with whom he also worked. Has also worked with the Carolina Stomp Chasers, Bernard Etté, Robert de Kers, Jean Omer, Charles Remue, Gus Deloof, Aimé Barelli, Django Reinhardt, Hubert Rostaing, and others ~ Candrix passed away in 1974