This Day In Music: May 11
May 10 ~ Birthdays/All ~ May 12
May 11, 2023 ~ Classical cornetist, trumpeter Marcel Lagorce, full name Antoine Marcel Lagorce, passed away ~ Trumpet soloist with the Symphony Radio Orchestra from 1957 through 1967, and with the Orchestre De Paris from 1967 through 1993. Member of brass quintet Ars Nova, which also included hornist Georges Barboteu, trumpeter Bernard Jeannoutot, trombonist Camille Verdier, and tubist Elie Raynaud. Taught at Conservatoire de Paris, Paris from 1976 through 1988 ~ Lagorce was born in 1932
May 11, 2022 ~ Classical concert pianist Alexander Toradze, full name Alexander Davidovich Toradze, passed away in South Bend, Indiana, USA ~ Best known for his classical Russian repertoire. Has worked with renowned orchestras such as the Berlin Philharmonic, the Marlinsky Theatre Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the Cleveland Orchestra, and the London Philharmonic Orchestra ~ Toradze was born in 1952
May 11, 2022 ~ Hard rock, heavy metal singer Trevor Strnad passed away ~ Until his death shortly after his 41st birthday, Strnad served as lead singer for extreme metal outfit the Black Dahlia Murder recording over a dozen albums with the band including the acclaimed Ritual released in 2011. The band was named for the unsolved 1947 murder of Elizabeth Short, often referred to as the Black Dahlia. Although no official cause of death had been given for Strnad, the phone number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline was provided at the end of the band's statement. Brian Eschbach, the only other constant member since the band's inception in 2001, would take over Strnad's duties as lead vocalist ~ Strnad was born in 1981
May 11, 2022 ~ Classical, contemporary classical, baroque flutist William Bennett, full name Wiliam Ingham Brooker Bennett, passed away in London, UK ~ Worked with George Malcolm, Osian Ellis, Yehudi Menuhin, the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, the Sadler's Wells Opera, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Melos Ensemble, George Malcolm, Clifford Benson, Osian Ellis, the English Chamber Orchestra, Jimi Hendrix, Wynton Marsalis, and others ~ Bennett was born in 1936
May 11, 2020 ~ John David Martin, commonly known as singer, guitarist, songwriter Moon Martin, passed away in Encino, California, USA ~ Recorded over half a dozen albums, starting with Shots From A Cold Nightmare released in 1978. Scored a number of modest solo hits, notably Rolene, No Chance, and X-Ray Vision. Best known however for penning Bad Case Of Loving You (Doctor Doctor), a hit for Robert Palmer, and Cadillac Walk, made famous by Willy DeVille ~ Moon was born in 1945
May 11, 2019 ~ Clarinetist Sol Yaged passed away in Coconut Creek, Florida, USA ~ Influenced by Benny Goodman. Offered a chair with the Buffalo Philharmonic, but embraced jazz instead. In-demand sideman through the 1940s and early 1950s, working with the likes of Phil Napoleon, Coleman Hawkins, Red Allen, and Jack Teagarden. Led his own ensembles from the mid-1950s onward, a fixture on the New York jazz scene through the late 1990s ~ Yaged was born in 1922
May 11, 2018 ~ Jazz pianist Mikhail Alperin passed away in Oslo, Norway ~ Leader and sideman. Best known as member of the Moscow Art Trio. Also worked with Arkady Shilkloper, John Surman, Terje Gewelt, Jon Christensen, Tore Brunborg, Anja Lechner, and others ~ Alperin was born in 1956
May 11, 2016 ~ Jazz saxophonist Joe Temperley passed away in New York, New York, USA ~ Leader and sideman. Worked with Tommy Sampson, Humphrey Lyttelton, Woody Herman, Buddy Rich, Joe Henderson, Duke Pearson, the Jazz Composers Orchestra, Thad Jones, Mel Lewis, Clark Terry, Brian Lemon, Jimmy Knepper, Jimmy Deuchar, Dave McKenna, Kenny Davern, Harry Allen, Benny Carter, Aaron Diehl, Odonel Levy, Wynton Marsalis, and others ~ Temperley was born in 1929
May 11, 2016 ~ Drummer, actor Peter Behrens passed away in Wilhelmshaven, Germany ~ Formed the band Trio, known best for the hit Da Da Da of their eponymous 1982 Trio debut album. The single would reach top 10 across Europe and sell over 13 million copies. Following the band's disbandement in 1986 Behrens would work as a social worker, record as a solo artist to moderate succes, and by the late 1980s venture into acting ~ Behrens was born in 1947
May 11, 2014 ~ Bassist Ed Gagliardi, full name Edward John Gagliardi, passed away ~ Original bass player for Foreigner, present on the albums Foreigner and Double Vision, fired in 1979. Co-founded the band Spys in 1981 with former Foreigner-keyboardist Al Greenwood. Spys released just two albums, Spys and Behind Enemy Lines, but would be widely acclaimed for setting the tone for many 80s synth-rock bands. Gagliardi, who was right-handed, played the bass left-handed out of admiration for Paul McCartney ~ Gagliardi was born in 1952
May 11, 2011 ~ Eugene Edward Young, commonly known as trumpeter Snooky Young, passed away in Newport Beach, California, USA ~ Worked with Count Basie, Gerald Wilson, Lionel Hampton, Thad Jones, Mel Lewis, Doc Severinsen, the Tonight Show Band, the Band, Norris Turney, Booty Wood, Richard Tee, Cornell Dupree, Marshal Royal, Ross Tompkins, Freddie Green, Ray Brown, Louie Bellson, Ray Charles, Milt Jackson, Sam Jones, Mark Murphy, Oliver Nelson, Charles Mingus, Quincy Jones, Ray Bryant, Herbie Mann, Chico O'Farrill, JJ Johnson, Lalo Schifrin, Maria Muldaur, Gene Ammons, BB King, Tracy Chapman, Gerald Wilson, and others ~ Young was born in 1919
May 11, 2008 ~ Joyce Reba Luttrell, commonly known as country, southern gospel singer, songwriter Dottie Rambo, passed away in Mount Vernon, Missouri, USA ~ Member of Singing Rambos, alongside husband Buck Rambo and daughter Reba Rambo. Best known as a songwriter with reportedly over 2,500 songs to her name. Artists who recorded Rambo's songs include Solomon Burke, Johnny Cash, Carol Channing, Barbara Fairchild, Larry Gatlin, Crystal Gayle, Vince Gill, Wanda Jackson, George Jones, Alison Krauss, Jerry Lee Lewis, Barbara Mandrell, Bill Monroe, the Oak Ridge Boys, Dolly Parton, Elvis Presley, Little Richard, Jeannie C Riley, Connie Smith, Hank Snow, Mel Tillis, Rhonda Vincent, Porter Wagoner, Dottie West, and others ~ Rambo was born in 1934
May 11, 2006 ~ Yosef Banai, commonly known as singer, actor, dramatist Yossi Banai, passed away in Tel Aviv, Israel ~ Best known as an actor, working with most of the active theater companies in Israel and particalurly associated with playwright Nisim Aloni, starring in numerous of the latter's plays. As a singer known for his smoky voice, and as a fine interpreter of usually translated works of Jacques Brel and Georges Brassens. Banai's son is Yuval Banai, lead singer of influential pop rock band Mashina ~ Banai was born in 1932
May 11, 2004 ~ Producer, songwriter, singer John Whitehead passed away in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA ~ Member of 1960s group the Epsilons, discovered by Otis Redding. Half of the production, songwriter McFadden & Whitehead, the other half being Gene McFadden. Best known for their 1979 disco hit Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now. As behind the scenes figures the pair wrote and produced some of the most enduring 1970s, 1980s R&B, soul songs for artists such as Melba Moore, Freddie Jackson, Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes (Wake Up Everybody (Part 1)), Gladys Knight, the Jackson 5, the O'Jays (Back Stabbers), James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Teddy Pendergrass (The More I Get The More I Want), Lou Rawls, Archie Bell & the Drells (Let's Groove), the Intruders, and others. Whitehead was shot and killed at age 55 in an apparent case of mistaken identity, the case still unresolved ~ Whitehead was born in 1948
May 11, 2003 ~ Bassist, guitarist, singer Noel Redding, full name David Noel Redding, passed away in Clonakitty, Ireland ~ Rose to fame as member of the Jimi Hendrix Experience, accompanying Jimi Hendrix on the albums Are You Experienced, Axis (Bold As Love) and Electric Ladyland. Co-founded Fat Mattress with Neil Landon, leaving after the 1969 eponymous Fat Mattress debut album. Would go on to work with the Road, Noel Redding Band, Randy California, Cork, Mountain, the British Invasion All-Stars, and others ~ Redding was born in 1945
May 11, 1995 ~ Bandleader, trombonist, pianist Ernie Fields, full name Ernest Lawrence Fields, passed away in Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA ~ Father of saxophonist Ernie Fields Jr. Best known as bandleader of the house band at Rendezvous Records from the late 1950s until the company folded in 1963 working with sidemen such as Ernie Freeman, Plas Johnson and Earl Palmer ~ Fields was born in 1904
May 11, 1994 ~ R&B singer, guitarist, songwriter Danny Overbra passed away in Chicago, Illinois, USA ~ Best known for his 1950s recordings Train Train Train and Forty Cups Of Coffee. Popular club performer, noted for his guitar skills, playing behind his back, and with his teeth, many such moves emulating T-Bone Walker ~ Overbea was born in 1926
May 11, 1989 ~ Geoffrey Royce Rojas, commonly known as Latin pop, bachata, R&B singer, songwriter Prince Royce, born in the Bronx, New York, USA ~ Released his eponymou Prince Royce debut album in 2010, which spawned the hit singles Stand By Me and Corazon Sin Cara. Has recorded to critical acclaim and warm reception in the Latin community since. Well known songs include Las Cosas Pequenas, Darte Un Beso, and Déjà Vu feat Shakira. Has also collaborated with Daddy Yankee, Thalia, Michel Teló, Pitbull, Sean Paul, Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony, Snoop Dogg, and others
May 11, 1984 ~ Pianist Gerald Clayton born in Utrecht, the Netherlands ~ Leader and sideman. Co-leads the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra. Has alo worked with Roy Hargrove, Diana Krall, Ben Wendel, Dianne Reeves, Terri Lyne Carrington, Ambrose Akinmusire, Dayna Stephens, Kendrick Scott, Avishai Cohen, and Gretchen Parlato
May 11, 1983 ~ Holly Rachel Vukadinovic, commonly known as actress, singer, model Holly Valance, born in Fitzroy, Australia ~ Actress known for roles in TV series such as Neighbours and films such DOA Dead Or Alive and Pledge This. Debuted as a singer with the Footprints album in 2002, spawing the UK hits Kiss Kiss, Down Boy and Naughty Girl
May 11, 1983 ~ Pop, R&B, hip-hop singer, rapper, songwriter John West born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA ~ Influenced by Erykah Badu, Lauryn Hill, Carole King, Jill Scott, and by Lenny Kravitz. Debuted in 2011 with the eponymous John West EP. Known for songs such as Lovely, Loved You Tonight, and Already There. Has worked with Christian Rich, Pusha T, Big Sean, Brian Kennedy, the Smeezingtons, Kevin Rudolf, the Stereotypes, and others
May 11, 1982 ~ Actor, singer Cory Monteith, full name Cory Allan Michael Monteith, born in Calgary, Canada ~ Best known for portraying the role of Finn Hudson on the musical drama TV series Glee. Monteith had struggled with substance abuse since his early teens and died of an apparent accidental overdose of heroin and alcohol at age 31 ~ Monteith passed away in 2013
May 11, 1981 ~ Reggae singer Bob Marley, full name Robert Nesta Marley passed away in Miami, Florida, USA ~ Icon of reggae. The first Jamaican artist to reach international stardom. Fused reggea, ska, rocksteady with spiritual and socially conscious lyrics, often showcasing a positive vibe including on subjects relating to personal hardship or social injustice. As a lyricist held in the highest regard, on par with artists such as Bob Dylan. Backed by the Wailers would score hits with songs such as Get Up Stand Up, I Shot The Sheriff, No Woman No Cry and Could You Be Loved ~ Marley was born in 1945
May 11, 1980 ~ Rock, punk, psychobilly singer, guitarist, songwriter Taylor Hollingsworth born in Birmingham, Alabama, USA ~ First gained attention in the early 2000s, fronting Taylor & the Puffs. Has recorded over half a dozen albums as a solo artist, starting with Tragic City released in 2006. Forms the duo Dead Fingers with his wife singer Kate Taylor. Also closely associated with Conor Oberst, the Dexateens, and Verbena
May 11, 1979 ~ Bluegrass, country guitarist, mandolinist, singer Lester Flatt, full name Lester Raymond Flatt, passed away in Nashville, Tennessee, USA ~ Rose to prominence as member of bluegrass icon Bill Monroe's backing unit. Teamed up with banjoist Earl Scruggs to form the famed duo Flatt & Scruggs, one of the most important bluegrass acts in the history of country music and especially known for Foggy Mountain Breakdown, The Ballad Of Jed Clampett, Pearl Pearl Pearl, and You Are My Flower ~ Flatt was born in 1914
May 11, 1978 ~ Marie-Andrée Bergeron, commonly known as pop singer Ima, born ~ Sings in French, English, Italian and Spanish. Debuted in 2002 with her eponymous Ima, spawning the singles Ton Corps Sur Mon Corps, Donne-Moi and perhaps her best-known song Baila, and has recorded consistently since
May 11, 1978 ~ Symphonic metal cellist Perttu Kivilaakso born in Helsinki, Finland ~ Best known as member of Apocalyptica. First appeared on the 2000 Cult album, though he had previously performed but not recorded with the band focusing on his studies instead. Wrote or co-wrote several of the band's songs including Conclusion, Farewell and Beautiful. Has also composed the opera Indigo with bandmate Eicca Toppinen, which premiered at the Finnish National Opera in 2016
May 11, 1976 ~ Jacob Brian Dutton, commonly known as hip-hop, trap producer, songwriter Jake One, born in Seattle, Washington, USA ~ Influenced by Pete Rock, Dr Dre, DJ Premier, Marley Marl. Debuted as a solo artist with the White Van Music in 2008. Has collaborated with G-Unit, Freeway, Mayer Hawthorne, Brother Ali, MF Doom, and others
May 11, 1976 ~ Gospel, R&B, rock & roll singer, songwriter Wynona Carr, full name Wynona Merceris Carr, passed away in Cleveland, Ohio, USA ~ Actively recording since the late 1940s initially to little success. Would fade into obscurity by the early 1960s only to be rediscovered in the 1990s with re-releases of old material ~ Carr was born in 1924
May 11, 1975 ~ Drummer Steve Hass born in Ronkonkoma, New York, USA ~ Worked with Bernard Pretty Purdie, Christian McBride, Suzanne Vega, Miri Ben Ari, Bob Berg, Richard Bona, the Manhattan Transfer, John Scofield, Mavis Staples, Billy Childs, Bob Sheppard, Brandon Fields, Alan Pasqua, Patti Austin, Keiko Matsui, Cher, Debbie Gibson, Larry Coryell, Abe Laboriel Sr, Ravi Coltrane, Traci Lords, Randy Brecker, Vinx, Matthew Parish, Tina Shafer, Janis Siegel, Ginny Owens, Judy Wexler, and others
May 11, 1974 ~ Norman Howell, commonly known as R&B, reggae, dancehall, reggaeton, hip-hop singer, songwriter Notch, born in Hartford, Connecticut, USA ~ Fluent in American English, Jamaican Patois and Spanglish, mixing all three dialects in his songs, a mixture he calls Spatoinglish. Lead singer for hip hop, reggae group Born Jamericans. Has also recorded as a solo artist, notably the track Nuttin Nuh Go So, and has collaborated with the likes of Daddy Yankee, Luny Tunes, Julio Voltio, Baby Ranks, the Thievery Corporation, Sublime, Pitbull, and the Rascalz
May 11, 1972 ~ Piedmont blues, country blues singer, guitarist, songwriter Alec Seward, full name Alexander T Seward, passed away in New York, New York, USA ~ Worked with Brownie McGhee, Sonny Terry, Louis Hayes, Leadbelly, Woody Guthrie. As a solo artist best known for Some People Say and Creepin' Blues, the latter with notable harmonica accompaniment by Larry Johnson ~ Seward was born in 1901
May 11, 1970 ~ Saxophonist Johnny Hodges passed away in New York, New York, USA ~ Alongside Benny Carter considered one of the definitive alto sax players of the big band era. Started playing with artists such as Lloyd Scott, Sidney Bechet, Luckey Roberts, Chick Webb. Joined Duke Ellington on the recommendation of Ellington's clarinetist Barney Bigard. Hodges would become one of the most prominent players in Duke's ensemble. With the exception of the period 1951 through 1955, when he led his own band, Hodges played with Ellington from 1928 to his death in 1970. Signature pieces would include Confab With Rab, Jeep's Blues and Hodge Podge. Hodges's death prompted Ellington to remark the band “would never sound the same.” ~ Hodges was born in 1907
May 11, 1967 ~ Amy Trujillo, commonly known as singer A'me Lorain, born in Simi Valley, California, USA ~ Lead singer of Family Affair, which included her brother bassist Freddy Trujillo and then-husband guitarist, drummer Victor Indrizzo. Known for their single Whole Wide World, a hit on the Dance charts and the all-genre Billboard Hot 100 in 1990
May 11, 1966 ~ Drummer Christoph Schneider born in Berlin, Germany ~ Initially trained on the trumpet. Switched to drums, much to his parents disliking, in his teens. Best known as drummer of Rammstein, which he co-founded with Richard Kruspe and Oliver Riedel
May 11, 1966 ~ Jazz pianist, bandleader, composer, arranger Julian Joseph, full name Julian Raphael Nathaniel Joseph, born in London, UK ~ Leader and sideman. Worked with Jean Toussaint, Alec Dankworth, Mark Mondesir, Sharon Musgrave, Peter John King, Charnett Moffett, Wayne Batchelor, Eddie Daniels, Johnny Griffin, Jason Rebello, Reginald Veal, Matthew Barley, Guy Barker, Billy Cobham, George Coleman, Chico Freeman, Emiliana Torrini, Don Braden, Nina Hagen, Courtney Pine, Steve Williamson, and others
May 11, 1966 ~ Country singer, guitarist, pianist, songwriter Kevin Fowler born in Amarillo, Texas, USA ~ Initially a rock singer and guitarist, lead guitarist for rock, glam metal band Dangerous Toys from 1992 through 1994 and subsequently forming his own Southern rock, hard rock group Thunderfoot. By the end of the decade would switch to country, self-releasing his Beer Bait & Ammo solo debut album in 2000. It's title track would be recorded by Sammy Kershaw in 2003, gaining Fowler attention in the country music scene. Others who recorded his songs include Mark Chesnutt (Lord Loves The Drinkin' Man, and Montgomery Gentry (Long Line Of Losers). As a recording artist Fowler has recorded over half a dozen albums, including the 2019 Dos Borrachos collaborative album with Roger Creager, and has charted with songs such as Ain't Drinkin' Anymore, The Best Mistake I Ever Made, Pound Sign, and That Girl
May 11, 1966 ~ R&B singer Wilson Pickett records Land Of 1,000 Dances at Fame Studios, Muscle Shoals, Alabama ~ Written by Chris Kenner. Previously recorded by Kenner in 1962, and again by Cannibal & the Headhunters in 1965, the song would become most closely associated with Pickett, his 1966 single, b/w You're So Fine, reaching top 10 Billboard Hot 100 and topping the Billboard R&B charts. Backing musicians include Chips Moman, Spooner Oldham, Charlie Chalmers, Andrew Love, Wayne Jackson and Floyd Newman
May 11, 1965 ~ Singer, guitarist, keyboardist Greg Dulli born in Hamilton, Ohio, USA ~ Co-founding member, frontman for Afghan Whigs, a soul and blues-infused indie rock band most acclaimed for early 1990s albums such as Congregation and Gentlemen. Has also worked with the Twilight Singers, the Gutter Twins co-founded with Mark Lanegan, and recorded as a solo artist. Dulli also guested on the Foo Fighters eponymous 1995 The Foo Fighters debut album, playing guitar on the track X-Static
May 11, 1965 ~ Singer Liza Minnelli makes her Broadway debut in the musical Flora The Red Menace, written by John Kander and Fred Ebb, at the Alvin Theatre, New York, New York ~ Although the show was not warmly received, and would lose almost all of its $400,000 investment, it marked a number of firsts. It was the first collaboration between Kander and Ebb, who would later go on to write successes such as Cabaret and Chicago, and marked Liza Minnelli's Broadway debut at age 19. Contrary to common belief, the show was not written with Minnelli in mind, but rather for Barbra Streisand with Eydie Gormé as a second choice. Minnelli, starring in the title role, would earn a Tony Award for her performance, making her the youngest person to do so
May 11, 1962 ~ Jazz bassist, composer Robert Balzar born in Czechia ~ Worked with Joe Newman, Benny Bailey, Tony Scott, Benny Golson, Wynton Marsalis, Lew Tabackin, Sinan Alimanovic, Tony Lakatos, Hal Galper, Craig Handy, John Abercrombie, Dan Bárta, and others
May 11, 1960 ~ Post-punk, alternative rock, dream pop, new wave singer, bassist, guitarist, keyboardist, songwriter Mark Burgess born in Manchester, UK ~ Formed 1980s outfit the Chameleons, recording three albums before disbanding. Subsequently formed short-lived band the Sun & The Moon with bandmate drummer John Lever, known for their sole eponymous The Sun & The Moon album released in 1988. Formed late 1990s unit Invincible. Formed Black Swan Lane in the 2000s. Burgess has also recorded as a solo artist, starting with Zima Junction released in 1993
May 11, 1958 ~ Singer Connie Francis appears on The Ed Sullivan Show for the first time, aired on CBS ~ Performing right after Tony Martin, Francis sings her hit song I'm Sorry I Made You Cry. After this smash first appearance, Francis would make some two dozen more appearances on the show including two special episodes from West Berlin and Guantanamo Bay Naval Base
May 11, 1954 ~ Composer Judith Weir born in Cambridge, UK ~ First female composer appointed Master Of The King's Music, a feat she achieved granted the position by Queen Elizabeth II in 2014. Recognized for her orchestral and chamber works, yet best known for her theatrical works and operas such as The Black Spider, A Night At The Chinese Opera, The Vanishing Bridegroom, Blond Eckbert, and Miss Fortune (Achterbahn)
May 11, 1953 ~ Singer, songwriter Dorde Balasevic was born in FPR Yugoslavia, FPR Yugoslavia ~ First gained attention in the late 1970s as a member of Rani Mraz, writing Racunajte Na Nas which would become one of the band's best-known and an anthem of a generation. As a solo artist has about a dozen albums to his name starting with the well-received Pub released in 1982. Known for his outspoken political views, advocate of Yugoslavian unity, openly criticising ethnic nationalism and one of the most prominent critics of Slobodan Milosevic's regime ~ Balasevic passed away in 2021
May 11, 1951 ~ Pop rock bassist, singer Joe Puerta born in Lomita, California, USA ~ Founding member of Ambrosia, for whom he co-wrote the Billboard Hot 100 top 20 hit Holdin' On To Yesterday. Touring bassist, backing singer for Chi Coltrane, Laura Branigan, and Sheena Easton. Co-founded Bruce Hornsby & the Range, with whom he scored the 1984 Billboard Hot 100 No.1 hit The Way It Is
May 11, 1947 ~ Claude Hudson Trucks, commonly known as drummer Butch Trucks, born in Jacksonville, Florida, USA ~ Co-founding member of 31st of February which would eventually evolve into the Allman Brothers Band, known for songs such as Ramblin' Man, Jessica, Good Clean Fun, Seven Turns, End Of The Line, and others ~ Trucks passed away in 2017
May 11, 1946 ~ Michel Latraverse, commonly known as singer, guitarist, pianist Plume Latraverse, born in Montreal, Canada ~ Considered one of the most influential figures in Quebec counterculture. Dubbed “the French (language) Frank Zappa” with some two dozen albums to his name starting in the mid-1970s. Perhaps best known for his 1982 A Fond D'Train album. Would semi-retire from music by the mid-1980s to focus on painting and writing
May 11, 1946 ~ Rock keyboardist, film composer Zoran Simjanovic born in Belgrade, FPR Yugoslavia ~ Briefly a member of Siluete from 1961 through 1962. Subsequently rose to fame as member of pioneering rock band Elipse from 1962 through 1968. After the band disbanded Simjanovic would go on to become an in-demand songwriter and from the mid-1970s onwards one of the nation's most revered film composers with over 60 soundtracks to his credit including The Flagrance Of Wild Flowers, Balkan Express, Maleyevic's Cross, and others ~ Simjanovic passed away in 2021
May 11, 1944 ~ Pop, soft rock producer, arranger, songwriter David Mackay born in Sydney, Australia ~ Classically trained in piano, clarinet, music theory, and composition. In-house engineer, producer, A&R executive for EMI Australia, for whom he produced a number of 1960s acts including the Twilights before relocating to the UK. Well-known for co-producing Bonnie Tyler's first two albums, which spawned the hit singles More Than A Lover and the Billboard Hot 100 top 10 hit It's A Heartache. Other notable hit songs include Never Ending Song Of Love, I'd Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony), and Beg Steal Or Borrow for the New Seekers, Power To All Our Friends for Cliff Richard, and the double A-side Breakin' Away/That's Livin' Alright for Joe Fagin
May 11, 1943 ~ Bassist Les Chadwick. full name John Leslie Chadwick, born in Liverpool, UK ~ Original member of Gerry & the Pacemakers, alongside Arthur McMahon, Freddie Marsden and Gerry Marsden, known for a string of 1960s UK hits such as How Do You Do It, I Like It, You'll Never Walk Alone, I'm The One, Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying and Ferry Cross The Mersey ~ Chadwick passed away in 2019
May 11, 1941 ~ Singer Eric Burdon, full name Eric Victor Burdon, born in Walker-on-Tyne, UK ~ One of the most distinctive singers to emerge during the British Invasion, known for his powerful vocals. Lead singer for Alan Price Rhythm & Blues Combo, soon renamed the Animals after Burdon joined the band. The band is known for hits such as The House Of The Rising Sun, I'm Crying, Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood, We Gotta Get Outta This Place, Don't Bring Me Down, and San Franciscan Nights, all of which reached top 20 on both sides of the Atlantic. Burdon joined forces with American funk rock unit War in 1970, appearing on the album Eric Burdon Declares War and its follow-up Tha Black Man's Burdon. Subsequently Burdon has released over half a dozen albums as a solo artist
May 11, 1939 ~ Bossa nova singer, guitarist, songwriter Carlos Lyra, full name Carlos Eduardo Lyra Barbosa, born in Brazil ~ Helped define bossa nova. Among the first songwriters to be recorded by João Gilberto. Frequent songwriting collaborator of Ronaldo Bôscoli, Geraldo Vandré, Vinicius de Moraes. Known for songs such as Quanda Chegares, Criticando, Voce E Eu, Lobo Bobo, Aruanda, and Quem Quiser Encontrar O Amor ~ Lyra passed away in 2023
May 11, 1939 ~ Jazz, R&B trumpeter, hornist, trombonist, pianist Johnny Trudell born ~ In-demand Motown studio and session musician. Worked with Marvin Gaye, Martha Reeves, the Temptations, the Four Tops, the Tribe, Wendell Harrison, and others ~ Trudell passed away in 2021
May 11, 1939 ~ Richard Dean Taylor, commonly known as singer, producer, songwriter R Dean Taylor, born in Toronto, Canada ~ Producer and songwriter, active for Motown during the 1960s and 1970s. As a recording artist scored a Billboard top 20 hit with the 1970 single Indiana Wants Me. Also known for Gotta See Jane and There's A Ghost In My House, both of which charted in England ~ Taylor passed away in 2022
May 11, 1938 ~ Rock & roll singer, guitarist, songwriter Johnny Devlin, full name John Lockett Devlin, born in Raetihi, New Zealand ~ Enjoyed a brief spell of succes from during the late 1950s, starting with his Lloyd Price-cover Lawdy Miss Clawdy released in 1958. Over the next few years would draw massive crowds, open for the Everly Brothers, and score a number of hits before fading from view by the turn of the 1960s. Wrote Good Looking Boy, a 1961 hit for Patsy Ann Noble. Enjoyed some popularity in neighbouring Australia, noted for his mid-1960s singles Stomp The Tumbarumba, Blue Suede Shoes and Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On with the then unknown Gibb siblings of the Bee Gees providing backup vocals on all three songs, but failed to repeat his earlier succes
May 11, 1936 ~ Lovella May Borg, commonly known as jazz, free jazz pianist, composer Carla Bley, born in Oakland, California, USA ~ Over two dozen albums to her name as a leader or co-leader, best known for her 1971 Escalator Over The Hill jazz opera. Married to pianist Paul Bley, who encouraged her to compose, from 1957 to 1964. Married to trumpeter Michael Mantler from 1965 to 1991. Considering herself “99% composer and 1% pianist” Bley would become especially renowned as a composer, writing pieces such as Bent Eagle recorded by George Russell, Ictus recorded by Jimmy Giuffre, and Sing Me Softly Of The Blues recorded by Art Farmer. To rock audiences known for her association with Pink Floyd-drummer Nick Mason, producing, writing all the material of and playing piano on Mason's Nick Mason's Fictitious Sports solo debut album, which also featured Soft Machine's Robert Wyatt on vocals ~ Borg passed away in 2023
May 11, 1931 ~ Soul jazz organist Freddie Roach born in the Bronx, New York, USA ~ One of a handful of hammond players that made history in the 1960s. Roach recorded 5 critically acclaimed albums in the mid to late 1960s for Blue Note Records, notably 1964's Good Move, and 3 more for Prestige Records. Roach also worked as a sideman with Ike Quebec, Willis Jackson and Donald Byrd. Roach retired from the music business in 1970 and ventured into theater, playwriting and film ~ Roach passed away in 1980
May 11, 1930 ~ Frederick Russell Jones, commonly known as hard bop, cool jazz, post-bop pianist Ahmad Jamal, born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA ~ Best known for leading a trio with guitarist Ray Crawford and bassist Israel Crosby for most of the 1950s and early 1960s. Over 50 albums to his name as leader or co-leader over a career spanning six decades, specifically acclaimed for Chamber Music Of The New Jazz, At The Pershing (But Not For Me), and Listen To The Ahmad Jamal Quintet. Converted to islam while in his twenties, taking the name Jamal, and once sued jazz critic Leonard Feather for using his birthname of Jones ~ Jones passed away in 2023
May 11, 1930 ~ Maria Clotilde Belo de Carvalho Rosa Franco, commonly known as harpist, flutist, composer Clotilde Rosa, born in Queluz, Portugal ~ Co-founded the Lisbon Contemporary Group in 1970, which also included her second husband Jorge Machado. Formed the Trio Antigua by the end of the decade, working with Carlos Franco and Luisa de Vasconcelos, focusing on ancient music. Member of the Porto Symphony Orchestra. Retired her orchestral career in 1987 to teach harp at The Music School of Lisbon's National Conservatory, Lisbon, the first contemporary harp syllabus taught in Portugal ~ Rosa passed away in 2017
May 11, 1930 ~ Bolero coloratura-soprano singer Xiomara Alfaro born in Havana, Cuba ~ First gained attention starring in the original cast of Batamú, a musical revue composed by Obdulio Morales. Would go on to become a beloved bolero singer of the 1950s Cuban music scene dubbed “the Nightingale of Music” for her warm, soulful interpretations. Looking back on her career, Alfaro would comment on her career in a 2007 interview: “I try to transmit to my audience when I sing. God gave me a gift. And when God gives you something, you use it” ~ Alfaro passed away in 2018
May 11, 1928 ~ Violinist, conductor, composer Emil Bohnke passed away inear Pasewalk, Germany ~ Composed orchestral music, concertos and works for piano. Worked with the Bandler Quartet, the Busch String Quartet, the Leipzig Symphony Orchestra and the Berlin Symphony Orchestra. Best known for his composition Symphony Op.16 premiered by the Staatskapelle Berlin shortly after his death ~ Bohnke was born in 1888
May 11, 1924 ~ Jazz trumpeter, hornist Oscar Valdambrini born in Turin, Italy ~ Central figure in the development of Italian jazz. Worked with Rex Stewart, Gianni Basso, Armando Trovaioli, Gil Cuppini, Duke Ellington, Giorgio Gaslini, Maynard Ferguson, Franco Ambrosetti, Conte Candoli, Dusko Gojkovic, Freddie Hubbard, Mel Lewis, Frank Rosolino, Ernie Wilkins, Kai Winding, and others ~ Valdambrini passed away in 1996
May 11, 1920 ~ Jazz singer Beryl Bryden, full name Beryl Audley Brown, born in Norwich, UK ~ Influenced by blues singer Bessie Smith. Once named “Britain's queen of the blues” by Ella Fitzgerald. Worked with Humphrey Lyttelton, Freddy Randall, Mick Mulligan, George Melly, Chris Barber, Lonnie Donegan, Monty Sunshine, Rod Mason, the Metropolitan Jazz Band, Digby Fairweather, and Nat Gonella ~ Bryden passed away in 1998
May 11, 1916 ~ Pianist, organist, composer, conductor Max Reger, full name Johann Baptist Josepg Maximilian Reger, passed away in Leipzig, German Empire ~ Initially primarily a composer of Lieder, chamber music and choral music, later turning to orchestral compositions such as Variations And Fugue On A Theme By Mozart, Gesang Der Verklärten, and Hebbel Requiem ~ Reger was born in 1873
May 11, 1913 ~ Salvador Camarata, commonly known as trumpeter, producer, composer, arranger Tutti Camarata, born in Glen Ridge, New Jersey, USA ~ Lead trumpeter for Jimmy Dorsey early on in his career, also arranging tracks such as Tangerine, Green Eyes, and Your. Has also worked with the likes of Benny Goodman, the Casa Loma Orchestra, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, and Duke Ellington prior to relocating to the UK where he co-founded London Records with Decca Records executive Edward Lewis with the aim of distributing classical music from the UK to America. Camarata is also known for his association with Walt Disney, serving as music director and producer for Disneyland Records, and from the 1980s onwards as owner of The Sound Factory, one of the top recording studios in California used by numerous top artists ~ Camarata passed away in 2005
May 11, 1911 ~ Winstead Sheffield Glendenning Dixon Weaver, commonly known as actor, comedian, singer Doodles Weaver, born in Los Angeles, California, USA ~ Member of Spike Jones's musical comedy troupe the City Slickers from 1946 through 1951, for whom he introduced the character Professor Feetlebaum who spoke in spoonerisms. Weaver was also notably present on William Tell Overture, satirising a well-known sports announcer of the day. As a solo artist Weaver recorded a novelty version of Eleanor Rigby, a spoof of the Beatles song. Weaver was also an early contributor to Mad magazine, and has guested acted in numerous TV shows and films ~ Weaver passed away in 1983
May 11, 1906 ~ Swing, dixieland, jazz trombonist JC Higginbotham born in Social Circle, Georgia, USA ~ Leader and in-demand sideman. Has worked with Luis Russell, Benny Carter, Red Allen, Chick Webb, Fletcher Henderson, the Mills Blue Rhythm Band, Kenny Burrell, Buck Clayton, Coleman Hawkins, Alberta Hunter, Cootie Williams, Jimmy Witherspoon, Louis Armstrong, and others ~ Higginbotham passed away in 1973
May 11, 1905 ~ Wilbur Joe McCoy, commonly known as Delta blues singer, guitarist, songwriter Kansas Joe McCoy, born in Raymond, Mississippi, USA ~ Brother of Papa Charlie McCoy. Husband of Memphis Minnie. Best known for co-writing Why Don't You Do Right, recorded by Lil' Green, Benny Goodman, and by Peggy Lee. Other artists who have recorded his songs include Bob Dylan, John Mellencamp, the Ink Spots, Ella Fitzgerald, Led Zeppelin (When The Levee Breaks), Jo-Ann Kelly, Cleo Laine, A Perfect Circle, and others ~ McCoy passed away in 1950