this day in music history


 

On January 26, 1988, The Phantom of the Opera opened on Broadway, two years after its West End debut. It is the longest running show in Broadway history!  It’s been seen by over 130 million people and its worldwide gross is estimated at over $5.6 billon (source)! This video features three of the show’s songs-  ”Think of Me”, “The Music of the Night”, and “The Phantom of the Opera”:

Continue reading

Janis Joplin was born on January 19, 1943 in Port Arthur, Texas. She would have turned 71 years old today! Janis was one of my favorite artists to listen to when I was a teenager. I had a giant poster of Janis sitting on her painted Porsche plastered on my bedroom wall amidst glow-in-the-dark stars and would pop in one of her CDs when I wanted something with more soul than The Smashing Pumpkins or No Doubt. Her raspy voice was absolutely unique and her performances were electrifying and captivating!  Celebrate her birthday by watching and sharing a few videos of Janis working her magic on stage:

Continue reading

On January 13, 1968, Johnny Cash recorded his 27th album At Folsom Prison live at Folsom State Prison.  Some of my favorite songs on the album: “Long Black Veil”, “Folsom Prison Blues”, “Orange Blossom Special” and “Green, Green Grass of Home”. Cash had been interested in this particular prison for over a decade by the time he made At Folsom Prison!  In 1951, he watched the film Inside the Walls of Folsom Prison and it inspired him to write his 1955 hit “Folsom Prison Blues”.

On January 6, 1958, Gibson launched its iconic “Flying V” guitar.  I share a name (spelled differently) with the wood used to create its futuristic body! “Korina”  is a type of mahogany wood from a large tree native to Western Africa.  It was also used to make Gibson’s “Explorer” guitars.  The 1958 models of both the “Flying V” and “Explorer” are some of the most valuable production-model guitars in the world, in 3rd and 4th place on Vintage Guitar magazine’s “10 Most Valuable Guitars” list.  Although the 1958 “Flying V” is now extremely valuable, at the time the guitar wasn’t an immediate success.   It was even discontinued in 1959 after poor sales due to its heavy weight and modern design.  In the 1960s, Gibson reduced the guitar’s weight by eliminating its curved back and almost immediately, it was in the hands of many notable musicians such as Lonnie Mack (who had also played the 1958 original), Albert King, Dave Davies of the Kinks, and Jimi Hendrix.
Happy Birthday, Flying V!

Continue reading

Happy Birthday, Frank Sinatra!  The singer and actor was born Francis Albert “Frank” Sinatra on December 12, 1915 in Hoboken, NJ. He would have turned 98 today!  Here are 3 Sinatra performances to watch in his honor:

Continue reading


Happy Birthday, Maria Callas! Maria, one of the most renowned and influential opera singers of all time, would have turned 90 years old today.  She was born Maria Anna Sophie Cecilia Kalogeropoulos in NYC to parents George and Evangelia Kalogeropoulos. Her parents had just emigrated from Greece to New York in August of that year!  Her father shortened her last name to Callas when she was 6 years old.   She began piano lessons at 9 years old and before she was even 16 years old she was accepted into the National Conservatory in Athens.  At age 18, she made her professional operatic debut as Beatrice in Boccacio!

Here are 2 incredible Maria Callas videos to watch in her honor today:

Continue reading

Happy 70th Birthday, Joni Mitchell!  The singer/songwriter/painter was born Roberta Joan Anderson on November 7, 1943 in Alberta, Canada.  In honor of her birthday, I’m sharing some of my favorite Joni Mitchell quotes and 3 amazing performances to watch and share!

 
Continue reading

Photo by Stephen Danelian. Courtesy of Indiana University.

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma was born on October 7, 1955 in Paris, France.  Most likely, you’ve heard of Yo-Yo Ma, as he’s one of the most well-known classical musicians alive. The child prodigy began playing the cello at age 4 and was already performing publicly by age 5. He even played for Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy when he was only 7 years old! Yo-Yo Ma attended Trinity School in NYC, before transferring to the Professional Children’s School and graduating at age 15. He went on to study at Juilliard, Columbia, then Harvard where he received his Bachelor’s degree in 1976.

So how would you recognize Yo-Yo Ma?  In addition to many media appearances on television, he’s been featured on many soundtracks, including Seven Years in Tibet; Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; and Memoirs of a Geisha. You probably saw him performing with Itzhak Perlman at President Obama’s 2009 Inauguration!  He was also the first performer on September 11, 2002 at the site of the World Trade Center, when the names of those killed were read on the first anniversary of the attack.

In honor of his special day, watch a few of Yo-Yo Ma’s performances that showcase his talent:

Continue reading

American composer and pianist George Gershwin was born on September 26, 1898 in Brooklyn, New York. One of his most famous compositions is Rhapsody in Blue, a brilliant orchestral piece written in 1924 that combines elements of classical and jazz music in a way that hadn’t been done before his time. The music reflects the New York City Gershwin was experiencing in the 1920s. It’s imaginative, beautiful, and unlike any other piece you’ve heard!

Tonight, take 10 minutes to sit down and listen to this recording (George is playing the piano!) in his honor:

photo source

Ray Charles was born “Ray Charles Robinson” on  September 23, 1930 in Albany, GA.  He would have turned 83 today!  Here are a few of my favorite videos of Ray performing to watch in his honor:
 
Continue reading

Happy Birthday, Cass Elliot!  Elliot was born Ellen Naomi Cohen on September 19, 1941 in Baltimore, Maryland.  She would have turned 72 today.  
Here are a few performances to watch in her honor:

 
Continue reading

On September 16, 1963- 50 years ago today- The Beatles released “She Loves You”.  It was an immediate success and was one of the five Beatles songs that set a record on April 4, 1964 by simultaneously holding the top five positions on the Billboard charts!  These were the 5 songs:
Continue reading


 

Happy Birthday, George Jones! George was born on September 12, 1931 – he would have turned turned 82 today.  This is one of his most famous songs, “He Stopped Loving Her Today”, a song released in 1980 about a man who couldn’t forget about his lost love.  For years, the man holds on to her letters and photos always hoping that she will “come back again”.  He only stops loving her when he passes away and she comes to visit him one last time at his funeral.  It’s a sad, but beautiful song regarded by many as the greatest country song of all time.  Love the song?  Here’s another beautiful performance of the song by LeAnn Rimes at the Grand Ole Opry.

{Debussy at the piano, 1893}

Today is French composer Claude Debussy’s birthday.  He was born on August 22, 1862 and is one of my favorite classical composers. We often feature his compositions in our kids music classes at TLB.  When I saw today’s Goodle Doodle dedicated to him, it reminded me of the perfect video to share in his honor!  The video below is created by Steven Malinowski’s “music animation machine” and is set to Debussy’s Arabesque No. 1, one of the most beautiful, soothing pieces of music written for piano. Last August, I shared another similar animation of Debussy’s Clair de Lune. If you haven’t seen Malinowski’s mesmerizing “music animation machine”, I highly recommend it!
Enjoy and share!

 

The one-and-only Whitney Houston’s birthday is today.   She was born in Newark, New Jersey and grew up surrounded by music: her mother was a gospel singer, Dionne Warwick is her cousin, and her honorary Aunt- Aretha Franklin! Although the world was robbed of her brilliant talent too early, she left behind a legacy of timeless music that remains unmatched. Here are 5 must-see performances to enjoy in her honor today. Share with friends! Happy Birthday, Whitney!

Continue reading

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

MyChelle Dermaceuticals
Isabella Oliver Maternity
The Honest Company