RONNIE ALDRICH + WALTER DONALDSON + HAROLD ARLEN
1916 Ronnie Aldrich, born Ronald Frank Aldrich (15 February 1916, Erith, Kent, England – 30 September 1993, Isle of Man) was a British easy listening and jazz pianist, arranger, conductor, and composer. The only son af a store manager, he was three years old when he started playing the piano. He was educated at The Harvey Grammar School, Folkestone, and taught violin at the Guildhall School. Before World War II, Aldrich went to India to play jazz and first gained fame in the 1940s as leader of The Squadronaires, up until their disbanding in 1964. He was noteworthy for the recording development of playing two pianos in his recordings (the Decca Phase 4 Stereo series). He recorded for The Decca Record Company Ltd in the 1960s and 1970s, moving to Seaward Ltd (his own company) licensed to EMI in the 1980s. He also regularly broadcast on BBC Radio 2 with his own orchestra as well as with the BBC Radio Orchestra and the BBC Scottish Radio Orchestra, based in BBC Glasgow. He also recorded special tracks that were released by Reader's Digest. He was appointed musical director at Thames Television and thus was widely known as the musical director for the television programme The Benny Hill Show. He died of prostate cancer at age 77.
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1893 Walter Donaldson (February 15, 1893 - July 15, 1947) was a prolific United States popular songwriter, composing many hit songs of the 1910s and 1920s. Donaldson was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of a piano teacher. While still in school he wrote original music for school productions, and had his first professional songs published in 1915. The following year he had a hit with "The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady". After serving in the United States Army in World War I, Donaldson was hired as a songwriter by Irving Berlin Music Company. He stayed with Berlin until 1928, producing many hit songs, then in 1928 established his own publishing company. His company was legally Donaldson, Douglas & Gumble, Inc, but all the publications had Walter Donaldson's name in large letters, and the legal name of the company in fine print.
Donaldson is primarily known as a composer, rather than as a lyricist. He published some 600 original songs.
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1905 Harold Arlen (February 15, 1905 – April 23, 1986) was an American composer of popular music, having written over 500 songs, a number of which have become known the world over. In addition to composing the songs for The Wizard of Oz, including the classic 1938 song, "Over the Rainbow,” Arlen is a highly regarded contributor to the Great American Songbook. "Over the Rainbow," in fact, was voted the twentieth century's No. 1 song by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and the National Endowment for the Arts.
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Birthday Spotlight: Nina Mae McKinney - Nina Mae McKinney Nina Mae McKinney (June 13, 1912 – May 3, 1967) was an American actress who worked internationally during the 1930s and in the postwar pe...