Today In Music: A look back at pop music

By PENNY NELSON BARTHOLOMEW, United Press International   |   Feb. 17, 2002 at 2:00 AM

(Feb. 17)

Today's birthdays include Bobby Lewis, who had a chart-topping hit in 1961 with "Tossin' and Turnin'," was born in 1933 (age 69); Gene Pitney in 1941 (age 61); Dodie Stevens, who had a hit in 1959 with "Pink Shoe Laces," in 1947 (age 55); Melissa Brooke-Belland of Voice of the Beehive in 1966 (age 36); Ronald DeVoe of Bell Biv DeVoe in 1967 (age 35); and Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong in 1972 (age 30).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1960, Elvis Presley received his first gold record for an album, a 1956 release titled "Elvis."

In 1965, "Tennessee Waltz" was declared the state song of Tennessee.

In 1968, John Lennon, George Harrison, and Donovan flew to India to study transcendental meditation under Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

In 1969, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash collaborated on a recording project at the CBS Studios in Nashville. Although a number of songs were recorded, only one -- "Girl From The North Country" -- appeared on Dylan's "Nashville Skyline" album, for which Cash wrote the sleeve notes. Another tune -- "One Too Many Mornings" -- appeared in the documentary film "Johnny Cash, The Man And His Music."

In 1970, Joni Mitchell announced she would make no more public appearances. Before the year was out, she was on stage at the Isle of Wight Festival.

In 1972, a year before releasing the album, Pink Floyd premiered "The Dark Side of the Moon" before an audience at London's Rainbow Theatre.

In 1975, John Lennon's "Rock 'N' Roll" album of songs from his teenage years was released in the United States.

In 1979, the Clash launched the U.S. leg of its "Pearl Harbor '79" tour in New York. The first song of the set was "I'm So Bored With the USA."

In 1984, "Footloose" opened at 1,200 U.S. movie theaters.

In 1986, a daughter, Chloe Lattanzi, was born to Olivia Newton-John and her husband, Matt Lattanzi.

In 1987, Sly Stone was jailed in Los Angeles on two outstanding warrants on drug charges.

In 1988, a 12-year-old Motley Crue fan accidentally set his legs on fire while trying to imitate a stunt shown in the group's "Live Wire" video. The rockers sent their condolences to the boy, advising that their stunts should not be tried at home.

In 1992, more than 50 fans were hurt in a stampede at a New Kids On The Block concert in Seoul, South Korea. One teenage girl later died from her injuries.

Today's musical quiz:

Who wrote "He's a Rebel," a hit song for the Crystals? Answer: Gene Pitney.

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