Today In Music: A look back at pop music

By PENNY NELSON BARTHOLOMEW, United Press International  |  March 17, 2002 at 2:00 AM
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(March 17)

Today's birthdays include Nat "King" Cole, who was born in 1919; John Sebastian, who was with the Lovin' Spoonful before going solo, and Them drummer Patrick McCauley, both in 1944 (age 58); War drummer Harold Brown in 1946 (age 56); Thin Lizzy's Scott Gorham in 1951 (age 51); country singer Susie Allanson in 1952 (age 50); and Level 42 keyboardist/singer Mike Lindup in 1959 (age 43).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1962, Alexis Korner's Blues Inc. debuted at the Ealing Club in London with future Rolling Stone Charlie Watts on drums. Within weeks, Mick Jagger and Jack Bruce would join the group -- Jagger as a vocalist and Bruce on bass.

In 1968, the Bee Gees made its U.S. television debut -- performing "To Love Somebody" and "Words" on "The Ed Sullivan Show."

In 1973, Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" album first entered the Billboard Top-200 album chart -- and has hardly left it since.

In 1978, "American Hot Wax" -- the biopic about disc jockey Alan Freed -- premiered.

In 1982, Samuel George Jr., lead singer of the Capitols, was stabbed to death at age 39. The Capitols -- a Detroit trio -- had a top-10 hit in 1966 with the song "Cool Jerk."

In 1987, Boy George met Princess Diana at a London disco.

Also in 1987, fire damaged the San Diego, Calif., home of Jim Croce's widow, Ingrid.

In 1990, Prince began filming "Graffiti Bridge," the follow-up to his movie "Purple Rain."

Also in 1990, former Blind Faith bassist Ric Grech died at age 44.

In 1994, Michael Jackson's mother testified before a Los Angeles grand jury investigating whether to bring criminal charges of child molestation against her pop star son. No charges were ever filed.

In 1996, a British newspaper (the London Sun) reported that Michael Jackson had purchased a French castle near EuroDisney outside Paris.

In 1997, filming began on the first motion picture ever shot inside Graceland. It starred Harvey Keitel as a man who claims to be Elvis Presley and Bridget Fonda as a Marilyn Monroe impersonator.

In 1998, "Van Halen 3" -- featuring new vocalist Gary Cherone -- was released.

Also in 1998, Ice Cube kicked off a promotional tour to push the film "The Player's Club" as well as the soundtrack CD.

And in 1998, rapper C-Bo -- a.k.a. Shawn Thomas -- was sentenced to two more months in jail in Sacramento, Calif., after testing positive for marijuana. That was a violation of his probation.

Today's musical quiz:

Country singer Susie Allanson appeared in the film version of what Andrew Lloyd Webber/Tim Rice rock opera? Answer: "Jesus Christ Superstar."

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