Today in Music: a look back at pop music

By United Press International  |  June 30, 2002 at 3:05 AM
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(June 30)

Today's musical birthdays include the late legendary drummer Buddy Rich, who was born in 1917; singer/actress Lena Horne also in 1917 (age 85); Newbeats' Larry Henley in 1941 (age 61); the late Florence Ballard of the Supremes in 1943; Glen Shorrock of the Little River Band in 1944 (age 58); Sweet guitarist Andrew Scott in 1949 (age 53); Stanley Clarke in 1951 (age 51); and Adrian Wright of Human League in 1956 (age 46).

Today in music history:

In 1922, Eck Robertson and Henry Gilliland recorded the first discs ever made by Southern country musicians. The session was held in New York.

In 1923, jazz pioneer Sidney Bechet cut his first record, "Wildcat Blues," backed by "Kansas City Blues."

In 1959, Bobby Darin's "Mack the Knife" entered the pop charts.

In 1971, Bill Graham closed the Fillmore West in San Francisco.

In 1974, members of the Modern Jazz Quartet -- Milt Jackson, John Lewis, Percy Heath and Connie Kay -- played their last U.S. show in San Francisco. The quartet would then tour Australia before retiring after 22 years together.

In 1975, four days after divorcing Sonny Bono, Cher married Gregg Allman. Within 10 days, they announced they were splitting up, then reconciled, then split up again. Eventually, the marriage lasted three years -- long enough for Gregg and Cher to become the parents of a son, Elijah Blue.

In 1977, Marvel Comics published the "KISS Book," featuring members of KISS as superheroes.

Also in 1977, the organizers of the Newport Jazz Festival announced they would relocate the festival the following year from New York City to Sarasota Springs.

In 1981, rockabilly pioneer Jerry Lee Lewis underwent emergency surgery in Memphis for a hole in his stomach. He wasn't expected to survive -- but did.

In 1983, the Everly Brothers announced they'd settled their differences after a decade apart and would reunite for a concert at London's Royal Albert Hall in September.

In 1985, John Lennon's psychedelic-painted, Flower Power-era Rolls Royce was sold for more than $2 million at a New York auction.

Also in 1985, actor Sean Penn punched two reporters who tried to photograph him and his fiancee, Madonna, in Nashville, Tenn., where he was making a movie.

In 1991, a Tyler, Texas-based cable-TV company, TCA, dropped MTV, saying the music videos shown on the channel were "borderline pornographic materials." MTV said the dispute was over fees, not content.

In 1993, The Artist Formerly Known As Prince was given the "Humanitarian of the Year" Award by the St. Paul, Minn., Urban League.

In 1994, Virgin Records shipped the Rolling Stones new album "Voodoo Lounge" early after several radio stations played bootleg copies.

Also in 1994, Pearl Jam's Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament testified before a congressional panel about what they called Ticketmaster's monopolistic practices.

And in 1994, Chubby Checker returned to his hometown of Philadelphia to perform at the third annual "Hoagie Day."

In 1995, Michael Jackson's "HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book 1" debuted at No.1 on the Billboard album chart.

In 1997, Aerosmith kicked off its North American tour in Old Orchard Beach, Maine.

Also in 1997, the Smokin' Grooves tour began in Boston. It featured George Clinton and Funkadelic, Foxy Brown, Erykah Badu and Cypress Hill, among others.

In 1998, the Smashing Pumpkins opened the band's latest tour in San Francisco to promote its new album "Adore." The 13-city, 14-show North American jaunt also supported local charities.

Also in 1998, the Vans Warped Tour -- featuring Bad Religion, Cherry Poppin' Daddies and the Specials, among others -- opened in Phoenix, Ariz.

And in 1998, Wu-Tang Clan member Big Baby Jesus, a.k.a. Ol' Dirty Bastard (real name: Russell Jones), was shot and wounded during a robbery at his home in Brooklyn, N.Y.

In 1999, rapper DMX (real name: Earl Simmons) and his wife were arrested at their home in Teaneck, N.J., on weapons charges following the shooting three days earlier of Simmons' cousin and manager.

Also in 1999, Madonna filed a $2 million lawsuit against her former financial advisers. She claimed their screw-up caused her to overpay more than $2 million in income tax to the state of New York.

In 2000, tragedy struck one of Europe's biggest rock festivals. Nine people were crushed to death against a barrier in front of the stage as Pearl Jam performed at the annual festival in Roskilde, Denmark, near Copenhagen. In a statement, the members of Pearl Jam said they were "devastated" by the incident.

Also in 2000, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stone Temple Pilots and Fishbone launched a tour in Saratoga, N.Y.

And in 2000, Metallica's "Summer Sanitarium Tour," with Korn and Kid Rock, kicked off in Foxboro, Mass.

Today's musical quiz:

How old was Buddy Rich when he made his professional debut as a drummer? Answer: 18 months old. By the time he was 15, Rich was earning $1,000 a week. By the way, on his deathbed in 1987, a nurse asked Rich if there was anything making him uncomfortable. He reportedly replied: "Yes, country music."

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