Today in Music: a look back at pop music

By United Press International  |  Nov. 22, 2002 at 2:45 AM
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(Nov. 23)

Today's birthdays include Bruce Hornsby, of Bruce Hornsby and the Range, who was born in 1954 (age 48); and Joseph Sumner, Sting's son, in 1976 (age 26).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1955, the Cadillacs' "Speedoo" entered the pop music charts. "Speedoo" was the nickname of the Cadillacs' lead vocalist Earl Carroll.

In 1968, Country Joe McDonald quit the Fish.

In 1974, Gary Wright quit Spooky Tooth.

In 1976, Jerry Lee Lewis was arrested outside Graceland after waving a pistol around and demanding to see Elvis Presley.

In 1985, Big Joe Turner died at age 74. He'd suffered a heart attack some months earlier. Many people credit Turner with cutting the first rock 'n' roll record, "Shake, Rattle and Roll," in 1954.

In 1992, Roy Acuff, the "King of Country Music," died of congestive heart failure. He was 89.

In 1993, Emerson Lake and Palmer were immortalized in the Hollywood Rock Walk of Fame.

In 1995, following Thanksgiving Day dinner in Omaha, Neb., members of Alanis Morissette's band and her opening act, the Rentals, held an impromptu bowling tournament. The Rentals won.

In 1996, Elton John was honored as the founder of the Elton John AIDS Foundation at a gala celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center.

In 1997, Cranberries lead singer Dolores O'Riordan gave birth to her first child, a boy, in a Toronto hospital. She and husband Don Burton named their son Taylor Baxter Burton.

In 1998, Shania Twain was nominated for five American Music Awards. Rapper-turned-actor Will Smith got four nominations and Celine Dion, three.

Also in 1998, Metallica sued in federal court in Los Angeles, claiming the Web site was selling a bootleg album not approved by the band.

And in 1998, Los Angeles businessman Donald Bohana was sentenced to 15-years-to-life in prison for the August 1994 murder of Delores Jackson, the former sister-in-law of Michael Jackson and ex-wife of Tito Jackson.

In 1999, Metallica reunited with composer/arranger Michael Kamen at New York's Madison Square Garden for an encore of their classical orchestra collaboration first performed in April 1999 in San Francisco.

Also in 1999, the funeral for Doug Sahm of the Texas Tornados was held in his hometown of San Antonio, Texas. Sahm, 58, had been found dead in a Taos, N.M., hotel room. The cause of death was heart disease.

Topping the charts on this date:

Runaround Sue - Dion (1961), Wedding Bell Blues - The 5th Dimension (1969), You Light Up My Life - Debbie Boone (1977), We Built This City - Starship (1985).

Today's musical quiz:

What's Shania Twain's real first name? Answer: Eileen. Shania means "I'm on my way" in Ojibwa (Indian) dialect.


(Nov. 24)

Today's birthdays include composer Scott Joplin, "king of ragtime," born in 1858; Jim Yester of the Association, who was born in 1939 (age 63); bassist Donald "Duck" Dunn of the Mar-Keys, Booker T and the M-Gs, and the Blues Brothers, and Pete Best -- the original drummer of the Beatles who was kicked out of the group and replaced by Ringo Starr in August 1962 -- both in 1941 (age 61); Lee Michaels in 1945 (age 57); guitarist Chris Hayes of Huey Lewis and the News in 1957 (age 45); and Stone Roses guitarist John Squire in 1962 (age 40).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1972, Don Kirshner's "Rock Concert" debuted on ABC-TV. The first show featured Alice Cooper, the Allman Brothers, Chuck Berry, Blood Sweat and Tears, Seals and Crofts, and Poco.

In 1991, Queen's lead singer Freddie Mercury died of AIDS at his West London home, one day after confirming rumors that he had the disease. He was 45.

Also in 1991, Kiss drummer Eric Carr died of cancer at a New York hospital. He was 41.

And in 1991, singer Cyndi Lauper and her actor/boyfriend David Thornton were married in Manhattan.

In 1992, a London court granted the ex-wife of Rolling Stone Bill Wyman an $870,000 divorce settlement. Wyman had met Mandy Smith when she was 13. They married when she was 19 and he 52, and were divorced 23 months later in 1991.

Also in 1992, Michael Jackson donated $2.1 million in humanitarian aid to children in the former Yugoslav republics of Bosnia and Croatia.

And in 1992, a Boston magistrate ruled there was probable cause to bring a criminal complaint against rapper "Marky" Mark Wahlberg and a friend for allegedly beating up a man. The magistrate gave both sides two weeks to reach an agreement.

In 1993, Michael Jackson signed a music publishing deal with EMI, said to be worth more than $200 million.

Also in 1993, Grammy-winning blues guitarist Albert Collins died of cancer at age 61. He is cited as an influence by many rockers, including Eric Clapton and George Thorogood.

In 1999, for the fifth year, James Brown handed out free Thanksgiving turkeys to the poor in his hometown of Augusta, Ga.

In 2000, the Beatles' new album "1" -- a compilation of 27 of the Fab Four's No. 1 U.S. and U.K. hits from 1962 to 1970 -- debuted at No.1 on the Billboard Top 200 album chart.

Topping the charts on this date:

Stay - Maurice Williams and The Zodiacs (1960), Hey Jude - The Beatles (1968), Tonight's the Night (Gonna be Alright) - Rod Stewart (1976), Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go - Wham! (1964).

Today's musical quiz:

How did Pete Best become a Beatle? Answer: The future Beatles, then calling themselves the Quarrymen, were regular performers at The Casbah, Best's mother's club. When the band had a dispute with their drummer, Pete sat in and in August 1960 officially joined the band.


(Nov. 25)

Today's birthdays include Percy Sledge, who was born in 1941 (age 61); Electric Light Orchestra's Bev Bevan in 1946 (age 56); and Amy Grant in 1960 (age 42).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1955, Bill Haley's "Rock Around the Clock" topped the British music charts.

In 1961, the Everly Brothers joined the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves.

In 1968, the Beatles album popularly known as the "white album" was released in the United States.

In 1969, John Lennon returned his MBE -- Member of the British Empire -- medal to protest British involvement in the civil war in Biafra and British support of the Vietnam War.

In 1976, Rick Wakeman rejoined Yes.

Also in 1976, The Band's "The Last Waltz" -- its last concert together -- was held in San Francisco's Winterland ballroom. The show was recorded and later released as a triple album. It was also filmed by director Martin Scorsese. It had its DVD debut in 2002.

In 1983, singer, actor and trumpter Johnny "Scat" Davis died at age 73.

In 1984, British musicians led by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure recorded the anti-famine fundraiser "Do They Know It's Christmas?"

In 1991, a sprained ankle forced Rod Stewart to cancel his concert in the Detroit suburb of Auburn Hills, Mich.

In 1992, crooner Andy Williams announced that his upcoming Christmas tour would be his last.

In 1994, the Rolling Stones' pay-per-view concert aired live from Miami.

Also in 1994, Stevie Wonder appeared in the 67th Annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.

In 1995, Whitney Houston's "Exhale" debuted No. 1 on the music charts.

In 1996, Bruce Springsteen performed the first of two benefit concerts in Asbury Park, N.J. The money raised went to a local boys and girls club.

In 1997, Boyz II Men spend the afternoon serving an early Thanksgiving dinner to families living in a homeless shelter.

In 1998, Spin magazine executive editor Craig Marks told New York police that he'd been assaulted by Marilyn Manson's bodyguards, two days after the rocker threatened him. He said he didn't know why Manson was mad at him or his magazine.

In 1999, Yoko Ono unveiled a multimedia exhibit of her work at the Israeli Museum in Jerusalem.

In 2000, Marilyn Manson's drummer, Ginger Fish, suffered a broken collarbone during a show at New York City's Hammerstein Ballroom. It happened when Marilyn Manson tore down the drum set during the concert's finale and Fish went with it.

Topping the charts on this date:

Mack the Knife - Bobby Darin (1959), Incense and Peppermints - Strawberry Alarm Clock (1967), That's the Way (I Like It) - KC and The Sunshine Band (1975), All Night Long (All Night) - Lionel Ritchie (1985).

Today's musical quiz:

What was so precedent setting about the Beatles' "white album"? Answer: It had 30 songs -- more than anyone had ever put on an album before.


(Nov. 26)

Today's birthdays include entertainer Robert Goulet, who was born in 1933 (age 69); Tina Turner in 1938 (age 64); Them bassist John Henderson in 1944 (age 58); John McVie of John Mayall's Bluesbreakers and Fleetwood Mac in 1945 (age 57); Focus's Bert Ruiter in 1946 (age 56); and UB40's Norman Hassan in 1957 (age 45).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1956, big band leader Tommy Dorsey died at age 51.

In 1966, the Temptations' "(I Know) I'm Losing You" entered the pop music charts.

Also in 1966, Wilson Pickett's "Mustang Sally" entered the charts.

In 1968, Cream -- Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker and Jack Bruce -- played its farewell concert at London's Royal Albert Hall.

In 1973, the New York Dolls debuted at a London restaurant.

Also in 1973, John Rostill -- bassist with the 1960s group The Shadows -- was electrocuted while playing guitar in his home studio.

In 1976, Lol Creme and Kevin Godley quit 10cc. They later became prominent video producers.

In 1977, the Sex Pistols' "Anarchy in the U.K." album was released.

In 1980, Paul McCartney's "Wings Over America" tour film, titled "Rockshow," premiered in New York.

In 1982, jazz trumpeter Miles Davis married actress Cicely Tyson in New York. Bill Cosby was the best man.

In 1983, Quiet Riot's "Metal Health" was the No. 1 album.

Also in 1983, "PYT" became the sixth top-10 single from Michael Jackson's "Thriller" album.

And in 1983, David Bowie played to an estimated 80,000 people in Auckland, New Zealand.

In 1990, it was announced that Mick Jagger and longtime girlfriend Jerry Hall had married the previous week in Bali, Indonesia.

In 1991, Ozzy Osbourne broke his foot during a Chicago concert. The injury later forced him to cancel the rest of his tour.

In 1995, Bruce Springsteen kicked off his U.S. tour in support of his new album "The Ghost of Tom Joad."

In 1997, a reunited New Edition announced plans for its first tour in a decade. The road trip started a month later, Dec. 27, in Boston, the band's hometown.

Also in 1996, a Los Angeles judge revoked the probation of Death Row Record CEO Marion "Suge" Knight, ordering him to stay in jail at least three months after finding Knight violated probation in his assault case by taking part in a September fight at a Las Vegas hotel. That altercation had taken place shortly before the drive-by shooting that killed rapper Tupac Shakur.

In 1997, a Los Angeles judge issued an arrest warrant for ex-Milli Vanilli Robert Pilatus after he didn't show up for a court hearing. Pilatus had been charged with probation violations stemming from an attempted car burglary in September 1995 and three separate attacks on people in April 1996.

In 1999, the British pop trio Muse launched its first U.S. tour in Atlanta.

Topping the charts on this date:

It's Only Make Believe - Conway Twitty (1958), You Keep Me Hangin' On - The Supremes (1966), I Can Help - Billy Swan (1974), Up Where We Belong - Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes (1982).

Today's musical quiz:

What's Tina Turner's real name? Answer: Annie Mae Bullock.


(Nov. 27)

Today's birthdays include Al Jackson, drummer with Booker T and the MGs, who was born in 1935, Jimi Hendrix was born in 1942, Eddie Rabbitt in 1944, and Simple Minds' Charlie Burchill in 1959 (age 43).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1957, "The Chirping Crickets," the only Buddy Holly album issued during his lifetime, was released. It included the songs "That'll Be The Day," "Not Fade Away" and "Maybe Baby."

In 1964, for the second time in less than four months, Rolling Stones lead singer Mick Jagger was fined by an English court for various driving offenses.

In 1967, the Beatles' "Magical Mystery Tour" album was released in the United States.

In 1969, the Rolling Stones opened four nights at New York's Madison Square Garden. The concerts yielded the "Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out" album.

In 1970, George Harrison's album "All Things Must Pass" was released.

In 1984, Band-Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas" was released.

In 1990, Milli Vanilli's Rob Pilatus was arrested in Los Angeles and charged with sexual battery. The charges were dropped the next day.

In 1991, Queen's Freddie Mercury was cremated during a private funeral in London. He'd died of AIDS three days earlier.

Also in 1991, "Randy" Jackson, the brother of Michael, was sentenced to 30 days in a mental hospital for attacking his wife.

And in 1991, Gloria Estefan donated $10,000 to the victims of a Philippine tropical storm.

In 1996, a former farm employee for country singer Wynonna and her husband accused the couple of sexual harassment and discrimination for not paying her as much as her male predecessor. The lawsuit sought $800,000 in damages.

In 1997, funeral services for INXS lead singer Michael Hutchence were held in Sydney, Australia.

In 1998, Capitol Records announced that Garth Brooks's "Double Live" CD had sold 1.09 million copies in its first week of release, beating the old record set in 1993 by Pearl Jam's "Vs," which had sold 950,000 copies its first week in stores.

Also in 1998, The Who's Roger Daltry opened in New York as the lead character in Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol."

In 1999, Kyle Eastern Jr. and Michael Pierson of the rap group Digital Underground were arrested on sex charges in Little Rock, Ark. They were accused of kissing and fondling a young woman backstage following their concert at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds.

Topping the charts on this date:

Jailhouse Rock - Elvis Presley (1957), I Hear a Symphony - The Supremes (1965), Photograph - Ringo Starr (1973), Physical - Olivia Newton-John (1981).

Today's musical quiz:

It was only after his appearance at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 that Jimi Hendrix saw success in the United States? Where did his career first take off? Answer: England.


(Nov. 28)

Today's birthdays include Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr., who was born in 1929 (age 73); singer/songwriter Randy Newman in 1943 (age 59); former Little River Band guitarist Beeb Burtles in 1948 (age 54); David Letterman's TV bandleader Paul Shaffer in 1949 (age 53); and David Jaymes of Modern Romance in 1954 (age 48).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1925, the first WSM "Barn Dance," precursor to the Grand Ole Opry, was broadcast in Nashville.

In 1960, Elvis Presley's "Are You Lonesome Tonight?" was the No. 1 song.

In 1964, Willie Nelson debuted at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.

In 1970, George Harrison's "My Sweet Lord" and Elton John's "Your Song" were released.

In 1974, John Lennon made his last concert appearance at an Elton John show in Madison Square Garden. The two performed "Whatever Gets You Through The Night," "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds," and "I Saw Her Standing There."

In 1977, the stage musical "Elvis" opened in London.

In 1981, Lotte Lenya died at age 81. She was mentioned in the song "Mack the Knife."

In 1983, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Charlie Watts, Joe Cocker, Bill Wyman, Paul Rodgers, Kenney Jones and Ronnie Lane took part in a concert in Dallas to raise money for multiple sclerosis research. Lane was suffering from MS.

Also in 1983, Sylvia Robinson's Sugarhill Records signed a distribution deal with MCA.

In 1987, R.E.M. had its first hit single in Britain with "The One I Love." The song was also the band's first U.S. Top-10 single.

In 1990, VH1 followed the lead of MTV and became the second national video cable network to refuse to air Madonna's steamy new music video "Justify My Love."

In 1997, in his first extended TV interview in a decade, Paul McCartney told David Frost he thought the world would've been "very different" without the Beatles.

Also in 1997, Chumbawamba's Danbert Nobacon spent six hours in police custody in Florence, Italy, after being picked up for wearing a skirt in public.

In 2000, promoters of Madonna's cyber-concert at London's Brixton Academy said the show was watched online by 9 million people worldwide. Madonna was accompanied by Texas star Sharleen Spitteri, ex-Verve frontman Richard Ashcroft and Goldie. She sang six songs, starting with "Impressive Instant."

Also in 2000, Erykah Badu's new album, "Mama's Gun," was released.

Topping the charts on this date:

Singing the Blues - Guy Mitchell (1956), Leader of the Pack - The Shangri-Las (1964), I Can See Clearly Now - Johnny Nash (1972) Woman in Love - Barbra Streisand (1980).

Today's musical quiz:

Near the beginning of the 1996 film "Independence Day," one of the characters was playing an R.E.M. song on his stereo. Can you name the tune? Answer: "It's the End of the World (As We Know It)."


(Nov. 29th)

Today's birthdays include John Mayall of the Bluesbreakers, who was born in 1933 (age 69); Chuck Mangione in 1940 (age 62); Dennis Doherty of the Mamas and the Papas, and Rascals keyboardist Felix Cavaliere, both in 1941 (age 61); guitarist Barry Goudreau of Boston in 1951 (age 51); and Jon Knight of NKOTB -- New Kids On The Block -- in 1969 (age 33).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1965, Colorado Gov. John Love declared this "Rolling Stones Day" after the band sold out a concert at the Denver Coliseum.

In 1975, The Who's "Squeeze Box" was released.

In 1979, Supertramp recorded its "Paris" live double album in Paris.

In 1985, following a long court battle, Elton John and Bernie Taupin lost their bid to recover the copyrights on 169 of their songs published by D.J.Music under an agreement signed in 1967. But the judge ordered Dick James to pay John and Taupin up to 5 million British pounds in unpaid royalties.

In 1986, "Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band Live 1975-1985" entered the Billboard Top-100 album chart at No. 1, marking the first time a boxed set ever entered the chart in the top position.

In 1995, Van Halen lead singer Sammy Hagar married model Kari Karte in Marin County, Calif.

Also in 1995, it was reported that someone stole the mailbox from outside the Palm Springs, Calif., house where Elvis Presley and Priscilla honeymooned.

In 1999, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, kicked off three days honoring Johnnie "Johnnie B. Goode" Johnson. He's the legendary piano player who inspired Chuck Berry but who remains almost an unknown.

Also in 1999, Elvis Presley topped the list of the "12 Greatest Entertainers of the Century," compiled by E! Online Entertainment's editors. Frank Sinatra came in second, followed by Judy Garland, James Brown, the Rolling Stones, Barbra Streisand, Fred Astaire, Michael Jackson, the Marx Brothers, Shirley Temple, Monty Python's Flying Circus and Liberace.

In 2000, Chuck Berry's former partner -- pianist/composer Johnnie Johnson, a.k.a. Johnnie B. Goode -- sued Berry in St. Louis federal court. Johnson was seeking his rightful share of monies realized from numerous Johnson/Berry composed songs, for which he never received proper credit or royalties.

George Harrison, lead guitarist for the Beatles, died on this date in 2001 of brain cancer. He was 58. Often called the "quiet Beatle," overshadowed by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, he was a reluctant celebrity but a splendid guitarist and fine songwriter and left a rich musical legacy of his own. His final album, "Brainwashed," was released a year after his death.

Topping the charts on this date:

Autumn Leaves - Roger Williams (1955), I'm Leaving It Up to You - Dale and Grace (1963), Theme from Shaft - Isaac Hayes (I971), No More Tears (Enough is Enough) - Barbra Streisand/Donna Summer (1979).

Today's musical quiz:

Who wrote "Kentucky Rain," one of Elvis Presley's last hit singles? Answer: Country-pop artist Eddie Rabbitt.

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