Today in Music: a look back at pop music

By United Press International  |  March 2, 2003 at 2:30 AM
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(March 2)

Today's birthdays include country singer Doc Watson in 1923 (age 80); guitarist Willie Chambers of the Chambers Brothers in 1938 (age 65); Lou Reed in 1943 (age 60); Irish rock guitarist Rory Gallagher and New York cop-turned-rocker Eddie Money, both in 1949 (age 54); Karen Carpenter was born in 1950; Jay Osmond in 1955 (age 48); Cowsills drummer John Cowsill and Mark Evans, formerly with AC/DC, both in 1956 (age 47); and Jon Bon Jovi in 1962 (age 41).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1964, the Beatles began work with director Richard Lester on the group's first movie, "A Hard Day's Night."

In 1974, Stevie Wonder dominated the Grammys -- taking home five awards for his "Innervisions" album and the singles "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life" and "Superstition."

In 1979, the Havana Jam -- a three-day music festival -- opened in Cuba with Billy Joel, Stephen Stills, Tom Scott, Kris Kristofferson and Rita Coolidge.

In 1984, Hollywood's Gold Star Studios -- the site of Phil Spector's Wall of Sound creations -- closed.

Also in 1984, singer/songwriter James "Roy" Hill died at age 61. He wrote "Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On."

In 1989, Madonna's "Like A Prayer" debuted in a Pepsi ad during "The Cosby Show." In the wake of the ensuing uproar, Pepsi dropped the spot.

In 1992, Garth Brooks and Alan Jackson each received five nominations for the 27th annual Academy of Country Music Awards.

In 1993, Billy Ray Cyrus, Garth Brooks, Brooks and Dunn, and Mary Chapin Carpenter topped the list of nominees for the 28th annual Academy of Country Music Awards.

In 1994, the Paul McCartney song "Looking For Changes" was among the winners of the eighth annual Genesis Awards. The prizes are given out by the animal rights group Ark Trust to entertainers and the media who raise awareness about animal issues.

In 1995, Michael Jackson attended the funeral of a South California toddler allegedly thrown off a bridge into the Los Angeles River by his mother. The pop star also made a donation to a fund set up for the dead child's surviving older brother.

In 1996, all five members of the hot Brazilian rock group Mamonas Assassinas were killed in a plane crash near Sao Paolo, Brazil.

Also in 1996, Paul McCartney denied reports that the surviving Beatles were considering reuniting for a 22-city tour that'd pay them $225 million.

In 1997, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported authorities were investigating the October 1996 death of the infant son of The Artist Formerly Known As Prince and his wife, Mayte. The death certificate said the baby died one week after birth due to a rare skull deformity.

Also in 1997, a guitar autographed by the late Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead was sold for $1,200 at an auction of pop culture memorabilia.

In 1998, Motley Crue's Tommy Lee said in a statement that he wouldn't contest the divorce being sought by his wife, actress Pamela Anderson Lee, who'd accused him of beating her as she held their infant son. The couple later reconciled.

In 1999, British pop singer Dusty Springfield died following a lengthy battle with breast cancer. She was 59.

Also in 1999, 'N Sync made a guest appearance on the UPN sitcom "Clueless," performing their hit single "Tearin' Up My Heart."

Today's musical quiz:

Jon Bon Jovi once gave this away on MTV. What? Answer: His house.

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