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Today in Music: a look back at pop music

By United Press International

(April 28)

Today's birthdays include John Wolters, drummer with Dr. Hook, who was born in 1945 (age 58); and Roxy Music's Eddie Jobson in 1955 (age 48).

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Today's musical milestones:

Ross Bagdasarian's "The Witch Doctor," employing the unusual technique of recording the singer's voice at a different speed than the music, hit the No. 1 spot on Billboard's pop charts on this day in 1958. Bagdasarian, who recorded under the name of David Seville, later scored a repeat with his "Chipmunks."

In 1963, Andrew Oldham saw the Rolling Stones perform for the first time at the Crawdaddy Club in London. He became the group's manager and producer the next day.

In 1980, Marshall Tucker Band bassist Tommy Caldwell died of head injuries following a car accident near his hometown of Spartanburg, S.C. He was 30.

In 1984, what would be the Judds' first No.1 hit, "Mama He's Crazy," entered the music charts.

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In 1987, Rolling Stone Bill Wyman founded AIMS to provide promising young musicians with affordable time in recording studios.

Also in 1987, Ray Charles testified before Congress on behalf of increased funding for hearing research, telling lawmakers: "My eyes are my handicap, but my ears are my opportunity."

And in 1987, Sweden said it wouldn't exempt Frank Sinatra from a special tax on his upcoming show because he'd broken an artistic boycott of South Africa.

In 1988, B.W. Stevenson -- who had a top-10 single in 1973 with "My Maria" -- died following heart surgery. He was 38.

In 1990, Axl Rose of Guns N' Roses married Erin Everly -- daughter of Don, the older of the Everly Brothers -- in Las Vegas. They would divorce within a year.

Also in 1990, the Broadway musical "A Chorus Line" closed after a record 6,237 performances.

In 1993, Prince announced he was retiring from studio recording to concentrate on theater, film and nightclubs. He didn't.

Also in 1993, a Cleveland newspaper reported Paul McCartney would perform a benefit concert for the formal groundbreaking of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.

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In 1994, Lisa Marie Presley -- Elvis' only child -- and her musician-husband Danny Keough announced they were divorcing after 5 1/2 years of marriage and two children.

In 1995, Dr. John, Los Lobos, and Peter Paul and Mary were among the headliners at the 26th annual New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.

In 1997, Cyndi Lauper announced on a Fox TV Network morning show that she was pregnant. It was the first child for her and her husband, actor David Thornton.

In 1999, members of The Verve confirmed reports that they were breaking up.

Also in 1999, members of R.E.M. made their TV series debut on Fox TV's "Party of Five."

And in 1999, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

In 2000, Sting, Dr. John, the Allman Brothers Band, the Neville Brothers, the Staple Singers and the Radiators were among the headliners at the 31st annul New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.

Also in 2000, fire destroyed the Augusta, Ga., offices of the "Godfather of Soul" James Brown. A 29-year-old employee of James Brown Enterprises was later charged with arson in connection with the blaze.

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Today's musical quiz:

Before making it big on their own, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers toured for two years with this artist as his backing band. Who? Answer: Bob Dylan.

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