Today in Music: a look back at pop music

By United Press International  |  May 22, 2003 at 2:30 AM
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(May 22)

Today's birthdays include Charles Aznavour in 1924 (age 79); Peter Nero in 1934 (age 69); Bernie Taupin, Elton John's lyricist, in 1950 (age 53); Jerry Dammers of the Specials in 1954; Icehouse guitarist and singer Iva Davies in 1955 (age 48); and Morrissey, whose full name is Stephen Patrick Morrissey, in 1959 (age 44).

Today's musical milestones:

In 1954, Robert Zimmerman -- who later changed his name to Bob Dylan -- celebrated his bar mitzvah.

In 1966, 16-year-old Bruce Springsteen and his first band -- the Castilles -- recorded their only single, "That's What You Get," backed with "Baby I." The record was never released.

In 1981, Bob Marley's funeral was held in St. Annes, Jamaica.

In 1982, Madness topped the British album charts with a "best of" compilation titled "Complete Madness."

In 1987, the New York School of Performing Arts was named after Jose Feliciano.

Also in 1987, Fox TV announced that songwriter Carol Bayer Sager would be the first guest host to replace Joan Rivers on the network's late-night talk show.

In 1989, the rap group Public Enemy fired one of its members -- Professor Griff -- after he made anti-semitic remarks in the Washington Post.

In 1991, the New York Daily News quoted a photographer as saying nine members of the pop singing group Menudo were sexually abused by founder/promoter Edgardo Diaz and two other men.

In 1992, Michael Jackson paid for the funeral of a nine-year-old Los Angeles boy who was killed by a stray bullet during a drive-by shooting.

Also in 1992, five members of the rap group NWA were arrested and charged with inciting to riot after a fight broke out in a hotel lobby in New Orleans.

In 1995, Breeders guitarist Kelley Deal was charged with drug possession in Dayton, Ohio.

In 1997, Fleetwood Mac -- Lindsey Buckingham, Mick Fleetwood, Christine McVie, John McVie and Stevie Nicks -- reunited for the first time since 1982 to tape an MTV concert that was also turned into a new album.

In 1999, Barry Manilow was rushed to a Los Angeles hospital after suffering a reaction from dental surgery. He was treated for an infection and released two days later.

In 2000, Walter Becker and Donald Fagen, a.k.a. Steely Dan, were presented with the ASCAP Founders Award at the annual ASCAP Pop Awards Dinner in Los Angeles. The award is ASCAP's top honor for lifetime achievement in songwriting.

Also in 2000, Dave Matthews of The Dave Matthews Band and Darius Rucker of Hootie and the Blowfish were among the guests at a White House state dinner for South African President Thabo Mbeki. Also on hand -- Lenny Kravitz, BeBe Winans and Stevie Wonder. Matthews' family is from South Africa.

And in 2000, a side project by Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts -- the "Charlie Watts/Jim Keltner Project" album - was released. It included cameo appearances by two of Watts' Rolling Stones bandmates, Keith Richards and Mick Jagger.

Today's musical quiz:

Who co-wrote Madonna's 1990 hit single "Justify My Love"? Answer: Lenny Kravitz, who also co-wrote Aerosmith's "Line Up."

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