Musician Birthdays: George Harrison (guitarist, singer for the Beatles, also singer/songwriter for solo career. Famous for hits, “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, “My Sweet Lord”, and “Got My Mind Set On You”, born in 1943)
– In 1956: Elvis Presley had his first national hit when ‘I Forgot To Remember To Forget’ went to No.1 on the Billboard Country & Western chart.
– In 1964: The Beatles finished recording their next single ‘Can’t Buy Me Love’, at Abbey Road studios, London, (they had first recorded the song on 29 January 1964 at Path Marconi Studios in Paris). They also recorded the B-side, ‘You Can’t Do That’ and another new song ‘I Should Have Known Better’.
– In 1972: Led Zeppelin appeared in front of over 25,000 fans at the Western Springs Stadium, Auckland, New Zealand, the group’s first ever gig in New Zealand, (and the largest crowd ever to attend a concert on the island). A special train was chartered from Wellington to bring fans to the concert. News reviews the next day reported the band could be heard over five miles from the Stadium.
– In 1984: ‘Jump’, by Van Halen started a five-week run at No.1 on the US singles chart, a No.7 hit in the UK.
– In 1985: U2 began their first full north American arena tour, starting at the Dallas Reunion Arena in Texas.
– In 1995: Madonna started a seven week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Take A Bow’, the track which was co-written with Babyface became a No.16 hit in the UK.
– In 1998: During Shawn Colvin’s acceptance speech at the Grammy Awards, Ol Dirty Bastard grabbed the microphone and made various observations such as “Puffy is good, but Wu-Tang is the best” and “Wu-Tang is for the children”. He was then escorted offstage.
– In 2001: Rapper Lil’ Kim said a shooting which happened after she left a New York radio station was unconnected to her. One man was wounded in the incident outside the radio station Hot 97 in New York when five men fired 22 bullets. The New York Daily News reported the incident was the result of a feud between Lil’ Kim and rival rappers, Capone-N-Noreaga.
– In 2004: The Rolling Stones topped a US Rich List of music£s biggest money makers. The list was based on earnings during 2003 when the band played their ‘Forty Licks’ tour, which made them $212 million, (£124.7m) in ticket, CD, DVD and merchandise sales. The three million fans who went to the shows spent an average of $11 (£6.47) each on merchandise. Bruce Springsteen was listed in second place and The Eagles in third.
– In 2005: Whitney Houston was rushed to a hospital in Paris with suspected food poisoning after becoming ill during a flight from Los Angeles to Spain.
– In 2006: George Michael was found slumped over in a car in Hyde Park, London. A concerned person spotted the singer and called police who after being checked by paramedics was arrested on suspicion of possessing drugs and then released on bail. Michael made a public statement about the incident and said “I was in possession of class C drugs which is an offense and I have no complaints about the police who were professional throughout.” He also said that the event was “my own stupid fault, as usual.”
– In 2009: President Obama honoured Stevie Wonder, his musical hero, with America’s highest award for pop music, the Library of Congress’ Gershwin prize at a ceremony at the White House. The president said the Motown legend had been the soundtrack to his youth and he doubted that his wife would have married him if he hadn’t been a fan. Wonder’s song ‘Signed, Sealed, Delivered’ had been the theme song during Obama’s presidential campaign.
– In 2010: Marie Osmond’s teenaged son, Michael Blosil, was found dead on the ground below an apartment balcony in Los Angeles, California.
– In 2011: Susan ‘Suze’ Rotolo, died from lung cancer. She was the one time girlfriend of Bob Dylan, and the inspiration of some of his early songs. Susan appeared in one of the decade’s signature images, walking with Dylan arm-in-arm for the cover photo of his breakthrough album Freewheelin Bob Dylan.