2017 Allan Holdsworth, an innovative guitarist who influenced John McLaughlin, Eddie Van Halen and Carlos Santana, dies at age 70.
2017 Sylvia Moy, who co-wrote the Stevie Wonder hits "My Cherie Amour" and "Uptight (Everything's Alright)," dies at age 78. She was just the second black woman inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame (following Valerie Simpson).
2017 Jethro Tull hits #1 on the Classical Albums chart with Jethro Tull: The String Quartets.
2016 J. Cole, Alicia Keys, Chance the Rapper, Ludacris, Nicki Minaj and Wale attend a White House sit down with President Obama to discuss criminal justice reform and the My Brother's Keeper Initiative.
2014 Years of alcohol abuse take their toll on Sum 41 frontman Deryck Whibley, who collapses in his kitchen and is placed in an induced coma. He makes a slow and painful recovery in which he has to relearn guitar.
2011 Kent Morrill, keyboardist and vocalist for the Fabulous Wailers, dies.
2008 Tom Morello kicks off the Tom Morello Justice Tour 2008 in Los Angeles, California.
2006 Elton John cleans out his closet and raises over $700,000 for his AIDS Foundation when he sells over 10,000 articles of clothing in his Elton's Closet sale in New York.
1996 The remainder of Grateful Dead leader Jerry Garcia's ashes are scattered near the Golden Gate bridge in San Francisco; a week earlier, a portion had been scattered into India's Ganges river.
1991 MC Hammer's Please Hammer, Don't Hurt 'Em becomes the first rap album to go Diamond, for sales of 10 million copies in America.
1989 Roy Orbison's "You Got It" hits its chart peak at #9 four months after he died of a heart attack.
1984 British comedian Tommy Cooper suffers a heart attack and dies on stage during a live performance on the show Live From Her Majesty's.
1983 The Bad Brains' second full-length album, Rock for Light, is released. Produced by The Cars' Ric Ocasek, the album features both new compositions (such as the title track and "How Low Can a Punk Get?"), as well as re-recordings of tunes that originally appeared on the group's debut ("Sailin' On," "Banned in D.C."). Years later, Kurt Cobain would list Rock for Light as one of his all-time favorite records.
2012 A virtual Tupac Shakur performs at the Coachella festival, rapping "Hail Mary" and "2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted" before disappearing in a flash. Often reported as a hologram, the technology used to bring Tupac to life is later revealed to be a system of mirrors, glass and computer animation.
1972 Billy Joel plays a concert at Sigma Sound Studios in Philadelphia which is broadcast by the local radio station WMMR. After the show, the station puts his performance of "Captain Jack" in rotation, and Joel builds a following. This leads to a contract with Columbia Records, which releases Joel's breakthrough album, Piano Man, in 1973.
1971 The Beatles win their only Oscar, taking Best Original Song Score for their movie Let It Be.
1964 After a long day of filming their first movie, Ringo Starr tells the other Beatles it's been "a hard day's night." John Lennon turns the phrase into a song, and the movie title is changed from Beatlemania! to A Hard Day's Night.
©2020 Songfacts®, LLC