15 April

Pick a Day

15 APRIL

In Music History

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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.

1995 Dave Matthews Band appear on Saturday Night Live for the first time, performing "What Would You Say" and "Ants Marching."

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 Tone-Loc's debut album, Loc-ed After Dark, hits #1 on the Billboard 200, thanks to the success of his platinum hit "Wild Thing."

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.

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Punk Icon Joey Ramone Dies

2001

Joey Ramone of the Ramones dies of lymphoma at age 49.


Joey Ramone was signature punk from top to bottom, starting from his shoulder-length mane of black hair and ubiquitous rose-colored shades, down a lithe frame outfitted in a motorcycle jacket and torn jeans. As the Ramones' frontman for nearly two decades, Joey chewed up and spit out lyrics to punk classics like "Sheena Is A Punk Rocker," "Blitzkrieg Bop" and "I Wanna Be Sedated."

Before that, he was Jeffrey Hyman, a gangly Jewish kid born and bred in Queens, New York, where he escaped the cruelty of schoolyard bullies and the pain of his parents' divorce by diving headfirst into music. A steady diet of The Beatles, The Who, David Bowie, and Phil Spector-helmed girl groups left him craving more. Under the name Jeff Starship, he began performing with the glam rock band Sniper in 1974 before founding the Ramones with pals John Cummings (Johnny Ramone) and Douglas Colvin (Dee Dee Ramone) later that year.

The Ramones disbandment in 1996 marks the beginning of the end for Joey, who is diagnosed with lymphoma. Five years later, he dies while listening to U2's "In A Little While," just one month before his 50th birthday.

Twice engaged but never married, Joey leaves behind a legacy of music, including 14 Ramones albums and the critically acclaimed She Talks to Rainbows album he produced for Ronnie Spector. His solo LP Don't Worry About Me is posthumously released in 2002.

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