19 April

Pick a Day

19 APRIL

In Music History

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2019 The New York Yankees and Philadelphia Flyers pull Kate Smith's version of "God Bless America" when it is revealed that she sang racist songs in the 1930s, including "That's Why Darkies Were Born" and "Pickaninny Heaven."

2012 Greg Ham, multi-instrumentalist with the band Men At Work, best known for playing the saxophone on "Overkill" and "Who Can It Be Now," and the flute on "Down Under," dies of a heart attack at his home in Melbourne, Australia at age 58.

2009 The Flaming Lips celebrate Earth Day with a performance on the National Mall in Washington, DC.

2004 A stage musical version of the Elvis Presley film Jailhouse Rock opens in London.

2003 Good Charlotte's "The Anthem" peaks at #43 on the Billboard Hot 100.

2003 Motown choreographer Cholly Atkins dies of pancreatic cancer at age 89 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

2002 "Jeepster" by T. Rex becomes the first song successfully identified by Shazam in a pre-launch version of the service that requires the user to call a number and receive a text message with the name of the song.

1999 James Darren begins a five-episode stint on the primetime soap opera Melrose Place as an unscrupulous millionaire named Tony Marlin.

1997 Eldon "El Duce" Hoke (drummer, lead singer of The Mentors) dies at age 39 after being struck by a train in Riverside, California. The coroner's report calls the cause of death a "misadventure."

1993 Los Angeles session musician Steve Douglas (Brian Wilson, The Beach Boys, Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan) dies at age 54 of heart failure.

1990 The TV movie Summer Dreams: The Story Of The Beach Boys airs on ABC.

1982 Simon & Garfunkel reunite for a world tour, but split up again in the midst of it.

1980 The Specials become the first ska band to guest on Saturday Night Live, where they play "Gangsters" and "Too Much Too Young." Their energetic performance wows the crowd but fails to break ska music in America.

1980 Blondie's "Call Me," a song about a prostitute written for the film American Gigolo, hits #1 in America.

1975 The Raspberries split up.

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Prince Holds Top Spots With "Kiss" And "Manic Monday"

1986

You don't have to watch Dynasty to have an attitude: Prince hits #1 in the US with "Kiss." The #2 song is "Manic Monday" by the Bangles, which he wrote.

A track from his Parade album, "Kiss" is Prince's third #1 hit, following "When Doves Cry" and "Let's Go Crazy." Bursting with songs, he sometimes gives them to other artists, like the Bangles, whom he gifted with "Manic Monday." The Bangles were part of the Paisley Underground scene in Los Angeles when their song "Hero Takes A Fall" got the attention of Prince, who would later name his record company "Paisley Park." He had recorded "Manic Monday" with a group he assembled called Apollonia 6, but their version was never released - a listen to the demo shows why. The Bangles' version, with a lilting lead vocal from Susanna Hoffs, takes the lascivious edge off the song, which is about a woman who is late for work because she was doing lots of lovemaking the night before. It's the first hit for the group, who land a #1 later in the year with "Walk Like An Egyptian." In addition to "Kiss" and "Manic Monday," Prince is also on the chart as a writer with "A Love Bizarre" by his percussionist Sheila E. In 1988, his golden touch extends to Tom Jones, whose cover of "Kiss" is a hit for the '60s star.

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