7 April

Pick a Day

7 APRIL

In Music History

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2020 Acclaimed singer-songwriter John Prine dies at 73 after coming down with coronavirus.

2015 Don McLean's original manuscript to his lyric for "American Pie" sells at auction for $1.2 million. Says McLean: "I thought it would be interesting as I reach age 70 to release this work product on the song 'American Pie' so that anyone who might be interested will learn that this song was not a parlor game."

2014 25-year-old Peaches Geldof, daughter of the Live Aid mastermind Bob Geldof, is found dead in Kent, England, after overdosing on heroin. Her mother, Paula Yates, died in 2000 when Peaches was 11.

2013 Andy Johns (engineer for Led Zeppelin, Television, and The Rolling Stones) dies at age 62 of complications from a stomach ulcer.

2009 The jukebox musical Rock of Ages, a celebration of glam metal and classic rock of the '80s, opens at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre. More

2008 The newly reunited Stone Temple Pilots announce a 65-date reunion tour and play for the first time since 2002.

2007 Beyoncé's "Beautiful Liar," featuring Latin-pop star Shakira, breaks the record for the highest leap on the Billboard Hot 100 when it jumps 91 places to #3. The record was previously held by Akon, whose "Smack That," featuring Eminem, rose from #95 to #7 (ultimately peaking at #2) in 2006.

1999 Shania Twain's third album Come On Over is certified Diamond (10 million in sales) by the RIAA, making her the first female artist with back-to-back Diamond albums; her second album, The Woman in Me, was certified in 1997.

1998 Mary Bono, who was married to Sonny Bono when he died in a skiing accident four months earlier, wins a special election to claim her husband's seat in California's 44th Congressional District. Mary, who has no previous political experience, holds office until 2013.

1998 Drummer Carlos Vega (James Taylor's band) dies at age 41 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound the day before he is scheduled to appear on The Oprah Winfrey Show alongside James Taylor.

1988 When the piano wire that keeps him safely suspended during his gallows stunt snaps, Alice Cooper nearly hangs himself for real on stage at Wembley Arena in London. He's able to slip his chin over the rope to keep his neck from snapping until a roadie can rescue him.

1987 Whitesnake slides into hair metal with their seventh, self-titled album. It's by far their most successful, with the MTV hits "Here I Go Again" and "Is This Love?"

1987 Jazz singer Maxine Sullivan, known for her 1937 swing version of "Loch Lomond," dies after suffering a seizure at age 75 in New York City.

1984 New British Invasion: 40 of the artists on the US Top 100 singles chart are Brits - a new record.

1981 Rick James releases Street Songs.

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Bonnie Raitt Lands Her First #1 Album

1990

Bonnie Raitt emerges from a career slump with her first #1 album, Nick Of Time, unseating Paula Abdul's Forever Your Girl.

The album was produced by Don Was, who met the blues rocker a year earlier when they collaborated on the Dumbo tune "Baby Mine" for the Disney tribute album Stay Awake. Was knew that Raitt had just been signed to Capitol Records and expressed interest in producing her debut (her 10th overall album). Things were finally looking up for the singer, who suffered a string of setbacks throughout the decade, including failed relationships with her lover and her longtime label Warner Bros, who also cut Van Morrison, Arlo Guthrie, and T-Bone Burnett from the roster. Addictions to drugs and alcohol made it hard to bounce back, but she eventually cleaned up her act and headed out to an Oceanside cabin in Mendocino, California, to work on music. "Nick Of Time" came quickly. The soulful reflection on aging opens with a friend's tale of heartache, pining for a baby she may never get to have. The scenario poses a haunting question about missed opportunities: What if it's too late? Love arrives in the nick of time to rescue Raitt but in reality, it's self-love that saves the day rather than romantic love. "Writing [the song] gave me a sense of confidence and self-awareness that helped me break through some stifling self-doubt," she explained. Raitt was determined for the songs to reflect where she was in life, not where she used to be. "You can get tepid and sugary with your writing," she told Q magazine. "Or you can come to grips with things like relationships, as opposed to being single. How to keep a marriage vital. How to be dangerous even though you're straight, have quit drinking and can't stay up all night – those are issues about cynicism, about depression, about getting older, period, and what that does to your body and outlook." The album's mature themes resonate with Raitt's contemporaries who don't fit in with the youth-oriented MTV demographic. A reggae-tinged blues treatment of Bonnie Hayes' "Have A Heart" and "Nick Of Time" are Adult Contemporary hits, while the album, Raitt's first #1, wins three Grammy awards, including Album of the Year.

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