1 January

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Music History Events: Discoveries

December 7, 1998 The Indiana University a cappella group Straight No Chaser perform their zany rendition of "Twelve Days of Christmas" at the school. In 2006, a video of the performance is uploaded to YouTube and goes viral, earning the group a record deal and sending the song to #5 on the Adult Contemporary chart.

January 3, 1997 Researchers at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm publish an article called "Nitric Oxide And Inflammation: The Answer Is Blowing In The Wind" in the journal Nature Medicine. The article deals with the detection of mucosal inflammation, and while we can't speak to its medical efficacy, it does reveal a trend of biomedical researchers using Bob Dylan song titles and lyrics in their articles. The Swedish scientists had a friendly bet going to see how many Dylan references they could inject into their published work; a later study reveals hundreds of medical articles that had borrowed from Dylan, with the most popular song being "The Times They Are A-Changin'."

April 23, 1995 The Sunday Times of London breaks the story that a welder in Liverpool named Peter Hodgson found a reel of Beatles material in his attic. The recordings turn out to be legit, as Hodgson's father had loaned the recorder to Paul McCartney. After hearing the recordings, McCartney buys the reel and uses some of it on the Anthology collection. Songs include the Lennon/McCartney original "Hello Little Girl" and the Ray Charles cover "Hallelujah, I Love Her So."

November 15, 1993 Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Christina Aguilera, and Ryan Gosling join J.C. Chasez and Keri Russell in the cast of The All-New Mickey Mouse Club.More

July 2, 1980 Sheena Easton is featured on the BBC show The Big Time, which follows regular people trying to achieve their dreams. With visions of stardom as a singer, she is seen auditioning for EMI, who are suitably impressed and sign her to a deal. Her single "9 To 5" becomes a UK hit two months later and conquers America a year later.

April 15, 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.

July 27, 1958 Esso Oil (formerly Standard Oil, later Exxon), issues a report warning that listening to rock music in the car could waste gas because "the rhythm can cause a driver to unconsciously jiggle the gas petal."

February 19, 1878 Thomas Edison patents the phonograph.

March 5, 2016 Visiting a music-production class at N.Y.U., Pharrell Williams is blown away by a song called "Alaska" by Maggie Rogers, a senior at the university. "It's singular... your whole story I can hear it in the music," he tells her.More

May 6, 2014 "The Heart Of Man Is Like A Mine," a lost song from German composer Felix Mendelssohn, is performed for the first time in over a century and a half by alto Amy Williamson and pianist Christopher Glynn on BBC's Today.

October 23, 1997 Local band Staind open for Limp Bizkit at the Webster Theatre in Hartford, Connecticut. Bizkit frontman Fred Durst is impressed, and helps the band get a record deal.

May 6, 1983 The Smiths open for Sisters of Mercy at the University of London Union. In the audience is a producer from the influential radio program The John Peel Show, who gets the band on the show. Peel becomes a huge fan and plays the version of "This Charming Man" they recorded for the show, helping launch their career.

September 14, 1977 Cheryl Lynn appears on the Gong Show, where she wows the judges with her version of "You Are So Beautiful." This earns her a deal with CBS Records, which issues "Got To Be Real" as her first single. The disco track is her only big Hot 100 hit, but she becomes a regular on the R&B chart.

December 11, 1966 Elton John's band, Bluesology, opens for Little Richard at a show in London. Elton later says: "When I saw Little Richard standing on top of the piano, all lights, sequins and energy, I decided there and then that I was going to be a rock and roll piano player."

September 29, 1961 The New York Times publishes a glowing review of a Bob Dylan performance, giving the 20-year-old upstart his first press in a major publication.More

April 7, 1959 As the snow melts in Mason City, Iowa, Buddy Holly's glasses are found from the plane crash that killed him two months earlier. They are turned in to police, where they stay until 1980, when a sheriff finds them and returns them to Holly's widow.

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