10 July

Pick a Day


In Music History

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2016 Aerosmith lead guitarist Joe Perry suffers a cardiac arrest while performing with Alice Cooper and Johnny Depp, fellow members of the supergroup The Hollywood Vampires, in Coney Island in Brooklyn, New York. The 65 year old is rushed to Coney Island hospital, where's he's listed in stable condition.

2015 The documentary Amy is released. The film, directed by Asif Kapadia, chronicles the short life of British singer Amy Winehouse. Hard-living Winehouse won five Grammy awards for her 2006 album Back To Black. She died at the age of 27 from alcohol poisoning in 2011.

2012 Slash, of late Guns N' Roses fame, gets his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Charlie Sheen is master of ceremonies at the event, and comments, "It seems quite fitting that Slash is getting a star on the very street Axl Rose will one day be sleeping on." Oooooooooh, burn!

2010 The audience attending a benefit for Palestinian children in Oxfordshire, England, knew they were going to be entertained by David Gilmour. What they didn't know was that Gilmour's onetime Pink Floyd bandmate Roger Waters was going to drop in for a surprise four-song set. Waters said in a Facebook posting that he agreed to do it after Gilmour agreed to join him for a performance of The Wall in March 2011 in Europe. The last time the two had been on stage together was at the 2005 Live 8 London concerts.

2009 Robert Plant is officially a Commander of the British Empire after being bestowed with the title by Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace.

2008 VH1's Rock Honors pays tribute to The Who.

2007 Bad Religion release their fourteenth full-length studio album, New Maps of Hell.

2000 A much-ballyhooed Supremes "reunion" tour, "Return To Love," which features only Diana Ross from the original group, is canceled after initial ticket sales don't match expectations.

1998 Bauhaus, who broke up in 1983, begin their Resurrection tour with a show at The Palladium in Los Angeles.

1993 Bob Seger marries his third and wife, Juanita Dorricott.

1987 John Hammond, who signed both Bob Dylan (in 1961) and Bruce Springsteen (in 1972) to Columbia Records, dies at 76 after suffering from a number of strokes.

1986 Grateful Dead leader Jerry Garcia goes into a diabetic coma, forcing the band to cancel the rest of their tour. He's in the coma for five days, and when he comes to, he has to learn how to walk and talk again. After months of rehab, he gets his faculties back and in December, and is once again on stage with his band.

1980 Jessica Simpson is born in Abilene, Texas.

1979 Chuck Berry is sentenced to jail for tax evasion. He would serve four months.

1978 Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman falls from the stage at a gig St. Paul, Minnesota, and is knocked unconscious.

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Shazam Can Name That Tune


By simply tapping an app button on an iPhone, music fans can finally get an answer to the timeless question, "What's that song?" Shazam's free smartphone app is the first music recognition service of its kind - using a phone's microphone to listen to any song being played publicly - like in a restaurant, at a friend's house, or on TV - and identify it. And it actually works.

The technology is called Acoustic Fingerprinting, an algorithmic process of generating a map of any given audio as a unique file, storing it, and then associating it with other metadata, such as lyrics or album covers. Gracenote and CDDB use a similar process to gather data about songs and then return display results; this is how iTunes grabs album covers from the Internet automatically when you insert a CD.

Using Shazam's new app, when a user "tags" a song using their phone's microphone, the software looks for a match and then returns a link with the artist's name, track name, and a direct link to download the song on iTunes.

Shazam had been a paid service in the UK, where a user would call a shortcode number and the "answering service" would listen to 30 seconds of audio and then return an SMS with the song's info, for a small fee. Now that anyone with an iPhone can "tag" a song, the Shazam database grows exponentially, eventually with over 1 million songs tagged each week. Competition emerges from companies like MusixMatch and Soundhound.

Shazam technology changes how artists get discovered by fans and music industry scouts. The company can see in real-time what songs people are "Shazaming," and predict which songs will race to the top of the charts, before they are even released to radio. Among the most-Shazamed songs early on: "Somebody That I Used To Know" by Gotye and "Greyhound" by Swedish House Mafia.



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