30 July

Pick a Day


In Music History

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2014 Guitarist Dick Wagner dies of respiratory failure at age 71. Wagner is known for his associations with Lou Reed, KISS, David Bowie, and especially Alice Cooper.

2011 U2 wrap up their 360 tour at Moncton, Canada. The final gross for the tour is $735 million, breaking the record set by The Rolling Stones on their A Bigger Bang tour, which ran from 2005-2007. Ed Sheeran sets a new mark in 2019 with $775 million on his ÷ (Divide) tour, but it takes him 255 shows to do it - U2s tour ran for 110 dates.

2010 Rapper T.I. marries Tameka "Tiny" Cottle of the R&B group Xscape in Miami Beach, Florida.

2004 While walking around London, The Isley Brothers' Ronald Isley suffers a minor stroke and is admitted to a local hospital. He recovers in a matter of just a few weeks.

2002 Bruce Springsteen releases The Rising.

2001 Performing at OzzFest in Clarkston, Michigan, a thong-clad Marilyn Manson wraps his legs around the head of a 26-year-old security guard and grinds into him. The guard sues, claiming his head was "completely engulfed" in Manson's groin.More

1995 Biggie Tembo (guitarist/lead vocalist for Bhundu Boys) commits suicide at age 37 in Harare, Zimbabwe.

1993 Don Myrick (saxophonist for Earth, Wind & Fire), age 53, is fatally shot by Santa Monica policemen during a narcotics investigation when the lighter he is holding is mistaken for a weapon.

1991 "Enter Sandman" is released as a single, serving as a preview of what's to come from Metallica's Black Album. With a cover of the early Queen classic "Stone Cold Crazy" on the B-side, it reaches #16 on the Hot 100, their best showing to this point.

1986 RCA releases John Denver from his contract, possibly over his new single, "What Are We Making Weapons For?," which he recorded with the Russian singer Alexandre Gradsky. RCA had recently been acquired by General Electric, which was a top military contractor.

1982 The Ron Howard comedy Night Shift, starring Henry Winkler and Michael Keaton, debuts in theaters. The soundtrack features the song "That's What Friends Are For," performed by Rod Stewart. Written by Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager, it becomes a huge hit four years later when Dionne Warwick, Elton John, Gladys Knight, and Stevie Wonder (aka Dionne & Friends) cover it for AIDS awareness, winning Grammys for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals and Song of the Year.

1977 Andy Gibb's "I Just Want To Be Your Everything," written by his brother, Barry Gibb, hits #1 in America. His next two singles, "(Love Is) Thicker Than Water" and "Shadow Dancing," also hit the top spot, making him the first male solo artist with three straight #1 hits on the Hot 100.

1971 Brad Hargreaves (drummer for Third Eye Blind) is born in Marin County, California.

1968 The Beatles' Apple Boutique, a psychedelic clothing store located at 94 Baker Street in London, closes after seven months of bad business practices and rampant theft. With the group and its intimates having had the pick of the remaining inventory the night before, Apple Boutique employees are instructed to simply let people in off the street to take whatever merchandise they like. The store was closed that evening for good.

1966 The Troggs' "Wild Thing" hits #1.

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The Strokes Spur Rock Renaissance With Debut Album


The Strokes revive garage rock with the release of their debut album, Is This It. It drops in Australia first before making its way to England and America.

Led by vocalist Julian Casablancas, the New York City-based rock band first made the rounds in the UK, where they were promoted by the indie record label Rough Trade. When NME chose "Last Nite," from the band's EP The Modern Age, as its single of the week, it put The Strokes on the radar of several major record labels who all scrambled to sign them. Despite the commotion surrounding the band, papers back home were mourning the death of guitar rock, with The New York Times running a cover depicting an electric guitar as a tombstone. Little did they know, The Strokes were about to reinvent the genre with their debut album, Is This It, featuring the singles "Hard To Explain" "Last Nite" and "Someday" - songs about hard living and hard loving on the streets of New York City. After a failed attempt to record the album with Pixies producer Gil Norton, the Strokes reunited with their Modern Age producer Gordon Raphael, who invited the band back to his basement to capture the rough-hewn sound they'd created there for the EP. For Is This It, Casablancas told Raphael he wanted them to sound like "a band from the past that took a time trip into the future to make their record." The producer achieved this with minimal microphones: one for the vocals and one for the snare drum. "It wasn't sonically perfect," Raphael told The Guardian, "but it had some magic and emotion that was missing in the big studio stuff other bands were doing." After being put through the hype machine in the UK, Is This It peaks at #2. But its release in the US is unintentionally ill-timed: The vinyl version hits the market on September 11. As a result of the terrorist attacks, the CD edition is held back until October and omits the police brutality rager "New York City Cops" out of respect for the department's first responders. The album tops out at #33 in America, but receives widespread critical acclaim for its new-wave-by-way-of '70s-punk style and is later hailed as the most influential guitar record of the decade. Raphael, in particular, is gratified by the accolades. He recalls RCA's unenthusiastic response to the album during their visit to the recording studio. "They said it was crappy-sounding and unprofessional, and I was ruining Julian's voice and killing any chance the band had of a career. It was very satisfying when the album became a modern classic."



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