24 June

Pick a Day


In Music History

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2022 The movie Elvis, directed by Baz Luhrmann, hits theaters, starring Austin Butler as Presley. The soundtrack includes new songs by Eminem ("The King and I") and Doja Cat ("Vegas") along with Elvis songs in their original form and in new versions by the likes of Kacey Musgraves ("Can't Help Falling In Love") and Måneskin ("If I Can Dream").

2021 A section of Van Arsdale Place in Teaneck, New Jersey, is renamed The Isley Brothers Way in honor of The Isley Brothers, who formed there and named their record label, T-Neck, after the township.

2014 A copy of Caustic Window, an album by Richard James (aka Aphex Twin) that was abandoned after test-pressing allegedly only five copies, sells for $46,300 on eBay. The winner is Markus Persson, creator of video game Minecraft.

2011 Beyoncé releases 4. It's her fourth album; the title also references her favorite number, as she was born on September 4 and married on April 4.

2010 JoJo Billingsley (backing vocalist for Lynyrd Skynyrd) dies of cancer at age 58.

2008 A blogger who had thought it would be a good idea to leak some finished tracks from Guns N' Roses' Chinese Democracy receives a visit from the FBI and a cease-and-desist letter.

2004 Doris Day receives the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

1999 Pioneering music technologist and World War II veteran John Thomas "Jack" Mullin dies of a heart attack at 85 years old.

1994 Weezer release "Undone - The Sweater Song," the first single from their debut album, Weezer (aka The Blue Album).

1993 The California band Severe Tire Damage pull off the first webcast in history, live streaming a concert from the Xerox Research Center in Palo Alto to an extremely small audience. The next year, The Rolling Stones become the first major artist to do a webcast.

1991 14-year-old Shakira releases her debut album, Magia. Though sales are dismal, the collection of Spanish-language pop tunes boosts her visibility in her native Colombia. Two years later, she releases its followup, Peligro.

1978 Jackson Browne and Pete Seeger perform in Seabrook, New Hampshire, to protest a nuclear reactor planned for the site. It's one of the first "no nukes" rallies where musicians get involved, and it leads to a more organized effort: Musicians United For Safe Energy (MUSE), which also involves Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, James Taylor. The Seabrook plant is built, but efforts to build more are thwarted, as opposition to nuclear power becomes more vociferous.

1973 Blues Project reunite for a concert in Central Park.

1971 Robert Altman's McCabe & Mrs. Miller is released to theaters. Altman loves Leonard Cohen's work, and the soundtrack for this "anti-western" leans heavily on three songs from Songs of Leonard Cohen. On the merits of his film Brewster McCloud, which Cohen had seen and loved, Altman sold Cohen on the project and even convinced the "prince of pessimism" to create some new music for the film.

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Jeffrey Daniel Of Shalamar Does The Moonwalk On British TV


Jeffrey Daniel of Shalamar does the Moonwalk on the British TV show Top Of The Pops, getting the attention of Michael Jackson, who popularizes it in America a year later.

The dance-funk trio Shalamar is comprised of former Soul Train dancers Daniel, Howard Hewett, and Jody Watley. With their single "A Night To Remember" making moves in the UK, they're invited to perform the song on Top Of The Pops, a huge opportunity. The group is in America and Watley is pregnant, so Daniel offers to fly to England, and instead of doing the usual lip-synch, perform a dance routine to the song. Daniel was a standout dancer on Soul Train, which was recorded in Los Angeles and became an incubator for new dance moves. It was there that he mastered the art of "locking," a style with quick, robotic movements that lead the way for the dance element of hip-hop. He also developed "the Backslide," a captivating move that dancers on the show had been working on where it looks like you're floating backward. On Top Of The Pops, Daniel choreographs a routine to synch with the lyrics. We see him get ready for a night out, put on his jacket, and do some serious dancing. Midway through, he breaks out the Backslide, then he ends the routine by having a dancer on the show handcuff him and lead him as he Backslides right off the stage. Viewers are stunned - they've never seen this kind of dancing before. Daniel's Backslide is so novel that many assume it's some kind of special effect, maybe done with oil on the floor or wheels in his shoes. It's so buzzworthy that producer invite him back to do another routine, again to "A Night To Remember," in August. Daniel's performance gets the attention of Michael Jackson, who arranges to meet with him. Jackson's dance moves for his "Billie Jean" video are clearly inspired by Daniel's style, and when he performs the song in March 1983 on the Motown 25 special with Daniel in the audience, he breaks out the Backslide, which he calls the Moonwalk. The next day, kids all over America try to figure it out, just as the kids did in the UK after seeing Daniel do it on Top Of The Pops.



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