24 March

Pick a Day

24 MARCH

In Music History

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2020 Producers Swizz Beatz and Timbaland face off in the first Verzuz battle, where songwriters, producers and artists take turns performing their hits and are judged by an online audience. The series quickly becomes very popular, regularly drawing virtual audiences in the six figures. Popular battles include Gladys Knight vs Patti LaBelle, Teddy Riley vs Babyface, and Erykah Badu vs Jill Scott.

2010 Rock photographer Jim Marshall dies at age 74.

2009 Prince launches Lotusflow3r.com, which for $77 subscriptions, offers access to his videos and music. It shuts down after a year.

2009 Motown drummer Uriel Jones dies at age 74.

2007 Country singer Henson Cargill, known for the 1968 hit "Skip A Rope," dies during surgery at age 66.

2005 After Carrie Underwood performs "Alone" on American Idol, Simon Cowell, by far the harshest critic on the panel, predicts she will win the competition and sell more records than any previous Idol winner. He's right: She becomes the first country singer to win and ends up surpassing Kelly Clarkson as the best-selling alum of the show.

2001 "Duane Allman Boulevard" is dedicated in Macon, Georgia, near where he died in a motorcycle crash.

2001 After being dubbed Worst Actress of the Century a year earlier, Madonna lands her fifth Razzie for Worst Actress, for her role as Abbie Reynolds in The Next Best Thing, at the 21st Golden Raspberry Awards.

2001 John Connolly of Sevendust marries Lori Kirkley.

2000 MTV debuts the reality series Making the Band, with the first season spawning the boy band O-Town. Lou Pearlman, the creator of Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC, manages the group.

1997 Philadelphia soul singer Harold Melvin (of Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes) dies at age 57, months after suffering a debilitating stroke.

1992 A Tribe Called Quest release "Scenario," with a guest verse by little-known 19-year-old rapper Busta Rhymes.

1992 Arrested Development release their debut album, 3 Years, 5 Months and 2 Days in the Life of... It sells four million copies thanks to the hits "Tennessee," "People Everyday" and "Mr. Wendal."

1986 The Rolling Stones release their album Dirty Work. The first single is a cover of the soul classic "Harlem Shuffle."

1986 At the 58th Academy Awards in Los Angeles, Lionel Richie wins the Oscar for Best Original Song for his track "Say You, Say Me" from the film White Nights. The song topped three different Billboard charts but didn't appear on the soundtrack album for the movie. It was finally released on Lionel's 1986 album, Dancing on the Ceiling.

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The Godfather Leads To New Honorific

1972

The Godfather opens in theaters. Musically significant because the character Johnny Fontane is supposedly based on Frank Sinatra, and because "Godfather of..." becomes a common musical honorific.


The film, based on the 1969 novel, stars Al Martino as Fontane, who uses his mob connections to land a film role that resuscitates his career. Sinatra was rumored to have mob ties, and was at least an influence on the character - something director Francis Ford Coppola admits in commentary for the Blu Ray release. But beyond the Sinatra connection, there is the "Godfather" title, which is soon bestowed on James Brown, who becomes known as "The Godfather of Soul." Other musical pathfinders also receive this informal designation: Godfather of Ska - Laurel Aitken Godfather of Go-Go - Chuck Brown Godfather of Punk - Iggy Pop And then there's Snoop Dogg, christened "Tha Doggfather" on his second album. Note that Aretha Franklin is the "Queen of Soul," not the Godmother. Maybe if that was a movie...

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