24 May

Pick a Day

24 MAY

In Music History

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2016 Gord Downie, lead singer of The Tragically Hip, announces that he has a terminal brain cancer called glioblastoma. Downie, who was diagnosed in December and has been going through treatment, does one last tour with the band, closing with a show in his hometown of Kingston, Ontario, on August 21.

2013 Ed Shaughnessy (drummer for Johnny Carson's Tonight Show Band on NBC) dies of a heart attack at age 84.

2012 Billboard announces that Lionel Richie's Tuskegee is the second-best-selling album of the year so far in 2012, right behind Adele's 21. It's notable that the soul/R&B singer and Motown alumnus began his career in 1967, and is still connecting with modern audiences a full five decades later.

2010 Slipknot bass player Paul Gray dies at age 38 from an accidental overdose in his Iowa hotel room.

2010 At a Lamb of God concert in Prague, lead singer Randy Blythe pushes an encroaching fan off the stage. The man falls backward, hits his head, and dies two weeks later from the injury. Blythe doesn't know that the fan is seriously injured, and isn't aware of it when Czech authorities issue a warrant for his arrest. When the band returns to play a show in 2012, police detain Blythe and hold him in prison for five weeks. He later stands trail and is cleared of the charges.

2009 Former Wilco guitarist Jay Bennett dies in his sleep from an accidental overdose of a prescription painkiller at age 45.

2008 Forty-two years after releasing his first album, Neil Diamond scores his first #1 when Home Before Dark tops the albums chart.

2004 An auction of Bruce Springsteen's birth certificate on eBay is shut down by the Boss's legal team.

2003 Paul McCartney sits down for tea with Russian premier Vladimir Putin, then heads to Red Square for his very first performance behind the Iron Curtain, for an audience of 20,000.

1991 Gene Clark (tambourine player for The Byrds), suffering from a bleeding ulcer, dies at age 46 after years of drug and alcohol abuse.

1988 Country singer Billy Gilman, known for his hit debut "One Voice" at just 11 years old, is born in Westerly, Rhode Island.

1986 Garth Brooks marries his college sweetheart, Sandy Mahl. They'll welcome three daughters before their divorce in 2001.

1986 The Monkees, minus Mike Nesmith, begin their 145-date "20th Anniversary World Tour" at the Concord Hotel in the Catskill Mountains. The group has risen in popularity thanks to MTV, which started airing old episodes of their TV show.

1982 An 11-minute Paul McCartney/Ringo Starr film is screened at the Cannes Film Festival in France.

1982 Grateful Dead, Jefferson Starship, Boz Scaggs, and Country Joe & the Fish play a benefit concert for Vietnam vets at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

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Madonna Puts Her Life On Display In Truth Or Dare

1991

After a limited release in major cities (starting with Los Angeles), Madonna's concert documentary Truth or Dare opens in theaters.

The film is marketed as a warts-and-all, behind-the-scenes look at Madonna, but she has full control of the project since she is funding it and serves as executive producer. The concert scenes show her in full command on stage, enthralling crowds with an array of hits that includes "Holiday," "Like A Virgin" and "Vogue." The offstage moments are the meat of the film though. Madonna is gleefully in charge, even when talking to her dad, who asks her to tone down the show (she refuses). When Kevin Costner shows up backstage, he tells her the show was "neat," and makes an uncomfortable exit. When he's out of sight, Madonna makes the universal barfing gesture and says, "Anybody who says my show is 'neat' has to go." The most memorable scenes include an exchange of blue talk with Sandra Bernhard, a poem she recites about farting, and a creative use of a water bottle. It's not ladylike, but it is attention-getting, which has always been her MO. It's also very intimate, which is another common theme in her work - in countries where the phrase "Truth or Dare" doesn't translate, it is released as Truth or Dare: In Bed With Madonna. By wholeheartedly opening up her private life to the public, Madonna uses that access to stay in the spotlight and generate more talking points. It's a tactic that later becomes commonplace, but is rare in the days before cameraphones and reality TV (The Real World is still a year away). Warren Beatty, her boyfriend and a very reticent famous person, sums it up when he says in the film, "She doesn't want to live, much less talk, off-camera."

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