13 September

Pick a Day

13 SEPTEMBER

In Music History

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2013 Hozier releases "Take Me to Church," the lead single from his self-titled debut album.

2013 After winning a landmark lawsuit, The Village People lead singer Victor Willis regains the copyright to 33 songs he co-wrote for the band. Willis is the first songwriter to go public with his case, which deals with a 1978 law that reverts copyrights to songs back to their original owners 35 years after. Like many songwriters, Willis had signed away the rights to his songs.

2011 After an eight-year absence, Anthrax release their 10th studio album, Worship Music. Joey Belladonna, who hasn't been with the band since 1992, returns to handle lead vocals.

2010 John Mayer shuts down his Twitter account with 3.7 million followers. Once an avid Tweeter, Mayer has shied away from social media after oversharing in a Playboy interview. He does eventually return to Twitter, but in moderation. "It does rewire your brain," he says.

2009 Katy Perry and Russell Brand meet at the MTV Video Music Awards, which Brand is hosting. The pair begin dating soon after.

2008 Come Dancing, a musical devoted to the music of The Kinks, opens in London.

2005 Jimi Hendrix's boyhood home in Seattle is saved from destruction after his estate and the city agree to renovate the building and turn it into a community center.

2003 Dave Clark Five lead singer Mike Smith suffers a tragic fall from a ladder at his home in Spain, leaving him without any movement in three limbs. He would remain a near-quadriplegic until his death in 2008 from pneumonia, a complication of the original injury.

1994 The Notorious B.I.G. releases his debut solo album, Ready to Die. It's the first album issued on Sean Combs' Bad Boy label.

1993 Max Weinberg, drummer with Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, begins his new job as bandleader for NBC-TV's new show Late Night With Conan O'Brien.

1990 Eddie Vedder does some surfing, writes some lyrics, and adds his vocals to three instrumental tracks recorded by the guys he would later join in Pearl Jam. The songs become "Alive," "Once" and "Footsteps."

1988 N.W.A founder Eazy-E releases his debut solo album, Eazy-Duz-It.

1986 The Communards hit #1 in the UK with their cover of "Don't Leave Me This Way," an American #1 for Thelma Houston in 1977. Their version becomes the top-selling UK single of 1986.

1985 MTV debuts Club MTV, their contemporary and far more lascivious version of American Bandstand.More

1980 The TV series Solid Gold premieres. Like its genre-mates American Bandstand and Soul Train, the show consists of Top-40 music (mostly recorded) in a studio with a dance stage and floor. A feature of the show is a specialty crew of "Solid Gold dancers" who bump and grind to the tunes. Dionne Warwick is the host for the first season, but the show rotates through numerous hosts during its course. The show runs almost eight seasons before discontinuing in 1988.

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A Concert Tradition Begins With Lighters Up For John Lennon

1969

At the Toronto Rock and Roll Revival festival, host Kim Fowley starts a rock tradition when he asks the crowd to hold up lighters for Eric Clapton and John Lennon.


Clapton and Lennon are playing in The Plastic Ono Band, a group Lennon put together for the show. When Fowley gets word that Lennon is nervous and chain smoking backstage, Fowley comes up with the idea as a way to put him at ease. He tells the crowd:

"Everyone get out your matches and lighters please. In a minute I'm going to bring out John Lennon and Eric Clapton and when I do I want you to light them and give them a huge Toronto welcome."

When Fowley returns a few minutes later to bring out the band, the crowd is awash in a sea of lights, a spectacular scene when viewed from the stage. The lighter trick goes viral, and becomes commonplace at rock concerts, especially anywhere "Free Bird" is played.

As for this particular festival, it almost didn't happen. Chuck Berry, The Doors, Bo Diddley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Alice Cooper and Gene Vincent were all booked at the festival, but five days before the event, only 2,000 tickets were sold, and the investors pulled out. Kim Fowley came to the rescue with a plan: Call Apple Records, have them tell John Lennon who will be there (the Beatles loved Gene Vincent - they opened shows for him when they played in Germany), and ask him to emcee the event. The plan worked, except Lennon didn't want to emcee - he wanted to play. He just had to put a little band together.

With Lennon confirmed, the show goes on. The Plastic Ono Band consists of Lennon, Clapton, Klaus Voormann, Alan White and Yoko Ono.

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