2008 The first Fender Stratocaster set alight on stage by Jimi Hendrix is auctioned. The guitar sells for $575,000 to collector Daniel Boucher - less than the $1 million predicted. It is one of only two guitars definitively burned by Hendrix - the other was at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967.
1991 Guitarist C.C. DeVille is kicked out of Poison after he sabotages their performance at the MTV Video Music Awards by playing "Talk Dirty To Me" instead of "Unskinny Bop" as planned. DeVille rejoins the band five years later.More
1989 Soundgarden release Louder Than Love, the first grunge album on a major label (A&M).
1981 Soft Cell hit #1 in the UK with an electronic cover of "Tainted Love," a song originally released by the American soul singer Gloria Jones in 1964. The song also charts in America, reaching #8 in July 1982. It's the only hit for the duo in the States, but they have many more in their native UK.
1945 Boudleaux Bryant and Felice Scaduto get married. The couple become one of the most successful songwriting teams in pop music, with over 700 songs published, including "Wake Up Little Susie" and "Bye Bye Love."
2020 Metallica become the first act with #1 songs on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Songs chart in four different decades when their live version of "All Within My Hands," recorded with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, takes the top spot.
2018 Fleetwood Mac perform on the show Ellen, debuting their new lineup with Neil Finn and Mike Campbell replacing Lindsey Buckingham, who has been booted.
2014 Pop singer Simone Battle (of G.R.L.) dies of an apparent suicide in Los Angeles, California, at age 25.
2012 Country/folk musician Joe South dies of heart failure in Buford, Georgia, at age 72.
2007 Influential blogger Perez Hilton declares himself "obsessed" with the unsigned artist Eric Hutchinson, earning the singer 3,000 new MySpace friends and serious industry buzz, leading to a deal with Warner Bros. Records.
2000 Tori Amos gives birth to a baby girl, Natashya Hawley. The father is Amos' husband, Mark Hawley, an English sound engineer.
1998 R&B singer Sonny Knight dies at age 64 in Maui, Hawaii, two years after suffering a stroke. Known for the 1956 hit "Confidential."
1990 B.B. King receives a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
1987 American Bandstand airs on network TV for the last time. ABC picked up the show in 1957, and throughout its run on the network, Dick Clark was the host. The show continued another year in syndication and aired one season on the USA network in 1989.
1978 Joe Negroni of Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers dies of a cerebral hemorrhage in New York City at age 37.
1972 Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway's duet "Where Is The Love?" is certified Gold.
Destined to one day be considered one of the greatest singers and songwriters of all time, Freddie Mercury is born into a diverse range of childhood experiences. Raised as Farrokh Bulsara in a family of Parsis (Persian immigrants to India), Mercury grows up practicing the Zoroastrian religion. Most of his childhood is spent in India, where he takes up piano lessons at seven years old. By the age of 12, he starts his first band, the Hectics, while attending St. Peter's School in Panchgani, India. A passionate fan of Western pop music, Mercury dazzles friends with his ability to play back on piano the songs he hears on radio. In order to escape the Zanzibar Revolution, Mercury and his family move to 22 Gladstone Avenue in Feltham, Middlesex, England, in 1964, when Mercury is 17-years-old. Mercury earns a diploma in Art and Graphic Design from Ealing Art College and joins a couple bands before meeting guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor. Together, they start up Queen. This is also the time when Bulsara starts using the name Mercury, after the Roman messenger to the gods. With Queen, Mercury becomes one of the most iconic figures in UK music history. Queen's song "Bohemian Rhapsody" is in the Guinness World Records British Hit Singles Book as the UK's favorite hit of all time. The band has nine UK #1 albums and six UK #1 singles, not to mention 25 Top 10s and somewhere between 150 and 300 million records sold. Songs such as "Under Pressure," "Crazy Little Thing Called Love," and "We Are the Champions" continue to get regular airplay long after their initial releases. Mercury's solo albums, including his debut, Mr. Bad Guy (1985), also sell well in the UK (though not as well as Queen's), with one going gold and the other silver. For his efforts, Mercury is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (2001), the Songwriters Hall of Fame (2003), and the UK Music Hall of Fame (2004). Mercury is also revered as a representative of the LGBT community. Mercury's death from AIDS complications on November 24, 1991, significantly raises public awareness of the disease. Following his death, the surviving members of Queen hold the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert on April 20, 1992. Held at Wembley Stadium and featuring a lineup of legendary musical acts, the concert is viewed by 1 billion people in 76 countries. Mercury's tragic, brilliant life takes him around the world multiple times and leaves behind a legacy of beloved music and social impact, all starting on this day in 1946 in Zanzibar.
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