1939 : After five directors, several script drafts, and endless casting changes, The movie musical The Wizard Of Oz premieres at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood.
1953 : Perry Como’s “No Other Love” hits #1
1955 : Elvis Presley attended a meeting in Memphis with his manager Bob Neal, Colonel Tom Parker and Vernon Presley, at which a new contract was signed that named Colonel Parker as “special advisor” with control of virtually every aspect of Elvis’ career. Parker was not really a Colonel at all, but a Dutch immigrant named Andreas Cornelius van Kujik, whose honorary title was given to him in 1948 by Governor Jimmie Davis of Louisiana. He was a flamboyant promoter whose pre-Elvis experience included shows called The Great Parker Pony Circus and Tom Parker And His Dancing Turkeys and was a veteran of carnivals, medicine shows and various other entertainment enterprises.
1956 : “Colonel” Tom Parker, actually a Dutch immigrant who merely played at being a Southern aristocrat, becomes “special adviser” to Elvis Presley, effectively taking over management duties from Bob Neal, who knew managing the King was about to become a full-time job.
1960 : Elvis Presley started a five week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘It’s Now Or Never’, also No.1 in the UK. The song which was based on the Italian song, ‘O Sole Mio’, gave Presley his first post-army No.1.
1964 : Dean Martin’s Everybody Loves Somebody hits #1
1964 : After the massive success of The Beatles’ first film, A Hard Day’s Night, United Artists rushes to sign up-and-comers The Dave Clark Five to a film project entitled Catch Us If You Can (which was released in the US as Having A Wild Weekend).
1965 : The Beatles set a new world record for the largest attendance at a pop concert when they played in front of 55,600 fans at Shea Stadium in New York City. Sharing the bill with The Beatles; Brenda Holloway, The King Curtis Band, The Young Rascals and Sounds Incorporated. The Beatles were paid $160,000 for the show, the set list: Twist and Shout, She’s a Woman, I Feel Fine, Dizzy Miss Lizzie, Ticket to Ride, Everybody’s Trying to Be My Baby, Can’t Buy Me Love, Baby’s In Black, Act Naturally, I Wanna Be Your Man,A Hard Day’s Night,Help!, and I’m Down. Two of the Rolling Stones were among the audience, Mick Jagger and Keith Richard and later that evening; Bob Dylan visited The Beatles at their hotel.
1966 : During a US tour The Beatles appeared at the D.C. Stadium in Washington DC to over 32,000 fans. Tickets cost $3. Five members of the Ku Klux Klan, led by the Imperial Wizard of Maryland, picketed the concert.
1967 : Jimi Hendrix Experience played a one night only show at The Fifth Dimension club, Ann Arbor, Michigan. The club is now demolished.
1968 : Recorded on this day, The Beatles – “Rocky Racoon”
1969 : During a North American tour Led Zeppelin appeared at the Hemisfair Arena in San Antonio. Jethro Tull and Sweet Smoke were also on the bill. During the show Zeppelin received abuse from locals due to the length of their hair.
1969 : Woodstock Festival was held on Max Yasgur’s 600 acre farm in Bethel outside New York. Attended by over 400,000 people, the event featured, Jimi Hendrix, Joe Cocker, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, Santana, The Who, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, The Band, Canned Heat, Joan Baez, Melanie, Ten Years After, Sly and the Family Stone, Johnny Winter, Jefferson Airplane, Ravi Shanker, Country Joe and the Fish, Blood Sweat and Tears, Arlo Guthrie, and Joe Cocker. During the three days there were three deaths, two births and four miscarriages. Joni Mitchell was booked to appear but had to pull out due to being booked for a TV show, wrote the song ‘Woodstock.’
1970 : Creedence Clearwater Revival’s Lookin’ Out My Back Door enters the charts
1973 : Baltimore, MD, declares today “Cass Elliot Day” in honor of the native singer for The Mamas & The Papas.
1979 : The futuristic satire film ‘Americathon’ premiered in Los Angeles featuring Meat Loaf. The soundtrack included songs by The Beach Boys, Nick Lowe and Elvis Costello.
1980 : George Harrison becomes the first Beatle to release an autobiography when his book I Me Mine is published.
1981 : Diana Ross and Lionel Richie started a nine week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Endless Love’, a No.7 in the UK. The song was the title from a film starring Brooke Shields.
1987 : Michael Jackson had his third UK No.1 with the single ‘I Just Can’t Stop Loving You’, a duet with Siedah Garrett. It was originally intended to be a duet between Jackson and either Barbra Streisand or Whitney Houston. Session singer Siedah Garrett also worked with Madonna.
1991, Paul Simon played a free concert in New York’s Central Park before an audience of three quarters of a million people.
1991 : Nirvana plays a concert at The Roxy Theater in Los Angeles, where they invite fans to attend the shoot for their first video, Smells Like Teen Spirit, which they are filming two days later. Response is overwhelming, and hundreds of fans have to be turned away.
1992 : INXS went to No.1 on the UK album chart with ‘Welcome To Whoever You Are’, their first UK No.1 album.
1995 : The Dublin hotel owned by U2 ‘The Clarence’ was damaged by a fire which took over three hours to control. Also ‘The Kitchen’ nightclub in the same building was affected by the fire and was evacuated.
1995 : Spanish Latin-pop duo Los del Rio release the single “Macarena” in the US. The song inspires a dance craze and huge cult following, staying at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 14 weeks in 1996. The Bayside Boys remix of the single alone went 4x Platinum in the US. VH1 would later call it the “Greatest One-Hit Wonder of All Time” in 2002, although Los del Rio had more substantial success in Spain and internationally.
1996 : A New York women’s shelter refuses to take money raised by a recent benefit concert when they learn that one of the performers was James Brown, often accused of emotional and physical abuse of women.
2000 : David Bowie and his wife Iman celebrated the birth of their first child a baby girl named Alexandria Zahra Jones.
2002 : A memorial to John Lennon was unveiled in the remote Scottish village of Durness where Lennon had spent his holidays from age seven to fifteen. The lyrics from ‘In My Life’ had been inscribed on three stones.
2004 : Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts was being treated for throat cancer after being diagnosed with the disease in June.
2005 : Sly Stone comes out of a long seclusion to visit the Knitting Factory in Los Angeles, where his little sister Vet headlines with the latest version of the Family Stone.
2007 : The Osmonds reunite for the first time in over two decades to perform their 50th anniversary concert for PBS.
2007 : Sixteen solo John Lennon albums were made available to download on iTunes for the first time. A deal was approved by the late Beatle’s widow Yoko Ono following a lengthy legal battle between the band’s label Apple Corps and Apple Inc, which owned Tunes.
2008 : US record producer Jerry Wexler, who influenced the careers of singers including Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles and Bob Dylan, died at his home in Sarasota, Florida aged 91. Wexler produced the Aretha Franklin hit Respect, the Wilson Pickett song, In the Midnight Hour and helped Bob Dylan win his first Grammy award by producing the 1979 album, Slow Train Coming. He also coined the term rhythm and blues while writing for Billboard magazine in the late 1940’s.
2009 : On the first UK gig of their world tour, U2 breaks the Wembley Stadium Attendance record when 88,000 show up. Their “claw” set design allows more fans to fit in the stadium and break Rod Stewart’s record of 83,000 set in 1995.