On This Day October 17
1964 – “Do Wah Diddy Diddy,” by Manfred Mann, kicks off two weeks on top of the Billboard Hot 100. It’s the cover of a song originally recorded in 1963 by the American band The Exciters, but it was the British group Manfred Mann that made it an international smash.
1981 – Christopher Cross is king of the Billboard Hot 100 with music from the movies – “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do).” The track holds at No. 1 for three weeks and goes on to earn a Best Original Song Oscar.
2008 – Levi Stubbs, lead singer of Motown giants the Four Tops, dies at the age of 72. Stubbs had been in ill health since a 1995 cancer diagnosis; a stroke and other health problems led him to stop touring in 2000.
1931 – A jury finds Chicago mob boss Al Capone guilty of tax evasion. One of the most notorious criminals of the 1920s and 1930s, Capone is later sentenced to 11 years in federal prison, ordered to pay $215,000 in back taxes and fined $50,000.
1973 – The romantic drama, “The Way We Were,” starring Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford, has its world premiere in New York before opening nationally three days later. The film captures the Academy Award for Best Original Dramatic Score and Best Original Song for the theme song, “The Way We Were,” sung by Streisand.
1989 – A powerful 6.9 magnitude earthquake rocks the San Francisco Bay Area, killing 63 people, injuring 3,000 others and causing more than $5 billion in damage. Known as the Loma Prieta earthquake, the natural disaster strikes just as Game 1 of the World Series is starting at San Francisco’s Candlestick Park between local teams The Oakland Athletics and San Francisco Giants.