On This Day February 29

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Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1958 – Frank Sinatra cruises along the top of the Billboard album chart with “Come Fly With Me,” featuring the tracks “Isle of Capri,” “Autumn in New York,” “April in Paris,” “Blue Hawaii” and, of course, the title track, “Come Fly With Me.” The album holds the top spot for five weeks.

1964 – The Beatles are in the middle of a seven-week domination of the Billboard singles chart with “I Want to Hold Your Hand.”

1968 – The Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” album scores big at the 10th Grammy Awards, earning statuettes for Album of the Year (first rock LP to do so), Best Album Cover, Best Engineered Recording and Best Contemporary Album.

1980 – Buddy Holly’s distinctive eyeglasses and The Big Bopper’s watch turn up inside a file at the Mason City, Iowa police station. Both articles had been misplaced 21 years earlier after the plane crash that killed them and rocker Ritchie Valens.

1980 – At age 84, comedian George Burns becomes the oldest person with a hit on the Billboard Hot 100, as “I Wish I Was 18 Again” peaks at No.49. The last charting record Burns had before this was a spoken word comedy routine with his wife and partner Gracie Allen in 1933.

1992 – Mr. Big kicks off three weeks on top of the Billboard Hot 100 with “To Be with You.”

2004 – Usher, Lil Jon and Ludacris have the No. 1 single with “Yeah!” It remains on top of the Billboard Hot 100 for 12 weeks.

2012 – Singer and actor Davy Jones, who was part of the pop group The Monkees, dies of a heart attack at the age of 66.

On This Day February 3

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On This Day February 2

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On This Day January 24

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On This Day January 23

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History Highlights
History Highlights

1849 – Elizabeth Blackwell becomes the first woman physician in U.S. history when she earns a medical degree from the all-male Geneva Medical College in upstate New York, graduating at the top of her class at the age of 28. Blackwell devotes her life to advocating for women in the healthcare professions and, in 1868, opens a women’s medical college in New York City.

1957 – The Wham-O toy company introduces the first aerodynamic plastic disc known as the Frisbee, and forever changes outdoor recreation. The disc was the creation of Walter Frederick Morrison, who originally named it the Pluto Platter.

1968 – North Korea seizes the U.S. intelligence-gathering ship USS Pueblo claiming it had violated North Korean territorial waters while spying. 

1973 – President Richard Nixon announces that a peace accord had been reached in Paris to end the Vietnam War.

1975 – The ABC sitcom “Barney Miller” debuts. It’s about an NYPD precinct captain played by Hal Linden, and the shenanigans he endures with his detectives.

1976 – Singer, actor, athlete and civil rights activist Paul Robeson dies at the age of 77. 

1977 – The miniseries “Roots,” based on the book by Alex Haley, debuts. It runs for eight consecutive nights on ABC Television and becomes the single most-watched program in American history, drawing about 100 million viewers.

1997 – One day after her unanimous confirmation by the U.S. Senate, Madeline Albright is sworn in as America’s first female Secretary of State by Vice President Al Gore.

On This Day January 18

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History Highlights
History Highlights

1778 – British explorer Captain James Cook becomes the first European to discover the Hawaiian Islands when he sails past the island of Oahu. Two days later, he lands at Waimea on the island of Kauai and names the island cluster the Sandwich Islands, after the voyage’s sponsor, the Earl of Sandwich.

1919 – Leaders of the Allied powers — the United States, France, Great Britain and Italy — convene in Paris, France to begin the long and complex negotiations that would pave the way for the end of World War I. The Paris Peace Conference, as it is known, leads to creation of the League of Nations, an international peacekeeping organization.

1975 – The sitcom “The Jeffersons,” one of several spin-offs from TV’s groundbreaking “All in the Family,” premieres on CBS and becomes a ratings bonanza of its own during an 11-season run. Another Norman Lear creation, it stars Sherman Hemsley and Isabel Sanford as a successful African-American couple adjusting to life on Manhattan’s ritzy East Side after leaving their modest Queens neighborhood.

1977 – Scientists identify the cause of a mysterious outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease that killed 34 people at a 1976 American Legion Convention in Philadelphia. 

1990 – An FBI sting leads to the arrest of Washington, D.C. Mayor Marion Barry for possession of crack cocaine. After serving six months in federal prison, the so-called “mayor for life” makes one of the most improbable comebacks in the history of American politics in 1994 when D.C. residents elect him to a fourth term as mayor.

Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1944 – The first jazz concert — known as the Esquire All-American Jazz Concert — is held at New York’s Metropolitan Opera House, featuring Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton, Artie Shaw, Roy Eldridge, Jack Teagarden and Billie Holiday.

1960 – Johnny Preston starts a three-week run at No. 1 on the singles chart with “Running Bear,” a song written by J. P. Richardson (a.k.a. “The Big Bopper”). The song was released shortly after Richardson’s death in the February 1959 plane crash that also claimed the lives of Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens.

1964 – The Beatles make their U.S. singles chart debut when “I Want To Hold Your Hand” enters at No. 45. It goes on to spend seven weeks at No. 1. 

1969 – Marvin Gaye is midway through a seven-week ride atop the Billboard singles chart with “I Heard It Through the Grapevine.” The track becomes Motown’s biggest-selling hit at that time.

1975 – Barry Manilow scores his first chart-topping single when “Mandy” reaches the top of the Billboard Hot 100.

1986 – “That’s What Friends Are For” by Dionne Warwick, featuring Elton John, Gladys Knight and Stevie Wonder, is the No. 1 single. The track, written by Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager, wins Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals and Song of the Year Grammys.

1989 – At 38 years of age, Stevie Wonder becomes the youngest living person inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He has excellent company, as other inductees in his class include The Rolling Stones, The Temptations and Dion (DiMucci).

1992 – Michael Jackson wraps up seven weeks as a chart-topper with “Black or White,” off his “Dangerous” album.

2003 – Eminem finds himself on top of the Billboard Hot 100 for another week with “Lose Yourself,” from the “8 Mile” soundtrack.

On This Day January 5

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On This Day December 1

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On This Day October 21

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History Highlights
History Highlights

1879 – Thomas Edison throws the switch on his newly invented incandescent lamp, which burns for nearly 14 hours.

1921 – President Warren Harding delivers a speech in Alabama condemning lynchings that were being committed primarily by white supremacists against African Americans in the Deep South. Harding is the first U.S. president to address the controversial subject.

1941 – Nazi troops massacre thousands of men, women and children across Yugoslavia in retaliation for that country’s rejection of an alliance with Germany.

1959 – The distinctive and world-renowned Guggenheim Museum opens in New York City. Designed by acclaimed architect Frank Lloyd Wright, the museum houses one of the world’s top collections of contemporary art.

1959 – President Dwight Eisenhower signs an executive order transferring renowned rocket engineer Wernher von Braun and his team from the U.S. Army to the newly created National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Von Braun, who masterminded America’s space program, developed the lethal V-2 rocket for Nazi Germany during World War II, and had been a member of the Nazi Party and an SS officer.

1967 – In Washington, D.C., thousands of Vietnam War protesters stage a peaceful rally at the Lincoln Memorial before attempting to storm the Pentagon. Police arrest 250 of the demonstrators.

2014 – South African Oscar Pistorius, the first double amputee runner to compete at the Olympics, is sentenced to five years in prison after being found guilty of culpable homicide (manslaughter) in the 2013 death of his girlfriend, 29-year-old Reeva Steenkamp. His sentence is later doubled by a higher court.

Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1958 – Rock and roll legend Buddy Holly’s last recording session takes place in a New York City studio. Among the songs he records is “It Doesn’t Matter Anymore,” which was written by Paul Anka and becomes a No. 13 hit following Holly’s death in a February 1959 plane crash.

1967 – Lulu begins a five-week run at No. 1 on the singles chart with the theme from the movie “To Sir With Love,” starring Sidney Poitier.

1972 – Curtis Mayfield begins four weeks on top of the Billboard album chart with the soundtrack to the movie “Super Fly.” Sales of the album, which contains the hits “Freddy’s Dead” and “Super Fly,” go on to surpass the movie’s box office performance.

1973 – “Angie” begins a week as a No. 1 single for The Rolling Stones. The track is from the band’s “Goats Head Soup” album and becomes their seventh U.S. chart-topper.

1989 – Janet Jackson’s “Miss You Much” is mid-way through a four-week domination of the Billboard Hot 100.

1995 – Mariah Carey holds on to the top spot on the pop chart for a fourth week with “Fantasy.” The track remains there for another four weeks.

2000 – “Come on Over Baby (All I Want Is You)” becomes the third No. 1 single of Christina Aguilera’s music career. This track stays on top for four weeks.

2000 – Radiohead’s fourth album, “Kid A,” debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard album chart.

2006 – Justin Timberlake’s “SexyBack” marks its seventh and final week at No. 1 on the singles chart. The track captures a Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording in 2007.

On This Day September 23

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