On This Day April 16

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On This Day April 25

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Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1956 – Rock and Roll King Elvis Presley signs a seven-year movie contract with Paramount Pictures.

1960 – Elvis Presley gets stuck on top of the Billboard Hot 100 for four weeks with “Stuck On You.” It’s his first hit single following his two-year stint in the U.S. Army.

1970 – The Jackson 5 give The Beatles’ “Let It Be” the boot and claim the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for two weeks with “ABC.”

1981 – Daryl Hall and John Oates begin their third and final week as chart-toppers with “Kiss On My List.”

1987 – U2 begin a nine-week run at No. 1 on the Billboard album chart with “The Joshua Tree,” which packs chart-topping tracks including “With or Without You,” “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” and “Where the Streets Have No Name.” It goes on to capture Grammys for Album of the Year and Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.

1990 – The Fender Stratocaster that rock guitar legend Jimi Hendrix played at the Woodstock festival is auctioned off for a record $330,000. His two-hour set at the 1969 rock festival included a rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner.”

1992 – “Jump,” by hip hop duo Kris Kross, grabs the top spot on the singles chart and remains there for eight weeks.

1998 – Next has the No. 1 single with “Too Close.” The track remains on top of the pop chart for five weeks.

2007 – Leukemia claims the life of 69-year-old Bobby “Boris” Pickett, best known for his hit novelty song “Monster Mash,” which still gets radio airplay every Halloween.

On This Day April 7

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History Highlights
History Highlights

1776 – U.S. Navy Captain John Barry (a.k.a. “Father of the American Navy”), commander of the warship Lexington, achieves the first American naval capture of a British vessel when he seizes the British warship HMS Edward off the coast of Virginia. The capture of the Edward and its cargo turns Barry into a national hero and boosts the morale of the Continental forces.

1948 – The United Nations establishes the World Health Organization (WHO) to promote “the highest possible level of health” around the globe. A major cornerstone of WHO is the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease. World Health Day is observed internationally every April 7.

1954 – President Dwight Eisenhower coins one of the most famous Cold War phrases when he suggests the fall of French Indochina to the communists could create a “domino effect” in Southeast Asia. The so-called “domino theory” guided U.S. strategy toward Vietnam for the next decade.

1961 – President John F. Kennedy lobbies Congress to fund the preservation of historic monuments in Egypt’s Nile Valley threatened by construction of the Aswan High Dam.

1969 – The U.S. Supreme Court strikes down laws prohibiting private possession of obscene material (Stanley v. Georgia). 

1970 – At the 42nd annual Academy Awards, screen legend John Wayne ropes his first and only Oscar: Best Actor for his role in the Western “True Grit.”

1978 – President Jimmy Carter cancels planned production of the neutron bomb.

1994 – Violence in Rwanda fuels the launch of what becomes the worst episode of genocide since World War II: the massacre of an estimated 500,000 to 1 million innocent civilian Tutsis and moderate Hutus.

On This Day April 5

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Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1969 – Tommy Roe enjoys his fourth and final week on top of the pop chart with “Dizzy.”

1975 – “Lovin’ You,” by Minnie Riperton, tops the Billboard Hot 100. At the end of the track, you can hear her sing, “Maya, Maya” to her daughter, actress-comedian and “SNL” alum Maya Rudolph. Tragically, Riperton dies of breast cancer four years later at the age of 31.

1980 – “Another Brick in the Wall, Part II,” by Pink Floyd, is the No. 1 single. 

1984 – The funeral service for Motown legend Marvin Gaye takes place at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Los Angeles. Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, Quincy Jones, Berry Gordy and other Motown talent are on hand to pay their respects.

1985 – At 3:50 p.m. GMT, more than 5,000 radio stations around the world simultaneously broadcast the single “We Are the World,” produced as a charity to benefit Ethiopian famine relief. The single, written by Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie and produced by Quincy Jones, features the voices of some of the biggest musical acts of the day.

1994 – Grunge music icon Kurt Cobain, Nirvana founder and frontman, commits suicide at age 27. His body is discovered at his Seattle home three days later by an electrician who showed up to install a security system.

1997 – “Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down,” by Puff Daddy featuring Mase, is in the middle of a six-week ride atop the Billboard Hot 100.

2002 – Another grunge legend, singer-songwriter Layne Staley, co-founder and lead vocalist of alternative rock band Alice in Chains, is found dead in his Seattle home from a drug overdose at the age of 34.

2008 – Leona Lewis has the No. 1 single with “Bleeding Love.” The track holds the top spot for a week.

2014 – Pharrell Williams holds the top spot on the singles chart with “Happy,” which remains at No. 1 for 10 weeks.

On This Day March 20

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On This Day March 5

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On This Day January 29

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History Highlights
History Highlights

1845 – The Evening Mirror publishes Edgar Allan Poe’s now-classic poem, “The Raven” which begins, “Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary…”

1936 – The first inductees into the Baseball Hall of Fame are announced In Cooperstown, New York. They include Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson and Walter Johnson.

1963 – Robert Frost, considered the dean of American poets, dies in Boston at the age of 88.

1964 – Stanley Kubrick’s black comic masterpiece, “Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb,” opens in movie theaters to critical acclaim. Actor Peter Sellers plays three roles in the Cold War parody.

1979 – Teenager Brenda Spencer shoots and kills two men and wounds nine children as they enter the Grover Cleveland Elementary School in San Diego. Asked by authorities upon her arrest why she did it, the 16-year-old replies, “I don’t like Mondays. This livens up the day.” The incident inspires The Boomtown Rats to write their hit song, “I Don’t Like Mondays.”

1979 – President Jimmy Carter welcomes Chinese Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping to the White House following the establishment of diplomatic relations. The visit culminates with the signing of historic new accords that reverse decades of U.S. opposition to the People’s Republic of China.

2002 – In his first State of the Union address since the September 11 terror attacks on the U.S., President George W. Bush says Iraq, Iran and North Korea constitute an “axis of evil.” He outlines his rationale for the “war on terror,” a series of military engagements which would define U.S. foreign policy for years to come.

Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1964 – The Beatles spend the day at the Pathe Marconi Studios in Paris in their only studio recording session for EMI held outside the U.K. They record “She Loves You,” “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “Can’t Buy Me Love” in German.

1966 – “We Can Work It Out,” by The Beatles, reaches the top of the Billboard singles chart and remains there for a week.

1970 – Elvis Presley releases the single “Kentucky Rain,” which climbs as high as No. 16 on the Billboard Hot 100.

1972 – Don McLean’s “American Pie” is in the midst of a four-week ride atop the Billboard Hot 100. In 2017, the recording is selected for preservation in the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or artistically significant.”

1977 – “Car Wash,” by Rose Royce, is the No. 1 single. It comes from the movie of the same name that features Richard Pryor, George Carlin and The Pointer Sisters, and is considered a staple of the disco genre.

1983 – Men at Work wrap up three weeks on top of the Billboard Hot 100 with “Down Under,” off the Aussie band’s “Business as Usual” album.

1994 – “All for Love,” by Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart and Sting, is in the middle of a three-week run on top of the pop chart. The single comes from the soundtrack to “The Three Musketeers,” a movie starring Charlie Sheen, Kiefer Sutherland and Chris O’Donnell.

2000 – The No. 1 spot on the pop chart belongs to Australian pop duo Savage Garden with “I Knew I Loved You.”

2011 – Britney Spears lands on top of the Billboard Hot 100 for a week with “Hold It Against Me.”

2019 – Two-time Grammy-winning 80s R&B singer-songwriter James Ingram (“Just Once,” “Baby, Come to Me,” “I Don’t Have the Heart”) dies of brain cancer at the age of 66.

On This Day December 28

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On This Day December 24

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On This Day December 8

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