On This Day March 31

Musical Milestones

1943 – Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein’s “Oklahoma!” premieres on Broadway. In 1955, the musical is produced as a motion picture starring Gordon MacRae and Shirley Jones (in her film debut).

1958 – Chess Records releases “Johnny B. Goode,” by Chuck Berry. The song climbs as high as No. 8 on the pop chart and goes on to become a rock and roll classic.

1962 – Connie Francis claims the top spot on the pop chart for a week with “Don’t Break the Heart That Loves You”

1967 – Jimi Hendrix suffers minor burns to his hands when he sets his guitar on fire during a performance at Finsbury Park in London. Nevertheless, he goes on to torch guitars several times during his short career.

1973 – Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly with His Song” returns to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 for a fifth week after The O’Jays interrupted her for a week with their hit, “Love Train.”

1979 – “Tragedy,” by the Bee Gees, dominates the singles chart for a second and final week.

1984 – Kenny Loggins kicks off a three-week run atop the Billboard Hot 100 with “Footloose,” from the movie of the same name.

1987 – Prince releases his ninth studio album, “Sign o’ the Times,” which spawns three Top 10 hit singles: “If I Was Your Girlfriend,” “U Got the Look,” (with Sheena Easton) and the title track. 

1995 – Tejano superstar Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, known as the “Mexican Madonna,” is shot and killed by Yolanda Saldívar, the president of her fan club. Selena was the first female Tejano artist to win a Grammy, in the Best Mexican-American album category, for her 1993 album “Selena Live!” At the time of her murder, at age 23, Selena was on the brink of international fame, recording her first English language album.

2007 – “Glamorous,” by Fergie featuring Ludacris, enters its second and final week as the No. 1 single.

Own a Piece of This Day

SHOP HERE:

Oklahoma!

Starring Gordon Macrae, Gloria Grahame and Shirley Jones, and directed by Fred Zinnemann

To Selena, With Love

Chris Perez

Eiffel's Tower: The Thrilling Story Behind Paris's Beloved Monument and the Extraordinary World's Fair That Introduced It

Jill Jonnes

Raging Bull

Starring Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci and Cathy Moriarty, and directed by Martin Scorsese

The Partridge Family: The Complete Series

Starring Shirley Jones and David Cassidy

Catch Me If You Can

Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks and Christopher Walken, and directed by Steven Spielberg

On This Day November 9

Own a Piece of This Day

SHOP HERE:

Tune In: The Beatles/All These Years

Mark Lewisohn

Bridge Over Troubled Water

Simon and Garfunkel

The Rolling Stone Interviews

Jann S. Wenner

The Berlin Wall: A World Divided, 1961-1989

Frederick Taylor

Introducing Dorothy Dandridge

Starring Halle Berry and Klaus Maria Brandauer

Stranger to the Game: The Autobiography of Bob Gibson

Bob Gibson

On this Day May 27

History Highlights

1930 – New York City’s iconic Chrysler Building opens to the public and stands as the world’s tallest building until surpassed by the Empire State Building in 1931.

1936 – The ocean liner RMS Queen Mary leaves Southampton on her maiden voyage to New York with more than 1,800 passengers aboard. The ship arrives safely five days later.

1937 – The majestic Golden Gate Bridge opens, creating a vital link between San Francisco and Marin County, California. San Franciscans throw a “fiesta” in honor of the new span. Schools, offices and stores either close or reduce staffing. By 6 that morning, 18,000 people are waiting to cross the span from both the sides.

1939 – A ship carrying more than 900 Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi persecution is turned away from Havana, Cuba. Only 28 immigrants are admitted into the country. After appeals to the U.S. and Canada for entry are rejected, the rest are forced to return to Europe, where they are divided among several countries, including Great Britain and France.

1941 – The revered German battleship Bismarck is cornered and sunk in the North Atlantic by ships and planes from the British Royal Navy, ending one of the most intensive naval manhunts in history. An estimated 2,100 men are killed in the attack.

1962 – A mine fire that still burns to this day breaks out beneath the borough of Centralia, Pennsylvania.

1994 – Two decades after being expelled from the Soviet Union, Nobel laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn returns to Russia in an emotional homecoming.

Own a Piece of This Day

SHOP HERE:

The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

The Ultimate Chi-Lites

The Chi-Lites

Golden Gate Bridge: History and Design of an Icon

Donald MacDonald and Ira Nadel

Bismarck: The Final Days of Germany’s Greatest Battleship

Niklas Zetterling

An Officer and a Gentleman

Starring Richard Gere, Debra Winger and Louis Gossett, Jr., and directed by Taylor Hackford

The Pit and the Pendulum

Starring John Kerr, Vincent Price and Barbara Steele, and directed by Roger Corman