On This Day September 30

History Highlights

1927 – Babe Ruth hits his 60th home run of the season off Tom Zachary of the Washington Senators. Ruth’s record for the most homers in a single season stands for 34 years until Roger Maris hits 61 in 1961.

1954 – The U.S. Navy commissions the USS Nautilus, the world’s first nuclear submarine. During its early years of service, the vessel breaks numerous submarine travel records, and in August 1958, achieves the first voyage under the North Pole. 

1955 – Hollywood legend James Dean is killed in a car accident at the age of 24. At the time, Dean is speeding in his beloved “Little Bastard” — a silver Porsche 550 Spyder — to a car race in Salinas, California, when a vehicle driven by a 23-year-old college student veers into his path.

1960 – Yabba Dabba Do! Hanna-Barbera introduces Americans to a “modern Stone Age family” in the animated series “The Flintstones,” which lasts six seasons on ABC.

1968 – The first Boeing 747, named “City of Everett,” is rolled out before thousands of employees and the international press at Boeing’s Everett, Washington factory. The jumbo jet is the world’s largest civilian aircraft at that time — capable of carrying up to 490 passengers and 33 attendants. It officially enters service on February 9, 1969.

1982 – The NBC sitcom “Cheers,” set in a Boston bar, debuts, starring Ted Danson and Shelley Long. It is nominated for Outstanding Comedy Series each of the 11 seasons it is on the air, capturing 28 Primetime Emmy Awards from a record 117 nominations.

1984 – The popular prime time series “Murder, She Wrote” premieres on CBS, starring Angela Lansbury as crime novelist Jessica Fletcher, who travels the country solving murder cases. The show picks up two Golden Globes during a 12-season run. Lansbury is nominated for 10 Golden Globes and 12 Emmy Awards, winning four Golden Globes.

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The Best of the Capitol Masters: 90th Birthday Edition

Les Paul with Mary Ford

Milli Vanilli: Greatest Hits

Milli Vanilli

The Real James Dean

Peter L. Winkler

The Flintstones

Featuring Fred, Wilma, Barney, Betty and their kids

Open Heart

Elie Wiesel

The Essential Johnny Mathis

Johnny Mathis

On this Day August 12

Musical Milestones

1960 – The Silver Beatles become The Beatles, and on this day, the newly renamed band hires Pete Best as drummer. Two years later, he is fired and replaced by Ringo Starr.

1964 – The Beatles’ first film, “A Hard Day’s Night,” opens in 500 U.S. theaters to rave reviews.

1966 – The Beatles’ final U.S. tour begins with two performances at the International Amphitheatre in Chicago. During a pre-show press conference, reporters challenge John Lennon to explain his recent boast that The Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ.

1967 – The Doors close out three weeks on top of the Billboard Hot 100 with “Light My Fire.” About a month later, the band performs the song before a national audience on “The Ed Sullivan Show.”

1978 – “Three Times a Lady,” by the Commodores featuring Lionel Richie, is the No. 1 single.

1985 – Japanese singer-actor Kyu Sakamoto is killed at the age of 43 in the crash of a Japan Airlines jetliner outside Tokyo. Sakamoto was the first Asian recording artist to have a No. 1 hit in the U.S.: “Sukiyaki” in June of 1963, which sold more than 13 million copies worldwide.

1995 – TLC is in the midst of a seven-week domination of the singles chart with “Waterfalls.”

2000 – “Incomplete,” by Sisqó, begins a two-week run on top of the Billboard Hot 100.

2009 – Legendary guitarist Les Paul dies of pneumonia at age 94. Paul designed one of the first solid-body electric guitars, which went on sale in 1952 and was “instrumental” in the development of rock ‘n roll. He also pioneered other recording innovations such as multi-track recording and overdubbing.

History Highlights

30 B.C. – Cleopatra, queen of Egypt and lover of Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, takes her life following the defeat of her forces against Octavian, the future first emperor of Rome.

1851 – Business tycoon Isaac Merritt Singer patents the sewing machine.

1939 – “The Wizard of Oz,” starring Judy Garland and featuring words and music by E.Y. “Yip” Harburg and Harold Arlen, makes its world premiere at the Strand Theatre in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin.

1963 – The first 1964 Ford Thunderbird rolls off a Detroit assembly line. 

1977 – Space Shuttle Enterprise passes a critical test as it separates from the top of a 747 for its first free flight and makes a smooth landing in the Mojave Desert. 

1981 – IBM takes the wraps off the first personal computer (the IBM 5150) with a price tag starting at $1,565. That includes the system unit, a keyboard and color/graphics capability. It costs more for options including a display, a printer, two diskette drives, extra memory, a game adapter and application packages — including one for text processing. 

1990 – Digging on a cliff near Faith, South Dakota, paleontologist Susan Hendrickson unearths three huge bones that turn out to be part of the largest Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton ever discovered — a 67 million-year-old specimen dubbed Sue, after its discoverer.

2014 – Lauren Bacall, the smoky-voiced movie legend who taught Humphrey Bogart how to whistle in “To Have and Have Not,” dies at the age of 89. Bacall made more than 40 films during a 70-year career, including “The Big Sleep,” “How to Marry a Millionaire” and “The Mirror Has Two Faces.”

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A Hard Day's Night

The Beatles

The Definitive Collection

The Commodores

Singer and the Sewing Machine: A Capitalist Romance

Ruth Brandon

Father, Son & Co.: My Life at IBM and Beyond

Thomas J. Watson, Jr. and Peter Petre

Adventures in the Screen Trade

William Goldman

Neck and Neck

Mark Knopfler and Chet Atkins

On this Day June 9

Musical Milestones

1958 – The hottest single in the U.S. is “The Purple People Eater” by Sheb Wooley. The novelty hit holds the No. 1 spot for six weeks.

1962 – “I Can’t Stop Loving You,” by Ray Charles, is in its second week as a No. 1 single. It retains the top spot for five weeks. Across the pond, the track hits the top of the U.K. singles chart that July and holds there for two weeks.

1972 – Elvis Presley plays his first concert in New York City — the first of four sold-out shows at Madison Square Garden. The performances are recorded for later release on the “Elvis As Recorded at Madison Square Garden” album.

1972 – One month after auditioning for Columbia Records, Bruce Springsteen is signed by the label and begins assembling his E Street Band. His debut album, “Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.,” comes out in January 1973.

1979 – The Bee Gees reach No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the ninth time with “Love You Inside Out.” It becomes the sibling trio’s final chart-topper.

1984 – Cyndi Lauper begins a two-week run on top of the Billboard singles chart with “Time After Time,” off her debut album, “She’s So Unusual.” The track earns a Song of the Year Grammy nomination.

1990 – “Hold On,” by Wilson Phillips, clinches the top spot on the pop chart. The track goes on to win the Billboard Music Award for 1990 Hot 100 Single of the Year and is nominated for a Song of the Year Grammy.

1998 – The Ronettes (“Be My Baby,” “Walking In The Rain”) appear in court for their lawsuit against producer Phil Spector, whom they allege breached their 34-year-old contract by failing to pay royalties since 1963. Although The Ronettes win the case, the New York State Court of Appeals later overturns the decision, saying Spector had unconditional rights to their recordings.

2001 – Christina Aguilera, Lil’ Kim, Mýa and Pink have the No. 1 single with their cover of Labelle’s 1974 smash, “Lady Marmalade.”

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Timeless: The All Time Greatest Hits

Bee Gees

She's So Unusual

Cyndi Lauper

Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination

Neal Gabler

The Horse God Built: The Untold Story of Secretariat, the World's Greatest Racehorse

Lawrence Scanlan

Back to the Future

Starring Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson and Crispin Glover, and directed by Robert Zemeckis

Edward Scissorhands

Starring Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder and Dianne Wiest, and directed by Tim Burton