On This Day April 21

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Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1956 – Elvis Presley scores his first No. 1 single with “Heartbreak Hotel.” The song remains on top of Billboard’s Best Sellers in Stores chart for eight weeks.

1962 – Elvis returns to the top of the singles chart with “Good Luck Charm.”

1973 – Tony Orlando and Dawn begin a four-week run on top of the singles chart with “Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Old Oak Tree,” which becomes the hottest-selling single of the year.  

1984 – Phil Collins has the most popular single on the radio with the title track from the movie “Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now).” The song spends three weeks at No. 1. 

1990 – Paul McCartney sets a new world record for the largest concert audience for a solo artist. A total of 184,000 people attend the final show of his tour at the Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

1990 – “Nothing Compares 2 U” lands Sinéad O’Connor on top of the Billboard Hot 100 for four weeks. The song was written by Prince.

2008 – Soul singer-songwriter Al Wilson (“The Snake,” “Show and Tell”) dies of kidney failure at the age of 68. 

2016 – Pop megastar Prince dies of an accidental opioid overdose at his Paisley Park compound in suburban Minneapolis. He is just 57 years old, and news of his death sends shockwaves among millions of fans around the world. More than 150 million of the Grammy, Oscar and Golden Globe winner’s records have sold internationally,  ranking Prince among the best-selling musicians of all time.

On This Day February 20

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History Highlights
History Highlights

On This Day November 24

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Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1950 – The musical comedy “Guys and Dolls” premieres on Broadway at the 46th Street Theatre. Two years later, it spawns a film adaptation starring Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra. 

1962 – The Four Seasons, featuring Frankie Valli, are in the second week of a five-week run as Billboard chart-toppers with “Big Girls Don’t Cry.”

1966 – The Beatles gather in a studio for the first time since wrapping up their U.S. summer concert tour and spend the entire day recording John Lennon’s “Strawberry Fields Forever.”

1972 – Don Kirshner’s “Rock Concert” TV show debuts, featuring Chuck Berry, Blood, Sweat & Tears and Alice Cooper.

1973 – Ringo Starr’s “Photograph” begins a week as the No. 1 single.

1979 – The Barbra Streisand-Donna Summer duet “No More Tears (Enough is Enough)” kicks off two weeks as a No. 1 single.

1984 – “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” by Wham!, rules the Billboard Hot 100.

1991 – Queen frontman Freddie Mercury dies of complications from AIDS exactly one day after publicly disclosing that he is HIV positive. He was 45 years old.

1997 – Johnny Rotten of The Sex Pistols is the defendant in an episode of TV’s “Judge Judy.” The case is a wrongful termination suit brought on by his former drummer, which Rotten wins.

2007 – Jay-Z climbs to the top of the Billboard album chart with “American Gangster,” his 10th chart-topping album. This ties the rapper to 2nd place with Elvis Presley for the most No. 1 albums. Only The Beatles have had more, with 19. 

On This Day October 1

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Celebrity Birthdays
Celebrity Birthdays
Musical Milestones
Musical Milestones

1966 – “Cherish,” by The Association, parks itself at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

1970 – Funeral services are held for Seattle native Jimi Hendrix. The legendary rock guitarist and singer-songwriter died in London two weeks earlier at the age of 27.

1977 – Meco’s disco interpretation of composer John Williams’ theme from the motion picture “Star Wars” (later retitled “Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope”) kicks off two weeks as the No. 1 single.

1982 – A revolution in the way we listen to music takes place, as the first compact disc (CD) player goes on sale in Japan for about $1,000. It’s the Sony CDP-101, and it lands in stores around the world six months later. The first CD to officially hit the market is Billy Joel’s “52nd Street.”

1988 – “Don’t Worry, Be Happy,” by Bobby McFerrin, marks its second and final week as a Billboard No. 1 single. 

1994 – Boyz II Men own the top spot on the pop chart with “I’ll Make Love to You,” which remains at No. 1 for 14 weeks and captures a Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals.

2005 – “Gold Digger,” by Kanye West featuring Jamie Foxx, is in the middle of a 10-week run atop the Billboard Hot 100. The track, which samples Ray Charles’ “I Got a Woman,” is the second chart-topper for West and Foxx. It goes on to capture a Best Rap Solo Performance Grammy.

2011 – “Moves Like Jagger,” by Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera, is the No. 1 single.