Monday, August 13, 2012

August 13

1899: Alfred Hitchcock (Author)
1921: Jimmy McCracklin (Blues Pianist & Singer)
1930: Don Ho (Hawaiian Singer)
1951: Dan Fogelberg (Singer / Songwriter)
1959: Danny Bonaduce (The Partridge Family)
1973: Andy Griggs (Country Artist)
1984: James Morrison (Singer / Songwriter)

1924: Vernon Dalhart's "The Prisoner's Song" becomes the first country record to sell a million copies -- a milestone for public acceptance of the genre.

1938: Blues legend Robert Johnson, who was reported to have "made a deal with the Devil" in order to execute his amazing guitar technique, plays his last gig at a dance approximately 15 miles from Greenwood, MS, and is supposedly poisoned by either the club's owner or a jealous girlfriend, who places strychnine in an open bottle of whiskey. When offered the bottle, fellow bluesman Sonny Boy Williamson knocks it out of his hand, admonishing him against ever drinking from an open container at a public event, but Johnson drinks from the next open bottle anyway. He would die three days later.

1952: The original version of 'Hound Dog' was recorded by Willie Mae (Big Mama) Thornton. It would become the first hit for the song-writing team of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller and went on to top the Billboard R&B chart for seven weeks, selling nearly two million copies.

1959: Bobby Darin signs his first movie contract, a million-dollar, six-year, six-picture deal with Paramount Studios. He would go on to secure a nomination for Best Supporting Actor in 1962.

1963: The Four Seasons sue their struggling first label, Vee Jay, for non payment of royalties and move to Mercury/Philips Records. This would be the first of a long line of incidents that would doom the label.

1964: The Kinks score their first hit as "You Really Got Me," written by Ray Davies on his mother's piano, enters the British charts.

1965: The Jefferson Airplane made its stage debut at the Matrix Club in San Francisco, CA.

1965: Mike Smith, lead singer of The Dave Clark Five, suffered two broken ribs when he was pulled off the stage by fans. The group were in Chicago at the beginning of a US tour.

1967: A planned Joan Baez concert at Washington DC's Constitution Hall is cancelled after the Daughters of the American Revolution protest her recent anti-war remarks concerning Vietnam.

1971: Around midnight on this day, Saxophonist King Curtis was lugging an air-conditioning unit towards his brownstone apartment on West 86th Street in New York City when he noticed two junkies were using drugs on the steps to his home. When he asked them to leave, an argument started. The argument quickly became heated and turned into a fist-fight with one of the men, 26-year old Juan Montañez. Suddenly, Montañez pulled out a knife and stabbed Curtis in the chest. Curtis managed to wrestle the knife away and stab his assailant four times before collapsing. Montañez staggered away from the scene and Curtis was taken to Roosevelt Hospital, where he died from his wounds less than an hour later.

1971: John Lennon leaves England via Heathrow Airport, headed for New York City to find Yoko Ono's estranged and possibly kidnapped daughter Kyoto. It would be the last time he would see England.

1977: Bachman-Turner Overdrive announced that the group is splitting up (though they would reunite within six years).

1980: Songwriter, producer, and artist Todd Rundgren, his female companion, and three others are victims of a home invasion at his house in Woodstock, NY, bound and gagged by four masked intruders who steal art, stereo equipment, and recording equipment. One of the criminals hums Todd's 1972 hit "I Saw The Light" to himself as the robbery takes place.

1982: In response to plummeting record sales (which the industry blames on the sale of blank cassette tapes), major labels CBS, Atlantic, and Warner Brothers announce a series of major staff cuts.

1982: American soul singer Joe Tex died at his home in Navasota, Texas, following a heart attack, just five days after his 49th birthday. Had nine US Top 40 hits including the 1972 US No.2 single 'I Gotcha'.

1988: Willie Nelson becomes the first artist ever to have an album spend 10 years on the Billboard country chart, as "Stardust" logs its 520th week.

1990: While warming up for an outdoor concert at Wingate Field in Flatbush, Brooklyn, Curtis Mayfield is paralyzed by a lighting tower which falls from the stage and onto his back. He will remain a quadriplegic for the next nine years until his death in 1999.

1991: Arista releases Brooks & Dunn's debut album, "Brand New Man".

1992: Neil Diamond played the first of six sold-out nights at Madison Square Garden in New York. Diamond would bring in over $40 million from touring this year, the second highest in the music industry.

1994: Members from Oasis and The Verve were arrested after smashing up a hotel bar and breaking into a church to steal communion wine. Both bands had been appearing at Hulsfred Festival in Sweden.

1995: Michael Stipe (Singer for R.E.M.) has surgery for a hernia.

1999: Ex Guns N' Roses member Slash was arrested and accused of assaulting his girlfriend at his Sunset Boulevard recording studio by Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies. He was released on bail.

1999: Mick Jagger's marriage to model Jerry Hall was been declared null and void at the High Court in London. Neither Jagger nor Hall were present for the 30-minute hearing before Mr Justice Connell. After hearing evidence on behalf of Hall the judge ruled their "marriage" in Bali in 1990 was not valid either in Indonesia or under English law, and a decree of nullity was granted to Hall. The annulment avoided what had been expected to be a long and costly court battle, in which Ms Hall, 43, was reportedly seeking a $55m share of Jagger's wealth.

2002: Adam Ant pleaded guilty to threatening drinkers at The Prince Of Wales Pub in London in January of this year. The former 1980's pop star had returned to the bar with a starting pistol after being refused entry. He had also thrown a car alternator through the window of the pub.

2007: Fats Domino is honored as an "American Music Legend" by the Recording Industry Association of America.

2007: Amy Winehouse pulled out of two Rolling Stones gigs in Hamburg Germany citing exhaustion, British group Starsailor replaced Winehouse for the shows.

2009: Guitarist Les Paul died in hospital in White Plains, New York at the age of 94 suffering from severe pneumonia. Paul is credited with developing one of the first solid-body electric guitars, which went on sale in 1952 and contributed to the birth of rock. He also developed other influential recording innovations such as multi-track recording and overdubbing.

2011: As Sugarland prepares to take the stage, a wind gust collapses the stage at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis. Seven people eventually die and another 45 are treated for injuries.

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