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Today in Music History - Oct. 13

The Canadian Press logoThe Canadian Press 2021-10-13

Today in Music History for Oct. 13:


In 1941, singer Paul Simon was born in Newark, N.J. Between 1962 and 1970, he and partner Art Garfunkel were the most popular duo in rock music. "Simon and Garfunkel's" No. 1 hits included "Sounds of Silence," "Mrs. Robinson" and "Bridge Over Troubled Water." After "Bridge Over Troubled Water" in 1970, they parted company but did get back together several times during the next decade, notably for a 1981 concert in New York's Central Park. Simon began his solo career in 1972, producing a self-titled album that included a variety of musical influences, from backing by jazz violinist Stephane Grappelli to the reggae beat of "Mother and Child Reunion." Simon's other hit singles include "Kodachrome" and "Love Me Like a Rock," both from 1973, and "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover," a No. 1 song from 1976. But his biggest success came with the release in 1986 of "Graceland," an album recorded in South Africa with South African musicians.

In 1941, "Les Joyeux Troubadours," a half-hour program of songs and comedy skits, was first broadcast on the CBC network. The program, a French-language replica of the successful "Happy Gang" series on the English network, continued five days a week without interruption until 1977. It is generally regarded as having been the longest-running radio program of its kind in Canada.

In 1951, honky-tonk singer Lefty Frizzell had four of the top-10 records on the Billboard country chart, the only artist to achieve such a feat. Two of Frizzell's No. 1 songs that year were "I Want to Be With You Always" and "Always Late."

In 1958, Canadian soprano Teresa Stratas made her professional operatic debut in Toronto as Mimi in "La Boheme" with the Opera Festival Company, the forerunner to the Canadian Opera Company. Stratas made her debut at the Metropolitan Opera the following year, and has since performed with many of the world's leading opera companies.

In 1963, "The Beatles" appeared on British television's premiere variety showcase, "Saturday Night at the London Palladium." Crowds of screaming teenaged girls in the streets outside the theatre forced several interruptions in rehearsals. Police were called in to control the mob. The incident was heavily reported in the British press, which dubbed the rabid fan reaction "Beatlemania" and "The Beatles" themselves the "Fab Four." An estimated 15 million viewers saw the show.

In 1965, "The Who" recorded "My Generation" in London.  

In 1973, Tom Fogerty appeared on "American Bandstand" to perform "Joyous Resurrection," which he described as a capsule history of "Creedence Clearwater Revival."

In 1975, Neil Young underwent surgery in Los Angeles to remove a growth from his vocal chords.

In 1980, "AC/DC's" "Back in Black" album went platinum in the U.S. It has gone on to sell over 49 million copies worldwide, second only to Michael Jackson's "Thriller."

In 1990, Janet Jackson's "Rhythm Nation 1814" became the first album to generate six top-five singles. "Black Cat" was the last to make the top-five of the Billboard Hot 100.

Gallery: 20 record-breaking musicians (Espresso)

In 1992, the Supreme Court decided not to reinstate lawsuits alleging that Ozzy Osbourne's music prompted the suicides of a Georgia teen and a South Carolina teen.

In 1996, "Big," a musical stage version of the hit Tom Hanks' movie, closed after a six-month run, becoming one of the biggest financial flops in Broadway history. It was reported to have lost its entire $10.3 million investment.

In 1999, country singer Johnny Rodriguez was acquitted of murdering a man he accused of breaking into his home in Sabinal, Texas, the previous year. During the seven-day trial, the defence argued Rodriguez acted in self-defence. Rodriguez's hits in the 1970s included "Ridin' My Thumb to Texas," but his career declined the following decade due to personal problems.

In 2002, "ZZ Top" drummer Frank Beard had emergency surgery for appendicitis in Paris. "ZZ Top" continued to tour with a replacement, the first time they used a replacement since they formed in 1969.

In 2008, Guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen was inducted into Hollywood's RockWalk.

In 2008, Alan Jackson won the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers' Songwriter-Artist of the Year for his hits "A Woman's Love" and "Small Town Southern Man." Reba McEntire got ASCAP's Golden Note Award, presented to songwriters, composers and artists who have achieved extraordinary career milestones.

In 2009, Keith Urban and Vince Gill co-hosted an all-star concert to raise money for the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Brad Paisley, Taylor Swift and Faith Hill were among the musicians that donated their time and talent. The "We're All For the Hall" concert raised over US$300,000.

In 2009, Al Martino, who played the role of Johnny Fontane in "The Godfather," died at his childhood home in suburban Philadelphia. He was 82. Starting in 1952, Martino was known for hit songs including "Here in My Heart," "Spanish Eyes," "Can't Help Falling in Love" and "Volare."

In 2009, Spanish tenor Placido Domingo received the first ever US$1-million Birgit Nilsson award at a formal award ceremony in Stockholm. Late Swedish soprano Birgit Nilsson chose Domingo as the inaugural winner of the prize nearly a decade earlier, demanding the name would be kept secret until after her death. She died at age 87 on Dec. 25, 2005.

In 2009, Bob Dylan released his first Christmas album, "Christmas in the Heart." It featured songs like "Here Comes Santa Claus," "Little Drummer Boy" and "Winter Wonderland." He donated the U.S. royalties from the album to the group "Feeding America." International royalties went to the World Food Program.

In 2010, hip-hop star T.I. helped talk down a man threatening to jump off an Atlanta skyscraper. He joined the crowd outside a 22-storey office building and told officers he wanted to help. Police said the man agreed to come down in exchange for a few minutes face-to-face with the rapper, whose real name is Clifford Harris.

In 2010, General Johnson, lead singer of the popular beach music trio "Chairmen of the Board," died of complications from lung cancer. He was 69.

In 2016, legendary singer-songwriter Bob Dylan won the Nobel Prize in literature, the first time in the 115-year history of the prestigious award that it was bestowed to someone primarily seen as a musician.


(The Canadian Press)

The Canadian Press

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