Jerry Wexler, staff writer at 'Billboard' magazine, coined the term "Rhythm & Blues" in 1949, which becomes Billboard's official designation for African-American popular music.
In 1965, Nat King Cole died of lung cancer (Daughter Natalie had just turned 15 the previous week). Nat originally played piano in Jazz bands, but stepped to the front of the stage for good when "Mona Lisa" became a huge hit. He hit the charts again in 1991 when his voice was dubbed into a duet with Natalie on "Unforgettable".
The hotly anticipated, self-titled debut album by Led Zeppelin entered the album charts in 1969, ultimately reaching #10.
In 1972, with the expiration of John Lennon's U.S. non-immigrant visa, deportation proceedings began. Lennon will wage a four-year battle with the federal government to remain in the U.S.
In 1979, "Just the Way You Are" by Billy Joel wins Grammies for Record of the Year and Song of the Year.
MTV premiered Madonna's "Like a Prayer" video in 1989.
Melissa Manchester ("Midnight Blue") is 57.
Denny Zager of Zager & Evans ("In The Year 2525") turns 64
Songwriter Brian Holland (wrote many hits for the Supremes and the Four Tops with his brother, Eddie and Lamont Dozier) is 67.
In 1961, Jackie Wilson was shot by Juanita Jones, a girlfriend who had gone to his New York apartment to confront him about another woman. Although he managed to escape and make it to a hospital, Wilson lost a kidney and would carry the bullet that was too close to his spine to be removed, for the rest of his life.
The group Chicago formed (as the "Big Thing") in 1967.
Although she would place 21 songs on the Billboard Top 40, Linda Ronstadt had her only number one hit with "You're No Good" in 1975.
Today in 1986, the song "How Will I Know" by Whitney Houston topped the charts and stayed there for 2 weeks.
In 1984, Broadway star Ethel Merman died at age 75.
Electric Flag guitarist Michael Bloomfield, who also performed on Bob Dylan's Highway 61 Revisited, died of a drug overdose at age 37 in San Francisco in 1981. His body is discovered in his car.
Gino Vannelli ("People Gotta Move") became the first ‘white guy’ to perform on Soul Train in 1975.
1967 - The first laws concerning anti-bootlegging were enacted.
Incubus vocalist Brandon Boyd (middle) was born in Van Nuys, CA in 1976.
Mick Avory was born in East Molesey, Surrey, England in 1944. The drummer is with the Kinks from ’64 – ’84. He once auditioned for the Rolling Stones but was turned down.
In 1977, Sid Vicious joined the Sex Pistols, replacing Glen Matlock. The story goes Matlock was dumped because he “liked” The Beatles. The horror!
Fleetwood Mac released the album “Rumours” in 1977. The album features “Dreams,” “Go Your Own Way” and “You Make Loving Fun.”