1971 - Elton John releases his fourth album, Madman Across The Water. It doesn't contain any big hits, but "Tiny Dancer" and "Levon" endure as classics. The album's title song was initially set to be released on John's previous album Tumbleweed Connection, featuring guitarist Mick Ronson as the primary musician; however, it was set aside and was re-recorded for this album.

Dispelling rumours that the song‘s lyric referred to then US President Richard Nixon, Bernie Taupin had this to say:

Back in the seventies, when people were saying that "Madman Across the Water" was about Richard Nixon, I thought, That is genius. I could never have thought of that."

1977 - The manager of the Virgin record store in Nottingham, England, was arrested for displaying a large poster advertising the new Sex Pistols' album, Never Mind The Bollocks, Here's The Sex Pistols. High street stores banned the album after police warned they could be fined under the 1898 indecent advertising act.

1983 - Topper Headon of The Clash was arrested for walking his dog while drunk on London's Fulham Road. I mean c'mon, who among us, right?

1988 - Edie Brickell and New Bohemians are the musical guests on Saturday Night Live. Brickell meets Paul Simon on the broadcast, whom she marries in 1992. (Paul Simon Photo by Jim Dyson/Getty Images) (Edie Brickell Photo by Matthew Peyton/Getty Images)

1996 - Johnny Cash released Unchained, his second album produced by Rick Rubin. He's backed by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers and covers their song "Southern Accents." Marty Stuart, Flea, Lindsey Buckingham, and Mick Fleetwood also play on the album.

2005 - Influential guitarist Link Wray died at age 76. Building on the distorted electric guitar sound of early records, (credited with inventing 'fuzz' guitar after punching a hole in a speaker giving him a distorted guitar sound.) Wray's first hit was the 1958 instrumental "Rumble". It popularized "the power chord, the major modus operandi of modern rock guitarists."

2010 - Keith Richards' autobiography, Life, was at No. 1 on the New York Times Hardcover Nonfiction Bestseller list. “We age not by holding on to youth, but by letting ourselves grow and embracing whatever youthful parts remain.”-Keith quote from the book.


Ike Turner was born today in 1951.

Art Garfunkel is 79.

Gram Parsons was born today in 1946.

Mike Score of A Flock Of Seagulls is 63.

Bryan Adams is 61.

Ken Coomer, former Wilco drummer and drummer for Uncle Tupelo, is 60.

Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood is 49.

Ryan Adams is 46.

On This Day In Music History is sourced from This Day in Music, Paul Shaffer's Day in Rock, Song Facts and Wikipedia.

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