1970 - Janis Joplin makes her last recordings, singing "Mercedes Benz," which is included on her posthumous Pearl album a capella. She also records a goofy version of "Happy Trails" as a birthday present for John Lennon. Joplin dies three days later.

1976 - David Bowie retreats to West Germany, burned out from touring and to clean up his cocaine addiction.. While in Germany, Bowie he records his Berlin trilogy, Low, Heroes, and Lodger.

1980 - The Paul Simon film, One Trick Pony, premiered. It was a semi-autobiographical picture, written by and starring Simon and featuring guest appearances by Lou Reed, The B-52's and Sam & Dave.

1982 - John Cougar (he had yet to add "Mellencamp") went to No. 1 with American Fool and "Jack And Diane," respectively. Jack and Diane were a interracial couple in the first version of this song. He took the race part out of it after an executive from his record company heard what he was working on and asked him to do so to boost its hit potential.

2000 - Midnight Oil play their hit "Beds Are Burning" at the closing ceremony of the Summer Olympics in Sydney. Their black outfits are emblazoned with the word "sorry," a symbolic olive branch towards the Aboriginals who were forced from their lands by a government that refuses to apologize. (Photo by Lucas Dawson/Getty Images)


Richard Harris was born today in 1930. He had a hit with the song, "MacArthur Park," ("… someone left the cake out in the rain …"), although most people nowadays know him best as "the first Dumbledore" from the Harry Potter films. He passed away in 2002.

Julie Andrews, known for her roles in such musical films as Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music, is 86.

Jerry Martini, saxophonist for Sly and the Family Stone, is 78.

Donny Hathaway was born today in 1945. Had a big hit with Roberta Flack on 'Where Is The Love'.

Martin Cooper of Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark is 63.

Senegalese singer Youssou N'dour, heard on Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes," is 62.

Kevin Griffin frontman of Better Than Ezra is 53.

On this Day In Music History is sourced from This Day in Music, Song Facts and Wikipedia.

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