1961 - The Beatles began a three-month residency at The Top Ten Club, Hamburg, playing 92 straight nights. The group played for seven hours a night on weekdays and eight hours at weekends with a fifteen-minute break every hour. It was during this visit that Astrid Kirchherr cut Stuart Sutcliffe's hair into the style destined to become known as the "Beatle haircut" which The Beatles later adopted themselves.
1966 - John Lennon bought a copy of Timothy Leary's The Psychedelic Experience and The Tibetan Book Of The Dead, where he read near the beginning of the book's introduction; "When in doubt, relax, turn off your mind, float downstream," which captured Lennon's imagination and became the first line of 'Tomorrow Never Knows' which he recorded 5 days later.
1970 - As an April Fool's joke, John Lennon and Yoko Ono issued a statement to the press that they were having dual sex-change operations.
1984 - Marvin Gaye was shot dead by his father at his parent's home in Los Angeles, California. The argument started after his parents squabbled over misplaced business documents, Gaye attempted to intervene, and was killed by his father using a gun he had given him four months before. Marvin Sr. was sentenced to six years of probation after pleading guilty to manslaughter. Charges of first-degree murder were dropped after doctors discovered Marvin Sr. had a brain tumour.
1986 - Bruce Hornsby and the Range release The Way It Is. The group has a distinct sound of its own, there is new age music here, as well as jazz and country. They create their own world, a working-class environment of longing and loneliness set against the background of the Virginia Tidewater area.
2007 - Modest Mouse were at No. 1 on the U.S. album chart with We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank, featuring former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, who was in the band from 2006 to 2009.
2007 - Proving she understands irony just fine, Alanis Morissette released a tongue-in-cheek cover of The Black Eyed Peas's 'My Humps', which she recorded in a slow, mournful voice, accompanied only by a piano. The accompanying YouTube video, in which she danced provocatively with a group of men received over 15m views.
2017 - After months of uncertainty and controversy, Bob Dylan finally accepted the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature. Dylan became the first songwriter to win the prestigious award, and the first American since novelist Toni Morrison in 1993.
He received the prize "for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition", the award citation said.
It took him more than two weeks to make any public comment, finally saying the honor had left him "speechless". He said he had thought his odds of winning were as likely as him "standing on the moon". (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for VH1)
2020 - Singer-songwriter, record producer and guitarist Adam Schlesinger, best known for his work with Fountains Of Wayne, died at the age of 52 as a result of health complications caused by COVID-19. Fountains Of Wayne formed in New Jersey in 1995 and were named after a lawn ornament store in the state and seen on The Sopranos. Over his career, Schlesinger earned nominations for an Oscar, a Golden Globe, Tonys, Grammys and Emmys, winning the latter two.
2020 - Dolly Parton makes a $1 million donation to the Vanderbilt University Medical Center to help fund research for a coronavirus vaccine.
Isley Brother Rudolph Isley is 83.
Ronnie Lane of the Small Faces was born today in 1946.
Soul and jazz poet Gilbert "Gil" Scott-Heron was born today in 1949.
John Barbata from The Turtles is 77.
Jimmy Cliff is 74.
Billy Currie of Ultravox is 72.
Henry Gross of Sha Na Na is 71.
Jeff Porcaro of Toto was born today in 1954.
Susan Boyle is 61.
On This Day In Music History is sourced from This Day in Music, Allmusic, Song Facts and Wikipedia.