1966 - A great Beatles single came out: "Paperback Writer." Paul McCartney wrote this after helping some friends set up the Indica Bookshop.
"Rain" on the B-side. The latter was an early psychedelic effort, primarily the work of Lennon, featuring the band's first experiments with backwards tracking. There are different accounts of who first stumbled upon this effect (John Lennon or producer George Martin), but the most entertaining account comes from Lennon, claiming he accidentally loaded the tape backwards while "stoned out of [his] mind."
1969 - The Who released their fourth album Tommy, which was the first album to be billed as a rock opera. The album was mostly composed by guitarist Pete Townshend, and is a rock opera that tells the story of Tommy Walker, a "deaf, dumb and blind" boy, including his experiences with life and his relationship with his family.
Townshend's ability to construct a lengthy conceptual narrative brought new possibilities to rock music. Despite the complexity of the project, he and the Who never lost sight of solid pop melodies, harmonies, and forceful instrumentation, imbuing the material with a suitably powerful grace.
1973 - Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid, starring James Coburn and Kris Kristofferson, debuts in theaters. In addition to scoring and writing songs for the film, Bob Dylan makes his acting debut as a knife-wielding stranger named Alias. His acting is derided, but he lands a hit with "Knockin' On Heaven's Door."
1979 - Responding to a wave of lawsuits after refusing to transfer his contract to MCA Records, Tom Petty files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, a bold move that halts the legal proceedings and forces MCA to negotiate.
See, after two albums on the small label, Shelter, the label was sold to MCA, but Petty wouldn't go along, leading both labels to sue him for breach of contract.
The bankruptcy tactic works: A deal is reached where Petty signs with the MCA subsidiary Backstreet Records under new terms. Both sides save face, and Damn The Torpedoes, with some songs, like "Refugee," inspired by the legal wrangling, is released in October.
1991 - Photographer Michael Lavine took what would be the publicity shots for Nirvana's Nevermind album at Jay Aaron Studios in Los Angeles. The idea for the front cover shot of the baby swimming was taken after Kurt Cobain and Dave Grohl saw a TV documentary on water babies, mothers giving birth under water.
Spencer Elden, the child in the photo, would later sue claiming, Nirvana "intentionally" marketed an image that constitutes "child pornography" to promote the 1991 album "while earning, at a minimum, tens of millions of dollars". The family was paid $250 (for the shot), Entertainment Weekly reported in 1992.
2019 - Richard Ashcroft regained rights to his song ‘Bitter Sweet Symphony’ after more than two decades. The Verve singer lost the rights to his most recognizable song, which ended up in the possession of The Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. Released in 1997 on Urban Hymns, the track sampled The Rolling Stones’ song ‘The Last Time’, using a orchestral composition by Andrew Oldham, and became the center of lawsuits, which saw Ashcroft stripped of rights and royalties.
Oldham and former Stones manager Allen Klein, claimed that the Verve had used far more of "The Last Time" than was mutually agreed upon and that The Verve's use was not just a small sample but infringed on the songwriters' rights.
"As of last month," Ashcroft said in comments reported by the BBC, "Mick Jagger and Keith Richards signed over all their publishing for 'Bitter Sweet Symphony,' which was a truly kind and magnanimous thing for them to do." (Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images)
Rosemary Clooney was born today in 1928.
Robert Moog, inventor of the synthesizer, was born today in 1934.
Tiki Fulwood, drummer for Parliament and Funkadelic, was born today in 1944.
Danny Klein, bassist for the J. Geils Band, is 76.
Radiohead drummer Philip Selway is 55.
Jewel, is 48. Her debut album, Pieces of You, released in 1995, became one of the best-selling debut albums of all time, going 12 times platinum.
On this Day Music History is sourced from NBCNews, Allmusic, This Day in Music, NPR, Song Facts and Wikipedia.