1972 - Michael Jackson's "Ben," a song about a boy and his love for a pet rat, hits #1 in the US.
Jackson's first #1 as a solo artist, the song was written for the movie Ben, a sequel to the 1971 film Willard. In both films, Ben is a pet rat who leads a super-intelligent rat colony that turns on humans and begins killing them. In the second movie, Ben is befriended by a young boy, which is what the song is about.
1972 - Former Colorado resident, Joe Cocker and six members of his touring band are arrested after a concert in Adelaide, Australia, when police allegedly discover marijuana and heroin in their hotel rooms. He could have faced penalties ranging from a $2,000 fine to two years in prison, but was given a mere four-hour notice to leave the country.
1977 - David Bowie released Heroes. Heroes develops and strengthens the sonic innovations David Bowie and Brian Eno explored on their first collaboration, Low.. The vocal songs are fuller, boasting harder rhythms and deeper layers of sound. Much of the harder-edged sound of Heroes is due to Robert Fripp's guitar, which provides a muscular foundation for the electronics, especially on the relatively conventional rock songs. Similarly, the instrumentals on Heroes are more detailed, this time showing a more explicit debt to German synth pop and European experimental rock. Challenging and groundbreaking. (Photo by Jo Hale/Getty Images)
1994 - Pulp Fiction opens in theaters, reviving classic '60s songs such as "Misirlou," by Dick Dale, "Son Of A Preacher Man", Dusty Springfield, and "Girl, You'll Be A Woman Soon, " originally sung by Neil Diamond, covered by Urge Overkill.
Cliff Richard is 82. In the years after Elvis Presley but before the Beatles, Cliff Richard was the biggest thing in British rock & roll -- and in the years after the Beatles, he was never far from the top of the U.K. charts. The earliest recordings, most made with his backing band the Shadows, were his hardest-rocking and undoubtedly his most influential, making an impression on almost the entire first generation of British rock & rollers.
Justin Heywood, Moddy Blues, is 76.
Thomas Dolby, best known for his 1982 hit "She Blinded Me with Science" is 64.
Natalie Maines of the The Chicks is 48.
Usher is 44.
On this Day In Music History was sourced from Classic rock Bands, Allmusic, This Day in Music, Song Facts and Wikipedia.