1954 - Rock & Roll arrived as Bill Haley & The Comets made the Top Ten with "Shake, Rattle & Roll." Originally recorded by Big Joe Turner, Haley reworked the most overtly sexual lyrics in the song for the sake of airplay, replacing "You wear those dresses, the sun comes shining through. I can't believe my eyes all that mess belongs to you" with "You wearin' those dresses, your hair done up so nice. You look so warm but your heart is as cold as ice."
1960 - Ray Charles' version of "Georgia On My Mind," written in 1930 by Hoagy Carmichael and Stuart Gorrell, hits #1 in America. The lyrics are very ambiguous. It's possible that this was written about a woman, not the state. Carmichael and Gorrell didn't live in Georgia, but Carmichael did have a sister named Georgia.
This was recorded quickly in New York City - it took only four takes to complete (compared to Charles' usual 10-12 takes).
On April 24, 1979, this became the official state song of Georgia.
1970 - Santana's version of "Black Magic Woman" is released in the US. This was a hit for Santana, but few people know that this song is actually a cover of a 1968 Fleetwood Mac song. Peter Green, who was a founding member of Fleetwood Mac, wrote the lyrics. The original version is based on a blues song called "I Loved Another Woman." Mick Fleetwood called the original version, "Three minutes of sustain/reverb guitar with two exquisite solos from Peter."
1979 - Hot on the heels of his wildly successful Rust Never Sleeps album, Neil Young releases Live Rust, an album of live performances from the Rust Never Sleeps tour. Live Rust comes off as an excellent Neil Young live album and career summary, starting with the early song "Sugar Mountain" and running through then-new songs like "My My, Hey Hey (Out of the Blue)" and "Powderfinger." Young is effective in both his acoustic folksinger and hard-rocking Crazy Horse bandleader modes.
1987 - The long-since-divorced Sonny and Cher perform "I Got You Babe" on Late Night with David Letterman. They didn't plan to sing, but Letterman makes the request and persists over Cher's objections. Convincing Cher to sing is especially surprising considering her appearance on the show the previous year where she told Letterman she had avoided his show because she thought he was "an a--hole."
1990 - Pete Townshend of The Who tells Newsweek that he is bisexual, saying, "I won't be classified as just a man." He calls his song "Rough Boys" a "coming-out." (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Nina Gordon of Veruca Salt is 55
Brendan Benson, Raconteurs (with Jack White) and solo artist, is 52.
On This Day In Music History was sourced from Song Meanings and Facts, This Day in Music, Allmusic, Classic Bands, Song Facts and Wikipedia.