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1964 - Three years after he wrote "Crazy" for Patsy Cline, Willie Nelson made his first appearance at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville when he opened for Roger Miller.

1967 - The Beatles recorded their last fan club record as a group; 'Christmas Time Is Here Again!' The Beatles' Christmas records were spoken and musical messages from the group that were posted out on flexi disc at Christmas time to members of their official fan-clubs in the United Kingdom and the United States. Described by Jordan Runtagh of Rolling Stone as "the apex of their Christmas recordings."

1974 - John Lennon made one of his final concert appearances when he joined Elton John on stage at Madison Square Gardens in New York City. Lennon performed three songs; 'Whatever Gets You Thru The Night', 'I Saw Her Standing There' and 'Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds.' Elton and Lennon had made a bet, that if "Whatever Get's You Through the Night", which Elton sang on, reached #1, John would come on stage with Elton.

1987 - R.E.M. had their first entry in the Top 10 on the U.S. singles chart with "The One I Love". The record has ironically become a popular dedication to loved ones (on radio and even at weddings) due to a misinterpretation of its refrain, "This one goes out to the one I love," and a failure to note the contradiction within the same verse: "A simple prop to occupy my time." (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)

2007 - Kanye West and stuntman Evel Knievel settled a copyright dispute over West's use of the name "Evel Kanyevel" in a music video. The 69-year-old daredevil had claimed his image was tarnished by the video's "vulgar, sexual nature."


Berry Gordy, the founder of Motown Records, turns 93 today. Gordy got his start in the music business by by opening a jazz music record store and becoming a songwriter. In 1959 he borrowed $800 and formed Tamla Records, which was then merged with the Motown label. We have Gordy and Motown Records to thank for bringing to the masses such artists as the Supremes, Marvin Gaye, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Gladys Knight & the Pips, the Commodores, Stevie Wonder, the Jackson 5, and many others. The Motown sound is practically a genre of its own.

Randy Newman, who Paul McCartney once hailed as the greatest songwriter alive, is 79. An anomaly among early-'70s singer/songwriters, Randy Newman may have been slightly influenced by Bob Dylan, but his music owed more to New Orleans R&B and traditional pop than folk. Newman developed an idiosyncratic style that alternated between sweeping, cinematic pop and rolling R&B, which were tied together by his intelligently biting sense of humor. Where his peers concentrated on confessional songwriting, Newman drew characters, creating a world filled with misfits, outcasts, charlatans, and con men. Though he occasionally showed sympathy for his characters, he became well known for his acidic sense of satire, highlighted by his fluke 1978 hit "Short People" and his parody of '80s yuppies, "I Love L.A."

Paul Shaffer is 73. The multi-instrumentalist finds fame as a bandleader on the Late Show with David Letterman. Interesting fact, Paul co-wrote the 1982 hit, "It's Raining Men", by The Weather Girls. He was also member of the house band on NBC's Saturday Night Live and played keyboards on The Honeydrippers, Volume One, featuring Robert Plant, Jimmy page, and Jeff Beck, as well as musical director of the Blues Brothers, with John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd

Matt Cameron, drummer for Pearl Jam (formerly of Soundgarden and Temple of the Dog) is 60.

Rostam, formerly of Vampire Weekend, is 39.

On This Day In Music History was sourced from This Day in Music, Allmusic, Classic Bands, Song Facts and Wikipedia.

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