1968 - The Rolling Stones release Beggars Banquet. The Stones forsook psychedelic experimentation to return to their blues roots, which was immediately acclaimed as one of their landmark achievements. A strong acoustic Delta blues flavor colors much of the material. Basic rock & roll was not forgotten, however: "Street Fighting Man," a reflection of the political turbulence of 1968, was one of their most innovative singles, and "Sympathy for the Devil," with its fire-dancing guitar licks, leering Jagger vocals, African rhythms, and explicitly satanic lyrics, was an image-defining epic.
1969 - The Rolling Stones performed a free concert at the Altamont Speedway in northern California with support from Jefferson Airplane, Santana, The Flying Burrito Brothers and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. The Grateful Dead were also scheduled to perform following CSNY, but declined to play shortly before their scheduled appearance due to the increasing violence at the venue, where the Hells Angels were hired for security. And in fact, that's what the event is best-known for -- its considerable violence, including the stabbing death of Meredith Hunter and three accidental deaths: two caused by a hit-and-run car accident, and one by LSD-induced drowning in an irrigation canal. Also, two babies were born.
The concert is documented in The Stones movie Gimme Shelter. (Photo credit should read AFP/AFP via Getty Images)
1969 - Led Zeppelin made their debut on the US singles chart with "Whole Lotta Love." Plant's lyrics are based on a 1962 Muddy Waters song written by Willie Dixon called "You Need Love". The band reached an agreement with Dixon, who used the settlement money to set up a program providing instruments for schools.
Seven years later readers of Total Guitar and Guitar World magazines also chose Jimmy Page's riff from this song as their #1 riff of all time. "In 1969, the year Neil Armstrong first set foot on the moon, Jimmy Page launched his own giant leap for mankind."
1977 - Jackson Browne releases Running On Empty, a live album compiled from performances at various stops on his summer tour( with songs recorded onstage, backstage, and hotel rooms). Live albums typically rely on songs that have already been released, but this one features all new songs, the first major rock album to do so.
1980 - U2 performed their first concert in North America at The Ritz in New York City. They were just one of a few bands set to perform that evening, with roughly 25-plus people in attendance.
The set list:
11 O'clock Tick Tock.
An Cat Dubn
Into The Heart
Another Time, Another Place
The Electric Co
Stories For Boys
I Will Follow
Out Of Control
11 O'clock Tick Tock.
Bono said that it had become tradition for them to play their opening song as an encore, and therefore, performed the song “11 O'Clock Tick Tock” to close out the set.
1993 - At a video shoot for Travis Tritt's remake of the Eagles' "Take It Easy," the Eagles themselves reunite and decide to re-form for new songs and a tour. The song appeared on the album, Common Thread: The Songs of the Eagles. When asked to shoot a video to promote it, Tritt says the only way he'll do it is if the Eagles appear in it, which is exactly what happens. The shoot leads to a full-blown reunion, which in 1994 becomes the live album Hell Freezes Over and subsequent tour.
1995 - Four months after the death of guitarist Jerry Garcia, the Grateful Dead announced that they were splitting up.
After four months of heartfelt consideration," the group said in a statement on Friday, "the remaining members of the band met yesterday and came to the conclusion that the 'long strange trip' of the uniquely wonderful beast known as the Grateful Dead is over. Although individually and in various combinations they will undoubtedly continue to make music, whatever the future holds will be something different in name and structure."
They would tour again from 1998-2002 as The Other Ones and in 2003 and 2009 as The Dead. The final run of Dead & Company happens this summer with 3 shows over Fourth Of July weekend at Folsom Field.
Dave Brubeck was born on this day in 1929. In the 1950s and '60s, few American jazz artists were as influential, and fewer still were as popular, as Dave Brubeck. At a time when the cooler sounds of West Coast jazz began to dominate the public face of the music, Brubeck proved there was an audience for the style far beyond the confines of the in-crowd, and with his emphasis on unusual time signatures and adventurous tonalities, Brubeck showed that ambitious and challenging music could still be accessible.
Peter Buck, guitarist for R.E.M., is 66. While attending the University of Georgia, he works at Wuxtry Records and meets future bandmate Michael Stipe.
Pixies drummer Dave Lovering is 61.
On This Day In Music History was sourced from the New York Times, This Day in Music, Allmusic, Song Facts and Wikipedia.