1971 - The mass murder trial of Charles Manson was underway. Much to the dismay of The Beatles, Helter Skelter was played in the courtroom. Manson's clan wrote “Healter Skelter” on the walls, misspelling the Beatles' song. It was an attempt to find out if any songs could have influenced Charles Manson and his followers to commit murder.
Several songs from the White Album crystalized Manson's thinking about a coming revolt by blacks against the white Establishment.
1974 - For $4 you could see Bruce Springsteen at Kent State University in Ohio as the opening act for Black Oak Arkansas.
1993 - Fleetwood Mac reunited to play "Don't Stop" and other hits at the first inauguration celebration for President Bill Clinton. The band's "Don't Stop" was used as the theme for his campaign.
Up until then, the band had been on the wane. The inauguration brings the classic lineup back together, and by 1997, they reclaim their status as stadium fillers with Buckingham and Nicks back to the fold. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)
1994 - Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on this day were The Animals, The Band, Duane Eddy, The Grateful Dead, Elton John, John Lennon (as a solo artist), Bob Marley and Rod Stewart.
Paul McCartney inducts John Lennon saying "The thing you must remember is, that I'm the number one John Lennon fan. I love him to this day and I always did love him."
2018 - The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner announced that Tom Petty had died accidentally from mixed drug toxicity. Petty's wife and daughter said he had multiple medical problems, including emphysema, knee difficulties and most significantly a fractured hip.
The statement read, "It is our feeling that the pain was simply unbearable and was the cause for his overuse of medication. We feel confident that this was, as the coroner found, an unfortunate accident."
Australia's "King of Rock & Roll" Johnny O'Keefe (Iggy Pop covered his "Real Wild Child") was born in 1935.
Phil Everly of The Everly Brothers was born today in 1939. Best known as one half of the Everly Brothers, with songs like "Wake Up Little Susie" and "Take a Message to Mary" showcased the Everlys' boyish charm and inspired close harmonies, which had a big influence on the Beatles.
Janis Joplin was born today in 1943. As well as being one of the finest rock singers of the 1960s, Janis Joplin was also a great blues singer, making her material her own with her wailing, raspy, supercharged emotional delivery.
Dolly Parton is 77. It's difficult to find a country performer who has moved from her country roots to international fame more successfully than Dolly Parton. From singing barefoot on the front porch of her Tennessee Mountain Home to commanding the stage in six-inch heels, her songs have captured the hearts of generations.
As an actress, she starred in films such as 9 to 5, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Rhinestone, and Steel Magnolias. She has also founded a number of charitable and philanthropic organizations. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Parton donated $1 million towards research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center to help develop a Coronavirus vaccine.
Rod Evans, original singer for Deep Purple, is 76. He sang their 1969 hit "Hush".
Robert Palmer was born today in 1949. One of the great underappreciated singers of the rock era, Robert Palmer sang with such ease that it disguised both his vocal skill and his adventurous tastes. Deeply rooted in soul, he pivoted to a variety of sounds throughout his career, (New Orleans funk, reggae, new wave) often operating at the vanguard of fashion or perhaps right on the edge of the mainstream.
Highlights for Today in Music History are gathered from LA Times, Famous-Trials, This Day in Music, Allmusic, Song Facts and Wikipedia.