1963 - Blues guitarist Elmore James dies at age 45. No two ways about it, the most influential slide guitarist of the postwar period, James, hands down. Although his early demise from heart failure kept him from enjoying the fruits of the '60s blues revival as his contemporaries Muddy Waters and Howlin' Wolf did, James left a wide influential trail behind him. And that influence continues to the present time -- in approach, attitude, and tone -- in just about every guitar player who puts a slide on his finger and wails the blues. Known as "The King of the Slide Guitar", James influenced Jimi Hendrix, B.B. King, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Keith Richards.
1969- The Beatles with Billy Preston started a five week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Get Back', the group's 17th US No.1. Credited to "The Beatles with Billy Preston", it was the Beatles' only single that credited another artist, 'Get Back' was also the Beatles' first single release in true stereo in the US.
n his 1980 Playboy interview, John Lennon claimed that Paul looked at Yoko in the studio when he sang the line "get back to where you once belong." John was sure he was disrespecting her.
1974 - David Bowie Diamond Dogs. Originally conceived as a concept album based on George Orwell's 1984, Diamond Dogs evolved into another one of Bowie's paranoid future nightmares. Diamond Dogs features pleasurable moments, "1984," "Rebel Rebel," and "Diamond Dogs", but it is the first record since Space Oddity where Bowie's reach exceeds his grasp.
But that cover art... featuring Bowie as a striking half-man, half-dog grotesque painted by Belgian artist Guy Peellaert. It was controversial as the full painting clearly showed the hybrid's genitalia.
1975 - Earth, Wind & Fire's "Shining Star," a song celebrating the band's credo of clean living and spiritual health, hits #1 in America. Co-written by East High graduate Phillip Bailey. Recorded at Caribou Ranch studio in Nederland.
1979 - The three remaining members of Genesis give the fans a thrill by manning the box office and selling their own tickets to the upcoming show at the Roxy in Los Angeles.
Rich Robinson, guitarist in the Black Crowes is 54. Along with singer, brother, Chris Robinson, appropriated the sound and style of vintage Rod Stewart, while brother Rich fused Keith Richards' lean guitar attack with Ron Wood's messy rhythmic sense. At their best, the Black Crowes echoed classic rock without imitating their influences.
Patti Labelle is 82. Capable of matching the wail of a fire engine and yet just as affecting when singing barely above a whisper, R&B legend Patti LaBelle has enjoyed one of the longest careers in contemporary music. Active since the early '60s with the Bluebelles -- the girl group that evolved into '70s funk trailblazers LaBelle -- she has notched hits in a variety of sounds including girl group pop, gutsy soul, space-age funk, hard-hitting disco, lush quiet storm, and high-tech pop. Labelle became the the first African-American vocal group to land the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.
Bob Dylan is 82. "The poet laureate of rock-n-roll." Dylan's influence on popular music is incalculable. As a songwriter, he pioneered several different schools of pop songwriting, from confessional singer/songwriter to winding, hallucinatory, stream-of-consciousness narratives. As a vocalist, he broke down the notion that a singer must have a conventionally good voice in order to perform, thereby redefining the vocalist's role in popular music. As a musician, he sparked several genres of pop music, including electrified folk-rock and country-rock. And that's just the tip of his achievements. Dylan's force was evident enough during his height of popularity in the 1960s -- the Beatles' shift toward introspective songwriting in the mid-'60s never would have happened without him -- but his influence echoed throughout several subsequent generations, as many of his songs became popular standards and his best albums became undisputed classics of the rock & roll canon. (Photo by STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images)
On This Day In Music History was sourced from This Day In Music, Songfacts, Allmusic, and Wikipedia.