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1966 - A great Beatles single came out: "Paperback Writer," with "Rain" on the B-side. The latter was an early psychedelic effort, primarily the work of Lennon, featuring the band's first experiments with backwards tracking. There are different accounts of who first stumbled upon this effect (John Lennon or producer George Martin), but the most entertaining account comes from Lennon, claiming he accidentally loaded the tape backwards while "stoned out of [his] mind." A total of three promotional clips were filmed for "Rain," featuring collage-like cutting of the footage in a way that would become commonplace for countless music videos by the mid-1980s; looking back, George Harrison remarked, "So I suppose we invented MTV" (with the clips).

1969 - The Who released their fourth album Tommy. The full-blown rock opera about a deaf, dumb, and blind boy that launched the band to international superstardom. Though the album was slightly flawed, Townshend's ability to construct a lengthy conceptual narrative brought new possibilities to rock music. There's many excellent songs, including "I'm Free," "Pinball Wizard," "Sensation," "Christmas," "We're Not Gonna Take It," and the dramatic ten-minute instrumental "Underture." Despite the complexity of the project, the Who never lost sight of solid pop melodies, harmonies, and forceful instrumentation, imbuing the material with a suitably powerful grace.

1973 - Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid, starring James Coburn and Kris Kristofferson, debuts in theaters. In addition to scoring and writing songs for the film, Bob Dylan makes his acting debut as a knife-wielding stranger named Alias. His acting is derided, but he lands a hit with "Knockin' On Heaven's Door."

1978 - Bruce Springsteen releases Prove It All Night. After Born To Run vaulted Springsteen to stardom in 1975, he was deflated by a legal battle with his first manager, Mike Appel, which kept him out of the studio for much of 1976 and 1977. When he and the E Street Band started recording again with producer Jon Landau, he had a lot of songs ready. Instead of picking the hits, Springsteen chose songs that fit the narrative of the album: You gotta pay the price. "Prove It All Night" ended up being the most radio-friendly of the 10 songs that made the cut, so it was released as the first single.

As for the songs that didn't make the album, 22 of them showed up on the 2010 expanded release, including two that he gave away and were hits for other artists: "Fire" (The Pointer Sisters) and "Because The Night" (Patti Smith). (Photo by -/AFP via Getty Images)

1991 - Photographer Michael Lavine took what would be the publicity shots for Nirvana's Nevermind album at Jay Aaron Studios in Los Angeles. The idea for the front cover shot of the baby swimming was taken after Kurt Cobain and Dave Grohl saw a TV documentary on water babies and was taken by Kirk Weddle. Several babies were used; five-month old Spencer Eldon's photo came out best. Elden would sue, alleging that the Nevermind cover constituted child pornography.

1994 - Seal released his second self-titled album. The record is lush with harmonies and over-the-top melodies. "Don't Cry" flows with the luxuriant vibes of a hushed vocal and a bellowing string arrangement. Seal showcases his collaborative talent with "If I Could," a duet featuring Canadian folkie Joni Mitchell. "Kiss from a Rose" and "Prayer for the Dying" established Seal as a household name after both became radio and television mainstays.

2000 - Coldplay shoot the video for "Yellow" on a beach in Studland Bay, Dorset, England. The 30 or so extras are sent home because it's too cold and wet to execute the "beach party" vibe envisioned, so lead singer Chris Martin just walks around singing the song in one take. It's basic, but very effective, becoming an iconic video.

2019 - Richard Ashcroft regained rights to his song ‘Bitter Sweet Symphony’ after more than two decades. The Verve singer lost the rights to his most recognizable song, which ended up in the possession of The Rolling Stones’ Sir Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. Released in 1997 on Urban Hymns, the track sampled The Rolling Stones’ song ‘The Last Time’, using a symphonic composition by Andrew Oldham, and became the center of lawsuits, which saw Ashcroft stripped of rights and royalties.

In a nutshell, the song rights were owned by Allen Klein. He claimed more of the song was sampled than agreed upon. After his death, his son Jody, said he would to talk to Mick and Keith about the situation. They agreed to return the "Bitter Sweet Symphony" royalties and songwriting credits to Ashcroft.

Ashcroft said it was a "kind and magnanimous" move, and further stated: "I never had a personal beef with the Stones. They've always been the greatest rock and roll band in the world. It's been a fantastic development. It's life-affirming in a way." In a statement, the Rolling Stones said they acknowledged the financial and emotional cost of "having to surrender the composition of one of your own songs".


Robert Moog, inventor of the synthesizer, was born today in 1934. Electronic music pioneer Bob Moog, creator of the Minimoog synthesizer revolutionized the sound and the role of keyboardists. Before Moog's invention, synthesizers were big, unruly instruments that could easily take up a whole room (laboratory). Unveiled in 1970, the Minimoog was the first, easily-portable synthesizer and brought what had been lab-bound electronic music to the masses and the stage; thus laying the foundation for the latter-day keyboard and MIDI-based marvels.

!0 songs featuring the Moog:

Kraftwerk: “Autobahn”

Donna Summer: “I Feel Love”

Rush: “Closer to the Heart”

Emerson, Lake & Palmer: “Lucky Man”

Pink Floyd: “Wish You Were Here”

Parliament: “Flash Light”

Heart: “Magic Man”

Lipps, Inc.: “Funkytown”

Yes: “Starship Trooper”

The Beatles: “Here Comes the Sun”


Singer-songwriter Jewel Kilcher (Jewel) is 50. As a story, Jewel's origin is impossible to beat: on her way up, the singer/songwriter lived in a van on the West Coast, struggling to find an entrance to a career as a professional musician. This hardscrabble tale, only enhanced by her Alaskan upbringing, stood in direct contrast to the sweet, gentle hits "Who Will Save Your Soul," "You Were Meant for Me," and "Foolish Games" from her 1995 debut album, Pieces of You, songs that never suggested a tough background. Jewel could tap into her blue-collar beginnings as often as she relied on her sensitive side, a skill she transferred to a number of settings, including books of poetry, acting and reality TV, collections of holiday and children's songs, a glitzy pop makeover, and an earnest few years as a country singer.

On this Day In Music History was sourced, curated, copied, pasted, edited, and occasionally woven together with my own crude prose, from This Day in Music, KSLX, Song Facts, Music this Day, Allmusic, Paste, and Wikipedia.

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