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Born on this day:
1946, Rick Nielsen, guitar, vocals, Cheap Trick
1949, Robin and Maurice Gibb, vocals, songwriting, The Bee Gees
1960, Luther Campbell, rapper, 2 Live Crew
1967, Richard James Edwards, guitar, Manic Street Preachers
1972, Vanessa Paradis, French singer
1989, Jordin Sparks, singer
1962, The Tornadoes started a three-week run at #1 on the U.S. singles chart with
“Telstar.” Produced and written by Joe Meek, it was the first major hit from a U.K. act on the American chart. It also was a #1 in the UK.
1967, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Pink Floyd, The Who, Keith West and Tomorrow, Eric Burdon & The Animals and Soft Machine all appeared at The Olympia, London, at an all-night festival, Christmas on Earth Continued. The DJ was John Peel plus the venue featured a paddling pool, light shows and a movie theater.
1972, Little Jimmy Osmond was at #1 on the U.K. singles chart with “Long Haired Lover From Liverpool.” At nine years, eight months of age it made him the youngest person to have a #1 record – also the biggest seller of 1972.
1973, Elton John started a two-week run at #1 on the U.K. album chart with Goodbye Yellow Brick Road. It also had an eight-week run at #1 on the U.S. chart.
1980, Stiff Records released an album in the U.K. called The Wit and Wisdom of Ronald Reagan. The entire disc contained 40 minutes of silence.
1981, At a rock and roll memorabilia auction in London, a stage suit worn by John Lennon sold for £2,300, a letter from Paul McCartney to a fan sold for £2,200 and a Perspex sculpture of John & Yoko was bought by singer Kate Bush for £4,200.
1987, Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue was pronounced “dead on arrival” in an ambulance when his heart stopped beating for two minutes. Sixx was given two shots of adrenaline in his chest to revive him. Fellow band members were prematurely informed of his death.
1988, The Smiths played their farewell gig at Wolverhampton Civic Hall (without guitarist Johnny Marr). To gain entrance to the gig fans had to wear a Smiths or Morrissey T-shirt.
1991, James Brown launched an unsuccessful lawsuit against the producers of the movie The Commitments, claiming one of the characters too closely resembled him.
2000, Madonna married film director Guy Ritchie at Skibo Castle, Scotland. Celebrities attending the wedding included Jon Bon Jovi, Bryan Adams, Sting and fashion designers Donatella Versace, Jean Paul Gaultier and Stellla McCartney. The couple divorced in November 2008.
2002, Former Clash singer and guitarist Joe Strummer (John Graham Mellor) died of a suspected heart attack at age 50. For more on Strummer, see This Day in Music Spotlight.