Friday, May 15

This Week in Musical History
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May 15

This date in musical history

In 1918, country crooner Eddy Arnold was born on a farm near Henderson, Tennessee.
Arnold is said to have sold more records than any other country artist - about 60 million - and he has done so by appealing to people who normally wouldn't even think of buying a country record.
His big break came in the early 1940's when he joined Pee Wee King's Golden West Cowboys. That gave him exposure on the Grand Ole Opry, and in 1944 he signed a contract with RCA Victor.
Arnold had his first million-seller, "I'll Hold You in My Heart," in 1947, soon followed by others such as "Bouquet of Roses," "Anytime," and "Cattle Call." Eddy Arnold was still topping the country charts in the 1960's with such hits as "What's He Doing in My World" and "Make the World Go Away."

 Other musical milestones on this date:
  • In 1953, the famous Quintet of the Year jazz concert took place at Massey Hall in Toronto. The members of the quintet were among the greatest musicians that jazz ever produced - saxophonist Charlie Parker, trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie, pianist Bud Powell, bassist Charles Mingus and drummer Max Roach.
  • In 1971, two films by John Lennon and Yoko Ono, "Fly" and "Apotheosis," were screened at the Cannes Film Festival.
  • In 1974, bass guitarist Bill Wyman became the first Rolling Stone to have a solo LP with the release of "Monkey Grip."
  • In 1979, the Country Music Association presented US President Jimmy Carter with its first Special Award for his support of country music.
  • In 1981, former Sex Pistol John Lydon, who used to be known as Johnny Rotten, and his band Public Image Limited were booed and pelted by debris during a performance at a New York club. A dozen people were hurt before the band's 50-minute performance ended. A Public Image show set for the following night was cancelled.
  • In 1984, guitarist Nils Lofgren joined Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, replacing Steve Van Zandt.
  • In 1986, Belinda Carlisle, who had just left the the Go Gos, made her Los Angeles debut as a solo artist. In the audience were Prince and the Bangles. Andy Taylor of Duran Duran joined Carlisle on stage, as he would at other concerts throughout the summer.
  • In 1987, rock star Prince and his band made an unannounced after-hours appearance at a private club in West Berlin. They performed for an hour at the Quasimodo club following the first of two sold-out shows in a West Berlin concert hall.
  • In 1988, "Carrie," a musical adaption of Stephen King's novel about a troubled teenager with telekinetic powers, closed in New York after a brief run. It was one of the most expensive flops in Broadway history, losing about $8 million.
  • In 1989, five-time Academy Award-winning composer Johnny Green died in Beverly Hills, California at age 80. He won Oscars for scoring "Easter Parade," "An American in Paris," "West Side Story" and "Oliver!," and for producing the short subject "The Merry Wives of Windsor Overture." Green was also a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and composed such standards as "Body and Soul," "Out of Nowhere" and "I Cover the Waterfront."
  • In 1995, R.E.M. resumed its world tour in San Francisco, two months after it was suspended when drummer Bill Berry underwent brain surgery. He fell ill during a show in Lausanne, Switzerland, but made a complete recovery.
  • Also on this date in 1995, singer Scott Weiland of the grunge rock group Stone Temple Pilots was arrested in Pasadena, California, for possessing cocaine and heroin. Police pulled over Weiland's car after he made a quick midnight stop at a motel. He was ordered to spend four to six months in a drug treatment centre, forcing cancellation of the group's tour in the summer of 1996. The charges were dropped after Weiland completed his treatment.

     Born on this date:
  • In 1936, Canadian arranger, composer and conductor Milan Kymlicka was born in Czechoslovakia. By the early 1970's, Kymlicka was one of Canada's leading studio arrangers and conductors, working with such artists as Peter Appleyard, the Good Brothers and Anne Murray.
  • In 1948, new wave producer Brian Eno was born in Woodbridge, England. A founding member of Roxy Music in 1971, he played synthesizer and electronically altered the other instruments in the group, before leaving in a dispute with songwriter Bryan Ferry. Eno went on to work as a solo artist and a producer-collaborator with Talking Heads, David Bowie and Devo, among others.
  • In 1952, David Byrne, lead vocalist for the new wave band Talking Heads, was born in Dunbartin, Scotland. Byrne formed the Talking Heads as a trio in 1975 in New York with Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth. Jerry Harrison completed the band in 1977. The Talking Heads' first album, called "77," made the top 100, and every LP of theirs after that made the top 40. Their first single hit was a cover of gospel singer Al Green's "Take Me to the River" in 1978. Band members turned to solo projects in the 1980's. Frantz and Weymouth formed the Tom Tom Club, and Byrne made a name for himself as a filmmaker with such flicks as "True Stories."
  • In 1953, multi-instrumentalist and composer Mike Oldfield was born in Reading, England. His 1973 LP, "Tubular Bells," went to number three on the Billboard chart, staying there more than a year and selling over a million copies. In 1974, the album won a Grammy Award as Best Pop Instrumental LP after excerpts were used in the soundtrack ofthe film "The Exorcist."
  • In 1926, Canadian composer Clermont Pepin, in St. Georges-de-Beauce, Quebec.
  • In 1937, '60s pop-folk singer Trini Lopez.
  • In 1940, singer Lainie Kazan.
  • In 1941, country singer K.T. Oslin.
  • In 1944, Graham Goble of the Little River Band.
  • In 1951, singer Fergie Frederiksen of Toto.
  • In 1970, Attrell Cordes, "Prince Be" of the rap duo PM Dawn.

  • Country legend Eddy Arnold.

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