2013Glee star Cory Monteith is found dead in a Vancouver hotel room after accidentally ingesting a toxic combination of heroin and alcohol. The 31-year-old actor played Finn Hudson on the popular FOX musical series.
2003Broadway singer Eileen Rodgers dies of lung cancer at age 73.
2000James Brown is formally charged with assaulting Russell Eubanks, an employee of South Carolina Electric and Gas, with a steak knife after Eubanks visited Brown's Beech Island estate to check on reports that he was without electricity.
1996A Guinness World Record for largest jam session ever is broken when over 2,000 guitarists play a version of Elvis Presley's "Heartbreak Hotel" for 75 straight minutes.
1992Jett Williams, illegitimate daughter of country legend Hank Williams, is granted partial royalties of his songs by a New York appeals court, adding to a ruling reached on July 5 that she should receive half of his estate.
1974George McRae's "Rock Your Baby" hits #1 for the first of two weeks.
1974Eric Clapton invites Todd Rundgren to play guitar during the encore of Clapton's concert at Madison Square Garden. Todd's guitar rig isn't working, so Clapton takes off his guitar, hands it to Todd, and steps aside to listen.
1974R&B singer Deborah Cox is born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, but grows up in Scarborough. She breaks into the music industry as a backup singer for Celine Dion in the early '90s.
1973Bob Dylan releases Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid, the soundtrack album for the Sam Peckinpah-directed movie of the same name.
1973Tensions between The Everly Brothers spill over at a show in Hollywood, where Phil Everly smashes his guitar in frustration. Don Everly continues the show on his own, announcing, "The Everly Brothers died ten years ago." (The duo reunites in 1983.)
Live Aid is the brainchild of The Boomtown Rats singer Bob Geldof and Midge Ure of Ultravox. Billed as "The Global Jukebox," the all-day charity concert is held to raise money for relief efforts after a devastating famine in Ethiopia. The concert spans across two stages in two continents: JFK Stadium in Philadelphia and London's Wembley Stadium. As well as the 100,000 fans in the USA and 72,000 in the UK, the event is broadcast live across the world to an audience of around 2 billion people in 150 nations.
After seeing a news report on the drought and famine that swept across war-torn Ethiopia, Geldof was spurred into action and organized the recording of a single featuring dozens of British stars. The result: Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?." American artists answered under the name USA for Africa with "We Are The World." Money raised from these projects was sent to the stricken African nation, but only served as short-term relief. Geldof is now looking to raise money for more sustainable aid efforts.
Live Aid is designed as a global event, and intended to play out on television. Indeed, the majority of fans in Wembley Stadium have to watch the events unfold on giant video screens, as they are too far away to make out the stars on the stage. Early plans for a live link-up between David Bowie in Philadelphia and Mick Jagger in London have to be canned due to technical limitations, so instead a video clip is recorded for simultaneous broadcast on both continents.
Status Quo aptly open the 16-hour spectacle in London with "Rocking All Over The World," followed by over 70 acts across the stages on both sides of the Atlantic. Highlights include Queen's Freddie Mercury engaging the 72,000 strong crowd in a mass-singalong and David Bowie and Mick Jagger performing "Dancing in the Street" as a duet.
Estimates vary as to the total raised by the concerts, but most agree the figure is at least $50 million. How much of that money reached the Ethiopian people is unclear; in 1986 Spin magazine issues a scathing report claiming that the money did more harm than good, with lots of it ending up in the pockets of Ethiopia's corrupt Head of State Mengistu Haile Mariam.