Born on this day:
1928, Tony Williams, The Platters
1929, Joe Meek, producer
1935, Peter Grant, manager of Led Zeppelin
1948, Dave Holland, drummer, Judas Priest
1950, Agnetha Faltskog, Abba
1975, Minnie Riperton was at #1 on the U.S. singles chart (2 in the U.K.) with the Stevie Wonder produced “Loving You” – her only U.S. chart hit. Riperton died of cancer on 12 July 1979.
1978, Duran Duran made their live debut at The Lecture Theatre, Birmingham Polytechnic.
1980, R.E.M. played their first ever gig when appearing at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, Athens, Georgia.
1981, Canned Heat singer and harmonica player, Bob “The Bear” Hite died aged 36 of a heart attack.
1984, Marvin Gaye’s funeral took place at The Forest Lawn Cemetery, Los Angeles. Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, Quincy Jones, Berry Gordy and other Motown singers, writers and producers, attended the service.
1994, Kurt Cobain committed suicide at his Seattle home. Cobain’s body wasn’t discovered until April 8, by an electrician who had arrived to install a security system, who initially believed that Cobain was asleep. A suicide note was found that read; “I haven’t felt the excitement of listening to as well as creating music, along with really writing … for too many years now.” A high concentration of heroin and traces of Valium were found in Cobain’s body. His death was officially ruled as suicide by a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the head.
2006, Gene Pitney was found dead aged 65 of natural causes in a Cardiff hotel. The American singer was on a U.K. tour and had shown no signs of illness.