Today in Music History for Sept. 19:
In 1910, Salomon Mazurette, called the King of Canadian Pianists, died in Detroit at the age of 63.
In 1931, singer Brook Benton was born Benjamin Franklin Peay in Camden, S.C. His baritone style showed the influences of Nat King Cole and Billy Eckstine. "It's Just a Matter of Time" and "So Many Ways," a double-sided million-seller in 1959, were the first of nearly a score of top-20 hits for him. He died in 1988.
In 1951, Canadian record producer Daniel Lanois was born in Hull, Que. His list of superstar clients has included "U2," Brian Eno, Peter Gabriel and Bob Dylan. Lanois and his brother, Robert, opened Grant Avenue Studio in Hamilton, Ont., in 1980. One of his first clients was Eno, and together they co-produced several projects. Among them were two "U2" albums, "The Unforgettable Fire" in 1984 and "The Joshua Tree" in ’87. Lanois was also the principal producer on a third "U2" album, "Achtung Baby" in 1991. Two years earlier he had released "Acadie," his first album as a singer-songwriter. Lanois was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame in 2005.
In 1958, Elvis Presley set sail for Germany, where he would serve a tour of duty for the U.S. Army. He arrived in West Germany on Oct. 1. He had entered the army on March 24 that year.
In 1968, country singer Red Foley died in Fort Wayne, Ind. He was 58. He was one of the biggest stars in country music during the 1950s. In 1950 alone, he had three million-sellers -- "Chatanoogie Shoe Shine Boy" and the spirituals "Steal Away" and "Just a Closer Walk With Thee."
In 1973, singer, songwriter and guitarist Gram Parsons, a pioneer in the country-rock movement of the late 1960s, died at a motel in the California desert of a heart attack brought on by drug abuse. He was 26. His coffin was later stolen by two of his associates and set on fire. Through his involvement with "The Byrds" and "The Flying Burrito Brothers," Parsons achieved his dream of marrying country and rock music.
In 1975, country singer C.W. McCall's album "Black Bear Road" was released. From this LP would come "Convoy," a multi-million-selling single which sparked the CB radio craze.
In 1979, singer Elton John, accompanied only by percussionist Ray Cooper, began his first U.S. tour in four years. John had just completed a similar tour of the Soviet Union -- the first western pop star to visit that country.
In 1979, American pianist Lou Busch died in a car crash in Camarillo, Calif. He was 69. Busch was best-known for his ragtime piano albums recorded under the name Joe "Fingers" Carr. As Carr, he had three top-20 hits from 1950-56 -- "Sam's Song," "Down Yonder" and "Portuguese Washerwoman."
In 1981, singers Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel reunited for a free concert in New York's Central Park. More than 400,000 people gathered to hear their first full concert in 11 years, although Garfunkel had joined Simon for occasional guest numbers since the duo's breakup in 1970. A double LP, "The Concert in Central Park," and a video of the event were issued. "Simon and Garfunkel" then launched a six-week European tour. Both singers received much-needed exposure at a time when their solo careers seemed to have stalled.
In 1985, rock star Frank Zappa testified before the U.S. Senate commerce committee against the movement to rate the lyrics of rock music based on sexual and violent content. Others who appeared to protest the proposal were Dee Snider of "Twisted Sister" and John Denver.
In 1987, Dick Clark's "American Bandstand" left the ABC-TV network after more than 30 years and went into first-run syndication. ABC had cut the show to half an hour and Clark wanted to return to the program's original hour-long format. "Bandstand" began as a local show in Philadelphia in 1952 before going national five years later.
In 1991, Michael Jackson performed an uncredited voice-over on "The Simpsons" animated series on the Fox network. He provided the voice for a white mental patient who thinks he's Michael Jackson.
In 1995, rocker Bryan Adams opened Vancouver's GM Place stadium (now Rogers Arena), performing for a sold-out crowd of more than 18,000. The new facility, home to the city's NHL and NBA teams, replaced the 26-year-old Pacific Coliseum as Vancouver's major concert venue.
In 1995, Jarrett Cordes of the rap duo "PM Dawn" was arrested in Mt. Holly, N.J., on charges he had sex with a 14-year-old female cousin.
In 1997, contemporary Christian singer and songwriter Rich Mullins died in a traffic accident near Lostant, Ill., southwest of Chicago. He was 41. Mullins was run over by a tractor-trailer after being ejected from an out-of-control sport utility vehicle. He was best known for his 1988 recording of "Awesome God," a song which became popular in churches across North America.
In 1997, David Bowie treated about 750 fans to a surprise show in Chicago. He was the mystery performer in a "Blind Date" show organized by Miller Beer. The audience was made up of contest winners from across the U.S.
In 2003, Australian country music singer Slim Dusty died of cancer at age 76. He recorded 105 albums, and was recording his next when he died. His 1958 hit "A Pub With No Beer," really launched his career. At the closing ceremonies for the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, he performed the Australian ballad "Waltzing Matilda."
In 2004, Skeeter Davis, who hit the top of the pop charts with "The End of the World" in 1963 and sang on the Grand Ole Opry radio show for more than 40 years, died of cancer at a Nashville hospice. She was 72.
In 2008, session drummer Earl Palmer, the man who brought the backbeat to rock and roll died at his Los Angeles home after a long illness. He was 84. He played on hits like "Tutti Frutti" by Little Richard, "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' " by "The Righteous Brothers" and "River Deep, Mountain High" for Ike and Tina Turner. He played drums for artists like "The Monkees," Neil Young, Frank Sinatra and many Phil Spector sessions.
In 2008, "Blink-182" drummer Travis Barker and celebrity disc jockey DJ AM (Adam Goldstein) survived a fiery South Carolina jet crash that killed the other four people aboard. Barker was burned on his torso and lower body and DJ AM was burned on his hands and part of his head. Goldstein, who had a history of drug addiction, was found dead in his apartment on Aug. 28, 2009.
In 2009, The Little Nashville Opry in Nashville, Ind., burned down. The popular concert venue opened in 1975 and had hosted some of country music’s biggest names, including Johnny Cash, George Strait, "The Oak Ridge Boys" and Trisha Yearwood.
In 2011, Montreal's "Arcade Fire" won the $30,000 Polaris Music Prize, yet another accolade for the band's universally celebrated third album, "The Suburbs," which swept Album of the Year honours at the Juno, Grammy and Brit Awards.
In 2011, the Academy of Country Music gave country music legend Reba McEntire her Career Achievement Award at its special Honors ceremony at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. Her award had been announced in April during the ACM Awards but were not part of that awards show.
In 2011, Dolores Hope, the sultry-voiced songstress who was married to comedian Bob Hope for 69 years and sometimes sang on his shows for U.S. troops and on his television specials, died at age 102.
In 2016, Haitian-Canadian electronic and hip hop producer Kaytranada won the $50,000 Polaris Music Prize for his album "99.9%," deemed the best full-length Canadian album of the past year based on artistic merit.
The Canadian Press