This Month in Music History – December

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December 1

1983: Neil Young is sued by Geffen Records for producing albums that are “not commercial in nature and musically uncharacteristic of his previous albums”

1982: Epic Records releases Thriller – Michael Jackson’s first solo album in three years

December 2

1970: Jay-Z is born Shawn Corey Carter

1967: The Monkees set a record by achieving four number one albums in the same year

December 3

1979: Eleven Who fans are trampled to death rushing to gain admittance for general seating at Cincinnati’s Riverfront Stadium.

December 6

1988: Roy Orbison dies of a massive heart attack at the age of 52

1969: The Rolling Stones headline a free show at Altamont Speedway in California; the Hell’s Angels handle security and stab a man to death during the show (See: Gimme Shelter)

1956: Randy Rhodes is born

December 7

1949: Tom Waits is born

December 8

1980: John Lennon is gunned down in front of his N.Y.C. apartment building after returning home from a recording session with his wife Yoko Ono

1947: Gregg Allman is born

1943: Jim Morrison is born

December 10

1967: Otis Redding dies in a plane crash

December 11

1964: Sam Cooke is shot and killed by hotel manager Bertha Franklin

1957: Jerry Lee Lewis secretly weds his third wife, third cousin Myra Gale Brown

December 18

1943: Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones is born

December 23

1966: Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam is born

1955: Bruce Hornsby is born

December 24

1945: Lemmy of Motorhead is born

December 25

1946: Jimmy Buffett is born

December 26

1968: Led Zeppelin begins its first U.S. tour

1940: Legendary music producer and “Wall of Sound” creator Phil Spector is born

December 27

1932: Radio City Music Hall opens to the public in New York City’s Rockefeller Center

1952: David Knopfler (the younger brother of Mark Knoplfer) of Dire Straits is born

December 30

  1999: George Harrison is stabbed several times after he and his wife, Olivia, are attacked by an intruder in their home outside London

December 31

  1943: John Denver is born John Henry Deutschendorf

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