Today In Music: 3rd May
What do Elvis, Pet Shop Boys and Stravinsky have in common? They're all featured in the May 3rd edition of Today In Music, that's what.
1913: Igor Stravinsky's ballet "The Rite of Spring" premiered at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris. The performance, which featured avant-garde music and choreography, caused a riot among the audience, who were shocked and outraged by the unconventional style. The police had to be called in to restore order, and the scandal made headlines around the world. Despite the controversy, "The Rite of Spring" went on to become one of the most influential works of 20th century music and a landmark of modernism.
1952: The first Eurovision Song Contest was held in Lugano, Switzerland, featuring seven participating countries: Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. The contest was created as a way to promote unity and cultural exchange among European countries after World War II. The winning song was "Net als toen" ("Just like then") by Corry Brokken of the Netherlands.
1956: Elvis Presley's breakthrough single "Heartbreak Hotel" reached the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart, marking his first #1 hit. The song, with its haunting melody and melancholy lyrics, became a signature tune for Presley and a classic of rock and roll.
1969: The musical "Hair" opened at the Biltmore Theatre on Broadway. The show, which celebrated the hippie counterculture of the 1960s and featured nudity, drug use, and anti-war sentiments, was controversial but also hugely popular. The soundtrack album, which included hit songs such as "Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In" and "Good Morning Starshine", became a bestseller and a symbol of the era.
1973: Led Zeppelin began their North American tour, which would become one of the most famous and successful rock tours of all time. The tour featured the band's legendary concerts at Madison Square Garden in New York City, which were later released as the album and film "The Song Remains the Same". The tour also marked the peak of Led Zeppelin's fame and influence, and cemented their status as one of the greatest bands in rock history.
1986: "West End Girls" by Pet Shop Boys reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart, marking the duo's first chart-topping hit. The song, with its catchy synthpop melody and ironic lyrics about urban life, became an instant classic and a defining song of the 1980s. The Pet Shop Boys went on to become one of the most successful and innovative acts of the decade, blending pop, dance, and electronic music with art and fashion.
2003: Beyoncé released her debut solo album "Dangerously in Love", which featured hit singles such as "Crazy in Love" and "Baby Boy". The album, which showcased Beyoncé's powerful vocals and versatile style, was a commercial and critical success, debuting at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart and earning her five Grammy Awards. The album also marked the beginning of Beyoncé's solo career after her years as a member of the girl group Destiny's Child, and established her as one of the biggest stars of the 2000s.
Words: Thomas Jackson
Header Image: Led Zeppelin by Tom Weschler