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Started by a discarded cigarette in the basement of the Hurst Building, The Great Baltimore Fire destroys most of the city of Baltimore, Maryland, USA, and causes an estimated $200m in property damage. Miraculously, no lives are lost. The disaster will inspire the 1929 song Baltimore Fire by Charlie Poole And The North Carolina Ramblers, and the 2007 track Nineteen Ought Four by J Roddy Walston And The Business.
Jazz impresario, manager and record producer Norman Granz is born in Los Angeles, California, USA. Earning himself the soubriquet 'the first jazz millionaire', Granz will found the historic Jazz At The Philharmonic concerts, launch and run four record labels, including Verve Records, and manage the careers of Ella Fitzgerald and Oscar Peterson, to name but two.
Lord Invader performs his composition Rum And Coca Cola for the first time in front of a paying audience in the Victory Calypso Tent [an informal music venue set up for the carnival season] in Port of Spain, Trindidad, West Indies. Six months later, visiting US radio comedian Morey Amsterdam will hear the song, take it back to the USA, sanitise its saucy lyric and copyright it in his own name. Rum And Coca Cola will be a huge hit for The Andrews Sisters but Lord Invader will have to go to court to win his royalties.
In American music trade magazine Billboard, popular singer Jo Stafford is quoted as saying, 'Rock and Roll is an economic thing. Today's nine-to fourteen-year-old group is the first generation with enough money given to them by their parents to buy records in sufficient quantities to influence the market. In my youth if I asked my father for 45 cents to buy a record, he'd have thought seriously about having me committed.'
Bill Monroe plays for a banquet at The Masonic Hall, Terre Haute, Indiana, USA, for a fee of $250.
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Three men are arrested in New York City, USA, and charged with criminally receiving $23,000 worth of Decca Records discs which had been stolen in Queens on October 23.
A riot breaks out at a Rolling Stones' concert in The Empress Ballroom, Blackpool, England, UK, when guitarist Keith Richards aims a kick at a fan who has scrambled onto the stage. As a result, The Stones will be banned from playing in Blackpool, and the ban will remain in force for 44 years. Support band for this show is The Executives.
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Frankie Valli of The Four Seasons is arrested at Ohio State Fair, Springfield, Ohio, USA. Valli himself had done nothing wrong, but the band's manager had failed to pay $375 to the local Holiday Inn where the band had been staying. Valli is released shortly after when one of the other band members, Tommy De Vito, pays the outstanding amount.
The Byrds record It Won't Be Wrong, A Satisfied Mind and (another version of) Set You Free This Time in CBS Recording Studio, 6121 Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA.
A feature in Variety magazine in the USA reveals the impact The Beatles have had on EMI Records' profitability in a feature entitled, Beatles Up EMI Fiscal Profit To Peak $16,975,000".
The Miles Davis Quintet plays at The Plugged Nickel, Chicago, Illinois, USA. The show is recorded and will be released as the album Miles Davis At Plugged Nickel.
The Kinks release a new single, Sunny Afternoon, on Pye Records in the UK.
The New York Times reports record levels of sales in the music business in the USA - with $1.39bn worth of albums and $247m of music tapes sold in 1968.
Dean Martin signs a new three-year, ten-LP recording contract with Reprise Records in the USA.
John Cummings collects a $50 Mosrite guitar which he bought the previous day at Manny
Acts on the second day of The Great British Music Festival at Olympia, London, UK, are Bad Company, Nazareth, Ronnie Lane’s Slim Chance, Pretty Things and Be Bop Deluxe. Tickets are £3.50.
At a cost of just £200 Iron Maiden record their first demos, at Spaceward Studios, Cambridge, England, UK, Europe.
RCA Records in the USA signs a $30m recording deal with Puerto Rican band Menudo.
Former Clash drummer Topper Headon is fined £3 at Horseferry Road Magistrates Court, London, England, UK, Europe, for being "staggering drunk while walking his mongrel dog."
Ozzy Osbourne sends US tv preacher Oral Roberts $1.00 for "psychiatric treatment" after Roberts announces that God would take his life unless he received $1 million in donations.
Motown Records is purchased by MCA for $61m.
It is reported that the UK's Press Council has told tabloid newspaper The Daily Star to remedy an inaccurate story about Elton John spending £4.5m on a house in Palm Beach, Florida, USA.
Ozzy Osbourne donates $15,000 to AIDS research after a concert in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
The Internal Revenue Service in the USA seizes property belonging to Willie Nelson in six states, including his recording studio in Austin, Texas, to pay off his $6.5m tax arrears.
Michael Jackson signs a $60m contract renewal with Sony Music.
In the High Court in London, UK, it is alleged by Mark Hapgood QC, that Elton John once spent £30m in just under two years - an average of £1.5m a month. Mr Hapgood suggests that Sir Elton went "spending mad" following a £42m deal with recording company Polygram in February 1996. The claims are made during a court case in which the singer is suing Andrew Haydon [former MD of management company John Reid Enterprises] for negligence. Sir Elton also accuses City accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers of negligence in managing his affairs.
Paul McCartney is named the highest-earning music star of the year to date after having sold tickets worth $33.9m during his recent tour of the USA.
T.A.T.U. and Twins play at The Hong Kong Harbour Fest, part of a government-underwritten HK$1 billion program of high profile concerts running for almost a month, intended to help revive the economy of Hong Kong after the SARS epidemic.
The Rolling Stones play the second of two nights at The Hong Kong Harbour Fest. The festival, which ends with this show, is part of a government-underwritten HK$1 billion program of high profile concerts running for almost a month, intended to help revive the economy of Hong Kong after the SARS epidemic.
It is reported that the lakeside home owned by Johnny Cash and his wife June Carter, where the couple lived for 35 years, is up for sale with a price tag of $2.9m.
Kid Rock moves in to a new $800,000 home in West End, Nashville, Tennessee, USA.
The annual Forbes listing of the earnings of dead stars reveals that Kurt Cobain of Nirvana has overtaken Elvis Presley as the highest earning dead celebrity.
eBay bids for tickets to Michael Jackson's upcoming Memorial Event in the Staples Center, Los Angeles, California, USA, reach as high as US$3,000. Most offers, however, are in the $100 to $200 range.
Britney Spears spends $150,000 on a new black Maserati sports car in Calabasas, California, USA.
It is reported that Rihanna has filed a countersuit in Los Angeles County Superior Court against her personal trainer Cindy Percival. Percival started their battle late in 2009 by suing the singer for $26,144-worth of unpaid fees and travel expenses.
Coldplay play a 'secret' gig at the Journal Tyne Theatre, Newcastle, England, UK, Europe, with Ant And Dec as hosts. The show is a fundraiser for Crisis, raises £250,000 to help establish a new Crisis Centre for the homeless.
Around 500 items from Michael Jackson's rented mansion are sold for almost £1m at Julien's Auctions in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA.
It is reported that Avril Lavigne's 12,184 square-foot mansion in Bel Air, Los Angeles, California, USA, is to be bought for $8.5m by Los Angeles Clippers star Chris Paul. The property was originally listed for $9.5m after Lavigne split from her husband Deryck Whibley of Sum 41.
The UK's massive HMV Group posts a pre-tax loss of £38.6m for the 12 months ending in April 2012, compared to a flat figure the year before. Overall like-for-like sales are down 12.1%, as physical music value fell 19%.
A 1974 Silver Shadow Rolls Royce once owned by Freddie Mercury of Queen goes up for sale at an auction by Coys, Birmingham, England, UK, Europe, with an estimated selling price of £9,000 - £11,000.
It is reported that San Francisco-based singer Rupa Marya is taking the Warner/Chappell Publishing group to court in an effort to have the song Happy Birthday To You taken out of copyright. When Rupa recorded a live concert with her band The April Fishes on the night before her birthday earlier in the year, the audience sang Happy Birthday to her. Warner/Chappell sent her a bill claiming that she owed them $455 for the usage of the song, written in the 1890s, on which they are reported to be making over $2m every year.
Spotify drops a totally silent LP called Sleepify, by a Los Angeles funk band called Vulfpeck, citing "violations of the service's content policies" as a reason. The album was intended as a protest against Spotify as well as a means of raising tour funding. Up to the time it was pulled off Spotify it had been streamed 5.5m times, earning the band almost $20,000.
Garth Brooks announces the cancellation of all his imminent five concerts at Croke Park, Dublin, Ireland. Over 400,000 tickets had been sold for the shows.
The music biopic Get On Up, based on the life of James Brown, opens at cinemas in the USA, bringing in $14m for its opening weekend.
Animism by Tanya Tagaq wins the 2014 Polaris Music Prize ($30,000) at The Carlu in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
For the year ended on this date, Warner Music Group Corp. reported a net loss of $24m (as opposed to $57m in 2013), although digital revenue increased by 10.9% and total revenue increased by 5.2%.
The Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF)’s 13th annual benefit, entitled An Enduring Vision, is held at Cipriani, Wall Street, New York City, USA. During the event, Sir Elton performs solo versions of some of his hits at the piano.
ASAP Rocky releases his second LP, At Long. Last. ASAP, on A$AP Worldwide Records.
Pollstar publishes its list of the highest-grossing tours of the year so far, with the Top Ten being as follows :

$151.5m – Guns N' Roses

$118.1m – U2

$98.2m – Justin Bieber

$88m – Metallica

$68.2m – Depeche Mode

$60.5m – Red Hot Chili Peppers

$59m – Adele

$57.2m – Ed Sheeran

$54.5m – Eric Church

$52.7m – Bruno Mars

1904
2017