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Suicide

Edwin Pearce Christy, founder of popular American blackface minstrelsy group The Christy Minstrels commits suicide by throwing himself from a window of his house in New York City.
Billie Holiday, with Teddy Wilson And His Orchestra, records Gloomy Sunday, Love Me Or Leave Me, I Cover The Waterfront and Jim for OKeh/Columbia Records in New York City, USA. Gloomy Sunday will require an extraordinary reputation as a song which causes people to commit suicide.
Phil Spector's father, Benjamin, commits suicide by inhaling carbon monoxide fumes in his car, because of insurmountable debt problems. Written on his tombstone will be the words, To Know Him Was To Love Him, prompting Phil to write the song To Know Him Is To Love Him which he will record a decade later with The Teddy Bears, giving him his first hit single.
Montana, USA, newspaper The Billings Gazette reports that a destructive epidemic of black stem rust, which damages wheat crops, has spread to most counties in North Dakota, USA. Bob Dylan was a young teenage boy, living in neighbouring Minnesota, when this ecological disaster took place. His song The Ballad Of Hollis Brown is about a [fictional] farmer who, driven to distraction by the loss of his livelihood to black stem rust, kills himself and all of his family.
The Miami Herald runs a story about a hotel guest who committed suicide and left a note stating, "I walk a lonely street". On seeing this story, Mae Axton will write the song Heartbreak Hotel, which will provide a huge hit for Elvis Presley in 1956.
Elvis Presley is in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA, re-shooting the ending of Wild In The Country, because pre-release screening audiences did not like the original ending in which Hope Lange committed suicide.
Phil Everly heads the bill on a package tour at The ABC, Hull, UK. The show was supposed to star The Everly Brothers, but Don Everly collapsed after a suicide attempt in London's Savoy Hotel. Other acts on the bill include Frank Ifield, Ketty Lester and The Vernons Girls.
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Phil Everly heads the bill on a package tour at The Odeon, Leeds, UK. The show is supposed to star The Everly Brothers, but Don Everly collapsed after a suicide attempt in London's Savoy Hotel. Other acts on the bill include Frank Ifield, Ketty Lester and The Vernons Girls.
Phil Everly heads the bill on a package tour at The ABC, Croydon, UK. The show is supposed to star The Everly Brothers, butDon Everly collapsed after a suicide attempt in London's Savoy Hotel. Other acts on the bill include Frank Ifield, Ketty Lester and The Vernons Girls.
Phil Everly heads the bill on a package tour at Colston Hall, Bristol, UK. The show is supposed to star The Everly Brothers, but Don Everly collapsed after a suicide attempt in London's Savoy Hotel. Other acts on the bill include Frank Ifield, Ketty Lester and The Vernons Girls.
Phil Everly heads the bill on a package tour at The Gaumont, Cheltenham, UK. The show is supposed to star The Everly Brothers,but Don Everly collapsed after a suicide attempt in London's Savoy Hotel. Other acts on the bill include Frank Ifield, Ketty Lester and The Vernons Girls.
Phil Everly heads the bill on a package tour at The ABC, Huddersfield, UK. The show is supposed to star The Everly Brothers,but Don Everly collapsed after a suicide attempt in London's Savoy Hotel. Other acts on the bill include Frank Ifield,Ketty Lester and The Vernons Girls.
Folksinger and folklorist Paul Clayton commits suicide, aged 36, by taking an electric heater into his bathtub with him in New York City, USA. It is said that the 1965 Bob Dylan song It's All Over Now Baby Blue and the 1970 Joni Mitchell song Blue are both said to have been inspired by Clayton.
Phyllis Major, the wife of Jackson Browne, commits suicide with an overdose of barbiturates in Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA. At least two of Browne's subsequent songs, Sleep's Dark And Silent Gate and The Shape Of A Heart, will be inspired by Major. Also, an earlier song, Ready Or Not, was written about how Browne and Major first got together after meeting in The Troubadour club in Los Angeles.
The Clash play at The Apollo, Glasgow, Scotland, UK, Europe, supported by Suicide. During Suicide's set, a fan throws an axe at Alan Vega's head.
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Janet Vogel Rapp, vocalist with 50's hitmakers The Skyliners, is found dead in her car in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, having committed suicide the previous day. In recent years she had been suffering severe mental disorders.
Joy Division have a gig at Derby Hall, Bury, UK, but their singer, Ian Curtis, is in hospital, having attempted suicide the night before.
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Ian Curtis, singer and songwriter with Joy Division, hangs himself in his Manchester, UK, home. In 1985, New Order, the band formed from the ashes of Joy Division, will record an instrumental, Elegia, inspired by and dedicated to Curtis. In 1999, the American post-hardcore band Thursday will release a song titled Ian Curtis on their debut album, Waiting.
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Darby Crash, leader of seminal Los Angeles, California, USA, punk band The Germs, dies of a heroin overdose in a suicide pact.
In Reno, Nevada, USA, after listening to the Judas Priest album Stained Class, heavy metal fans Raymond Belknap and Jay Vance attempt suicide with a sawn-off shotgun. Belknap dies instantly. Vance survives but is horribly disfigured.
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On the last night of The Cure's North American tour, at a concert in The Forum, Los Angeles, California, USA, a fan called Jonathan Moreland jumps on stage and stabs himself several times, because he has been jilted by his girlfriend. The audience cheers enthusiastically, assuming it all to be part of the show.
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Tommy Kiefer guitarist and founder-member of Swiss metal band Krokus commits suicide by hanging himself on Christmas Eve. Kiefer was a long-term heroin addict.
Robert Budd Dwyer, while serving as the 30th Treasurer of Pennsylvania, shoots himself dead with a .357 Magnum Smith and Wesson model 27 during a televised press conference in his office in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, USA. He had been convicted of taking bribes while in office. The 1995 song Hey, Man, Nice Shot by Filter is about Dwyer's suicide.
European singing star Dalida, plagued by depression and a chaotic love life, commits suicide in Paris, France, Europe, with an overdose of barbiturates, leaving a note which reads, "Forgive me, life has become unbearable for me...". She had first found success in 1954 with her international hit single Bambina, and eventually sold over 85m records worldwide.
A California appeals court upholds the decision to dismiss the lawsuit brought against Ozzy Osbourne by the parents of Jack McCollum, a young man who had killed himself while listening to Ozzy's song Suicide Solution.
A young girl suffering from memory loss is prevented from committing suicide by jumping from the Severn Bridge, Bristol, England, UK, Europe. A newspaper report of the incident will provoke Fish of UK prog-rock band Marillion to write the songs which will be released as the album Brave.
Popular singer Wim De Craene commits suicide, aged 40, by taking an overdose of medication in Ghent, Belgium, Europe.
Suicide Blonde by INXS enters the ARIA Singles Chat in Australia at No6. It will peak at No2. The blues harp intro to the song is a sample from a Charlie Musselwhite track.
English-born soul / neo-soul and R'n'B singer and songwriter Ephraim Lewis dies dies after having apparently jumped from a fourth floor balcony in Los Angeles, California, USA. His death will be ruled as suicide, but some reports say that LAPD officers stunned him with a Taser after a hyperactive exchange, perhaps connected to his use of methamphetamine.
Alan Vega of pioneering electro-punk duo Suicide dies in his sleep, aged 72, in New York City, USA.
Billy Mackenzie of The Associates commits suicide by overdosing on a combination of paracetamol and prescription medication in the garden shed of his father's house in Auchterhouse, Scotland, UK, Europe. Depression and the death of his mother are believed to have been contributing factors. At least two songs will be inspired by MacKenzie, including Cut Here (2001) by The Cure and Say (1999) by The Creatures.
Derrick Hand, State Coroner of New South Wales, Australia, Oceania, presents his report into the death of Michael Hutchence, lead singer of INXS. The report rules that Hutchence's death was a suicide while depressed and under the influence of alcohol and other drugs.
Guitarist Hideto Matsumoto [aka Hide] of the group X Japan is found dead, hanging from a towel tied to a doorknob in his apartment in Tokyo, Japan, Asia. His death will be recorded by the authorities as suicide. Within days three fans will die in copycat suicides, and 50,000 people will attended his funeral at Tsukiji Hongan-ji.
James Lawrence of Hope Of The States hangs himself at Real World Studios, owned by Peter Gabriel, in Box, Wiltshire, England, UK, Europe. The group had been recording its debut album.
Innovative rock guitarist Robert Quine dies aged 61 in New York City, USA. Depressed by the death of his wife, Alice, he deliberately takes an overdose of heroin at his New York City apartment. Quine worked with Richard Hell, Lou Reed, Brian Eno, Tom Waits and many others.
Iron Maiden release a live version of their 1983 single, The Trooper, in the UK on EMI Records.
The Age newspaper in Australia, Oceania, reports on the disposition of the estate and assets of Michael Hutchence of INXS, which had been estimated at between $10 and $20m but turned out to contain virtually nothing. The remainder of his estate had been sold off and used to pay legal fees.
Arctic Monkeys release their third single, Leave Before The Lights Come On, on Domino Records in the UK.
At the murder trial of legendary record producer Phil Spector in Los Angeles, California, USA, gunshot wound expert Dr Vincent DiMaio tells the court that, in his opinion, actress Lana Clarkson committed suicide.
Speaking at a charity event at the Magic Johnson AMC theatre, Jermaine Jackson states that the recent suicide of Evan Chandler constitutes proof that his brother Michael Jackson was not guilty of child abuse. Evan Chandler, father of Jordan Chandler, and instigator of charges against Michael Jackson of child sex abuse, had been found dead in bed at home earlier in the month, having shot himself in the head.
Mark Linkous, singer/songwriter best known for his work under the name Sparklehorse, commits suicide by shooting himself in the heart outside a friend's home in Knoxville, Tennessee, USA.
The remaining members of electropop trio Ou Est Le Swimming Pool arrange a festival, billed as Chazzstock, in honour of recently deceased member Charles Haddon, at Koko in Camden, London, England, UK. The Kooks, Mr Hudson, Tony Hadley of Spandau Ballet, Man Like Me, Daisy Dares You, Kissy Sell Out, Tribes, Ollie Wride, and The Horrors perform at the event.
It is reported that Disney has removed from sale t-shirts bearing an image of Mickey Mouse which closely resembled the artwork on the cover of Joy Division's 1979 album Unknown Pleasures. There had been criticisms earlier in the week, not just on the grounds of plagiarism, but on the suitability of using - on a t-shirt aimed at children - an image widely associated with a band whose singer, Ian Curtis, committed suicide.
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Polly Samson, wife of Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmour, helps police to rescue a man attempting to commit suicide in freezing water near her beach-side home in Hove, East Sussex, UK. The man - who resisted being rescued - is then taken to the Royal Sussex Country Hospital, where he is arrested and sectioned.
Ronnie Montrose, guitarist and bandleader, dies, apparently of prostate cancer, aged 64, in the San Francisco Bay area of California, USA, where he was born. However, a coroner's report will later reveal that he committed suicide using an unregistered .38-caliber revolver.
Lady Gaga, currently on tour in Australia, Oceania, phones in a bid of $133,075 to buy a gown by her friend the late designer Alexander McQueen at a sale hosted by fashion collector Guinness at Christie's auction house in South Kensington, London, England, UK, Europe. Proceeds from the auction are to benefit the Isabella Blow Foundation, created in memory of the late fashion editor who committed suicide after a long battle of depression.
Fashion designer L'Wren Scott, the girlfriend of Sir Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones, is found dead - apparently having committed suicide - in her apartment in New York City, USA.
Simone Battle, a member of the girlband G.R.L., is found dead, aged 25, at her home on West Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA. Her death is ruled a suicide and speculation suggests her despair may have been because of financial problems.
Minus The Bear release their sixth LP, Voids, on Suicide Squeeze Records.
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2017