Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich (1906 - 1975) was a Soviet-era Russian composer and pianist who became internationally known after the premiere of his First Symphony in 1926 and was regarded throughout his life as a major composer.
Shostakovich achieved early fame in the Soviet Union, but had a complex relationship with its government. His 1934 opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk was initially a success, but eventually was condemned by the Soviet government, putting his career at risk. In 1948 his work was denounced under the Zhdanov Doctrine, with professional consequences lasting several years. Even after his censure was rescinded in 1956, performances of his music were occasionally subject to state interventions, as with his Thirteenth Symphony (1962). Shostakovich was a member of the Supreme Soviet of the RSFSR (1947) and the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union (from 1962 until his death), as well as chairman of the RSFSR Union of Composers (1960–1968). Over the course of his career, he earned several important awards, including the Order of Lenin, from the Soviet government.
Shostakovich combined a variety of different musical techniques in his works. His music is characterized by sharp contrasts, elements of the grotesque, and ambivalent tonality; he was also heavily influenced by neoclassicism and by the late Romanticism of Gustav Mahler. His orchestral works include 15 symphonies and six concerti (two each for piano, violin, and cello). His chamber works include 15 string quartets, a piano quintet, and two piano trios. His solo piano works include two sonatas, an early set of 24 preludes, and a later set of 24 preludes and fugues. Stage works include three completed operas and three ballets. Shostakovich also wrote several song cycles, and a substantial quantity of music for theatre and film.
Shostakovich's reputation has continued to grow after his death. Scholarly interest has increased significantly since the late 20th century, including considerable debate about the relationship between his music and his attitudes toward the Soviet government.
Zucchero Fornaciari, 68.
Adelmo Fornaciari Cavaliere di Gran Croce, more commonly known by his stage name Zucchero Fornaciari or simply Zucchero, is an Italian singer, musician and songwriter. His stage name is the Italian word for "sugar", as his elementary teacher used to call him. His music is largely inspired by gospel, soul, blues and rock music, and alternates between Italian ballads and more rhythmic R&B-boogie-like pieces. He is credited as the "father of Italian blues", introducing blues to the big stage in Italy. He is one of the few European blues artists who still enjoys great international success.
In his career, spanning more than three decades, Fornaciari has sold over 60 million records around the world, and internationally his most successful singles are "Diamante", "Il Volo/My Love", "Baila (Sexy Thing)/Baila morena", and the duet "Senza una donna (Without a Woman)" with Paul Young. He has won numerous awards, including four Festivalbar, nine Wind Music Awards, two World Music Awards (1993, 1996), six IFPI Europe Platinum Awards, and a Grammy Award nomination. He has collaborated and performed with many famous artists, including Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Brian May, Miles Davis, Ray Charles, B. B. King, Sting, Bono, Dolores O'Riordan, Paul Young, Peter Gabriel, Luciano Pavarotti, and Andrea Bocelli.
Rosalia Vila Tobella known mononymously as Rosalia is a Spanish singer, songwriter, producer, actress and musician. Born and raised in the outskirts of Barcelona, she has been described as an "atypical pop star" due to her genre-bending musical styles. After being enthralled by Spanish folk music at age 13, she studied musicology at Catalonia College of Music while also performing at musical bars and weddings.
She completed her studies with honors by virtue of her collaborative cover album with Raul Refree, Los Angeles (2017), and the baccalaureate project El Mal Querer (2018). Reimagining flamenco by mixing it with pop and hip hop music, it spawned the singles "Malamente" and "Pienso en tu Mira", which caught the attention of the Spanish general public, and were released to universal critical acclaim. Recipient of the Latin Grammy Award for Album of the Year and listed in Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, El Mal Querer started the ascent of Rosalia into the international music scene. Rosalia explored urbano music with her 2019 releases "Con Altura" and "Yo x Ti, Tu x Mi", achieving global success. She gave reggaeton an experimental twist on her third studio album Motomami (2022), departing from the new flamenco sound of its predecessor. The album caught international attention with its singles "La Fama", "Saoko" and "Despecha" and became the best reviewed album of the year on Metacritic.
Throughout her career, Rosalia has accumulated eleven number-one singles in her home country, the most for a local artist. She has also won two Grammy Awards, twelve Latin Grammy Awards (including two Album of the Year wins), four MTV Video Music Awards, an MTV Europe Music Award, three UK Music Video Awards and two Premio Ruido awards, among others. In 2019, Billboard gave her the Rising Star Award for "changing the sound of today's mainstream music with her fresh flamenco-influenced pop", and became the first Spanish-singing act in history to be nominated for Best New Artist at the Grammys. She is widely considered one of the most successful and influential Spanish singers of all-time.
On this day today:
1954 - Rosemary Clooney's "Hey There" hits #1 in America.
1956 - Elvis Presley's "Love Me Tender" becomes the first single to sell a million copies before its release.
1961 - Bob Dylan plays a show at Gerde's Folk City in New York that earns him a glowing review in the New York Times, giving him his first major media exposure.
1964 - The Temptations record "My Girl."
1967 - Little-known country singer Dolly Parton makes her first appearance on The Porter Wagoner Show, singing two songs from her debut album: "Dumb Blonde" and "Something Fishy." She becomes the full-time replacement for the program's longtime singer, Norma Jean. Parton stays on the show for seven years and records string of popular duet albums with Wagoner.
1968 - Mary Hopkin's "Those Were The Days," produced by Paul McCartney and released on the Beatles' Apple Records, goes to #1 in the UK, knocking off "Hey Jude." It stays for six weeks before being bumped by Joe Cocker's cover of the Beatles' song "With A Little Help From My Friends."
1968 - Will Smith is born and raised in West Philadelphia. On the playground is where he spends most of his days.
1970 - Ringo Starr releases Beaucoups Of Blues.
1970 - Janis Joplin records "Me And Bobby McGee" at Sunset Sound Studios in Hollywood. She dies nine days later from a drug overdose at age 27.
1973 - The Allman Brothers release "Ramblin' Man."
1975 - Jackie Wilson has a heart attack while performing "Lonely Teardrops" at the Dick Clark "Good Ol' Rock 'n' Roll" revue in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. When he falls, he hits his head and goes into a coma for four months. He regains consciousness but suffers brain damage that leaves him unable to walk or talk. Wilson dies in 1984.
1979 - Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical Evita makes its debut on Broadway with Patti LuPone after a successful year on London's West End.
1980 - Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham dies at age 32 of asphyxiation from vomiting after a night of heavy drinking. The band decides to break up instead of replacing him.
1980 - Rapper T.I. is born Clifford Harris in Atlanta. Gun charges keep him in legal trouble for much of the '00s, but he still manages to release three #1 albums. His biggest year is 2008, when his songs "Live Your Life" and "Whatever You Like" both reach the top.
1981 - The Rolling Stones start their US tour with a concert at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia, where they play to a crowd of 90,000. The tour is sponsored by musk maker Jovan, establishing a new paradigm for corporate involvement.
1989 - New wave duo Tears for Fears release their third album, The Seeds Of Love. It's the last TFF release to feature Curt Smith, who relocates to New York to pursue a solo career after an acrimonious split with bandmate Roland Orzabal. They reunite in 2004 for Everybody Loves A Happy Ending.
1990 - Dave Grohl replaces Chad Channing in Nirvana, becoming the fifth (and final) drummer for the band.
1990 - INXS release X, the follow-up to their wildly successful 1987 album Kick. In the interim, lead singer Michael Hutchence released an album with his less glamorous band, Max Q.
2001 - For the first time ever, the Recording Academy agrees to accept a downloadable single for Grammy consideration. Virgin Records releases two singles: "Dig In," by Lenny Kravitz and "God Gave Me Everything" by Mick Jagger, which are released to digital retailers via Liquid Audio.
2007 - Bruce Springsteen releases Magic.
2008 - MySpace Music launches, allowing artists to upload songs to their profiles for fans to stream for free. With 5 million artist pages, MySpace is hoping to compete with iTunes, but it's hemorrhaging users to Facebook and never makes much impact as a streaming service.
2010 - Bush perform at the second Epicenter Music Festival in Fontana, California. This concert marks the band's first live appearance since 2002.
2017 - At the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers play their last concert, as Petty dies a week later. The show is the last stop on their 40th Anniversary tour.
2022 - The movie Don't Worry Darling, starring Harry Styles, tops the box office while his song "As It Was" remains at #1 on the Hot 100. The film is directed by Olivia Wilde, who started dating Styles after meeting him on set.