August 31: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Edwin Moses
1900: Todd Rhodes was born. He was a pianist, arranger and an early influence in jazz and later R&B. He passed away in 1965 at age 64.
1935: Eldridge Cleaver was born. He was a writer and political activist who became an early leader of the Black Panther Party. His book Soul On Ice is a collection of essays praised by The New York Times Book Review at the time of its publication as “brilliant and revealing”. He died in 1998 at age 62.
1935: Frank Robinson was born. He is a former award winning MLB outfielder and manager. He turns 78 today.
1937: Bobby Parker was born. He is a guitarist and toured with Bo Diddley, Otis Williams, Sam Cook, Jackie Wilson, etc. He continues to perform as a regular act at Madam’s Organ Blues Bar in Washington. He turns 76 today.
1955: Chuck Berry’s ”Maybellene” reached #5 pop while spending eleven weeks at #1 on the R&B hit list. Chuck began his musical career as a member of the Johnny Johnson trio in St. Louis in 1952.
1955: Edwin Moses was born. He is a former track & field athlete who is also a Olympic Gold Medalist. He turns 58 today.
1959: The Coasters’ “Poison Ivy” charted, eventually becoming the group’s fourth and final R&B #1.
1962: The Shirelles, ben E. King, Little Eva, Chuck Jackson, Dee Dee Sharp, the Marvelettes, the Ronettes, the Del-Satins, the Majors and Tony Orlando (years before Dawn) performed at Murray the K’s annual New York Labor Day Rock ‘n’ Roll show at the Brooklyn Fox Theater.
1963: The Miracles’ “Mickey’s Monkey” charted en route to #3 R&B and #8 pop.
1968: ‘You’re All I Need to Get By’ by Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell was the Number One song this day.
1969: Richie Havens performed at England’s Isle of Wright Festival with the Moody Blues, the Who, Joe Cocker, Bob Dylan, and others.
1971: Chris Tucker was born. He is an actor and comedian. He turns 42 today.
1976: George Harrison was found guilty of “subconscious plagiarism” of the Chiffons’ hit “He So Fine” for similarities to his million-seller “My Sweet Lord.” In a case of sweet retribution, the Chiffons then recorded their own version of “My Sweet Lord.”
1980: Joe Budden was born. He is a rapper and a member of the hip hop group Slaughterhouse. He turns 33 today.
1987: Michael Jackson: The Magic Returns aired on CBS-TV, featuring his seventeen-minute video “Bad.”
1990: Nat “Sweetwater” Clifton passed away at age 67. He was one of the first African American to play in the NBA.
1994: R. Kelly married new chart sensation Aaliyah in Rosemont, IL. The marriage was later annulled as Aaliyah was only fifteen years old at the time and the state law required that people to be sixteen to marry.
2002: Lionel Hampton passed away. He was a jazz vibraphonist, percussionist, bandleader and actor. He ranks among the greatest names in jazz history. He was 94 years old.
2007: William R. Hudgins passed away at age 100. He was a former door-to-door salesman in Harlem who helped to start the Carver Federal Savings Bank, now the largest black-owned bank in the nation, and was its president for 18 years.
2012: Ed Vincent passed away at age 78. He was the first black mayor of Inglewood, California before before entering state politics.