Black Music Month originated in 1979. Jimmy Carter proclaimed the month of June as Black Music Month to celebrate the wonderful music, the achievements, births, important timelines, events and to remember those we lost.
1. “Honey Boy” Edwards
1915: Blues singer “Honey Boy” Edwards was born. He was one of the great Mississippi Delta blues men. He passed away in 2011 at age 96.
2. Ella Fitzgerald
1947: Ella Fitzgerald and the Andy Love Quintet (a vocal group) charted with a beautiful version of “That’s My Desire” reaching #3 R&B.
3. Louis Jordan
1947: Louis Jordan entered the R&B hit list with “I Know What You’re Putting Down,” reaching #3.
4. The Dominoes
1952: “Have Mercy Baby” by the Dominoes was the Number One song on this day.
5. The Heartbeats
1957: An all-star show at the Apollo Theater included the Heartbeats, the Jesters, the Charts, the Velours, and the Sensations.
6. Delfeayo Marsalis
1965: Delfeayo Marsalis was born. He is an award winning jazz trombonist and record producer.
7. The Temptations
1965: The Temptations, Dionne Warwick, the Supremes, Martha Reeves & the Vandellas, the Ronettes, and the Four Tops performed on the “It’s What’s Happening, Baby” special on CBS-TV.
1986: Sade and Hugh Masekela performed at an anti-apartheid concert at Clapham Common in London. Also appearing were Sting, Boy George, Elvis Costello, and Peter Gabriel, among others. Nearly a quarter of a million people attended.
9. Tichina Arnold
1969: Happy Birthday to actress and singer Tichina Arnold
10. Tina Turner
1990: Tina Turner became the first woman and only the second rock ‘n’ roll act (Pink Floyd being the other) to perform at the Palace of Versailles in France.
11. Diana Ross & the Supremes
1991: The Supremes performed for the first time as Diana Ross & the Supremes at the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas.
12. Fredi Washington
1994: Actress, singer, dancer, writer and activist Fredi Washington passed away on this day. She was 91 years old. Fredi had a very light complexion but never once tried to pass as white. She was very proud of her heritage and her commitment to civil rights was just as strong as her professionalism in the theater and cinema arts. She was one of the founders of the Negro Actors Guild and from 1937 to 1938 was the organization’s secretary.
13. Ronnie Mathews
2008: Jazz pianist Ronnie Mathews passed away on this day of pancreatic cancer. He was 72 years old.