In February, Jeff Johnson talked about Black History Month coming to a close. He said it shouldn’t be celebrated just once a year but everyday or every week. He asked that we set aside at least one evening or one day a week to talk about black history and to keep it alive. We plan to honor his request with a gallery every week this month to celebrate significant events, timelines, births and to remember those who have passed away.
1. October 13: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Leona Mitchell
1898: Edith Sampson was born. She was a lawyer, judge and the first black U.S. delegate appointed to the United Nations. She passed in 1979.
1902: Arna Bontemps was born. He was a poet and a noted member of the Harlem Renaissance. He passed away in 1973.
1909: Art Tatum was born. He was a jazz pianist and virtuoso. He passed away at age 47 of kidney failure.
1938: Shirley Caesar turns 75 today. She is a Grammy Award winning Gospel singer, songwriter and recording artist, known as the ‘First Lady of Gospel Music.’
1949: Leona Mitchell turns 64 today. She is an operatic soprano and an Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame Inductee.
1951: John Lee Hooker scored on the R&B charts with his 78 “I’m in the Mood,” his sixth hit. In the next few years, it would sell more than one million copies, as would his first single, “Boogie Chillen.’ ‘
1952: Beverly Johnson turns 61 today. She is a model, actress and businesswoman. She was the 1st black model to appear on the cover of Vogue in 1974.
1956: The Heartbeats’ standard, “A Thousand Miles Away” (#5 R&B, #53 pop), was released. The group’s lead singer, James Sheppard, wrote the standard while lounging in his bathtub.
1956: The Chips’ “Rubber Biscuit” ($100), the Cleftones’ “String Around My Heart” ($40), and the Cadillacs’ “The Girl I Love” ($100) were all issued.
1957: Specialty Records, upon hearing of Little Richard’s plan to leave rock ‘n’ roll, scheduled a quick eight-song recording session before the rocker could enter a theological seminary.
1958: ‘It’s All in the Game’ by Tommy Edwards was the number one R&B song this day.
1961: Doc Rivers turns 52 today. He is a former NBA player and current head coach & Sr. VP of Basketball Operations for the LA Clippers.
1962: T’Keyah Crystal Keymah turns 51 today. She is an actress, director, producer and writer.
1962: Jerry Rice turns 51 today. He is a former NFL wide receiver who played twenty seasons and considered to be the greatest in NFL history.
1963: Brook Benton followed the Beatles on Sunday Night at the London Palladium, his British TV debut. In essence, The Beatles opened for him.
1968: Tisha Campbell Martin turns 45 today. She is an actress of film and television and a singer.
1970: Mel Jackson turns 43 today. He is an actor, producer, spoken word artist and R&B musician.
1973: Brian Dawkins is 40 today. He is a former NFL safety who played for 16 seasons.
1977: Orlons member Shirley Brickley was shot to death by an intruder in her home in Philadelphia. The Orlons were one of the hottest dance music groups of the early ’60s, They formed as a group in high school in the late 1950s, and were known as an all-girl quintet called Audrey and the Teenettes, before they became the Orlons. Shirley was a member through all nine of their Top 100 hits. She was only thirty-two.
1979: Michael Jackson’s “Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough” reached #1 pop and R&B. It was his first solo #1 in seven years and reached #3 in England and #2 in Germany.
1979: The Sugar Hill Gang charted R&B with “Rapper’s Delight,” reaching #4 and #36 pop. They became the first pop success on the rap scene with what turned out to be their biggest hit.
1980: Ashanti Douglas turns 33 today. She is a singer, songwriter, dancer and actress.
1990: Fifty-two years after his death, Robert Johnson finally made the charts. A meticulously and lovingly compiled collection of Jonson’s recordings titled The Complete Recordings started a thirty-one week run and earned platinum status despite only reaching #80 pop
1993: Wade Flemons passed away at age 53 of cancer. He was a singer and was a member of Earth, Wind & Fire for several years.
2005: Vivian Malone Jones passed away. She one of the first two African Americans to enroll at the University of Alabama in 1963 and the university’s first African American graduate. She was 63.
2009: Cullen Bryant passed away, aged 58. He was a running back in the NFL. He played for the LA Rams for 11 seasons and was on their 1980 Super Bowl Team.
2009: Oraine Simpson, age 26, was fatally stabbed to death during a dispute with a neighbor. He was a Jamaican international football (soccer) player.
2010: General Norman Johnson passed away, aged 67. He was a songwriter, producer and the lead singer of the soul group Chairmen of the Board.
2. October 14: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Paul Robeson
1834: Henry Blair of Greennosa, MD was granted a patent for a corn planting machine.
1916: Sophomore tackle and guard Paul Robeson was excluded from the Rutgers football team when Washington and Lee University refused to play against a black person.
1926: Son Thomas was born. He was a Delta Blues Musician and folk artist/sculptor. He passed in 1993.
1930: Robert Parker turns 83 today. He is an R&B singer & musician. His song ‘Barefootin’ was a big hit in 1966.
1947: Norman Harris was born. He was a guitarist, producer, arranger and songwriter and founding member of MFSB. He died in 1987 of Cardiovascular disease. He was 40 years old.
1948: Singer Marcia Barrett turns 65 today. She was one of the original members of the group Boney M.
1957: The Rays’ timeless tune “Silhouettes” charted en route to #3 in the nation.
1959: Alphonse Trent passed away. He was a jazz musician and founder of the Alphonso Trent Orchestra that toured the country and had a lengthy career.
1960: The Vibrations, B.B. King, Joe Hinton, and Harvey Fuqua (of the Moonglows) performed at Chicago’s Regal Theater.
1964: Dr. Martin Luther King received the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolence.
1965: Karyn White turns 48 today. She is an R&B singer who was popular during the late 1980s and early 1990s.
1967: ‘Soul Man’ by Sam & Dave was the number one R&B song this day.
1967: Gladys Knight & the Pips’ “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” was released and quickly rose to #2.
1967: The Jimi Hendrix Experience peaked at #65 with “Purple Haze,” their debut American release. Though Jimi would have seven pop chart singles in his career, the psychedelic blues guitarist would never chart R&B. In fact he had more hits in England (eleven) than the U.S.
1967: Sam & Dave, Eddie Floyd, Otis Redding, Carla Thomas, Percy Sledge, Arthur Conley, and Booker T. & the M.G.’s brought the Soul Explosion Tour to England, performing at Finsbury Park in Astoria, London.
1968: Olympic Gold Medalist Jim Hines became the 1st man ever to break the “ten-second barrier” in the 100-meter sprint in the Summer Olympic Games held in Mexico City with a time of 9.95 seconds.
1972: Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes charted with their first Top Five hit, “If You Don’t Know Me By Now,” reaching #1 R&B and #3 pop.
1978: Usher turns 35 today. He is a Grammy Award winning singer, songwriter, dancer and actor.
1990: John Lee Hooker won Contemporary Blues Album of the Year for The Healer, Best Contemporary Male Blues Artist, and Blues Vocalist of the Year at the W.C. Handy Blues Awards at the National Blues Awards in Memphis.
1992: Seventy-five-year-old John Lee Hooker, still performing and touring, appeared at NBC-TV’s The Tonight Show.
2007: Rapper Kenneth (“Big Moe”) Moore suffered a heart attack on the 7th and had been in a coma and on life support. He passed away this day without regaining consciousness. He was 33 years old.
3. October 15: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Nellie Lutcher
1885: Morris Brown College opened its doors on this day to 107 students and nine teachers.
1906: Singer & pianist Victoria Spivey, one of he great ’20s blues interpreters, was born today. Best known for her “Black Snake Blues” in 1926, Victoria performed up until her death in 1976.
1912: Nellie Lutcher was born. She was an R&B / Jazz singer and pianist. She passed away in 2007, aged 95.
1917: The 1st black enlistees from West Point graduated from military duty at Fort Des Moines, Iowa.
1925: Mickey Baker was born. He was an R&B, Jazz and Rock & Roll guitarist. He passed in 2012, aged 87.
1931: Freddy Cole turns 82 today. He is a jazz singer & pianist whose career has spanned over 50 years.
1938: Marv Johnson was born. He was a R&B / soul singer and performed on the 1st record to be issued from what became Motown. He passed in 1993, aged 54.
1953: Tito Jackson turns 60 today. He is a musician, singer & songwriter and original member of the Jackson 5.
1954: The Five Keys began a week of performances at the Apollo Theater. They were followed by the Clovers.
1955: Johnny “Guitar” Watson made his R&B cart debut with “Those Lonely, Lonely Nights,” reaching #10.
1958: Renee Jones turns 55 today. She is an actress and played Lexie Carver on Days of Our Lives for many years.
1964: Track & Field athlete Bob Hayes tied the Olympic record for the 100-metre dash winning the Gold Medal at the Tokyo Games.
1966: Eric Benét turns 47 today. He is an R&B / neo soul singer, songwriter and musician.
1966: Black Panther Party was created by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale.
1968: Wyomia Tyus became the 1st person to win a Gold medal in the 100 metre race in two consecutive Olympic Games.
1970: Ginuwine turns 43 today. He is a singer, songwriter, dancer and actor.
1976: More than three months after Tina Turner escaped the years of abuse from husband/producer Ike, Ike & Tina Turner announced that their nineteen-year professional association was over.
1981: Keyshia Cole turns 32 today. She is an R&B singer, songwriter and record producer.
1983: Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney’s “Say, Say, Say,” charted, reaching #1 pop for six weeks.
1983: ‘Ain’t Nobody’ by Rufus & Chaka Khan was the number one R&B song this day.
1991: B.B. King performed in Seville, Spain, at Guitar Legends, a concert series that was part of Spain’s forthcoming Expo 92.
1994: James Ingram performed in Washington, DC, at the Celebrity Tribute for Medicine, honoring twenty-eight extraordinary Black Americans in the fields of medicine and science.
2001: Dr. Ruth Simmons the 1st African American leader of an Ivy League institution was inaugurated as 18th president of Brown University.
2003: The Louis Armstrong House opened to the public as a historic museum.
2007: Ernest Withers passed away at age 85. He was a photographer who spent more than 60 years documenting history from the blues music of Beale Street to the civil rights movement.
2008: Chris Mims passed away at age 38. He was a former defensive lineman for the San Diego Chargers. Mims played eight seasons in the NFL, seven with the Chargers and one with the Washington Redskins.
2010: Dr. Mildred Jefferson passed away at age 84. She was the first black woman to graduate from Harvard Medical School and a nationally recognized leader of the antiabortion movement.
4. October 16: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Tommie Smith & John Carlos
1903: Big Joe Williams was born. He was a Delta blues guitarist, singer and songwriter, notable for the distinctive sound of his nine-string guitar. He passed in 1982.
1922: Leon Sullivan was born. He was a Baptist minister, civil rights leader, social activist and longtime General Motors Board Member. He passed in 2001, aged 78.
1932: Double Bassist & Orchestral conductor Henry Lewis was born. He passed in 1996, aged 64.
1940: Benjamin O. David, Sr. assumed the rank of Brigadier General of the U.S. Army this day.
1942: Ms. Barbara Lynn turns 72 today. She is a R&B, electric blues guitarist, singer and songwriter.
1951: Little Richard made his recordings for RCA Camden in Atlanta. The songs from this and a 1952 session, “Get Rich Quick” and “Every our,” weren’t released until 1956.
1952: Cordell ‘Boogie’ Mosson was born. He was a bassist and member of Parliament-Funkadelic. He passed this past April, aged 60.
1957: The Chantels recorded their now legendary hit “Maybe” (#2 R&B, #15 pop) in a New York studio that was actually a refurbished church.
1962: Mary Wells and the Supremes began a two-month tour in Washington, DC, along with a slew of other Motown acts, including the Miracles, Little Stevie Wonder, and Marvin Gaye.
1962: Manute Bol was born. He was a former Pro B-Ball player and listed as the tallest man ever to play in the NBA 7 feet, 6 3/4 inches tall (Guinness). He passed away in 2010 of kidney failure. He was 47.
1968: U.S. athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos were suspended from the Olympic Games for holding up their fists in a Black Power salute.
1968: Kingston, Jamaica was rocked by the Rodney Riots, inspired by the barring of Walter Rodney from the country.
1969: Roy Hargrove turns 44 today. He is a two-time Grammy Award winning jazz trumpeter.
1971: ‘Thin Line Between Love & Hate’ by the Persuasions was the number one song this day.
1972: Kordell Stewart turns 41 today. He is a retired NFL quarterback and soon-to-be ex husband of Porsha Stewart.
1973: Maynard H. Jackson became the 1st African American mayor of Atlanta, Ga.
1984: Bishop Desmond Tutu received the Nobel Peace Prize.
1986: Chuck Berry celebrated his sixtieth birthday (two days early) by participating in an all-star concert in St. Louis that was filmed as part of the film Hail! Hail! Rock ‘n’ Roll. Performers included Keith Richards, Julian Lennon, Robert Cray, Linda Ronstadt, and Eric Clapton.
1988: A benefit concert featuring Joan Armatrading called Smile Jamaica was held in London at the Dominion Theater for the victims of a hurricane in the Caribbean.
1990: Grammy Award winning jazz drummer and bandleader Art Blakey passed away. He was 71.
1990: Bo Diddley appeared on opening night of Guitar Legends, a concert series that was part of Expo ’92 in Seville, Spain. Bo was originally with a band called the Langley Avenue Jive Cats in Chicago and learned to play violin before he mastered the guitar.
1993: Aretha Franklin sang America’s national anthem at the Skydome in Toronto before the first game of the World Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Toronto Blue Jays.
1995: The Million Man March took place in Washington, D.C.
2010: Valmy Thomas passed away at age 84. He was the 1st Virgin Islander to play major league baseball, a catcher who played with the Giants, Phillies, and Orioles, finishing a five-year career with the Cleveland Indians in 1961.
2012: Gwendolyn Ridgley passed away at age 61. She was a teacher who became a lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit over the firing of thousands of New Orleans school employees after Hurricane Katrina.
5. October 17: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Levi Stubbs
1711: Jupiter Hammon was born. He was a black poet who in 1761 became the 1st African American writer to be published in the present-day United States.
1888: One of the 1st banks for African-Americans was organized, Capital Savings Bank of Washington D.C.
1924: The Phyllis Wheatley settlement house was founded and began operation in Minneapolis, MN.
1950: Howard Rollins was born. He was an actor of stage, film and television. He died in 1996, aged 46 of complications from lymphoma.
1953: The Orioles charted with “In the Mission of St. Augustine,” reaching #7 R&B while becoming the last of eleven hits.
1956: Mae Jemison turns 57 today. She was the 1st black woman to travel in space in 1992. She is a NASA astronaut, physician and college professor.
1960: ‘Save the Last Dance for Me’ by the Drifters was the number one song this day.
1964: Martha & the Vandellas’ scintillating “Dancing in the Streets” hit #2 pop. The song was written by producer Mickey Stevenson and Marvin Gaye and was originally turned down by Motown artist Mary Wells.
1968: Ziggy Marley turns 45 today. He is a musician, singer-songwriter, guitarist and voice actor.
1969: Wyclef Jean turns 44 today. He is a 3-time Grammy winner rapper, singer, songwriter, musician, record producer and politician.
1969: Wood Harris turns 44 today. He is an actor of film, stage and television.
1970: The Jackson 5 reached #1 pop (five weeks) and R&B (six weeks) with “I’ll Be There.” It was their fourth chart topper in a row.
1972: Sharon Leal turns 41 today. She is a singer and actress of stage, film and television.
1984: Alberta Hunter passed away at age 89. She was a pioneer singer whose career spanned six decades.
1985: Black Poetry Day was celebrated for the 1st time this day.
1992: Ike Turner, Lou Rawls, Chaka Khan, Bobby Womack, Earth, Wind & Fire, Al Green, and Bill Withers performed at two concerts in Redondo Beach, CA, as benefits for the family of the deceased former Temptations member Eddie Kendricks.
2004: Julius Harris passed away at age 81. He was an actor who appeared in more than 70 films and his career spanned four decades.
2005: Donald Tucker passed away. He was a civil rights activist and the longest-serving councilman in Newark, NJ.
2008: Levi Stubbs passed away at age 72. He was the Four Tops front-man whose voice drove the Motown classics as “Reach Out” and “Baby I Need Your Loving.” They sold millions of records and performed for more than 40 years without a change in personnel.
2008: Nick Weatherspoon passed away at age 58. He was a former University of Illinois basketball star who played seven seasons in the NBA.
2010: Michael Tabor passed away at age 63. He was one of 13 Black Panther Party members acquitted in 1971 of conspiring to bomb public buildings and murder police officers in New York.
2011: Piri Thomas passed away at age 83. He was a writer and poet whose 1967 memoir, Down These Mean Streets, chronicled his tough childhood in Spanish Harlem and the outlaw years that followed and became a classic portrait of ghetto life.
6. October 18: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Esperanza Spalding
1775: Poet Phillis Wheatley was freed from Slavery. She died nine years after being freed at age 31.
1896: The St. Agnes Hospital in Raleigh opened its doors. This was one of the 1st hospitals for blacks in America.
1919: Camilla Williams was born. She was an operatic soprano who performed both nationally and internationally. She was the 1st African American to receive a regular contract with a major U.S. opera company, The NYC Opera. She passed in 2012, aged 93.
1923: Jessie Mae Hemphill was born. She was a singer, songwriter and electric guitarist.
1926: Chuck Berry turns 87 today. He is a guitarist, singer, songwriter adn one fo the pioneers of rock & roll music.
1934: Calvin Lockhart was born. He was an actor of stage and film. He passed in 2007 at age 72.
1944: Orville ‘Hoppy’ Jones of the Ink Spots fame passed away on this day after collapsing on stage in NYC. He was 40 years old.
1945: The 30th Spingarn Medal was awarded to Paul Robeson on this day for his acting and singing achievements.
1947: Joe Morton turns 66 today. He is an actor of stage, television & film. He currently portrays Olivia Pope’s dad in the show Scandal.
1948: Ntozake Shange turns 65 today. She is an award-winning playwright and poet. As a self-proclaimed black feminist, she addresses issues relating to race and feminism in much of her work.
1951: Happy Birthday to Terry McMillan. She turns 62 today and is an author of several bestsellers as well as her books being made into movies.
1958: Thomas Hearns turns 55 today. He is a retired professional boxer and the 1st boxer in history to win world titles in four divisions.
1961: Wynton Marsalis turns 52 today. He is a trumpeter, composer, teacher, music educator, and Artistic Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center in NYC.
1963: Muddy Waters, Sonny Boy Williamson, Memphis Slim, and Willie Dixon all performed at the American Negro Blues Festival at Fairfield Halls in Surrey, England.
1966: The Jimi Hendrix Experience made their performance debut in Paris at the Paris Olympia as the opening act for French superstar, Johnny Hollyday.
1967: Chuck Berry, the Platters, the Five Satins, and many others performed at Richard Nader’s First Rock ‘n’ Roll Revival Concert at New York’s Madison Square Garden. The concert ushered in the oldies revival still going on to this day.
1969: Ella Fitzgerald’s album Ella scratched the Top 200 (#196), becoming her last of eleven chart LPs. She went on to become the most honored jazz vocalist in history.
1969: ‘I Can’t Get Next to You’ by the Temptations was the number one song this day.
1969: The Jackson 5 performed on ABC-TV’s Hollywood Palace. It was their national debut. The Jackson’s father/manager, Joe Jackson, was a former guitar player for the Falcons of “You’re So Fine” fame.
1978: Wesley Jonathan turns 35 today. He is an actor of film and television.
1982: Happy Birthday Ne-Yo. He turns 31 today. He is a Grammy Award winning R&B recording artist, songwriter, record producer, dancer and actor.
1984: Esperanza Spalding turns 29 today. She is a three-time Grammy award winning jazz bassist, cellest and singer.
1986: For the first time in rock history, three females held the top three positions on the Hot 100 singles charts. They were Janet Jackson (“When I Think of You”), Tina Turner (“Typical Male”), and Cyndi Lauper (“True Colors”).
1998: B.B. King’s famous guitar “Lucille” disappeared as the tour bus it was riding on got lost on its way to a performance in Kingston, New York. The mayor ordered the police to comb the city until the bus, seen leaving town, was headed off and given a full escort to the theater.
2007: Lucky Dube was fatally shot during an apparent carjacking. He was shot twice by the assailant and crashed after trying to drive away. He was 43 years old.
2008: Dee Dee Warwick passed away, aged 63. She was a soul singer who won recognition for both her solo work and her performances with her elder sister Dionne Warwick.
2010: Marion Brown passed away at age 79. He was a saxophonist whose playing style made him a key figure in the jazz avant-garde of the ‘60s and ’70s.
2012: David S. Ware passed away at age 62. He was a jazz saxophonist whose career began in the early ‘70s; but Ware did not make a significant name for himself until 20 years later when he helped to lead a resurgence of free jazz in New York.
7. October 19: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: LaWanda Page
1900: Henry O Tanner, painter, won the Medal of Honor at the Paris Exposition.
1920: LaWanda Page was born. She was a comedienne and actor of film and stage. She passed in 2002, aged 81.
1922: Juanita Moore turns 91 today. She is an actress of film and television and was nominated for an Oscar her role in Imitation of Live Annie Johnson.
1936: Johnnetta B. Cole turns 77 today. She is an educator, cultural anthropologist and humanitarian. She is the 1st African-American female president of Spelman College from 1987 to 1997.
1944: George McCrae turns 69 today. He is a soul & disco singer. His song ‘Rock Your Baby’ became one of the 1st hits of the disco era selling an estimated 11 million copies worldwide.
1944: Peter Tosh was born. He was a Jamaican reggae musician who was a core member of the band The Wailers. He was fatally shot in 1987, aged 42
1945: Gloria Jones turns 68 today. She is a R&B singer, songwriter and currently works as a musical supervisor for films.
1945: Sharon Redd was born. She was a singer and actress. She passed in 1992, aged 46 of pneumonia.
1954: The Penguins’ classic “Earth Angel” (#1 R&B, #8 pop), was released.
1956: The world premiere of the rhythm and blues film Rockin’ the Blues was held at New York’s Apollo Theater. The cast included the Harptones, the Wanderers, the Hurricanes, and the Miller Sisters. The flick was followed by a stage show featuring the Wheels of “My Heart’s Desire” fame.
1958: Michael Steele turns 55 today. He is a politician and served as the first African-American chairman of the Republican National Committee
1959: ‘You Better Know It’ by Jackie Wilson was the number one song this day.
1960: The Shirelles appeared on American Bandstand performing what had become their first R&B charter nine days earlier, “Tonight’s the Night.”
1960: Jennifer Holliday turns 53 today. She is a Tony Award-winning actress and singer.
1962: Evander Holyfield turns 51 today. He is a retired professional boxer and a former Undisputed World Champion in both the cruiser-weight and heavyweight divisions.
1963: Brook Benton began the British tour billed as the Greatest Record Show of 1963 along with Dion, Trini Lopez, Timi Yuro, and Lesley Gore. The tour’s first stop was the Finsbury Park Astoria in London.
1964: Sonny Boy Williamson, Willie Dixon, Howlin’ Wolf, and Lightin’ Hopkins began a five-day concert series at the second American Negro Blues Festival at Fairfield Halls in Surrey, England.
1966: Sinitta turns 47 today. She is a British-American singer, songwriter, actress and Britain’s X-Factor mentor.
1966: Roger Cross turns 47 today. He is an actor of film and television.
1972: Pra turns 41 today. He is a two-time Grammy-winning rapper, best known as one of the founding members of the critically acclaimed hip hop group, the Fugees.
1976: Joy Bryant turns 37 today. She is a former fashion model turned actress, currently starring in the NBC drama Parenthood.
1976: Omar Gooding turns 37 today. He is a stand-up comedian, actor, rapper, voice artist, and comedian.
1988: Son House, Jr. passed away, aged 86. He was a blues singer and guitarist noted for his highly emotional style of singing & slide guitar playing.
1991: Aaron Neville peaked at #8 pop with a cover of the Main Ingredient’s 1972 hit “Everybody Plays the Fool.” The original reached #3.
1991: The Temptations performed at the Alabama State Fair in Birmingham, AL.
1992: Donna Summer performed at the Palais Omnisports in Paris, France
1995: Don Cherry passed away, aged 58. He was an innovative jazz trumpetist.
2010: Warren Hamilton passed away at age 50. He was a City of Memphis employee and bass player for the Memphis soul/rhythm-and-blues group The Soul Shockers, known to most Memphians as one of the best r&b/soul bands in the area.
2012: Lincoln Alexander passed away at age 90. He was the son of a hotel maid and a railway porter who became Canada’s first black Member of Parliament and the first black cabinet minister. Alexander was also Canada’s first black lieutenant governor.