Today in Music History: The Dixie Chicks perform despite threats

The Dixie Chicks
The Dixie Chicks perform at the 49th Annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center on Feb. 11, 2007, in Los Angeles. (Kevin Winter | Getty Images 2007)

History Highlight:

Today in 2003, The Dixie Chicks performed a concert at Dallas' American Airlines Center despite an anonymous threat that group member Natalie Maines would be shot on stage, (after the controversy regarding her comments about President George W. Bush, and the Iraq war). Maines had a police escort to and from the show and then directly to the airport.

Also, Today In:

1957 - John Lennon and Paul McCartney met for the first time in Woolton, Liverpool, at the St. Peter's Church Parish festival where 16-year-old Lennon's skiffle band, The Quarrymen, were appearing. McCartney impressed Lennon by playing "Twenty Flight Rock" by Eddie Cochran and "Be-Bop-A-Lula" by Gene Vincent. Lennon was even more impressed when McCartney showed Lennon and Eric Griffiths how to tune their guitars, something they'd been paying someone else to do for them.

1963 - James Brown went to No. 2 on the U.S. album chart with Live At The Apollo. Recorded on the night of Oct. 24, 1962, at Brown's own expense, it spent 66 weeks on the Billboard Albums chart. In 2003, the album was ranked No. 25 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

1964 - The Beatles film A Hard Day's Night premiered at The Pavilion in London.

1965 - Jackie Wilson released "Higher And Higher."

1966 - Elvis Presley's "Paradise Hawaiian Style" movie opens nationwide.

1968 - The Rolling Stones scored their fifth U.S. No. 1 single when "Jumpin Jack Flash" reached the top of the charts. Keith Richards has recalled that he and Mick Jagger wrote the lyrics while staying at Richards' country house, where they were awoken one morning by the sound of gardener Jack Dyer walking past the window. When Jagger asked what the noise was, Richards responded: "Oh, that's Jack — that's jumpin' Jack."

1971 - American jazz trumpeter, singer and bandleader, Louis Armstrong died.

1971 - Bjorn Ulvaeus and Agnetha Faltskog of ABBA were married in Verum, Sweden.

1972 - David Bowie performed "Starman" on Top Of The Pops, causing an uproar among the conservative British audience by singing with his arm coquettishly draped around the shoulder of guitarist Mick Ronson - a move that made him a household name overnight.

1974 - "Rock The Boat" by The Hues Corporation became the first disco song to top the Hot 100.

1979 - Van McCoy, known for the 1975 disco hit "The Hustle," died of a heart attack at age 39.

1984 - The Jacksons kicked off their North American Victory tour at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City. More than two million people attended the 55 concerts, which grossed more than $75 million. Michael Jackson donated $5 million to various charities.

1985 - Phil Collins went to No. 1 on the U.S. singles chart with "Sussudio," his third U.S. No. 1.

1989 - Tom Petty's first solo album apart from The Heartbreakers, Full Moon Fever, charted at No. 3.

1994 - Forrest Gump hit theaters. Aside from becoming the top-grossing film of the year in North America and winning multiple Academy Awards, the movie spawns a hit soundtrack with songs from Elvis Presley, Three Dog Night, The Doors, The Byrds, The Mamas & the Papas, Buffalo Springfield, and more.

1998 - Cowboy singer and actor Roy Rogers died of heart failure in his sleep at his desert home in Apple Valley, Calif., at the age of 86.

2003 - Skip Battin, bassist and songwriter with The Byrds, died of complications from Alzheimer's. In his life, he also played with New Riders Of The Purple Sage and The Flying Burrito Brothers.

2004 - R&B/soul singer-songwriter Syreeta Wright died after a two-year battle with bone cancer at age 58. She teamed up with Billy Preston on the 1980 No. 1 hit "With You I'm Born Again", once worked as a secretary at Motown Records and married Stevie Wonder in 1970.

2016 - Drake equalled Michael Jackson's 1983 chart record after he had the No. 1 album and song in the American charts for seven consecutive weeks. "Views" and "One Dance" remained unbeaten on the Billboard charts respectively.

2017 - Jay-Z's digital-only album 4:44 went platinum within five days - despite limits on who could access it. The music was only available on Tidal, and to customers of Sprint.


Bill Haley (born William John Clifton Haley) considered "the first rock 'n' roll star," was born today in 1925. Performing as the frontman of Bill Haley and his Comets, Haley had the 1955 U.S. and U.K. No.1 single, "Rock Around The Clock." (More about Bill Haley on Local Current: 'Blackboard Jungle' turns 60: Revisiting the movie that marked the beginning of the rock and roll era)

Nanci Griffith is 65.

Curtis James Jackson III, better known as 50 Cent, is 43.

Kate Nash is 31.

Highlights for Today in Music History are gathered from This Day in Music, Paul Shaffer's Day in Rock, Song Facts and Wikipedia.

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