2019 – Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran was named the UK’s artist of the decade by the Official Charts Company. Sheeran achieved the milestone after a combined run of 12 No.1 singles and albums between 2010 and 2019 – more than any other artist. He’s also had the most weeks (79) at No.1 in both the album and singles charts in this period.
2016 – Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan said it was “truly beyond words” to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature. In a speech read on his behalf at the ceremony in Sweden, he said he thought his odds of winning were as likely as him “standing on the moon”. Patti Smith performed ‘A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall’ at the ceremony. But the singer had to apologise during her rendition after nerves got the better of her and she forgot the lyrics.
2012 – Ravi Shankar
Indian musician Ravi Shankar died after undergoing heart valve replacement surgery. He was one of the best-known exponents of the sitar and influenced many other musicians throughout the world. George Harrison who was first introduced to Shankar’s music by Roger McGuinn and David Crosby, became influenced by Shankar’s music and went on to help popularize Shankar.
2008 – Simon Cowell
Simon Cowell said he was “very embarrassed” after contracts signed by this year’s X Factor contestants were leaked to the Daily Mirror newspaper. The 80-page document, which is enforceable “anywhere in the world or the solar system” was signed by all 12 finalists before the live shows began. It included a clause that prevents them from saying anything “unduly negative, critical or derogatory” about Cowell. Also the show claimed the prize as a “£1m recording contract”, but the contestants’ contract said the prize money was £150,000.
2003 – Bobby Brown
Bobby Brown was charged with battery after allegedly hitting wife Whitney Houston in the face. Brown, turned himself in to the police three days after a reported domestic dispute at the couple’s home in Atlanta, Georgia. Houston, who accompanied her husband to court, said they were trying to work out their problems “privately.”
2001 – David Soul
David Soul won a lawsuit against Matthew Wright, a London theatre critic who criticised Soul’s stage performance without even seeing it. Wright’s column had made reference to the Monday performance, when in fact, the play did not run on Mondays.
2001 – Brian Harvey
Brian Harvey underwent surgery after suffering a serious head injury in an attack. The former East 17 singer was attacked by a group of youths as he left the Works nightclub in Nottingham, having appeared at a promotional event.
2000 – Richard Ashcroft
Former Verve front man Richard Ashcroft was forced to cancel the remaining dates on his current UK tour after he fell on stage and broke two ribs. The accident happened during a show in Birmingham.
1996 – Morrissey
Johnny Marr and Morrissey were left with a £300,000 legal bill after loosing a case over unpaid royalties with former Smiths members Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce.
1993 – Mr Blobby
The character Mr Blobby as featured on UK TV’s ‘The Noel Edmunds House Party’, started a one-week run as the UK No.1 single with the novelty song ‘Mr Blobby’. The single later received the dubious honour of being voted the most irritating Christmas No.1 single in a HMV poll.
1989 – Led Zeppelin
The Recording Industry Association of America certified four Led Zeppelin albums as multi-platinum: Presence (2 million), Led Zeppelin (4 million), Physical Graffiti (4 million) and In Through The Out Door (5 million).
1983 – Flying Pickets
The Flying Pickets were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with their version of the Yazoo song ‘Only You’. Also this years Christmas No.1 and the first a cappella chart-topper in the UK.
1982 – Toni Basil
Singer, TV actress and dancer Toni Basil went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Mickey’, making her a US One Hit Wonder. Also a No.2 hit in the UK, the song was written by Mike Chapman and Nicky Chinn as ‘Kitty’, and was first recorded by UK group Racey during 1979.
1982 – The Jam
The Jam played their last ever gig as a band when they appeared in Brighton, England. Singer and guitarist Paul Weller went on to form The Style Council with keyboardist Mick Talbot. The permanent line-up grew to include drummer Steve White and Weller’s then-wife, vocalist Dee C. Lee.
1973 – Kiss
Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley was nearly electrocuted during a concert in Florida when he touched a short-circuited light. The guitarist was carried from the stage but returned 10 minutes later to finish the show.
1972 – James Brown
James Brown was arrested after show in Tennessee for trying to incite a riot. Brown threatened to sue the city for $1m, the charges were later dropped.
1971 – Benny Hill
UK comedian Benny Hill was at No.1 on the UK singles chart with the innuendo-laden novelty song, ‘Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West)’, giving Hill his only No.1 and the Christmas No.1 hit of 1971. The song was originally written in 1955 as the introduction to an unfilmed screenplay about Hill’s milkman experiences.
1968 – The Scaffold
Liverpool folk group The Scaffold were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Lily The Pink’, this year’s Christmas No.1. ‘Lily the Pink’ was a new version of an older folk song entitled ‘The Ballad of Lydia Pinkham’, and a similar version was the unofficial regimental song of the Royal Tank Corps, at the end of World War II.
1968 – Eric Clapton
Filming began for The Rolling Stones ‘Rock & Roll Circus.’ As well as clowns and acrobats, John Lennon and his fiancee Yoko Ono performed as part of a supergroup called The Dirty Mac, along with Eric Clapton, Mitch Mitchell, and Keith Richards. It was originally meant to be aired on the BBC, but the Rolling Stones withheld it because they were unhappy with their performance. The film was eventually released in 1996.
1964 – Sam Cooke
Soul singer Sam Cooke was shot dead at the Hacienda Motel in Los Angeles, California. Bertha Franklin, manager of the motel, told police that she shot and killed Cooke in self-defence because he had attacked her. Police found Cooke’s body in Franklin’s apartment-office, clad only in a sports jacket and shoes, but no shirt, pants or underwear. The shooting was ultimately ruled a justifiable homicide.
1961 – Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley started a 20-week run at No.1 on the US album chart with ‘Blue Hawaii’, his seventh US No.1 album.
1961 – The Marvelettes
The Marvelettes went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Please Mr Postman’. The session musicians on the track included 22 year old Marvin Gaye on drums. The song gave The Carpenters a US No.1 and UK No.2 single in 1975.