Stevie Wonder Happy Birthday

Stevie Wonder Wishes Martin Luther King A Happy Birthday

Only a handful of artists have the cultural magnetism that enables their work to impact our lives, even beyond their musical comfort zone. It was Stevie Wonder‘s composition and release of ‘Happy Birthday,’ and his tireless campaigning, that led directly to the enshrinement of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, observed in the US for the first time in January 1986 and ever since.

The idea for a national holiday to mark the 15 January birthday of the great civil rights campaigner was building in momentum from soon after Dr. King’s shocking assassination in 1968. Several states enacted holidays on his birthday in the 1970s, includiing Illinois, Connecticut and Massachusetts, but Congress stopped short of passing a national day into law. In November 1979, despite the endorsement of President Jimmy Carter, the King Holiday Bill was defeated by five votes. (more…)

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10 Rock Star Graves You Can (And Should) Visit

The news of an artist’s death is never easy, but the wave of support that follows is a reminder of how incredible their art was.

There are many ways fans remember musicians who have left Earth too soon: whether it’s rewatching live DVDs, buying T-shirts and albums, or even starting cover bands, it’s hard to let go of something that’s impacted your life so much.

Some artists have been buried in public lots, available for fans to pay tribute. Some of these get roses, photos, even paintings; others get graffitied or trashed.

Even when opinions are divisive, the fact still remains: this person made an impact while they were here.

Here are 10 graves of some of the greatest musicians that you can honour in person.

Nick Drake

Location: St. Mary Magdalene Churchyard, Warwickshire, England

Jim Morrison

Location: Pere-Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France


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Queen To Receive Lifetime Acheievement Award At Grammys

Queen will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at this year’s Grammys.

The band will have to make some room on its mantle: John Deacon, Brian May, Roger Taylor and the late Freddie Mercury also have two recordings in the Grammy Hall of Fame.

Tina Turner, Neil Diamond, The Meters, Louis Jordan, Emmylou Harris, Hal Blaine are among the other honorees to receive the award.

“This year’s Special Merit Awards recipients are a prestigious group of diverse and influential creators who have crafted or contributed to some of the most distinctive recordings in music history,” said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of the Recording Academy, in a press release. (more…)

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David Bowie Nile Rodgers

Listen To An Unreleased Demo Of David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance”

Nile Rodgers is sharing a rare clip of audio for what would’ve been David Bowie’s 71st birthday.

The musician unleashed a demo version of Bowie’s “Let’s Dance”, recorded in 1982 at Bowie’s home in Switzerland.

“I woke up on my first morning in Montreux with David peering over me. He had an acoustic guitar in his hands and exclaimed, ‘Nile, darling, I think this is a HIT!'” said Rodgers on the collaboration. “This recording was the first indication of what we could do together as I took his ‘folk song’ and arranged it into something that the entire world would soon be dancing to and seemingly has not stopped dancing to for the last 35 years! It became the blueprint not only for ‘Let’s Dance’ the song but for the entire album as well.” (more…)

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