There will be few year-end retrospectives this month, whether music-based or not, that won't at least mention the death of British soul virtuoso. There were other heavy stories, namely Steve Jobs' death and the Indiana State Fair stage collapse, records were broken or tied, thanks to U2 and Katy Perry, and babies were made ( Beyonce!) and not made, in Justin Bieber's case. Check out our chronological look at 2011's biggest news stories and events, and tell us which ones you'll remember the most in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
February 6 // National Anthem Gets Worked Over
"O say can you..." please get the words right? 2011 saw several top musicians flubbing the lyrics to "The Star Spangled Banner." While Christina Aguilera caught the worst of it in February at The Super Bowl (which she says was due to getting "so caught up in the moment of the song" she lost her place). Cyndi Lauper also stumbled at the U.S. Open semi-finals. "American Idol" season 10 winner Scotty McCreery had a mishap at the World Series, as well runner-up Lauren Alaina at a Thanksgiving football game.
February 10 // We We We So Excited
In a year filled with Odd Future, Kreayshawn, Lana Del Rey, and even Heart2Heart, one Southern California teen rose above the rest on ye olde Internets: 14 year-old Rebecca Black. After the aspiring singer's family paid vanity producers ARK Music Factory $4000 to record the track and film the video for the ARK-written "Friday," the clip was unleashed Feb. 10 on unsuspecting YouTube users. The song's unintentionally humorous lyrics ("Tomorrow is Saturday, and Sunday comes afterwards"), brainlessly fun chorus and liberal use of auto-tune captivated fun-seeking viewers and a month later, the video went viral, inspiring parodies on "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" and sending Black to the talk-show circuit. [#HumbleBrag: Black and family stopped by the Billboard offices in late July where we kicked it in the back seat conference room with some pizza.]
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