2004 – Although already quite animated, “American Idol” judge Simon Cowell makes the transition to cartoon form on another Fox television series, “The Simpsons.” The outspoken talent evaluator parodies himself in the episode, titled “Smart & Smarter,” as a tough admissions committee member at a school where the Simpsons hope to enroll their baby daughter Maggie.
2001 – John Fahey, guitarist and indie label owner, dies in Salem, Ore., two days after undergoing coronary bypass surgery. He is 61. Fahey formulated an idiosyncratic blues-based fingerpicking style that was showcased on a series of albums for his label, Takoma Records. He was considered a principal, albeit unwilling, influence on such new-age musicians as Will Ackerman and George Winston.
1999 – Rising R&B star Kelly Price files suit against T-Neck Records, Island Records, Ron Islay, and Islay Brothers Music Corp., alleging that T-Neck breached her contract and interfered with other recording opportunities.
1999 – Jimmy Chamberlin announces that he has rejoined the Smashing Pumpkins, 3 1/2 years after being ousted from the group for his involvement in the fatal drug overdose of keyboardist Jonathan Melvoin.
1998 – Stevie Wonder is honored as the 1999 MusiCares Person of the Year. He receives the honor at a special tribute dinner and concert at the Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles.
1988 – Rick Astley wins the annual British Phonographic Industry award for best single, “Never Gonna Give You Up.”
1986 – MTV celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Monkees by airing “Pleasant Valley Sunday,” a 22-hour broadcast of Monkees TV episodes.
1977 – No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: “New Kid in Town,” Eagles. The single, the first release from the album “Hotel California,” is the group’s first to be certified gold for selling more than 1 million copies.
1976 – Florence Ballard of the Supremes dies of cardiac arrest. Age 32. Ballard was cut from the group in 1967 following such No. 1 hits as “Baby Love,” “Stop! In the Name of Love” and “You Can’t Hurry Love.”
1968 – Genesis releases its first single, “The Silent Sun.” Peter Gabriel and Tony Banks later say they wrote the song in the style of the Bee Gees to impress producer and Bee Gees fan Jonathan King.
1967 – No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: “Kind of a Drag,” The Buckinghams. The group from Chicago was originally called the Pulsations.
1956 – No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: “Lisbon Antigua,” Nelson Riddle.
1936 – Singer Ernie K-Doe (Ernest Kador Jr.) is born in New Orleans. His first song to hit the charts, “Mother-in-Law,” reaches No. 1 in 1961.