1943 – Frank Sinatra starts his film career when he signs a 7-year contract with RKO Pictures.
1960 – Eddie Cochran is killed when the taxi he is traveling in crashes into a lamppost on Rowden Hill in Chippenham, England. Songwriter Sharon Sheeley and singer Gene Vincent survive the crash. Cochran was 21.
1956 – Elvis Presley releases his self-titled, debut album.
1941 – The world’s first commercial FM radio station, Nashville’s W47NV, begins broadcasting.
1957 – Jackie Wilson makes his US chart debut with “Reet Petite.”
1960 – Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, who had lost contact since they went to primary school together, run into each other on a train and renew their acquaintance. They soon start playing together and eventually form The Rolling Stones.
1942 – In response to what it sees as a threat from a new fad, phonograph records, the American Federation of Musicians goes on a recording strike (but not live gigs).
1952 – Eight-year-old prodigy Gladys Knight appears on the TV show Ted Mack’s Amateur Hour, which was a precursor to shows like Star Search and American Idol. She wins the top prize of $2,000 for her performance of Nat King Cole’s “Too Young.”