On this day in 1985, the United States government decommissioned Route 66 — America's main street — after almost 60 years in service connecting Chicago and Los Angeles. On today's "A Classical Day in the Life" we take in the sonic landscape of Route 66.
Today in 1988 Mike Tyson defeated Michael Spinks in just 91 seconds at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City. What music accompanied their brief bout? Take quick listen to this episode of "A Day in the Life." Bonus points if you can identify the final audio clip.
Today in 1880, “O Canada” was born in Quebec, Canada. What are its international roots and circumstances of its first performance? When did it get its English lyrics? And what does it all have to do with hockey? All this and more on this installment of “A Day in the Life.”
It is June Carter Cash’s birthday, born today in 1929. Learn about her musical pedigree and her accomplishments prior to and with eventual husband Johnny Cash on this installment of “A Day in the Life.”
Today in 1943, Harold Spivacke, then Chief of the Music Division at the Library of Congress, wrote a letter to American composer, Samuel Barber about a recent performance of his String Quartet--Opus 11 in B minor. Find out what the letter contains and hear more about the work itself on this installment of "A Day in the Life."
Today in 2009 the Eastman Kodak Company announced the end of the production of its Kodachrome color film stock. What are its musical origins, connections, and inspirations? Find out on this quick episode of "A Day in the Life."
Today in 1954 witnessed the final broadcast of the radio program, “The Railroad Hour.” It featured abridged takes on classics of musical theatre, such as Carousel or The Merry Widow. Who were the instrumental (pun intended) figures in creating this successful show? And what do railroads have to do with all of this? Find out on this episode of “A Day in the Life.”
Today in 1973, Brian Eno left the popular UK band Roxy Music. He would eventually go on to be a central and celebrated figure within the experimental rock and ambient music scenes, to say nothing of his work as a producer of albums by the likes of Talking Heads, U2, and Coldplay. Find out why he left and the first song he wrote on this edition of "A Day in the Life."
On this day in 1901, Edward Elgar conducted the world premiere of his orchestral overture Cockaigne, or "in London Town," at Queens Hall in London. Just what is this Cockaigne and what does it have to do with London? Find out on today's "A Classical Day in the Life".
Today in 1967, Dan Tyminski was born in Rutland, Vermont. This episode of "A Day in the Life" explores this prolific and respected bluegrass musician, including his work with Alison Kraus, the Cohen Brothers, and Electronic Dance Music producer Avicii.
Today in 1965, the first-and-only New York Folk Festival took place in Carnegie Hall. Johnny Cash and June Carter performed. Son House and Muddy Waters reunited for the first time in 20 years. What else emerged from the four-day event? Find out with a quick listen to this episode of "A Day in the Life."
Today is composer Igor Stravinsky’s birthday, born in Russia on this day in 1882. Why did his ballet Rite of Spring send listeners into a frenzy? How did he come to influence nearly every twentieth-century composer through his musical output. Find out on this episode of “A Day in the Life.”
Rapper Tupac Shakur was born on this day in 1971. Today's "A Day in the Life" explores his early influences and rise to stardom, including his original rap name and time with Digital Underground--plus lots of great tracks!
Today in 1893 Theodore Thomas conducted the music of Bach at the World Columbian Exposition in Chicago. This episode of "A Classical Day in the Life" explores the performance of western classical and popular music at the fair as well as moments of musical appropriation within the "exotic" exhibits that lined the streets of the so-called White City.
On this day in 1989, grunge band Nirvana released its debut album titled Bleach. Find out how lead singer/songwriter Kurt Cobain was influenced by The Beatles while creating this music for this album on today’s “A Day in the Life.”
Today in 1882, Eric Satie was expelled from the Paris Conservatory. Why did this happen and what did he accomplish as a result? Find out these answers--as well as what else happened to him on this day in 1908--on today's "A Classical Day in the Life."
Today in 1909, Burl Ives was born in Jasper County, Illinois. Folk singer and actor, he popularized songs such as "The Blue Tail Fly" and "Big Rock Candy Mountain." How might his political views have found their way into a popular holiday television program? Find out on today's "A Day in the Life."
Today in 1988, Paula Abdul--then a little-known choreographer and former LA Laker Girl turned pop singer--released her debut album titled Forever Your Girl. Today's "A Day in the Life" explores the hits from this album and why Milli Vanilli was to blame for Abdul only earning four number one singles off of this album.
Today in 1986 witnessed the debut of Short Ride in a Fast Machine by American composer John Adams. On this episode of "A Classical Day in the Life" we explore the this rhythmic gauntlet and the origins of its inspiration. Hint: it was a car. What type? Have a listen!
The opera Tristan und Isolde premiered in Munich on this day in 1865. On today's "A Classical Day in the Life," we explore the power of an important chord composed by Richard Wagner and why some say it was the beginning of the end for traditional harmony.
Today in 2005, Paul Anka was awarded the 'Order of Canada.' What inspired his 1957 hit "Diana"? What song did he write for Buddy Holly? What did he contribute to The Tonight Show? And how many songs has he written? All this and more on today's episode of "A Day in the Life."
On this day in 1840, the Hungarian composer and virtuoso pianist Franz Liszt changed the history of concertgoing culture: he inaugurated the term "recital" for a concert he gave at the Hanover Square Rooms in London. On today's "A Classical Day in the Life", we learn more about Liszt's concept of recitals and what he played at his first one on this day in 1840.
Today in 1970 Bruce Springsteen began to record his first album: Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. Find out what songs he recorded, who he recorded with, and the critical response to this initial outing today on “A Day in the Life.”
The comedic film Trading Places premiered on this day in 1983. What music accompanied stars Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd through Prince and the Pauper experiences? Find out today on “A Day in the Life.”
On this day in 1810, the German composer Robert Schumann was born. On today's "A Classical Day in the Life", we explore one of the heavyweights of the 19th century romantic tradition.