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On July 29th, in 1919, the first annual Convention of the National Association of Black Musicians occurred in Chicago, Illinois. The members presented Marion Anderson with the 1st scholarship they awarded.
On July 29th, in 1972, the original ‘Shock Rocker’, ‘The 3rd Earl of Harrow’, David Earl Sutch, AKA Screaming Lord Sutch was arrested in London for streaking on public transportation. As the story goes, Sutch jumped on a bus on Downing Street with four nude women to promote his upcoming gigs in London. Sutch was inspired by ‘Screaming Jay Hawkins’ in the 60’s and changed his name to Screaming Lord Sutch (see Today, on Vinyl post from 7/18 for more on Screaming Jay Hawkins). Sutch had horror themed stage shows pre-Alice Cooper, and served on Parliament for the Official Monster Raving Loony Party.
On July 29th, in 1987, then governor of Michigan, James Blanchard, announced that July 29th would be a statewide Four Tops Day for their contribution to music. Arkansas governor and Future POTUS Bill Clinton accompanied the band, playing sax during their performances. The Four Tops had numerous hits during the 60’s and 70’s, most notably, 1964’s Baby I Need Your Loving & 1965’s I Can’t Help Myself. They recorded on the Motown imprint and the Funk Brothers laid the backing tracks (see Today, on Vinyl post from 07/16 & 07/25 for more info on the Funk Brothers).
On July 29th, in 2004, Keyboardist with Billy Preston’s The God Squad-James ‘Huby’ Hubert Heard (center) died from complications of the heart in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Hamilton, Ohio native was close friends with Roger Troutman. They attended the same school and started a band together in their early teens (for more info on Roger Troutman see Looking for the Perfect Beat Vol. 3 07/24). He moved to Cincinnati and was discovered by Billy Preston while playing in a church. He’s played with the Gap Band, Leon Russell, the Rolling Stones, Bootsy, Teddy Pendergrass, Brothers Johnson, Angela & Renee & Ray Charles. He became a reverend in 2002 and stopped playing secular music. He died 2 years later.
On July 29th, in 2011, singer, songwriter, producer Eugene ‘Gene’ McDaniels, died from natural causes at his home in Kittery Point, Maine. The Kansas City born & Omaha native, was a 60’s pop vocalist leading up to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. After that, McDaniels began writing socially aware songs like ‘Compared to What'. He also released two infamous break LPs on Atlantic during the early 70’s (Headless Heroes of the Apocalypse & Outlaw). He’s the writer/producer behind Roberta Flack’s Grammy award winning number 1 hit-Feel Like Makin’ Love. McDaniels is survived by his 3rd wife and 6 children.