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The Beatles First Member To Hit #1, A TV Ban For A Song & More This Week In Music History

The biggest Christmas collaboration ever, The Beatles’ first ex-member to hit #1 in the charts, and a TV ban for playing a song! This and more this week in music history here.

December 25: Merry Christmas, Let’s Work Together: Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney

It’s the biggest festivity of the year, and to wish him Merry Christmas, on this day in 1980, Michael Jackson called Paul McCartney. The occasion is the perfect time to write some songs together. The ex-Beatle couldn’t refuse, and the newly formed duo recorded three duets together (including the first single from Thriller and hit “Say Say Say”). The friendship however doesn’t last long. Their collaboration ended when Jackson bought the publishing rights to The Beatles and McCartney’s songs.

December 26: The Quiet Beatle is the Louder Ones On the Charts

Talking about The Beatles, on this day, ten years before the Jackson-McCartney collaboration began, another member of the ex-Fab Four became the first Beatle to top the Hot 100 as a solo artist. Considering he was known as the “Quite Beatle,” it might seem unexpected, but that was only a cover to hide the pure magic of George Harrison. With the hit “My Sweet Lord,” the writer of many Beatles songs, such as”While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” “Here Comes The Sun” and “Something,” immediately went #1.

December 27: “Another Sign of the Declining Public Morality”

It’s 1978, and TV still has an unspoken active censure going. It is in this context that the BBC comes under fire when it plays part of the Sex Pistols’ “God Save The Queen.” The song played on a show called Listen To The Banned, the name of which clearly explains the byway that led to the choice of the song. Many however didn’t appreciate the network’s decision. The educator Dr. Rhodes Boyson said it was “another sign of the declining public morality which so rightly worries the general public.”

December 28: Mother’s Love

In 2016, one day after losing her daughter, actress Carrie Fisher, Singin’ in the Rain star Debbie Reynolds died of a stroke at age 84. The actress and singer died from an intracerebral hemorrhage caused by high blood pressure after suffering a fatal heart attack.

December 29: Hitting #1 in the US But Not Being Able to See it

Life isn’t always fair, and sometimes we leave the earth before seeing the results of our efforts. This is the case of Jim Croce, whose hit and now classic 1973’s “Time In A Bottle” hit #1 in the US three months after his death in a plane crash.

December 30: Close to Death

Let’s go back to ex-Beatles member George Harrison for another moment that involved him in 1999. Christmas has just passed, and the artist is spending the magic of his holidays with his family in his house in England. During the night, however, the peace is broken when the mentally disturbed Michael Abram breaks into his home and stabs Harrison in the chest. The artist was nearly killed, if it wasn’t for his wife, Olivia, who saved him by attacking Abram with a poker and a table lamp. Harrison suffered a collapsed lung, but survived.

December 31: “I’m A Believer”

Before returning to fame by being one of the most prominent singles from the Shrek soundtrack, the single “I’m A Believer” was a hit in the ’60s as well. Written by Neil Diamond and later covered by Smash Mouth, in 1966, The Monkees’ single stayed at the top of the charts in America for seven weeks.

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