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This Week In Music History: Feb 27-March 1

Tommy and Pam controversial relationship, U2’s iconic War, Bruce Springsteen’s “Philadelphia” and more: here’s what happened today!

Feb 27 1998: Pam And Tommy

Following the release of the notorious tv series, now we all probably know the story of Pam and Tommy. In particular, we all got to know their abusive relationship. What happened today is connected to this sad turns of event. In fact, it was today that the Motley Crue’s drummer Tommy Lee was released on $500,000 bail. The artist plead innocent to the charge of abusing his wife and son. The controversial couple made the headlines, becoming one of the most famous yet not appreciated duo in the history of music.

February 28: U2 release War

On this day in 1983, U2 released one of their most successful album, War. Third album of the Irish band from Dublin, War is certainly the album that made them famous to the larger public and outside of the country. Politically involved on the themes that were storming Ireland in the late 70s and early 80s, the album became the band’s greatest and most iconic release.

Coherent and cohesive in terms of both music and lyrics, the album is U2’s work of art. With its raw and crude narration, the band portrayed their country’s heritage and history development. The best example is “Sunday Bloody Sunday.” The song kicks the album on the sound of loud drums recalling the energy of a battle. The song refers to the Irish’ “Bloody Sunday.” On 30th January 1972 in Derry, Northern Ireland, British Soldiers shot 28 unarmed civilians, who were peacefully protesting against Operation Demetrius. This was a highly aggressive British operation against the Irish nation.

Another success from the album is the famous “New Year’s Day,” an hopeful and expectant song about a new, peaceful future. U2 is indeed famous for their anti-war and peaceful songs. Just think about the charity record “Do They Know It’s Christmas,” which written by Bono, the band’s singer and leader.

War became the U2’s first No.1 album in the UK, and some of its hits were also performed at the 1984’s Live Aid.

March 1: Bruce Springsteen – Streets of Philadelphia

On this day in 1995, Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Streets of Philadelphia’ struck gold at the Grammys. The song won not only one, but three of the main awards. These are Song of the Year, Best Male Vocal Performance and Best Rock Song titles.

The song is also famously known as the soundtrack of the 1993 poignant movie “Philadelphia.” It is also one of Springsteen’s deepest and most socially involved singles. With time, the single absorbed the movie’s meaning. It soon became the representation of the fight against HIV/AIDS and the stigma around it, which Tom Hanks and Denzel Washington portrayed in the multiple award winning movie.

March 2: Twist And Shout

Photos © Apple Corps Ltd.
The Beatles played their second performance on the Ed Sullivan Show – in Miami Beach, Florida.

On this day in 1963 one of Beatles’ – and in general in music – most iconic song and biggest representation of an era was released. “Twist And Shout,” symbol of the early 60s, with its rock n’ roll sound and its airiness. The song was later released on the Liverpool band’ s second album Please Please Me. The album included as well other successes, as the majestic “I Saw Her Standing There,” “Love Me Do” and the now classic “Do You Want To Know A Secret.”

March 3: Van Halen’s first world tour

It was today in 1979 that the Dutch-American hard rock band Van Halen launched their first world tour.

The band formed in 1972 by the guitarist Eddie Van Halen and his brother, drummer Alex Van Halen. In that year, the duo arrived in Pasadena, California and started their climb. In 1978 the band released their debut album, Van Halen, which was later the core of their first world tour. Bands like Black Sabbath and Journey welcomed the new and upcoming band to open their concerts for multiple nights. All together, the band performed for a total of 174 nights, making their first tour also the longest and most extensive in the band’s entire career.

In fact, the tour performed over a 10-month period, and covered mainly North America. 124 shows were played in the United States and two in Canada. Moreover, 39 nights around Europe and nine in Japan.

March 4: Surfin’ U.S.A.

One of the biggest American hits was released today. Bringing a new energy to the evolving rock n roll music, the Beach boys introduced to the public the new genre of surf rock with their hit “Surfin’ U.S.A.” The song assumed a patriotic meaning, becoming the representation of the warm, luxurious and carefree lifestyle of a flourishing country. The United States was striving and so were the Beach Boys. The song that gave them a place in the history of music.

March 5: Blues Brother John Belushi dies at 33.

On this day in 1982, Blues Brothers’ actor and musician John Belushi passed away of drug overdose in the Chateau Marmont Hotel in Los Angeles. The artist left at the young age of 33 after fighting against a long-lasting addiction that would’ve ended in the worst way. Icon of his years and symbol of a genre, the artist a shocked public and a scar open in every music fan’s hearts.

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