Music

AH

History of Alexander Hamilton

By billpetro / July 2, 2024 /

HISTORY OF THE 4TH OF JULY: ALEXANDER HAMILTON Alexander Hamilton has gained popularity recently, in large part due to the 2015 Broadway musical “Hamilton” by Lin-Manuel Miranda. What is the real story behind this remarkable revolutionary? What kind of leader was he? How was his background similar and different from the other Founding Fathers?  …

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All You Need Is Love

History of All You Need Is Love, by The Beatles

By billpetro / June 25, 2024 /

HISTORY OF ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE, BY THE BEATLES On June 25, 1967, The Beatles released the song “All You Need Is Love.” At that time, they participated in the Our World TV show, which used the recently constructed communication satellite system and broadcast their performance across the globe. Beatles drummer Ringo Starr said…

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sgt pepper

History of the Summer of Love – 1967: Part 4, Rock & Roll

By billpetro / June 2, 2024 /

HISTORY OF THE SUMMER OF LOVE – 1967: PART 4, ROCK & ROLL   It was twenty years ago today Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play They’ve been going in and out of style But they’re guaranteed to raise a smile   Rock & Roll in the late ’60s was exemplified when The Beatles…

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Tommy album

History of The Who’s Tommy: 55 Years Ago

By billpetro / May 23, 2024 /

HISTORY OF THE WHO’s TOMMY Fifty-five years ago today, on May 23, 1969, the British rock group The Who released the double-album rock opera Tommy in the U.K. Commercially, the record went Gold in the U.K. and Double Platinum in the U.S. It was released in the U.S. on May 17 or 19; reports vary.…

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William Wilberforce

History of Amazing Grace: Abolition of the British Slave Trade, part 2

By billpetro / February 23, 2024 /

HISTORY OF AMAZING GRACE, part 2: William Wilberforce As I mentioned in my first article on the History of Amazing Grace, this is the story of the lives of two men and that one song. In the first part, we discussed the life of the song’s author, John Newton. However, the 2007 film “Amazing Grace”…

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Amazing Grace

History of Amazing Grace: Abolition of the British Slave Trade, part 1

By billpetro / February 22, 2024 /

HISTORY OF AMAZING GRACE, part 1 On February 23, 1807, the British parliament passed a bill banning the nation’s slave trade. In these two articles, we’ll explore the lives of two men and one song that played a significant role in that effort. John Newton‘s devoted Christian mother dreamed that her only son would grow…

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The Beatles

History of The Beatles: Coming to America February 7, 1964

By billpetro / February 6, 2024 /

HISTORY OF THE BEATLES On February 7, 1964, The Beatles landed at JFK Airport in New York. The airport had recently been renamed by a mourning country in honor of President Kennedy, who had been assassinated just 77 days earlier. The airport was now full of 4,000 greeters. Not realizing why there was such a…

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Peter Pan

History of Peter Pan: the Story Behind the 71-Year-Old Disney Classic

By billpetro / February 5, 2024 /

HISTORY OF PETER PAN All of this has happened before, and it will all happen again.   So begins my favorite Walt Disney animated movie, Peter Pan, which debuted 71 years ago on February 5, 1953. The original movie poster said: “It will live in your heart forever” …and indeed it has. Why was this…

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American Pie

History of The Day The Music Died

By billpetro / February 3, 2024 /

HISTORY OF THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED On February 3, 1959, a plane crash occurred in Iowa during a snowstorm shortly after 1:00 AM, killing three young rock and roll singers who would go down in history: Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson. They were part of the 24-day “Winter Dance…

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Mozart

History of Mozart: Today’s his Birthday

By billpetro / January 27, 2024 /

HISTORY OF MOZART Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born on January 27, 1756, but he was baptized under the name Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart.   What’s In A Name As an adult, he referred to himself as “Wolfgang Amadè Mozart,” signing his marriage certificate that way. His baptismal name was Latinized, as was common in…

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TheNutcracker

History of The Nutcracker: the Ballet That’s a Christmas Tradition

By billpetro / December 18, 2023 /

HISTORY OF THE NUTCRACKER: THE BALLET THAT’S A CHRISTMAS TRADITION On December 18, 1892, The Nutcracker premiered at the Imperial Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia, a week before Christmas.   Nutcracker Popularity The Nutcracker has had such an enduring influence on the celebration of Christmas for more than a century that no one even…

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Carol of the Bells

History of Carol of the Bells: from a Ukrainian folk song

By billpetro / November 28, 2023 /

HISTORY OF CAROL OF THE BELLS: FROM A UKRAINIAN FOLK SONG The favorite Christmas song, Carol of the Bells, is based on a Ukrainian folk song that initially had nothing to do with Christmas and was, in fact, popular in pre-Christian Ukraine. How did this folk song become such a popular American Christmas carol, and…

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