Happy 75th Birthday to The Kinks co-founder and frontman Ray Davies. Regarded as one of the most influential British songwriters, Davies wrote the 1964 No.1 hit You Really Got Me, along with All Day and All of the Night, and Victoria. In the next two years he wrote Set Me Free and Sunny Afternoon—and, later, Lola (“She walked like a woman and talked like a man”), Apeman, Celluloid Heroes, and Come Dancing. With four Gold Albums The Kinks catalogue has sold over 50 million records worldwide. WATCH a recent interview in a short bio… (1944)

2008 photo by Benoit Aubry, CC license

Davies was knighted in 2017 for services to the arts, has written for plays and musicals, and is the author of X-Ray, his autobiography, as well as a book of short stories entitled Waterloo Sunset. He has also made three films, including a 1991 documentary on Charles Mingus called Weird Nightmare. 

Since The Kinks disbanded in 1996, Sir Ray has released six solo albums, his latest in 2017, called Americana, based on his experiences in the US, and his 2013 biographical book Americana.

MORE Good News on this Day: (Happy Summer Solstice!)

  • Halifax, Nova Scotia was founded (1749)
  • The first Constitution of its kind in human history was established as the supreme law of the United States when New Hampshire became the 9th state to ratify it, after it was drafted one year earlier in Philadelphia (1788)
  • Columbia Records introduced the LP (long-playing record album) in a public demonstration at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City (1948)
  • The Supreme Court ruled that Americans are free to burn the country’s flag under the protection of the First Amendment (1989)
  • Jean Michel Jarre played a charity concert in Katowice, Poland for deaf and hearing-impaired children as part of his Oxygene Tour, with proceeds going toward build a healing center for deaf children near Warsaw where a plaque now bears the French musician’s name (1997)
  • The law against homosexuality in the United Kingdom – Section 28 – was repealed in Scotland with a 99 to 17 vote. (2000)
  • SpaceShipOne became the first privately funded spacecraft to achieve spaceflight (2004)
  • The first International Yoga Day was celebrated, led by the yoga-loving Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (2015)

And, on this day in 2015, Apple Music reversed its policy on paying musicians, one day after Taylor Swift said she was refusing to allow streaming of her latest album “1989”.

Taylor Swift - CC-Eva Rinaldi Celebrity and Live Music Photographer
By Eva Rinaldi Celebrity and Live Music Photographer, CC license

In an open letter to Apple, Swift said she was unhappy with the three-month free trial offered to subscribers, saying “We don’t ask you for free iPhones. Please don’t ask us to provide you with our music for no compensation.” Apple now pays artists for music streamed during trial periods.

Happy 52nd Birthday to eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. The computer geek entrepreneur became a billionaire at age 31 when the company’s stock was offered for sale to the public three years after the first eBay auction in 1995.

Omidyar and his wife Pamela are well-known philanthropists through their Omidyar Network, and the son of Iranian immigrant parents has involved himself in online journalism as the head of investigative reporting and public affairs for his own news service, the Honolulu Civil Beat. (1967)

And, on this day in 1893, the first Ferris wheel premiered. Designed and built by George Ferris Jr. for an exposition in Chicago, the amusement ride measured 264-feet tall (80m) and was intended to rival the Eiffel Tower, centerpiece of the 1889 Paris Exposition. (1893)

A technological advance based on the three wooden wheels at Asbury Park, Atlantic City, and Coney Island, NY (built the prior year by William Somers), the Ferris wheel rotated on a 71-ton axle with two 16-foot-diameter cast-iron spiders weighing 53,031 pounds.

Also, Happy 40th Birthday to actor Chris Pratt (Guardians of the Galaxy and Parks and Rec)

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