On this day

1955 | Dickie Valentine was at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Christmas Alphabet’, the first Christmas song to reach the No.1 position. It was the first Christmas No.1 that was actually about Christmas, a trend that would continue off and on over the next several decades.

1966 | Jimi Hendrix made his TV debut on ITV’s ‘Ready Steady Go!’ The Jimi Hendrix Experience also recorded ‘Foxy Lady’ on this day.

1975 | Patti Smith released her debut studio album Horses.

1997 | Children’s TV characters The Teletubbies went to No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Teletubbies Say-eh-oh’.

2000 | It was announced that after 74 years the UK rock weekly Melody Maker was to close down. The Christmas edition would be the last one then it would merge with the NME creating a more sizeable broad-based magazine.

2001 | American singer, songwriter, and guitarist Chuck Schuldiner died of brain cancer. He founded the pioneering band Death in 1983. Schuldiner is often referred to as “The Godfather of death metal”. Death’s best-selling album is the 1991 release Human.

2002 | UK music channel Music Choice analysed all the Christmas No.1 singles from the past 30 years and identified criteria for their success. These included the use of sleigh bells, children singing, church bells harmony and references to love. They concluded that Sir Cliff Richards 1988 hit ‘Mistletoe and Wine’ was the perfect Christmas hit.

Born on this day

1952 | Berton Averre, lead guitarist with the Los Angeles rock band The Knack who scored the 1979 US No.1 single ‘My Sharona’.

1967 |Jamie Foxx, (born Eric Marlon Bishop). US actor, R&B singer and pianist, (2005 US No.1 and UK No.2 single ‘Gold Digger’ with Kanye West, 2006 US No.1 & UK No.9 album ‘Unpredictable’). Academy Award winner in 2005 for his performance of musician Ray Charles in Ray.

1974 | Nick McCarthy, guitarist, with Scottish indie rock band Franz Ferdinand, who were the winners of the 2004 Mercury Music Prize for their self-titled debut album.

1981 | Amy Lynn Lee, singer with American rock band Evanescence.

1989 | American singer-songwriter, Taylor Swift. She has sold over 40 million albums and 130 million digital single downloads worldwide.