August 4 – White Christmas, Everly Brothers, Billboard

Release of musical film Holiday Inn, which includes 12 songs by US composer Irving Berlin.

One of the songs is White Christmas, recorded by Bing Crosby and the Ken Darby Singers on May 29. It wins Berlin an Academy Award for Best Original Song.

Crosby had first sung the song on his Christmas, 1941 radio show. On Oct. 31, 1942, Crosby’s version tops Billboard’s Best Selling Retail Records chart, where it spends 11 consecutive weeks. Returning to the top 10 in every subsequent holiday season through 1949, it becomes one of the most popular recordings ever made — selling over 50M copies.

In 2001 the song is ranked #2 on the RIAA’s list of 365 Songs of the Century, right behind Judy Garland singing Over the Rainbow. In 2002 the song’s 1942 version is added to the National Recording Registry.


The Everly Brothers debut their version of song Wake Up Little Susie on the Ed Sullivan Show.

The song makes it to US#1 (UK#2), partly because it was banned in Boston radio … partly because the Everlys are -hot-


Founding of the Billboard Hot 100 single records popularity charts (called Top 40 at the time) based on radio play and sales.

The US#1 song on this date was Poor Little Fool by Ricky Nelson – for reasons similar to the Everlys.