October 30 – Midsummer Night, Grapevine, Imagine, Beasties


Black-and-white film masterpiece A Midsummer Night’s Dream (*) is released.

Actors include (18-year-old Tokyo born) Olivia de Havilland (*), Joe E. Brown, James Cagney, (14-year-old vaudeville son) Mickey Rooney (broke his leg during filming) (*), Dick Powell, Victor Jory.

With incidental music by Felix Mendelssohn (which premiered in Potsdam on Oct. 14, 1843), and choreography by Njinsky’s sister, it wins Academy awards for Best Cinematography (the result of a write-in campaign) and Best Film Editing.

If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumbered here
While these visions did appear.
~ Puck

 Stills  Gallery ▷Youtube clips▹


Motown releases the Marvin Gaye recording of I Heard It Through the Grapevine on Tamla 54176. It goes US#1 on December 14 (UK#1 in 1969).

While it had previously been recorded by other Motown acts (it was a USR&B#1 hit – released as Soul 35039 Sep. 28, 1967 – for Gladys Knight & the Pips ), it becomes Gaye’s signature song.

An 11-minute cover appears on Creedence Clearwater Revival album Cosmo’s Factory, a US#1 on Aug. 22, 1970. In 1985, Gaye’s rendition co-stars in a famous UK Levi’s commercial .


John Lennon‘s solo (with a little help from ‘is friends) album Imagine goes to #1 worldwide. Imagine (live) 

Helpers included King Curtis, Nicky Hopkins, Phil Spector, Klaus Voormann and many more. Oh well … well, well, well.


First mainstream US#1 rap album

Hip-hoppers the Beastie Boys release their debut album, Licensed to Ill.

The first hip-hop LP to top the Billboard 200 chart, it sells 5 million copies. The cut (You Gotta) Fight for Your Right helped a little.

The original album title? ‘Don’t Be A Faggot’. Columbia talked Russell Simmons into getting that fixed.