Born this day in 1984 was the first jazz artist to win a Grammy for Best New Artist of the Year. Here she is playing Stevie Wonder's "Overjoyed" at the White House in 2009.
A master of jazz and classical forms, he turns 51 today. Here is a jazz performance of "Sheik of Araby" followed by Handel's "Eternal Source of Light," from his from his admirable collaboration with soprano Kathleen Battle
Born today in 1951, she gave the world a story that needed to be told as only she could tell it. Her first novel, Mama, published in 1987, might never have made it past the first 5,000 copies had she not launched an aggressive letter-writing campaign to book-store owners around the country using word-processing skills mastered during her day job. But everyone knows it's Waiting to Exhale that put her on the map. Here's Whitney Houston singing the title song over a montage of scenes from the movie version.
Its inventor, R. Buckminster Fuller, applied for a patent on this day in 1933. A three-wheeler that got 30-miles to the gallon, it received design assistance from sculptor, Isamu Noguchi, and for a while really did seem like the car of the future. The name "Dymaxion" is a mash-up of "dynamic," "maximum," and "ion." Although a fatal accident caused investors to withdraw financial support, you can see from the video below that it really was ahead of its time. But no worries for Bucky, who once said, "I seem to be a verb." He went on to invent the Geodesic Dome, one of the strongest structures ever built.