September 27, 2007 – Van Halen kick off their reunion tour with David Lee Roth and new bassist Wolfgang Van Halen at the Charlotte Bobcats Arena. It was their first tour with Roth in 23 years, and it grossed over $93 million for 74 dates.
September 27, 2004 – Producer Phil Spector is charged with the murder of 40-year-old actress Lana Clarkson and is released on $1 million bail. He is eventually found guilty of second-degree murder in 2009 and was serving 19 years in prison. He died due to complications of Covid-19 on January 16, 2021 at the age of 81.
September 27, 1997 – Bob Dylan plays for Pope John Paul II and 300,000 others in Bologna, Italy. The pope believed Dylan could help him connect with young Catholics.
Classic Rock Birthdays
September 27, 1947 – Meat Loaf (born Marvin Lee Aday), vocals (d. 2022)
September 27, 1943 – Randy Bachman, guitar, vocals (Bachman-Turner Overdrive, The Guess Who)
September 27, 1964 – Stephan Jenkins, vocals (Third Eye Blind)
September 27, 1958 – Shaun Cassidy, vocals, guitar
September 27, 2018 – Marty Balin (born Martyn Jerel Buchwald), founder and lead singer of the Jefferson Airplane and Jefferson Starship, dies on his way to the hospital in Tampa, FL. He was 76. Balin had previously undergone heart surgery two years earlier and later filed a lawsuit for malpractice against Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital hospital in New York, saying he left there with a damaged tongue and vocal chords. Balin, who was the primary singer in Jefferson Airplane at its formation, shared co-lead vocals with Grace Slick prior to leaving in 1971. He later rejoined what was now Jefferson Starship in 1975, but quit soon after Grace Slick left in 1978. Balin continued to work with members of both bands on and off throughout the years. Balin was also an accomplished painter and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996 as a member of Jefferson Airplane.
September 27, 1986 – Metallica bass player Cliff Burton is crushed to death after the band’s tour bus slides off the road between Stockholm and Copenhagen. Burton is thrown through the window of the bus, which falls on top of him, resulting in his death. He was 24. Burton co-wrote most of the songs on Ride The Lightning, plus “(Anesthesia) – Pulling Teeth” from Kill ‘Em All, and “Master of Puppets,” “Orion” and “Damage, Inc.” from Master of Puppets. In 2009, Burton was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with Metallica members James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich and Kirk Hammett plus later bassists Jason Newsted and Robert Trujillo.
September 27, 1979 – Scottish guitarist Jimmy McCulloch dies of heart failure due to morphine and alcohol poisoning in Maida Vale, London. He was 26. He was best known for playing lead guitar and bass as a member of Paul McCartney’s band Wings from 1974 to 1977. One of McCulloch’s first jobs was playing with Thunderclap Newman, and in 1969, when “Something in the Air” went to No.1 it made McCulloch the youngest guitarist to ever play on a UK No.1 single, at just sixteen years old.