FROM WIKIPEDIA COMMONS
Laura Ann Branigan (July 3, 1952 – August 26, 2004) was an American singer, songwriter, and actress. Her signature song, the platinum-certified 1982 single “Gloria“, stayed on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 for 36 weeks, then a record for a female artist, peaking at No. 2. It also reached number one in Australia and Canada. In 1984, she reached number one in Canada and Germany with the U.S. No. 4 hit “Self Control“. She also had success in the United Kingdom with both “Gloria” and “Self Control” making the Top 10 in the UK Singles Chart.
Seeing her greatest level of success in the 1980s, Branigan’s other singles included the Top 10 hit “Solitaire” (1983), the U.S. AC chart number one “How Am I Supposed to Live Without You” (1983), the Australian No. 2 hit “Ti amo” (1984), her return to the top 40 “The Power of Love” (1987), the top hit 15 dance “Shattered Glass.” Her most successful album was 1984’s platinum-selling Self Control. She also contributed songs to motion picture and television soundtracks, including the Grammy and Academy Award-winning Flashdance soundtrack (1983), and the Ghostbusters soundtrack (1984), and also Miami Vice (1984). In 1985, she won the Tokyo Music Festival with the song “The Lucky One“. Her chart success began to wane as the decade closed and after her last two albums Laura Branigan (1990) and Over My Heart (1993) garnered little attention, she generally retired from public life for the rest of the 1990s. She began returning to performing in the early 2000s, most notably appearing as Janis Joplin in the off-Broadway musical Love, Janis. As she was recording new music and preparing a comeback to the music industry, she died at her home in August 2004 from a previously undiagnosed cerebral aneurysm.
Branigan and her music saw renewed popularity and public interest in 2019 in the US after “Gloria” was adopted by the NHL‘s St. Louis Blues as their unofficial victory song while they completed a historic mid-season turnaround to win their first Stanley Cup in franchise history, leading to the song entering ice hockey lore as an “unlikely championship anthem”. Branigan’s legacy manager and representative Kathy Golik embraced the trend and traveled to St. Louis to publicly represent Branigan among the Blues fanbase during the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs, later stating her belief that Branigan and “Gloria” “will forever be intertwined” with the Blues and the city of St. Louis.
Branigan died in her sleep at her lodge in East Quogue, New York, on August 26, 2004, aged 52. The cause was attributed to a previously undiagnosed ventricular brain aneurysm. It was reported that she had been experiencing persistent headaches for several weeks before her death, but had not sought medical attention for them. At the time of her death, it was widely erroneously reported that she was 47 years old, resulting from a technical error the Associated Press published after contacting Branigan’s management company.
Branigan was cremated, and her ashes were scattered over Long Island Sound.
- 1883: KRAKATOA, A VOLCANO ON THE INDONESIAN ISLAND OF RAKATA, ERUPTED. THE EXPLOSIONS HEARD IN THE ERUPTION REMAIN THE LOUDEST NOISE ON HUMAN RECORD. THE SOUND WAS HEARD ACROSS THE INDIAN OCEAN AS FAR AWAY AS RODRIGUEZ ISLAND AND AUSTRALIA
- 1883: KRAKATOA, A VOLCANO ON AN INDONESIAN ISLAND, BEGAN TO ERUPT. OVER THIS AND THE NEXT DAY, THE ERUPTION CAUSED TSUNAMIS THAT KILLED 36,000 PEOPLE. PARTICLES FROM THE ERUPTION WERE RELEASED INTO THE STRATOSPHERE, CAUSING THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE OF EARTH TO LOWER BY ONE DEGREE FOR THE NEXT TWO YEARS.
- 1902: A STARCH PROCESS THAT LED TO PUFFED GRAIN CEREALS WAS PATENTED
- BORN 1909: FRANK F. GASPARRO (DESIGNED THE LINCOLN MEMORIAL REVERSE ON THE PENNY)
- 1920: THE NINETEENTH AMENDMENT WAS ADOPTED, GRANTING WOMEN THE RIGHT TO VOTE. IT WAS NICKNAMED THE “ANTHONY” AMENDMENT IN RECOGNITION OF THE LOBBYING EFFORTS OF SUFFRAGETTE SUSAN B. ANTHONY.
- BORN 1921: BENJAMIN BRADLEE (JOURNALIST)
- BORN 1922: IRVING LEVINE (BROADCAST JOURNALIST)
- 1930: PHILO FARNSWORTH PATENTED A TELEVISION
- BORN 1935: GERALDINE FERRARO (POLITICIAN)
- 1939: WXBS TELEVISED THE FIRST MAJOR-LEAGUE BASEBALL GAMES, A DOUBLE-HEADER BETWEEN CINCINNATI REDS AND BROOKLYN DODGERS
- BORN 1960: BRANFORD MARSALIS (MUSICIAN)
- 1968: THE BEATLES RELEASED THEIR SMASH HIT “HEY JUDE”
- BORN 1969: MELISSA MCCARTHY (ACTRESS)
- 1970: GUITARIST JIMI HENDRIX MADE HIS LAST PUBLIC APPEARANCE IN THE UK
- DIED 1974: CHARLES LINDBERGH (AVIATOR)
- 1977: BILL 101 TOOK EFFECT, MAKING FRENCH THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE OF QUEBEC
- DIED 2004: LAURA BRANIGAN (GRAMMY-NOMINATED POP SINGER BEST KNOWN FOR HER HIT GLORIA)
- DIED 2009: DOMINICK DUNNE (AMERICAN WRITER AND INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALIST)