This Day in Pop Culture for August 30

Apple Records

1968: The Naughty Apple

It was on this day that The Beatles’ record label, Apple Records, released its first single, “Hey Jude.” The label was founded by the band intended to be used as a creative outlet for the band and used as a way to reduce their tax burden. They choose the name and image of a Granny Smith apple because in Paul McCartney’s mind, a green apple signified creative freedom and independence from commercial interests. The record was unique because it featured the image of a Granny Smith apple on side-A and the same apple sliced in half on side-B. But according to The Independent, the song was almost never released because some record executives thought that the image looked pornographic. In a letter sent to Apple boss Ron Kass, it said, “Here’s a wild and unanticipated problem to brighten up your day. I just received a call from a very large and influential jack jobber in the western United States. He opened the conversation by saying, ‘Are you guys serious? Do you know what you’re doing? Do you really intend to sell products bearing the new Apple label?’” He said that the Apple label was completely pornographic, and the graphic nature of the art was noticed by all of his employees. He doubted that record store chains would want to stock such a record. Not only was he wrong, but there is no evidence that the band had intended using a controversial image.

National Frankenstein Day

Freakishly weird, in some circles August 30th is also known as National Frankenstein Day. It’s not because that’s when the first movie about the monster was released or even when the original novel was published. It actually celebrates the birthday of the novel’s author Mary Shelley.

Cristopher Cross
(Warner Records)

1980: Christopher Cross Goes ‘Sailing’

On this day in 1980, singer-songwriter Christopher Cross rose to the top of the music charts with his first hit, “Sailing.” Up to this point, Cross was a relatively unknown singer. His self-titled album is considered to be one of the biggest soft-rock hits of all time and included “Ride Like the Wind,” (which was actually released before “Sailing”) and featured a backup vocal for Michael McDonald. This fame lead to a sweep of wins at the 1981 Grammy Awards where “Sailing” and Cross won for Best Record, Best Song, Best Album and Best New Artist. Cross’s next hit also came out that year, “Arthur’s Theme” from the movie, Arthur with Dudley Moore. Cross’s next Top 10 hit was “Think of Laura” which came out in 1983 and it was his last.

Movies Released

  • Don’t Let Go (2019)
  • Emma (1996)

TV Series Debuts

  • Carnival Row (2019)
  • The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (2019)
  • The Late Show (1993)

Famous Birthdays

  • 1797: Mary Shelley (author)
  • 1908: Fred MacMurray (actor)
  • 1927: Bill Daily (actor)
  • 1972: Cameron Diaz (actress)

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