Daylight Video

On this day in 1956, Eddie Cochran signed his first record contract, beginning a prolific three-and-a-half year public career before his death in a car accident at the age of 21. Here he is performing his first hit, “Twenty Flight Rock,” in the Jayne Mansfield movie The Girl Can’t Help It.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.