Saturday, May 7, 2011

This Date in Rock Music History: May 8

1961:  Ricky Nelson had a hot new song.  "Hello Mary Lou" moved from 73 to 27.

1961:  Del Shannon's "Runaway" continued to set the pace at #1 for a third week.
1962:  Engineer Ted Huntley recommended to Beatles' manager Brian Epstein that he send a demo of the band to EMI producer George Martin.
1965:  Bob Dylan shot a promotional film for "Subterranean Homesick Blues" outside of the Savoy Hotel in London, becoming one of the first artists to film a music video.

1965:  They were known then as Chad Allan & the Expressions but they would go on to become one of the top acts in the history of Canada as the Guess Who.  They first appeared on the chart with on this date with their first single, "Shakin' All Over"--5/8/65.
1965:  You could tell where this song was heading.  "Ticket To Ride" by the Beatles vaulted from 18 to 3 on this date.

    Gary Lewis & the Playboys were a solid #2...

1965:  Herman's Hermits made it two weeks in a row ruling the roost with "Mrs. Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter".  "Count Me In" by Gary Lewis & the Playboys was at #2 while the Beatles were third with "Ticket To Ride".  The rest of the Top 10:  "Game Of Love", the former #1 by Wayne Fontana & the Mindbenders, was now at #4, "I'll Never Find Another You" from the Seekers was at 5, Petula Clark fell to #6 with "I Know A Place", Herman's Hermits were going up with their new release "Silhouettes", Freddie & the Dreamers dropped to #8 with "I'm Telling You Now", the Rolling Stones were at #9 with "The Last Time" and Sounds Orchestral found the Top 10 with the instrumental "Cast Your Fate To The Wind".
1967:  Gerry and the Pacemakers announced they were splitting up.
1970:  The Beatles released the album Let It Be on Apple Records.
1971:  "If" by Bread was #1 for the third week in a row on the Easy Listening chart.  

1971:  Three Dog Night held on to #1 for a fourth week with "Joy To The World".  The Jackson 5 moved up to challenge with "Never Can Say Goodbye" while Ocean traded places with "Put Your Hand In The Hand".  Neil Diamond and Bread were both up a long ways in just seven weeks as "I Am...I Said" was #4 and "If" ranked fifth.  The rest of the Top 10:  The great Marvin Gaye song "What's Going On", the Bells decided to "Stay Awhile" at #7, Aretha Franklin hit #8 with her version of the Simon & Garfunkel classic "Bridge Over Troubled Water", Daddy Dewdrop provided comic relief with "Chick-A-Boom" and Lobo burst into the Top 10 with "Me And You And A Dog Named Boo".
1972:  Billy Preston became the first rock artist to headline a show at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

1975:  The Eagles appeared in concert at the Edgewater Raceway Park in Cincinnati, Ohio during the One of These Nights tour.
1976:  Spurred by sales that would eventually top 10 million, "Fernando" by ABBA was the new #1 song in the U.K.

1976:  Former Lovin' Spoonful member John Sebastian enjoyed a brief stay at #1 with "Welcome Back".  Maxine Nighingale came in second with "Right Back Where We Started From" and the Sylvers remained in their #3 position with "Boogie Fever".  Elvin Bishop made a move to #4 with "Fooled Around And Fell In Love".  The rest of the Top 10:  "Silly Love Songs" by Wings moved impressively from 12 to 5, Peter Frampton's "Show Me The Way", Diana Ross took #7 with "Love Hangover", Silver Convention was up 13-8 with "Get Up And Boogie (That's Right)", the Bellamy Brothers suffered one of the biggest tumbles from #1 in the Rock Era (1-9) with "Let Your Love Flow" and Johnnie Taylor was down with "Disco Lady".
1977:  Olivia Newton-John gave a concert at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City.
1978:  Donny Osmond was married at the age of 21 to his wife Debra.

1982:  Casablanca Records founder Neil Bogart died of cancer at the age of 39 in Los Angeles.
1982:  "Shanghai Breezes" by John Denver led the way on the Adult Contemporary chart.
1982:  "Chariots Of Fire" from Vangelis reached #1 in its 22nd week on the chart.  Only seven #1 songs in rock history took longer to get to #1.
1993:  Mark Knopfler received an honorary degree from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, England.  

1993:  Whitney Houston remained at #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart with "I Have Nothing".
1995:  Rick Nelson was inducted posthumously into the Hollywood Rock Walk.

1998:  Johnny Winter received a star on Hollywood's Rock Walk.
1998:  The Smashing Pumpkins filed a lawsuit against Westwood One, claiming the radio syndication company had breached an oral and implied agreement when they licensed an interview in 1991 with the band.
2002:  Mariah Carey signed a multiyear recording contract that gave Carey joint ownership of her own recording label.

2002:  "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen was voted as the
favorite song of all-time in the U.K.  "Imagine" by John Lennon was second, "Hey Jude" third, and "Dancing Queen" by ABBA came in fourth in a poll organized by the Guinness World Records British Hit Singles book.  (Note:  some websites claim the results of the poll were released May 6.  The announcement came on May 8, according to Reuters News Service and the newspaper 'The Guardian'.) 
2003:  Elton John announced that he and lyricist Bernie Taupin would compose the score for the Broadway musical The Vampire Lestat.
2003:  Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake and Ashanti assisted the Global Medical Relief Fund's campaign to bring a badly-burned orphan in Operation Iraqi Freedom to the United States for treatment.
2005:  Akon debuted at #1 in the U.K. with "Lonely" while his album Trouble moved to #1 as well.
2008:  Maurice White and Philip Bailey of Earth, Wind & Fire and Steve Winwood were given honorary Doctorate degrees from Berklee College of Music in Boston.
2008:  Eddy Arnold, who had 22 hits early in the Rock Era, including "Make The World Go Away" in 1965, died one week shy of his 90th birthday of natural causes at a nursing home in Nashville, Tennessee.

2010:  Quincy Jones received an honorary Doctorate of Music from Indiana University.

Born This Day:

1940:  Ricky Nelson (real name Eric Nelson) was born in Teaneck, New Jersey; died in a plane crash near De Kalb, Texas December 31, 1985.

1940:  Toni Tennille was born in Montgomery, Alabama.
1941:  John Fred, who along with his Playboy Band gave us "Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)", was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; died of kidney disease in New Orleans, Louisiana April 15, 2005.  (Note:  some websites insist Fred died April 14, but according to the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame, Fred died on April 15.)
1943:  Danny Whitten, guitarist, singer and songwriter with Neil Young's Crazy Horse, was born in Columbus, Georgia; died of a heroin overdose in Los Angeles November 18, 1972.
1943:  Paul Samwell-Smith, bass guitarist with the Yardbirds, was born in England.  (Note:  there is much confusion as to Paul's place of birth, and he has given no interviews to clear up that confusion.  Some websites say he was born in Richmond, Surrey, England, others say simply "London", while others say he was born in Twickenham, London, and still others in Twickenham, Surrey.  Twickenham (now part of the London Borough Richmond upon Thames), was previously located in the county of Middlesex until 1965, and Samwell-Smith was born long before the county change to London.  Part of Twickenham is in the county of Surrey, but again Samwell-Smith was born long before the change of counties, so each of those last two listed places of birth are false.  Unfortunately, there are no credible sources for either London or Richmond for Mr. Samwell-Smith.)

1944:  Bill Legend, drummer of T. Rex, was born in Barking, Essex, England.  (Note:  Legend says on his official website that he was born in London.  He must not know what his official birth certificate says, for in the book 'Bolan:  The Rise And Fall Of A 20th Century Superstar' by Mark Paytress, it says that Legend was born in Barking and lived in London.) 1944:  Gary Glitter ("Rock And Roll, Part 2"), whose real name is Paul Gadd, was born in Banbury, Oxfordshire, England.  Glitter pleaded guilty in 1997 to 54 counts of making indecent photographs of children under 16 available on the Internet.  After being released in jail, he fled to Vietnam, where he was then convicted of molesting girls aged 11 and 12.  The wierdo earns royalties every time the sports team that you support plays his song.
1951:  Chris Frantz, founding member and drummer of the Talking Heads, and also a producer, was born in Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

1951:  Phillip Bailey with Earth, Wind & Fire was born in Denver, Colorado.
1953:  Billy Burnette, son of Dorsey and a singer and guitarist with Fleetwood Mac, was born in Memphis, Tennessee.

1953:  Alex Van Halen, drummer for the group Van Halen, was born in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

1972:  Darren Hayes, singer-songwriter with Savage Garden, was born in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

1975:  Enrique Iglesias was born in Madrid, Spain.
1978:  Ana Maria Lombo of Eden's Crush was born in Medellin, Columbia.

Don Kirshner's "Rock Concert"

Don Kirshner, who helped launch the careers of Neil Diamond, Carole King and the Monkees, later started his own concert series called Don Kirshner's Rock Concert, which aired in the 1970's and early 1980's. 

The show premiered on September 23, 1973 and featured the Rolling Stones.  Up until this time, most performances on television were done by lip-syncing the words and having the song piped in over a speaker.  Acts performed live on Rock Concert, and the show was a huge hit, surpassing even Johnny Carson's The Tonight Show in some markets.  

This is a list of just some of the many artists who were featured on the show:

Bad Company
Bachman-Turner Overdrive
Joan Baez
Bay City Rollers
Bee Gees
Pat Benatar
Blood, Sweat & Tears
Cheap Trick
Jim Croce
Doobie Brothers
Earth, Wind & Fire
Fleetwood Mac

Golden Earring
Guess Who
George Harrison
Billy Joel
Gladys Knight & the Pips
Lynyrd Skynyrd
Don McLean
Helen Reddy
Rolling Stones
Linda Ronstadt
Seals & Crofts
Sly & the Family Stone
Steely Dan
Steve Miller Band
Cat Stevens
Stevie Wonder


The Top 100 Albums of All-Time in the Rock Era

One album will be unveiled each day.  We started Sunday, May 1.  Here is the list so far:

The #94 Album of All-Time in the Rock Era--"A Song For You" by the Carpenters

A Song For You was the fourth album released by the Carpenters, available on June 13, 1972 on A&M Records.  It was recorded in mid-1971.

The album reached a peak of #4, spent 41 weeks on the album chart and sold 3 million copies.  It's Track Rating was 9.18, which puts it about in the middle of the Top 100 albums.  Airplay was strong, putting A Song For You near the top of that factor.  You will find six huge hits on this album--"Hurting Each Other", "It's Going to Take Some Time", "Goodbye to Love", "Top of the World", "I Won't Last a Day Without You" and "Bless the Beasts and Children", which is one of the best on the list.  Those six generated huge airplay numbers from not only Top 40 stations but also Adult Contemporary radio--this album is ranked near the top for radio airplay.  When you combine the radio ratings from all of the stations in those two formats, it's a powerful force for airplay.  Five of the tracks mentioned above were either #1 or #2 on the Adult Contemporary charts.  "Road Ode" and the title track, both which have become all-time favorites with fans, also generated additional airplay from the album.  

The album is ranked near the bottom of the Top 100 because of the chart and sales statistics shown above.  Had the album charted better at the time and sold a few more copies, it would be considerably higher.  Many consumers, however, chose to purchase the greatest hits of the group to get the songs on this album.  In other words, they love the songs on the album but chose to buy a different album to get them.  This is why sales have to be considered in a Top Albums of All-Time list, but aren't the be-all, end-all.  This album also was recognized by the Academy Awards, which nominated "Bless the Beasts and Children" for Best Song From a Motion Picture (of the same name), and by the Grammy Awards, which nominated the song "Flat Baroque" for Best Instrumental Arrangement.

Side One
1.  "A Song for You" (Leon Russell) 4:42
2.  "Top of the World" (John Bettis, Richard Carpenter) 2:56
3.  "Hurting Each Other" (Gary Geld, Peter Udell) 2:46
4.  "It's Going to Take Some Time" (Carole King, Toni Stern) 2:55
5.  "Goodbye to Love" (John Bettis, Richard Carpenter) 3:50
6.  "Intermission" (Richard Carpenter) 0:22

Side Two
1.  "Bless the Beasts and Children" (Perry Botkin, Jr. & Barry DeVorzon) 3:07
2.  "Flat Baroque" (Richard Carpenter) 1:45
3.  "Piano Picker" (Randy Edelman) 1:59
4.  "I Won't Last a Day Without You" (Paul Williams) 3:55
5.  "Crystal Lullaby" (John Bettis, Richard Carpenter) 3:58
6.  "Road Ode" (Gary Sims, Dan Woodhams) 3:50
7.  "A Song for You (Reprise)" (Leon Russell) 0:53

Jack Daugherty produced this album, engineered by Ray Gerhardt. Tony Peluso contributed the outstanding lead guitar solo on "Goodbye To Love".  All the music was arranged and orchestrated by Richard Carpenter.  Joe Osborn played bass, Hal Blaine and Karen Carpenter played drums, Bob Messenger played some great tenor sax, especially on the title song; he also plays excellent flute and alto flute, Tim Weisberg played bass flute, Louie Shelton played guitar, Red Rhodes contributed steel guitar, the oboe and English horn that you hear is from Earl Dumler and Norm Herzberg played bassoon. Roland Young contributed art for the cover.

A solid #94 from the Carpenters--A Song For You.

Friday, May 6, 2011

This Date in Rock Music History: May 7

1955:  Elvis Presley performed at the Peabody Auditorium in Daytona Beach, Florida.

1955:  Although "Rock Around The Clock" was not a hit when released the year before, it had picked up renewed interest by virtue of its inclusion in the movie The Blackboard Jungle, and was consequently re-released by Bill Haley & His Comets.  And a new era was born.  If you like rock music in any of its forms, you have this song to thank.  It convinced DJ's, radio station management, and most importantly executives at record companies that rock & roll was a viable form of music.
1958:  The Champs performed their #1 smash "Tequila" on American Bandstand.
1964:  The Searchers scored their third #1 song in the U.K. with "Don't Throw Your Love Away".

1966:  The Rolling Stones released the single "Paint It Black" in the United States.
1966:  The #1 album continued to be Going Places by Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass, followed closely by the group's Whipped Cream & Other Delights.  Color Me Barbra by Barbra Streisand was #3.  The rest of the Top 10:  Big Hits (High Tide and Green Grass) by the Rolling Stones, the Soundtrack to "The Sound of Music" was #5, Ballads of the Green Berets by SSgt. Barry Sadler fell to #6, Nancy Sinatra had #7 with Boots, the Supremes' I Hear a Symphony was #8, The Dave Clark Five's Greatest Hits was #9 and If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears by the Mamas and the Papas was #10.
1966:  The Percy Sledge classic "When A Man Loves A Woman" was on top for the first of four weeks on the R&B chart.

                                            Boise, Idaho's Paul Revere & the Raiders...

1966:  The Mamas and the Papas rose to #1 with "Monday, Monday", displacing "Good Lovin'" by the Young Rascals.  "Sloop John B" by the Beach Boys was #3, followed by "(You're My) Soul And Inspiration" from the Righteous Brothers and "Kicks", the great anti-drug song by Paul Revere & the Raiders.
1967:  Jimi Hendrix played two concerts at Brian Epstein's Saville Theatre in London.
1968:  Aretha Franklin recorded a live album at the Olympia Theatre in Paris, France.

1968:  Reginald Dwight changed his name to Elton John.  (Note:  some websites insist this happened in 1972.  The na├»ve website owners just might be tipped off by the 1969 album 'Empty Sky', which just happens to be the debut solo release by Elton John.  'Gold Mine' magazine and the newspaper 'The Examiner' are among the credible sources which confirm the correct year as 1968.)

1970: The fabulous Temptations released the single "Ball Of Confusion". 
1970:  Pink Floyd performed at the home of UCLA, Pauley Pavilion, in Los Angeles.
1971:  Three Dog Night chalked up a fourth week at #1 with "Joy To The World".  Lobo moved from 16 to 10 with "Me And You And A Dog Named Boo".

1973:  Three Dog Night released the single "Shambala".

1973:  George Harrison released the single "Give Me Love--Give Me Peace On Earth" on Apple Records.
1977:  Deniece Williams had the #1 U.K. song with "Free".
1977:  Marvin Gaye had the #1 R&B song with "Got To Give It Up".
1977:  Yvonne Elliman was #1 for a second week on the Adult Contemporary chart with her cover of "Hello Stranger".

                                          "Carry On Wayward Son" from Kansas...

1977:  The Eagles charted a sixth week at #1 on the Album chart with Hotel California, all with The #2 Album of the Rock Era*--Rumors by Fleetwood Mac, which just happened to be #2 on this date, bearing down on it.  The Soundtrack to A Star Is Born was third with Marvin Gaye Live at the London Palladium in fourth.  Stevie Wonder's epic Songs in the Key of Life edged out the debut from Boston--three of the all-time Top 10 albums were out at the same glorious time.  The rest of the Top 10:  The Soundtrack to "Rocky", the Isley Brothers with Go For Your Guns, Jethro Tull edged up with Songs from the Wood and Kansas grabbed #10 with Leftoverture.

1977:  The Eagles moved to #1 with "Hotel California".  Leo Sayer was right behind "When I Need You" while previous #1 "Southern Nights" from Glen Campbell slipped.  Stevie Wonder's "Sir Duke" was hot (moving 9-4), former #1 "Don't Leave Me This Way" from Thelma Houston came in fifth and newcomer Jennifer Warnes had "Right Time Of The Night".  The rest of the Top 10:  "So In To You" by the Atlanta Rhythm Section, Natalie Cole's "I've Got Love On My Mind", the Climax Blues Band moved up to #9 with "Couldn't Get It Right" and Rose Royce hit the Top 10 with their follow-up to "Car Wash", "I Wanna' Get Next to You".
1978:  Bob Dylan sold 90,000 tickets in less than eight hours for upcoming shows at the Wembley Empire Pool in London.
1983:  Style Council debuted at an anti-nuclear benefit in London.

                                             Pink Floyd's "Your Possible Pasts"...

1983:  Thriller by Michael Jackson was the top album for the 11th week.  Journey's Frontiers remained a distant runner-up while Kilroy Was Here from Styx was third.  Def Leppard's Pyromania advanced to #4 while former #1 Business As Usual by Men At Work was still strong after 45 weeks.  The rest of the Top 10;  The Final Cut from Pink Floyd, the self-titled Lionel Richie, H2O from Hall & Oates was number 8, Rio by Duran Duran and Bob Seger's new album, The Distance, moved to #10.
1983:  "I Won't Hold You Back" by Toto was #1 for a second week on the Adult Contemporary chart.

1984:  The Cars released the single "Magic" on Elektra Records.

1986:  John Mellencamp joined with farmers outside the Farmers Home Administration office in Chillicothe, Missouri to protest farm conditions.
1988:  "Nite And Day" by Al B. Sure! was #1 on the R&B chart.
1988:  Terence Trent D'Arby reached #1 in his 17th week with "Wishing Well".  Gloria Estefan moved to challenge with "Anything For You".

1988:  Gloria Estefan remained at #1 for a third week with "Anything For You" on the Adult Contemporary chart.
1988:  The "Dirty Dancing" Soundtrack was #1 on the Album chart for the 18th week, followed by Faith from George Michael.
1991:  Wilson Pickett was arrested for driving drunk and threatening a neighbor, who happened to be the mayor, in Englewood, New Jersey.
1994:  Aerosmith played the first of seven nights at the Nippon Budokan in Tokyo, Japan.
1994:  Pink Floyd remained at #1 on the Album chart for a third week with The Division Bell.

1994:  "The Sign" by Ace of Base, which had already spent four weeks at #1 and another four at #2, returned to the top position.  
1995:  James Taylor and Natalie Cole received honorary degrees from Berklee College of Music in Boston.  (Note:  several websites claim that Taylor and Cole received their degrees on May 6.  This is impossible, since the official website for Berklee reports that the commencement ceremony in 1995 was held May 7.  Taylor and Cole received their honorary degrees on that date.)
1998:  Steve Perry left Journey to embark on a solo career.

1998:  Eddie Rabbitt died of lung cancer in Nashville, Tennessee at the age of 56.
1999:  Lisa Stansfield made her acting debut in the U.K. comedy Swing at Leicester Square in London.
2002:  Stanley, Idaho's Carole King was a guest star for a third time on the WB Networks show Gilmore Girls.
2003:  TNT and TBS announced they had signed Justin Timberlake to cover sports for the two cable channels.  Timberlake reported from the PGA championship, NBA playoffs, and NASCAR races for the TNT network, and covered college football and Major League Baseball contests for TBS.
2003:  Fleetwood Mac began their Say You Will tour at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus, Ohio.
2003:  Pete Townshend of the Who was cleared of possessing pornographic images of children, but was found guilty of accessing a child pornography website in 1999.  He was placed on a national register of sex offenders for five years.
2005:  Giacomo, a 50-1 longshot owned by Jerry Moss, founder of A&M Records, won the Kentucky Derby in Louisville.
2006:  Snow Patrol had the #1 album in the U.K. with Eyes Open.

2006:  Gnarls Barkley continued to rule the Singles chart with their great song "Crazy".
2009:  Dolly Parton received an honorary Doctorate Degree from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.
2011:  Michael McDonald and Mavis Staples of the Staple Singers received honorary degrees to the Berklee College of Music in Boston.
2011:  John Maus of the Walker Brothers ("The Sun Ain't Gonna' Shine Anymore") died of liver cancer in Los Angeles at the age of 67.

Born This Day:
1927:  Jim Lowe ("The Green Door") was born in Springfield, Missouri; died December 12, 2016 in East Hampton, New York.

1931:  Teresa Brewer was born in Toledo, Ohio; died of neuromuscular disease at her home in New Rochelle, New York on October 17, 2007.
1939:  Johnny Maestro (real name John Mastrangelo) of the Crests ("Sixteen Candles") and Brooklyn Bridge ("The Worst That Could Happen") was born in Manhattan, New York; died March 24, 2010 of cancer in Cape Coral, Florida.  (Note:  some websites claim Maestro was born in Brooklyn, and others say he was born in New York City.  The truth is that Johnny was born on the east side of Manhattan, according to the newspaper 'The New York Times'.)
1939:  Jimmy Ruffin ("What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted") was born in Collinsville, Mississippi; died November 17, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
1943:  Rick Westwood, guitarist of the Tremeloes ("Silence Is Golden"), was born in Dagenham, Essex, England.
1943:  Thelma Houston was born in Leland, Mississippi.  (Note:  several websites report Houston was born in 1946.  While no credible sources exist for her birth year, our best research indicates Thelma was born in 1943.)
1946:  Bill Danoff of Starland Vocal Band ("Afternoon Delight") was born in Springfield, Massachusetts.
1946:  Bill Kreutzmann, drummer of the Grateful Dead, was born in Palo Alto, California.
1948:  Pete Wingfield ("Eighteen With A Bullet") was born in Liphook, Hampshire, England.
1951:  Mic Gillette, founder and trumpet and trombone player with Tower of Power, who also worked with Elton John, the Rolling Stones, Rod Stewart, the Doobie Brothers, Jefferson Starship, Huey Lewis and the News, Santana, Sheryl Crow and Blood, Sweat & Tears, was born in Oakland, California; died January 17, 2016 of a heart attack in Concord, California.
1960:  Ann Dudley of Art of Noise was born in Chatham, Kent, England.
1961:  Phil Campbell, lead guitarist with Motorhead, was born in Pontypridd, Wales.

1969:  Eagle-Eye Cherry ("Save Tonight"), son of Don Cherry and brother to Nenah, was born in Stockholm, Sweden.

The #95 Album of All-Time in the Rock Era--"II" by Boyz II Men

The next album in our Countdown is II by Boyz II Men.  

The album was buoyed by two smash hits "I'll Make Love To You" and "On Bended Knee".  "Water Runs Dry" was also a huge hit; other singles include "Vibin'" and "Thank You".  So obviously, the album received considerable airplay.  II debuted at #1 and remained there for five weeks.  Even more impressive, once it got knocked from its perch, it spent 12 weeks at #2 and 43 in the Top 10.  It wasn't just marketing in other words; when consumers purchased the album, they loved it, told their friends, and then their friends bought it.  The album remained on the chart for 97 years (or just short of two years) and has sold 9 million copies.  The Track rating of 8.62 is not particularly strong, but with confirmation from the public as shown above, it is strong enough to land in the Top 100.  The album was also #1 in New Zealand, but not strong throughout Europe, so when we do the worldwide Top 100 Albums, it might not make the list.  But it does in the United States.

Further, the album received honors that help the album on that front.  It won a Grammy for Best R&B Album, and "I'll Make Love To You" won for Best R&B Song and Best R&B Performance By a Duo or Group and was nominated for Record of the Year.   

1.   "Thank You" (Michael S. McCary, Nathan Morris, Wanya Morris, Shawn Stockman, Dallas Austin) – 4:34
2.   "All Around the World" (James Harris III, Terry Lewis, Michael S. McCary, Nathan Morris, Wanya Morris, Shawn Stockman, Daddy-O) – 4:56
3.   "U Know" (Michael S. McCary, Nathan Morris, Wanya Morris, Shawn Stockman, Tim Kelley, Bob Robinson) – 4:46
4.   "Vibin'" (Michael S. McCary, Nathan Morris, Wanya Morris, Shawn Stockman, Tim Kelley, Bob Robinson) – 4:26
5.   "I Sit Away" (Tony Rich) – 4:34
6.   "Jezzebel" (Wanya Morris, Shawn Stockman, The Characters: Troy Taylor & Charles Farrar) – 6:06
7.   "Khalil (Interlude)"  (Nathan Morris, Shawn Stockman Tim Kelley, Bob Robinson) – 1:41
8.   "Trying Times" (Wanya Morris, Tim Kelley, Bob Robinson) – 5:23
9.   "I'll Make Love to You" (Babyface) – 4:07
10.  "On Bended Knee" (James Harris III, Terry Lewis) – 5:29
11.  "50 Candles" (Shawn Stockman, Tim Kelley, Bob Robinson) – 5:06
12.  "Water Runs Dry" (Babyface) – 3:22
13.  "Yesterday" (Paul McCartney, John Lennon) – 3:07
14.  "Falling" (Brian McKnight & Brandon Barnes) – 4:09

Boyz II Men consisted of Wanya Morris, Shawn Stockman, Michael S. McCary and Nathan Morris.  In addition to writing, Babyface played guitar, acoustical guitar and synthesizer on the album.  Peter Moore played guitar, Mark Cargill and William Henderson played violin, Kevan Torfeh played cello, Bob Robinson contributed piano and keyboard work, Tim Kelley played both keyboards and drums and Ray Griffin played drums.

The album was recorded at D.A.R.P Studios, Doppler Studios, Flyte Time Studios, Granny's House Recording Studio, Kajem Studios, LaCoCo Studios, Larrabee Sound Studios, Studio 4 and The Enterprise.   II was produced by Babyface, Tim & Bob, Jimmy Jam, Terry Lewis, Dallas Austin, L.A. Reid and Tony Rich.  Claudio Cueni, Jim Hinger, Mick Guzauski, Reggie Hamilton and Steve Hodge mixed the project while Tim Kelly, Jimmy Jam, Reggie Hamilton, Shawn Stockman, Tim Kelley, Wayne Morris, Terry Lewis, Bob Robinson and Boyz II Men did the Arranging.  Catherine Wessel, Tim White and Ron Slenzak did the photography for the album, released August 30, 1994 on Motown Records.  

II from Boyz II Men is next at #95 in the Top 100 Albums of All-Time in the Rock Era.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

This Date in Rock Music History: May 6

1957:  He had appeared on his parents' radio show and later on television.  On this date, Ricky Nelson first appeared on the chart with his first single, "A Teenager's Romance".
1963:  Andrew Oldham and agent Eric Easton signed a management contract with the Rolling Stones.  (Note:  some websites report that this occurred on April 29, 1963.  This is incorrect, according to the book 'The Rolling Stones:  A Musical Biography' by Murry R. Nelson.  According to Nelson, the contract was signed on May 6.)
1965:  Keith Richards began writing the Rolling Stones song "Satisfaction" in a hotel room in Clearwater, Florida.
1965:  James Brown recorded "I Got You (I Feel Good)" at Criteria Studios in Miami, Florida.
1965:  Marianne Faithful married John Dunbar in Cambridge, England.
1966:  Bob Dylan played at the ABC Cinema in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
1967:  Aretha Franklin led the way on the R&B chart for a seventh week with "I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)".
1967:  Frank & Nancy Sinatra remained at the top of the Easy Listening chart with "Somethin' Stupid".

                                  Steve Winwood & the Spencer Davis Group...

1967:  Frank Sinatra & daughter Nancy had the #1 song for the fourth week--"Somethin' Stupid".  The Supremes moved from 8 to 2 with "The Happening" while "Sweet Soul Music" by Arthur Conley ranked third.  The Monkees fell with "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You" and the former #1 "Happy Together" by the Turtles was now at #5.  The rest of the Top 10:  "I Think We're Alone Now" from Tommy James & the Shondells, the Buckinghams with "Don't You Care", Peaches & Herb jumped from 18-8 with "Close Your Eyes", the Dave Clark Five reached the Top 10 with "You Got What It Takes" and the Spencer Davis Group moved from 13-10 with "I'm A Man".
1967:  The Monkees remained at #1 for the 13th week on the Album chart with More of the Monkees.  Counting their debut release, the group spent their 26th consecutive week at #1.

                                               "Mood for a Day" from Yes...

1972:  Roberta Flack remained at the top of the Album chart with First Take.  Neil Young advanced with Harvest, swapping spots with America and their self-titled debut.  Eat a Peach from the Allman Brothers Band remained in its position while Yes stayed at 5 with Fragile.  The rest of the Top 10:  Paul Simon and his self-titled album, Smokin' from Humble Pie, Nilsson dropped with Nilsson Schmilsson, Stanley, Idaho's Carole King moved back up after 57 weeks of release with the classic Tapestry and Graham Nash & David Crosby entered the Top 10 with the appropriately named Graham Nash/David Crosby.

1972:  The Staple Singers took over at #1 on the R&B chart with the great song "I'll Take You There".
1972:  Roberta Flack had one of The Top Adult Songs of the 1970's*, as "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" was #1 for a sixth week.

1972:  The Carpenters had one of the hottest new songs as "It's Going To Take Some Time", a song written for them by Stanley, Idaho's Carole King, moved from 79 to 43.

                                 The Stylistics hit the Top 10 for a second time...

1972:  Roberta Flack remained at #1 for a fourth week with "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face".  Joe Tex peaked at 2 with "I Gotcha'", the Stylistics were next with "Betcha' By Golly, Wow" and Michael Jackson checked in with "Rockin' Robin".  The rest of the Top 10:  Aretha Franklin's "Day Dreaming", America with their former #1 "A Horse With No Name", the Staple Singers rocketed up from 18 to 7 with "I'll Take You There", Jackson Browne with "Doctor My Eyes", Al Green edged up with "Look What You Done For Me" and Ringo Starr slid in with "Back Off Boogaloo".

1973:  Paul Simon began his first tour without Art Garfunkel at the Boston Music Hall in Boston, Massachusetts.
1974:  The Hues Corporation released the single "Rock The Boat".

1974:  The Righteous Brothers released the single "Rock And Roll Heaven".


1978:  At the peak of their career, and during one of the hottest times for any artist in the Rock Era, The Bee Gees announced that they would donate money from concerts to UNICEF.
1978:  Johnny Mathis & Deniece Williams remained at #1 on the R&B chart for the fourth week with "Too Much, Too Little, Too Late".
1978:  England Dan & John Ford Coley beat all challengers for a sixth week at #1 on the Adult chart with "We'll Never Have To Say Goodbye Again".

                               Billy Joel's title track from his breakthrough album...

1978:  The Soundtrack to "Saturday Night Fever" was #1 for the 16th straight week on the Album chart, with London Town by Wings making a feeble attempt to challenge.  Eric Clapton's Slowhand dropped while Kansas edged up with Point of Know Return.  Jefferson Starship elevated with Earth.  The rest of the Top 10:  The Stranger from Billy Joel, George Benson fell with Weekend in L.A., Jackson Browne moved up to #8 with Running On Empty, Chuck  Mangione entered the Top 10 with Feels So Good and Warren Zevon was the final entry with Excitable Boy.
1978:  The Bee Gees dominated at #1 for an eighth straight week with "Night Fever".  Counting their #1 hit, "Stayin' Alive", and "(Love Is) Thicker Than Water", a song they wrote for brother Andy Gibb, Bee Gees' compositions had been at #1 for 14 straight weeks. 

1982:  Diana Ross was awarded with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6712 Hollywood Boulevard.
1989:  Jody Watley had the new #1 on the R&B chart with "Real Love".

1989:  Cher & Sun Valley, Idaho's Peter Cetera teamed up for a third week at #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart with "After All".
1989:  Madonna remained at #1 for the third week on the Album chart with Like a Prayer.  Paula Abdul re-entered the Top 10 after 42 weeks of release with Forever Your Girl.
1989:  Richard Marx had a high debut (#39) with "Satisfied".
1989:  "Like A Prayer" by Madonna was #1 for a third week.  Bon Jovi remained second with "I'll Be There For You", Jody Watley was up to 3 with "Real Love", Tone Loc slipped with his "Funky Cold Medina" and Paula Abdul moved from 10 to 5 with her latest, "Forever Your Girl".

1983:  Kai Winding, who gave us the instrumental "More", passed away from a brain tumor in New York City, just short of his 61st birthday.
1992:  Michael Jackson paid the funeral expenses for Ramon Sanchez, a nine-year-old boy that had been killed in a drive-by shooting during the Los Angeles riots.  (Note:  some websites mistakenly say this happened on May 22.  According to the United States Congress House of Representatives Bill 600, as well as the books 'Michael Jackson:  The Icon' by Jos Borsboom and 'Michael Jackson:  The Autopsy Is In...It Was Homicide' by Phyllis Jager, and 'Jet' magazine, the correct date is May 6.) 
1993:  The Internal Revenue Service seized assets of $1.6 million from Jerry Lee Lewis for unpaid taxes.  
1995:  Oasis had their first #1 in the U.K. with "Some Might Say".
1995:  Boyz II Men had one of the hottest new songs as "Water Runs Dry" moved from 38 to 10.

                                                     "Selling the Drama" from Live's amazing release

1995:  Live completed one of the most improbable rises to #1 in rock music history when their great album Throwing Copper reached #1 in its 52nd week on the album chart.
1996:  Metallica began two days of recording for the music video "Until It Sleeps".
2001:  Destiny's Child had the #1 album in the U.K. with Survivor.

2002:  Ray Charles received an honorary degree of philosophy from Albany State University in his hometown of Albany, Georgia.

2002:  Otis Blackwell died of a heart attack in Nashville, Tennessee at the age of 71.  Blackwell was the writer of hits such as "Don't Be Cruel" for Elvis Presley, "Great Balls Of Fire" for Jerry Lee Lewis and "Handy Man" (originally by Jimmy Jones and later by Del Shannon and James Taylor).
2003:  MTV featured Metallica as a "MTV Icon" in a 90-minute special.
2005:  Audioslave became the first group to perform in Cuba when they played at La Tribuna  in Havana.

2005:  A bronze life-size statue of James Brown was unveiled on Broad Street in Augusta, Georgia.
2008:  Cher played the first of 192 dates at the Las Vegas Colosseum in Nevada.

Born This Day:
1917:  Kal Mann, who wrote "Butterfly" for Charlie Grace, "Teddy Bear" for Elvis Presley, "Wild One" for Bobby Rydell, "You Can't Sit Down" for the Dovells and "Let's Twist Again" for Chubby Checker among others, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; died November 28, 2001 from Alzheimer's disease in Pompano Beach, Florida.  (Note:  several websites, including the notorious '', erroneously report that Mann died in Philadelphia.  According to credible sources such as 'Billboard', Mann died at his home in Pompano Beach, Florida.)
1924:  Denny Wright, guitarist for Lonnie Donnegan, Ella Fitzgerald, and many others, was born in Deptford, London; died of bladder cancer February 8, 1992.
1942:  Colin Earl of Mungo Jerry ("In The Summertime") was born in Richmond upon Thames, London.  (Note:  some websites report that Earl was born in Hampton Court, London.  Hampton Court is a royal palace, not a city, located in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames.)
1945:  Bob Seger was born in Dearborn, Michigan.
1948:  Mary MacGregor ("Torn Between Two Lovers") was born in St. Paul, Minnesota.
1950:  Robbie McIntosh, drummer of the Average White Band, was born in Dundee, Scotland; died of drugs September 23, 1974 in Hollywood, California).
1960:  Larry Steinbachek (real name Lawrence Cole) of Bronski Beat ("Smalltown Boy") was born in London.
1960:  John Flansburgh of They Might Be Giants was born in Lincoln, Massachusetts.
1962:  Adam Yellin, engineer, mixer, producer and record company executive, who worked with the Rolling Stones, Kiss, Billy Idol, Debbie Harry and the Ramones, was born in New York City.
1964:  Tony Scalzo of Fastball was born in Honolulu, Hawai'i.
1967:  Mark Bryan, founding member and lead guitarist for Hootie & the Blowfish, was born in Silver Spring, Maryland.
1971:  Chris Shiflett, guitarist of the Foo Fighters, was born in Santa Barbara, California.