Saturday, May 4, 2013

This Date in Rock Music History: May 5

1900:  The Billboard (known today as Billboard), in its sixth year, switched production to weekly rather than monthly.
1956:  The Elvis Presley album Elvis becomes the first rock LP to top the Album chart.

1956:  Elvis scored the first #1 of his career with "Heartbreak Hotel".
1958:  Elvis Presley had the top R&B song with "Wear My Ring Around Your Neck".
1962:  Chris Montez recorded "Last Dance".

1962:  One of the great folk rock artists enjoyed their first hit on this date as Peter, Paul & Mary debuted on the chart with their first single--"Lemon Tree".
1962:  Dee Dee Sharp was #1 on the R&B chart with "Mashed Potato Time".
1962:  Mr. Acker Bilk had a huge Easy Listening hit with "Stranger On The Shore".  It was atop the Adult chart for the third out of seven weeks in a row.

1962:  The Shirelles marched to #1 with "Soldier Boy".  Dee Dee Sharp saw an opening and took advantage with "Mashed Potato Time", former #1 "Johnny Angel" from Shelley Fabares was third, followed by Mr. Acker Bilk and "Stranger On The Shore" and Elvis Presley's previous #1, "Good Luck Charm".
1968:  Buffalo Springfield split after a concert at the Long Beach Arena in Long Beach, California.

1969:  The Beatles released the single "Get Back" on Apple Records.

1969:  United States President Richard Nixon awarded Stevie Wonder with the Distinguished Service Award for Wonder's commitment to employment of the handicapped.
1972:  America, the Kinks, Donovan, the Grateful Dead, Dr. John, Captain Beefheart, Wishbone Ash, Country Joe MacDonald, New Riders of the Purple Sage and Brinsley Schwarz were among the performers at the three-day Bickershaw Festival in Wigan, Lancashire, England which began on this date. 
1972:  "Pillow Talk" by Sylvia was #1 for a second week on the R&B chart.
1972:  Paul Simon, Chicago and Carole King performed at a benefit for U.S. Presidential candidate George McGovern.  Michelle Phillips, Mama Cass, Judy Collins, Goldie Hawn and Jack Nicholson would all do similar benefits around the country.  Why do you suppose most of the talented entertainers support Democrats?   
1973:  Paul Simon released the album There Goes Rhymin' Simon on Columbia Records.

1973:  Paul Simon released the single "Kodachrome".
1973:  A crowd of 56,800 turned out in Tampa Stadium in Florida to see Led Zeppelin.  
1973:  Aloha from Hawai'i via Satellite by Elvis Presley was the new #1 album in the land.  Houses of the Holy by Led Zeppelin was at #2 with The Best of Bread at #3.  

                                                   Stealer's Wheel tried to get unstuck...

1973:  "Tie A Yellow Ribbon 'Round The Ole Oak Tree" by Tony Orlando & Dawn was #1 for the third week in a row, with "The Cisco Kid" by War hanging around at #2.  Sweet's "Little Willy" climbed to 3 while Stevie Wonder was heading for the top with "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life".  The rest of the Top 10:  the former #1 "The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia" by Vicki Lawrence at #5, Dobie Gray made a strong move from 11-6 with "Drift Away", Stealers Wheel had #7--"Stuck In The Middle With You", Donny Osmond was stuck at 8 with "The Twelfth Of Never", the Carpenters fell to 9 with "Sing" and the Edgar Winter Group had a monster hit with "Frankenstein".
1974:  The Stilettoes, who would later become Blondie, made their public debut at CBGB's in New York City.
1979:  "Love Is The Answer" by England Dan & John Ford Coley led the way on the Adult Contemporary chart.

1979:  "Reunited" by Peaches and Herb was #1 on the R&B chart for the second out of four consecutive weeks it would spent at the top.

                                                Frank Mills took his song and ran with it...

1979:  Peaches & Herb took "Reunited" all the way to the top on this date, taking over from "Heart Of Glass" by Blondie.  Frank Mills was next with "Music Box Dancer" with the former #1 "Knock On Wood" from Amii Stewart in fourth.
1984:  Duran Duran owned the #1 U.K. song with "The Reflex".
1984:  Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders and Jim Kerr of Simple Minds were married in New York City's Central Park.
1984:  "Hello" from Lionel Richie was the #1 song on the AC chart for the fifth straight week.

1984:  Phil Collins had the #1 song for a third week with "Against All Odds (Take  A Look At Me Now)".  Lionel Richie was second again with "Hello", while the Thompson Twins were next with "Hold Me Now".  Kenny Loggins followed with "Footloose" and Rick Springfield was up to #5 with "Love Somebody".  The rest of the Top 10:  Willie Nelson & Julio Iglesias with "To All the Girls I've Loved Before", the Cars scored their ninth career hit with "You Might Think", Tracey Ullman's "They Don't Know", Deniece Williams moved into the Top 10 with "Let's Hear It For The Boy" and Culture Club tumbled with "Miss Me Blind".

1986:  Cleveland, Ohio was named as the site for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Really too bad they tarnished it by electing far too many members.
1988:  Pepsi became the first company to buy commercial time in the Soviet Union, purchasing television airtime to show five minutes of commercials, including two showing Michael Jackson's famous commercial.  The commercials were set to run May 17-21.  (Note:  some websites erroneously say the commercial aired on this date.  An article in the newspaper 'The Los Angeles Times' and other newspapers on May 6 may have confused the website owners.  The article never said the commercials were run the previous day.  Rather, they said that Pepsi bought the airtime and that the commercials would air in the Soviet Union on May 17-21.) 
1990:  A tribute concert to John Lennon was at the Pier Head Arena in Merseyside, England.  Tom Petty, Ringo Starr, Jeff Lynne, Al Green, Joe Walsh, Natalie Cole, Lou Reed, Joe Cocker, Lenny Kravitz, and Wet Wet Wet performed.
1990:  The talented En Vogue debuted on the chart with their first single--"Hold On".

                                "Back on My Feet Again", from Bolton's sixth album...

1990:  Sinead O'Connor was solidly at #1 on the Album chart with I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got and Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 #2.  Soul Provider from Michael Bolton was #3, followed by MC Hammer at 4 with Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em.  The rest of the Top 10:  Paula Abdul with Forever Your Girl, Bonnie Raitt's Nick of Time coming in at #6, Violator from Depeche Mode #7, Heart moving into the Top 10 with Brigade, Pump from Aerosmith at #9 and the debut from Alannah Myles at #10.

                                                  Aerosmith was still going strong...

1990:  "Nothing Compares 2 (sic) U (sic)" by Sinead O' Connor held on to #1 for a third week.  Calloway was second with "I Wanna' Be Rich", Michael Bolton found himself at #3 with "How Can We Be Lovers" and Madonna moved from 12 to 4 with "Vogue".  Heart was up with "All I Wanna' Do Is Make Love To You".  The rest of the Top 10:  Jane Child and "Don't Wanna' Fall In Love", Babyface with "Whip Appeal", Lisa Stansfield dropped with "All Around The World", Aerosmith's 18th career hit "What It Takes" and Janet Jackson moved from 17 to 10 with "Alright".

1990:  Rod Stewart  and Ronald Isley remained at the #1 spot on the Adult Contemporary chart for the third week with "This Old Heart Of Mine".
1992:  The Beach Boys appeared on the ABC-TV show Full House.
1995:  Drummer Steven Adler of Guns N' Roses was arraigned in Van Nuys (California) Municipal Court on heroin possession.

1997:  Bruce Springsteen was awarded the Polar Music Prize by Sweden.
2002:  The plug was pulled on an interview with Ted Nugent on a Denver radio station after Nugent used derogatory racial terms for both Asians and Blacks.  We of course now know what type of low life scum he is.
2005:  "Hollaback Girl" by Gwen Stefani was the #1 song.
2005:  Justin Timberlake underwent an operation at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles to remove nodules from his throat.
2008:  Jerry Wallace ("Primrose Lane" from 1959) died of congestive heart failure in Corona, California at the age of 79.

2011:  Nigel Pickering, singer, songwriter, founder, bassist and guitarist with Spanky & Our Gang, died at the age of 80 in St. Augustine, Florida after a long struggle with liver cancer.

Born This Day:
1934:  Ace Cannon, saxophonist who gave us "Tuff" and played for Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and the Oak Ridge Boys, was born in Grenada, Mississippi.
1934:  Johnnie Taylor ("Disco Lady") was born in Crawfordsville, Arkansas; died of a heart attack in Dallas, Texas May 31, 1999, shortly after his 65th birthday.  (Note:  Taylor frequently said he was born in either 1937 or 1938.  The official date of his birth was not revealed until after his death, according to the book 'Encyclopedia of Arkansas Music' by Ali Welky and Mike Keckhaver, and 'MTV'.)  


1948:  Bill Ward, drummer for Black Sabbath, was born in Birmingham, Warwickshire, England.  (Note:  some websites, including 'Billboard' say Ward was born in Aston, Birmingham.  Some say he was born in Birmingham, West Midlands.  Birmingham did not become part of the county of West Midlands until 1974 with the Local Government Act, well after Ward was born.  Aston is an area, not a city, and Birmingham is a city, not a county.  Ward was born in Birmingham, Warwickshire.) 
1951:  Rex Goh, guitarist for Air Supply, was born in Singapore.
1962:  Kevin Paul Mooney, bass guitarist with Adam & the Ants, was born in Greenwich, London, England.
1963:  Ian McCulloch, lead singer of Echo and the Bunnymen, was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, England.  (Note:  some websites claim that Ian McCullough was the lead singer of the group and that he was born on this date.  No one with that name was ever with Echo and the Bunnymen.  The correct spelling of the lead singer is McCulloch.) 
1966:  Shawn Drover, drummer for Megadeth, was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
1981:  Craig David was born in Southampton, Hampshire, England.
1989:  Chris Brown was born in Tappahannock, Virginia.

Hits List: Pat Benatar

Here's a female rocker we've certainly highlighted in other portions of the website, but we haven't laid out her Hits List* yet.  Of course, she has numerous great songs that were never hits, especially early in her career.  But here is a record of her single releases:

1974:  "Day Gig"
1979:  "I Need A Lover" (#31 Netherlands)--Highly Underrated.
            "If You Think You Know How To Love Me"

1980:  "Heartbreaker" (#23, #16 Canada, #34 Australia)--Highly Underrated.
            "We Live For Love" (#27, #8 Canada, #28 Australia, #26 New Zealand)
            "You Better Run" (#42, #31 Australia, #42 New Zealand)--Underrated.
            "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" (#9, #10 Canada, #33 Australia)
1981:  "Treat Me Right" (#18, #12 Canada)
            "Fire and Ice" (#17, #2 Mainstream Rock, #4 Canada, #30 Australia, #22 New Zealand)--Highly Underrated.
            "I'm Gonna' Follow You"--Highly Underrated.
            "Hell Is For Children"--Highly Underrated.
            "Promises in the Dark" (#38, #16 Mainstream, #31 Canada)--Highly Underrated.

1982:  "Precious Time"
            "It's a Tuff Life"
            "Shadows of the Night" (#13, #3 Mainstream, #50 U.K., #12 Canada, #19 Australia, #32 New Zealand)

1983:  "Anxiety (Get Nervous)"

            "Little Too Late" (#20, #38 Mainstream)
            "Looking for a Stranger" (#39, #4 Mainstream)
            "Love Is A Battlefield" (#5, #1 Mainstream, #17 U.K., #2 Canada, #1 Australia, #6 New Zealand, #1 Netherlands, #11 Switzerland)
1984:  "Lipstick Lies"
            "We Belong" (#5, #3 Mainstream, #22 U.K., #8 Canada, #7 Australia, #7 New Zealand, #13 Netherlands, #5 Switzerland)
             "Diamond Field"
1985:  "Ooh Ooh Song" (#36, #22 Mainstream, #89 Canada, #78 Australia, #41 New Zealand)
            "Temporary Heroes"
            "Painted Desert"
            "Invincible" (#10, #4 Mainstream, #53 U.K., #6 Canada, #23 Australia, #15 New Zealand, #18 Netherlands)
            "Sex as a Weapon" (#28, #5 Mainstream, #67 U.K., #30 Canada, #33 Australia, #26 New Zealand)
1986:  "La Bel Age" (#54, #19 Mainstream, #86 Australia)
            "Big Life"

1988:  "All Fired Up" (#19, #2 Mainstream, #19 U.K., #8 Canada, #2 Australia, #20 New Zealand)
             "Don't Walk Away" (#42 U.K., #62 Australia, #48 New Zealand)
             "Let's Stay Together"
1989:  "One Love" (#59 U.K.)
1991:  "True Love" (#21 Netherlands)
            "Payin' the Cost to Be the Boss" (#17 Mainstream)
            "So Long"
1993:  "Everybody Lay Down" (#3 Mainstream)
            "Somebody's Baby" (#48 U.K., #36 New Zealand)
1994:  "Crazy"
            "Every Time I Fall Back"
1997:  "Strawberry Wine (Life Is Sweet)"
            "At This Time"
            "Papa's Roses"

2003:  "Have It All"
2004:  "Go"

That's 17 hits for Ms. Benatar, with 4 of those going Top 10, and as stressed above, many of those were underrated.  Plus, that doesn't scratch the surface with all the other great album tracks she has.  There is no doubt that Pat Benatar is one of The Top 100 Female Artists of the Rock Era*.

Friday, May 3, 2013

This Date in Rock Music History: May 4

1956:  Elvis Presley released the single "I Want You, I Need You, I Love You".  (Note:  several websites report the date of release as May 1 or May 12, and, while there are no "established" reliable sources, the website contains a pretty thorough account of the song's recording and release.  They report that Elvis released the song on May 4, and that is the best information on the release date.)
1956:  Gene Vincent recorded "Be-Bop-A-Lula" at Owen Bradley's Studio in Nashville, Tennessee.
1957:  The first rock music show on television, Alan Freed's Rock 'n' Roll Revue, premiered on ABC-TV.  Guests were the Del-Vikings, the Clovers, Guy Mitchell and Screamin' Jay Hawkins.  (Note:  some websites claim that a group called the Dell-Vikings were on the show.  There is no such group.  The proper spelling of the group is Del-Vikings.)
1959:  The first Grammy Awards Show was presented at the Beverly Hills Hotels in Los Angeles and New York City.  Volare" by Domenico Modugno received Record of the Year.

It's Just a Matter of Time by Brook Benton on Grooveshark
1959:  Oh, for the long lost days when African-Americans used to contribute quality to music.  Brook Benton landed a ninth straight week at #1 on the R&B chart with "It's Just A Matter Of Time".
1959:  Johnny Horton recorded one of the biggest jumps in rock history, when "The Battle Of New Orleans" rose from 93-36 on this date.

                                           Dave Cortez was one step away..

1959:  The Fleetwoods continued to hold on to #1 for the fourth week with "Come Softly To Me".  Dave "Baby" Cortez moved to #2 with "The Happy Organ".
1960:  Bobby Rydell took viewers on a tour of his home on the television show American Bandstand.
1961:  The Marcells had the #1 U.K. hit with "Blue Moon".
1963:  He would go on to have 38 hits but on this date, the great Wilson Pickett debuted on the chart with his first hit--"If You Need Me".
1963:  "Baby Workout" by the great Jackie Wilson was the new #1 on the R&B chart.
1963:  Andy Williams held on to the top spot on the Easy Listening Chart for the fourth week with "Can't Get Used To Losing You".
1963:  Surfin' U.S.A. became the first album by the Beach Boys to make the Album chart.  Andy Williams was at #1 with Days of Wine and Roses, which would go on to top the chart for 16 weeks.
1963:  The Crystals were on the move (80 to 53) with "Da Doo Ron Ron".

1964:  The Moody Blues were formed in Erdington, Warwickshire, England.  (Note:  some websites report that the group was formed in Birmingham, England, some say they formed in Erdington, West Midlands, and some say Erdington, Birmingham, Warwickshire, England.  Erdington is a suburb of Birmingham, and if one is talking about a city or town, there is no need to list the city that it is next to.  Although Erdington is now part of the county of West Midlands, that designation began in 1974 with the Local Government Act.  The Moodies formed in 1964, well before that time, when Erdington was located in the county of Warwickshire.  According to the newspaper 'The Examiner', the Moody Blues formed in Erdington, Warwickshire, England.)
1967:  The Jimi Hendrix Experience performed on the U.K. television show Top of the Pops.
1968:  The model Twiggy recommended Mary Hopkin to Paul McCartney, after she saw the 18-year-old Hopkin perform on a British talent show.  McCartney produced Hopkin's smash "Those Were The Days" later that year.
1968:  Steppenwolf appeared on American Bandstand.
1968:  Bobby Goldsboro moved to #1 on the Adult chart with "Honey".
      Hugo Montenegro did what no one currently can do:  have a Top 10 instrumental...

1968:  "Honey" by Bobby Goldsboro was #1 for a fourth week in a row.  The Box Tops couldn't budge with "Cry Like A Baby" while Gary Puckett & the Union Gap were stuck at 3 with "Young Girl".  The Beatles peaked at #4 with "Lady Madonna".  The rest of the Top 10:  "Tighten Up" from Archie Bell & the Drells, James Brown remained stuck at 6 with "I Got The Feelin'", the Intruders with "Cowboys To Girls", Hugo Montenegro's great instrumental, "The Good, The Bad And The Ugly", the Rascals advanced from 19 to 9 with "A Beautiful Morning" and the Irish Rovers dropped in with "The Unicorn".
1969:  John Lennon and Paul McCartney were on hand along with Ringo Starr for the London wrap party for The Magic Christian, which starred Peter Sellers and Starr, at the nightclub Les Ambassadeurs.

1970:  In one of the most disturbing incidents in American history, the Ohio National Guard killed four students and wounded 11 others during an anti-Vietnam War protest at Kent State University.  Neil Young was moved to write the epic song "Ohio", which he would record in the next few days with Crosby, Stills & Nash.
1973:  Led Zeppelin debuted their new tour at Fulton County Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia.  The tour would go on to gross $4 million, the biggest tour to that time.
1974:  ABBA went to #1 in the U.K. with the song that had won the Eurovision contest, "Waterloo".
1974:  "TSOP" by MFSB was the #1 Adult Contemporary hit.

1974:  Grand Funk's version of "Locomotion" was the #1 song, taking over from "TSOP" by MFSB.  "Bennie And The Jets" fell to #3 for Elton John while "Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me" by Gladys Knight & the Pips was #4.  The rest of the Top 10:  "Dancing Machine" by the Jackson 5, Ray Stevens climbed to #6 with his hit "The Streak", the former #1 Hooked On A Feeling" by Blue Swede was at 7, the great instrumental "Tubular Bells" from The Exorcist was #8 for Mike Oldfield, Three Dog Night entered the Top 10 at #9 with "The Show Must Go On" and the Main Ingredient had #10 with "Just Don't Want To Be Lonely".

                                        The title track from Grand Funk's new album...

1974:  The Soundtrack to "The Sting" was the #1 album, toppling Chicago VII.  John Denver's Greatest Hits fell to #3 with Cat Stevens' Buddha and the Chocolate Box at #4.  The rest of the Top 10:  Shinin' On from Grand Funk, Maria Muldaur at #6, Band on the Run by Paul McCartney & Wings, Tubular Bells from Mike Oldfield at #8, the great Goodbye Yellow Brick Road on its way down at #9 and the Doobie Brothers came in at 10 with What Were Once Vices Are Now Habits.
1975:  Elvis Presley was at the Civic Center in Lake Charles, Louisiana.
1976:  KISS chose Queens, New York for their first live performance.  The group debuted at the Popcorn Club, which is now the Coventry.
1978:  "Night Fever" by the Bee Gees held down #1 in the U.K. 
1985:  DeBarge enjoyed a brief one-week turn at #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart with "Rhythm Of The Night".
1985:  U.S.A. for Africa had the new #1 on the R&B chart with "We Are The World".

                                 Sade's first big hit had people asking "Who does that?!"

1985:  "We Are The World" by U.S.A. for Africa continued to be the #1 song for the fourth week while Madonna remained at #2 with "Crazy For You" and DeBarge had #3 "Rhythm Of The Night".  Simple Minds rose to #4 with "Don't You (Forget About Me)" from The Breakfast Club.  The rest of the Top 10:  "One Night In Bangkok" from Murray Head, "Obsession" by Animotion at #7, the Commodores at 8 with "Nightshift", Don Henley's hit "All She Wants To Do Is Dance" at #9 and Sade's first hit "Smooth Operator" closing out the Top 10.
1989:  Stevie Ray Vaughan began what would be his last tour at the Orpheum in Vancouver, British Columbia.  
1990:  Madonna began the North American leg of her Blonde Ambition tour at the Summit in Houston, Texas.  She began the world tour with nine shows in Japan prior to coming to North America.
1991:  MC Hammer played at Wembley Arena in London.
1991:  Phil Collins and Al Jarreau received honorary Doctors of Music degrees from Berklee College of Music.
1991:  "Baby Baby" gave Amy Grant her first #1 Adult Contemporary hit.

1991:  Amy Grant remained at #1 for a second week with "Baby Baby".  Roxette stood ready to take over with "Joyride" while the Hi-Five edged up with "I Like The Way (The Kissing Game)".  C + C Music Factory was at 4 with "Here We Go".  The rest of the Top 10:  Cathy Dennis with "Touch Me (All Night Long)", the Divinyls sang "I Touch Myself", Rick Astley with "Cry For Help", Rod Stewart scored his 13th career Top 10 and 42nd hit with "Rhythm Of My Heart", Wilson Phillips were on their way down with "You're In Love" and Mariah Carey was back with "I Don't Wanna' Cry".
1995:  After a judge declared John Fogerty the winner in a copyright lawsuit, Fogerty was awarded $1.35 million.
1995:  At a concert to remember the Kent State University shootings in 1970, Peter, Paul & Mary performed "Blowin' In The Wind".
1996:  George Michael had the #1 song in the U.K. with "Fastlove".

                                                  We were introduced to the Gin Blossoms...

1996:  Mariah Carey unbelievably achieved her 11th #1 song in 19 releases with "Always Be My Baby".  All but one of those releases was a Top 10 song.  Celine Dion finally fell after six weeks at the top with "Because You Loved Me".  The only new Top 10 was the double-sided hit from the Gin Blossoms--"Follow You Down"/"Til' I Hear It From You".
1996:  Alanis Morissette began six weeks on top the U.K. Album chart with her classic Jagged Little Pill.

1999:  Toto was inducted into Hollywood's Rock Walk.
2000:  KISS announced that it would auction off everything from their touring days.
2004:  Ex-Guns 'N Roses members Slash and Duff McKagen sued lead singer Axl Rose, alleging that Rose turned down several offers to use songs by the group on movie soundtracks without consulting the rest of the band.
2008:  Madonna had the #1 U.K. album with Hard Candy.
2008:  Frank Sinatra and Bruce Springsteen were inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark.  (Note:  some websites mistakenly say the induction ceremony took place on May 5.  The poor website owners apparently were confused when they saw newspaper reports on May 6 announcing the inductions.  As most people know, newspapers are printed overnight, and contain news that happened the previous day.  Sinatra and Springsteen were inducted on May 5, according to United Press International, the newspaper 'The New York Daily News', as well as 'Rolling Stone' magazine, at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark.)2011:  Marie Osmond remarried Steve Craig 26 years after they divorced.

Born This Day:
1923:  Ed Cassidy, drummer and co-founder of Spirit, was born in Harvey, Illinois; died of cancer December 6, 2012 in San Jose, California.  (Note:  some websites report Cassidy was born in Chicago, Illinois, but he was born in Harvey, according to the newspaper 'The New York Times'.)
1928:  Maynard Ferguson, who gave us one of rock's all-time top instrumentals, "Gonna' Fly Now", was born in Verdun (which is now part of Montreal), Quebec, Canada; died August 23, 2006 of kidney and liver failure brought on by an abdominal infection in Ventura, California.

1937:  Dick Dale (real name Richard Anthony Monsour), early pioneer of the Rock Era and elite guitarist, was born in Boston, Massachusetts.
1938:  Tyrone Davis ("Turn Back The Hands Of Time") was born in Greenville, Mississippi; died from complications of a stroke in Chicago, Illinois on February 9, 2005.  (Note:  some websites report Davis was born in Wilmont, Mississippi, a town near Greenville.  'MTV' and the newspaper 'The Guardian' say that Tyrone was born in Greenville.)

1941:  Nickolas Ashford, great songwriter, producer and half of the duo Ashford & Simpson ("Solid") was born in Fairfield, South Carolina; died August 22, 2011 in New York City after battling throat cancer.  Ashford and wife Valerie Simpson wrote many great Motown songs including 'Ain't No Mountain High Enough" and "Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing".  (Note:  some websites mistakenly say Ashford was born in 1942.  The respected newspapers 'The Washington Post' and 'The New York Times' report that Ashford was born in 1941.)
1942:  Ronnie Bond, drummer of the Troggs, was born in Andover, Hampshire, England; died November 13, 1992 in Winchester, Hampshire, England.
1944:  Peggy Santiglia of the Angels ("My Boyfriend's Back") was born in Belleville, New Jersey.

1944:  Richie Furay of Buffalo Springfield and Poco was born in Yellow Springs, Ohio.
1945:  Georg Wadenius, guitarist, songwriter, singer and bassist of Blood, Sweat & Tears, was born in Stockholm, Sweden.

1951:   Mick Mars (real name Bob Deal), lead guitarist for Motley Crue, was born in Terre H
aute, Indiana.  (Note:  some websites, including the notorious '', claim Mars was born in April 4, and some sites claim Mick was born in 1955 or 1956.  Wrong, wrong, wrongo!  Mars was born May 4, according to his daughter Stormy and her birth certificate.)
1951:  Jackie Jackson (real name Sigmund) of the Jackson 5 was born in Gary, Indiana.
1951:  Bruce Day, bass guitarist and vocalist of Pablo Cruise; died June 30, 1999 in Windsor, Ontario, Canada.
1953:  Oleta Adams was born in Seattle, Washington.
1955:  Robert Ellis Orrall, singer, songwriter and producer, was born in Winthrop, Massachusetts.
1961:  Jay Aston, singer of Bucks Fizz, was born in Purley, Surrey, England.  (Note:  some websites report Aston was born in London.  While there are no credible sources as to her birthplace, our best information indicates she was born in Purley.)

                                                         More songs like this, please

1970:  Gregg Alexander, singer-songwriter, producer and frontman of New Radicals, who gave us the timeless song "You Get What You Give", was born in Grosse Pointe, Michigan.
1972:  Mike Dirnt, co-founder, bassist and backing vocalist of Green Day, was born in Berkeley, California.
1979:  Lance Bass of 'N Sync was born in Laurel, Mississippi.

Top Tracks: "Love and Loneliness" by the Motors

Here's a rocker from the 80's.  The group never made it, but the song had merits:

The Top Unknown/Underrated Songs of the Rock Era*: "The Last Resort" by the Eagles

This definitely falls under category "One of the best songs you may not know..", so it fits nicely in The Top Unknown/Underrated Songs of the Rock Era*.  You know about "Hotel California", the title song from the album, but this one's on that great album as well:

The Last Resort
Words by Don Henley, Music by Glenn Frey
She came from Providence,
the one in Rhode Island
Where the old world shadows hang
heavy in the air
She packed her hopes and dreams
like a refugee
Just as her father came across the sea

She heard about a place people were smilin'
They spoke about the red man's way,
and how they loved the land
And they came from everywhere
to the Great Divide
Seeking a place to stand
or a place to hide

Down in the crowded bars,
out for a good time,
Can't wait to tell you all,
what it's like up there
And they called it paradise
I don't know why
Somebody laid the mountains low
while the town got high

Then the chilly winds blew down
Across the desert
through the canyons of the coast, to
the Malibu
Where the pretty people play,
hungry for power
to light their neon way
and give them things to do

Some rich men came and raped the land,
Nobody caught 'em
Put up a bunch of ugly boxes, and Jesus,
people bought 'em
And they called it paradise
The place to be
They watched the hazy sun, sinking in the sea

You can leave it all behind
and sail to Lahaina
just like the missionaries did, so many years ago
They even brought a neon sign: "Jesus is coming"
Brought the white man's burden down
Brought the white man's reign

Who will provide the grand design?
What is yours and what is mine?
'Cause there is no more new frontier
We have got to make it here

We satisfy our endless needs and
justify our bloody deeds,
in the name of destiny and the name
of God

And you can see them there,
On Sunday morning
They stand up and sing about
what it's like up there
They call it paradise
I don't know why
You call someplace paradise,
kiss it goodbye

Thursday, May 2, 2013

This Date in Rock Music History: May 3

1964:  Gerry & the Pacemakers performed "Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying" for their television debut in the United States on The Ed Sullivan Show.
1965:  The Beatles filmed sequences for their upcoming movie Help!  on the Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire, England with the British Army’s Third Tank Division.

1967:  The Hollies recorded "Carrie Anne" in two takes.
1967:  Carl Wilson of the Beach Boys went to court on charges he evaded the draft.
1968:  The Beach Boys opened a tour with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.  Shows opened with an unintelligible lecture by Yogi, and were a disaster for the group.  The tour was cancelled after five dates, with 24 concerts cancelled. 
1969:  Jimi Hendrix was arrested at Toronto International Airport for possession of narcotics.  He would die a little more than a year later, having not learned his lesson.


1969:  The great Mercy song "Love (Can Make You Happy)" vaulted from #52 to #15 on this date.

Cover Aquarius Let the Sunshine in (Fifth Dimension)
1969:  Now for some good news.  It was week #4 at the top for "Aquarius"/"Let The Sunshine In" by the 5th Dimension.  "It's Your Thing" climbed to #2 for the Isley Brothers while the Cowsills found themselves at 3 with "Hair".  The rest of the Top 10:  "You've Made Me So Very Happy" by Blood, Sweat & Tears at #4, Jerry Butler's "Only The Strong Survive", Booker T & the MG's climbing to #6 with one of rock's all-time great instrumentals, "Time Is Tight", Tommy James & the Shondells moving to position #7 with "Sweet Cherry Wine", another great instrumental, "Hawai'i Five-O" entering the top 10 at #8 for the Ventures, Simon & Garfunkel's classic "The Boxer" moving from 16-9 and Glen Campbell sliding to #10 with "Galveston".

1971:  Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds released the single "Don't Pull Your Love".
1971:  Led Zeppelin performed "Four Sticks" live for the only time of their career at K.B. Hallen in Copenhagen.

1973:  Diana Ross released the single "Touch Me In The Morning".

1975:  The Carpenters had yet another #1 Adult Contemporary song (the 12th of their career) with "Only Yesterday".
1975:  Barry White scored a #1 R&B song with "What Am I Gonna' Do With You".
1975:  The great sound of Chicago propelled the group from #68 to 43 on this date with "Old Days".

Jackie Blue by The Ozark Mountain Daredevils on Grooveshark        
       The Ozarks with their great summertime hit...

1975:  There were some great songs entering the Top 10 but first--the #1 song on this date--"He Don't Love You (Like I Love You) from Tony Orlando & Dawn.  B.J. Thomas found himself at #2 with "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song".  The rest of the Top 10:  Freddy Fender's "Before The Next Teardrop Falls", Elton John's former #1 "Philadelphia Freedom" at 4, Sammy Johns rose to #5 with "Chevy Van", the Ozark Mountain Daredevils rose from 14 to 6 with "Jackie Blue", Earth, Wind & Fire entered the Top 10 with "Shining Star", the Blackbyrds easy-going hit "Walking In Rhythm" was at #8, Leo Sayer had #9 with "Long Tall Glasses" and the Carpenters shot up from 21-10 with "Only Yesterday".
1976:  Paul McCartney performed in the United States for the first time in 10 years as the Wings Over America tour premiered at the Tarrant County Convention Hall in Fort Worth, Texas.
1976:  Paul Simon, Jimmy Cliff and Phoebe Snow teamed up for a benefit concert for the New York Public Library.
1978:  The movie FM opened in Los Angeles.

1980:  "Lost In Love" by Air Supply regained the #1 spot on the Adult Contemporary chart (It would spend six weeks there.)

Her Strut by Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet on Grooveshark
                                  "Her Strut", one of the Top Tracks* on Seger's new album...

1980:  Against the Wind from Bob Seger was the new #1 album in the land.  Pink Floyd was bumped out with The Wall while Billy Joel had Glass Houses at #3.  The rest of the Top 10:  Mad Love from Linda Ronstadt at #4, the Brothers Johnson were at #5 with Light Up the Night, Michael Jackson's Off the Wall was at 6, the Soundtrack to "American Gigolo" landed at #7, Journey's Departure was #8, Van Halen had #9, Women and Children First, and the debut from Christopher Cross entered the Top10 on his birthday.
1980:  Blondie achieved a third week at #1 with "Call Me".  An amazing Top Five included "Ride Like The Wind" from Christopher Cross, Air Supply's "Lost In Love", Billy Preston & Syreeta's touching "With You I'm Born Again" and Pink Floyd with "Another Brick In The Wall".

1986:  Dollywood (Dolly Parton's theme park) opened its gates in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
1986:  Whitney Houston remained at #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart with "Greatest Love Of All".
1986:  Robert Palmer earned a #1 song with "Addicted To Love".  The Pet Shop Boys reached #2 with "West End Girls" while former #1 "Kiss" was third for Prince & the Revolution.  Van Halen had a #4 hit with "Why Can't This Be Love".  The rest of the Top 10:  "Harlem Shuffle" from the Rolling Stones", Janet Jackson sang "What Have You Done For Me Lately", Whitney Houston was up from 12 to 7 with "Greatest Love Of All", the Outfield moved to 8 with "Your Love", Phil Collins had another hit with "Take Me Home" and the Bangles were on their way down with "Manic Monday".  
1991:  Texas Governor Ann Richards proclaimed it ZZ Top day in Texas.
1991:  Andy Williams married Debbie Haas in New York City.
1994:  The Rolling Stones promoted their upcoming Voodoo Lounge tour by sailing a boat down the Hudson River in New York City.
1997:  Katrina and the Waves won the Eurovision Song Contest in Dublin, Ireland by performing "Love Shine A Light".
2000:  In today's episode of Inmates Run Rap Music, DMX was sentenced to 15 days in jail for drug possession, driving without a license and unpaid parking tickets.  
2004:  Former Smith's singer Morrissey began his solo career at the Apollo Theater in New York City.
2008:  Mariah Carey had the #1 album E=MC2.

Born This Day:

 1903:  Bing Crosby (real name Harry Lillis) was born in Tacoma, Washington; died October 14, 1977 of a heart attack in La Moraleja, Spain.

1919:  Pete Seeger, one of the greatest folk singers ever, member of the Weavers, mentor to countless folk musicians, and writer of songs such as "We Shall Overcome", "Where Have All The Flowers Gone", "Turn!  Turn!  Turn!" and "If I Had a Hammer", was born in Manhattan, New York; died in his sleep January 27, 2014 in Manhattan.
1924:  Jane Morgan ("Fascination" from 1957) was born in Newton, Massachusetts.

1933:  James Brown was born in Barnwell, South Carolina; died December 5, 2006 in Atlanta, Georgia from congestive heart failure brought on by complications of pneumonia.  (Note:  we have conflicting books--the book 'Icons of Rock:  An Encyclopedia of the Legends Who Changed Music Forever' by Scott Schinder and Andy Schwartz says Brown was born in Barnwell, South Carolina, while the book 'Rhythm and Blues, Rap, and Hip-Hop' by Frank Hoffmann says James was born in Macon, Georgia.  Gotta' go against the rap and hip-hop book, especially since the official James Brown website reports that he was born in Barnwell.  Boy, the poor rap and hip-hop culture can't get anything right...)  

1934:  Frankie Valli, (Francis Castelluccio), leader of the Four Seasons and a solo performer, was born in Newark, New Jersey. 
1938:  Napoleon XIV (real name Jerry Samuels), who had the novelty hit "They're Coming To Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa!" was born in, where else, New York City.

1950:  Mary Hopkin ("Those Were The Days") was born in Pontardawe, Wales.

1951:  Christopher Geppert (Christopher Cross) was born in San Antonio, Texas.
1959:  David Ball of Soft Cell ("Tainted Love") was born in Blackpool, Lancashire, England.
1971:  Josey Scott, lead vocalist of Saliva, was born in Memphis, Tennessee.
1981:  Farrah Franklin of Destiny's Child was born in Des Moines, Iowa.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

This Date in Rock Music History: May 2

1956:  For the first time in chart history, five songs were in both the popular and the R&B Top 10.  They were Elvis Presley's "Heartbreak Hotel", "Blue Suede Shoes" by Carl Perkins, "Long Tall Sally" from Little Richard, "Magic Touch" by the Platters and "Why Do Fools Fall in Love" by Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers.
1960 - Production began on Elvis Presley's G.I. Blues.  It was his first post-Army movie. 

                                                 King went his own way...

1960:  Ben E. King left the Drifters and signed with ATCO Records.
1960:  The Everly Brothers had the ninth-fastest rising song in rock history (74-15) with "Cathy's Clown".  
1961:  The Beatles played at the Top Ten Club in Hamburg, Germany.
1963:  The Beatles were #1 in the U.K. with the first of 11 consecutive #1's--"From Me To You".

1964:  The Beatles had already invaded America, setting the stage for a huge invasion of talented British acts.  On this date, we were introduced to another.  They first appeared on the chart with a version of the Buddy Holly hit "Not Fade Away".  And the career of the Rolling Stones was underway.
1964:  The debut album from the Rolling Stones spent the first of 12 weeks at the top in the U.K.

1964:  The Beatles' Second Album reached #1 in its second week, the first LP to achieve the feat.  The Beatles also had the #2 album with Meet the Beatles!, while the Soundtrack to "Hello, Dolly!" was #3, Introducing...the Beatles was #4 and Al Hirt's Honey in the Horn was in the #5 spot.
1964:  One smash hit after another in succession--the Beatles moved from 67 to 32 with "Love Me Do".

1964:  The Beatles held on to #1 for a fifth week with "Can't Buy Me Love".  Even more impressive, it was the 14th week in a row that the Beatles had owned the #1 song (from "I Want to Hold Your Hand" to "She Loves You" to "Can't Buy Me Love").
1965:  The Rolling Stones performed on The Ed Sullivan Show.
1966:  Frank Sinatra released the single "Strangers in the Night".  (Note:  some websites report the single was released May 6.  "Strangers In The Night" debuted on the charts on May 7.  It is physically impossible for a song to be released by a record company, listened to and added to radio station playlists, reported by the radio stations to the trade papers, and the trade papers printed and published, in two days.)

1966:  Simon & Garfunkel released the single "I Am a Rock".

1966:  Dusty Springfield released the single "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me".
1967:  The Beach Boys abandoned recording sessions for the proposed album Smile(Note:  One website says the sessions were abandoned on May 18.    According to the book 'Heroes and Villains:  Essays on Music, Movies, Comics, and Television' by Steven S. Gaines, the Beach Boys made the announcement on May 2 via a press release.) 


1967:  The Beach Boys appeared at the Adelphi Theatre in Dublin, Ireland.
1969:  Elvis Presley finished filming his last movie, Change of Habit.
1969:  The Beatles continued recording "Something", written by George Harrison for his wife Patti Boyd.  No vocals were recorded yet, but the group did 36 takes of the song, with John Lennon on piano and Billy Preston on organ.
1969:  Pink Floyd appeared at the Manchester Chamber of Commerce in England.
1969:  Popular session drummer Benny Benjamin died of a stroke brought on by alcoholism and drugs, at age 43.  Benjamin played for Stevie Wonder, the Supremes, Marvin Gaye, the Temptations and the Four Tops.

1969:  Norman Greenbaum had the #1 song in the U.K. with "Spirit In The Sky".
1970:  Tyrone Davis moved to #1 on the R&B chart with "Turn Back The Hands Of Time".

1970:  One of the hottest new songs was "My Baby Loves Lovin'" by White Plains, which shot up from 87 to 62 on this date.

                              The Guess Who were moving up with "American Woman"...

  1970:  "ABC" by the Jackson 5 remained at #1 while the Beatles held steady at #2 with "Let It Be".  Norman Greenbaum was #3 with "Spirit In The Sky".  The rest of the Top 10:  Guess Who's double-sided hit "American Woman"/"No Sugar Tonight" was #4, John Lennon's "Instant Karma" slid to #5, the Friends of Distinction moved up to 6 with "Love Or Let Me Be Lonely", Edison Lighthouse remained in the Top 10 with "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)", Badfinger dropped with "Come And Get It", the Ides of March rocketed from 19-9 with "Vehicle" and Tyrone Davis was at 10 with "Turn Back The Hands Of Time".

1970:  Make it nine weeks in a row at #1 for Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon and Garfunkel.  The album had spent all but three weeks at #1.  Deja Vu, the great album by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, hung in there at #2 with the Beatles' Hey Jude at 3.  The rest of the Top 10:  Santana at #4, Chicago II at 5, Led Zeppelin II at #6, Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5 was #7, Steppenwolf 'Live' was #8, Psychedelic Shack from the Temptations came in at #9 and American Woman by the Guess Who was #10.
1972:  Bruce Springsteen played a brief set for John Hammond of CBS Records in New York.  Hammond was so impressed that he arranged a full-fledged audition for Springsteen at the Gaslight Club in New York for other executives from CBS.  Obviously, Springsteen met with their approval as well.
1977:  Eric Clapton recorded "Wonderful Tonight".

1977:  Barry Manilow released the single "Looks Like We Made It".
1979:  The Who appeared in concert for the first time following the death of drummer Keith Moon at the Rainbow Theatre in London.  Kenney Jones was the group's new drummer.
1981:  Smokey Robinson owned the top R&B song for a fifth week with "Being with You".

Morning Train (Nine To Five) by Sheena Easton on Grooveshark
1981:  Sheena Easton's debut song "Morning Train" reached #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart on this date.
1981:  Easton pulled off a double feat with the #1 song on the popular music chart as well.  Kim Carnes made an 18-7 move up with "Bette Davis Eyes".

Come Dancing by The Kinks on Grooveshark
1983:  The Kinks released their comeback single "Come Dancing".

                                           Spandau Ballet had a worldwide smash...

1983:  Spandau Ballet hit #1 in the U.K. with "True".
1987:  The Cutting Crew owned the new #1 song--"(I Just) Died in Your Arms".

1987:  "The Finer Things" by Steve Winwood remained at #1 for a second week on the Adult Contemporary chart.

1991:  Paula Abdul released the single "Rush, Rush".
1991:  On a budget of $61,000, Nirvana reserved 16 days at the Sound City Studios in Van Nuys, California to begin recording the album Nevermind.
1992:  The Cure reached #1 in the U.K. with their album Wish.
1992:  Bonnie Raitt received an honorary Doctor of Music Degree from Berklee College of Music.

1994:  Lisa Loeb released the single "Stay (I Missed You)".
2000:  Bobbi Martin ("For The Love Of Him" from 1970) died of cancer at the age of 56 in Baltimore, Maryland.

1997:  The Wallflowers performed in the parking lot of the Hard Rock Cafe in Orlando, Florida to raise money for Kids for the World.  (Note:  several websites inaccurately report that the concert occurred on May 3.  It was on May 2, according to the newspaper 'The Orlando Sentinel'.)
2005:  The members of Cream got together to perform four concerts (May 2, 3, 5 & 6) at London's Royal Albert Hall 36 years after they had broken up.  
2006:  Donna D'Errico from Baywatch filed for divorce from Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx.  (Note:  some websites report that D'Errico filed the divorce on May 3.  It was May 2, according to 'CBS News'.) 

2007:  Organizers in Wroclaw, Poland were trying to get 1,876 guitarists to the city's square to set a Guinness World Record for the biggest guitar ensemble in history.  The guitarists would all play "Hey Joe" by Jimi Hendrix.
2008:  Chad Kroeger of Nickelback was banned from driving for one year following his conviction of drunk driving.  Kroger had almost twice the legal limit of alcohol in his system.
2008:  Ringo Starr:  Off the Record debuted on HBO.
2014:  Jessica Cleaves, singer with the Friends of Distinction, died in Los Angeles at the age of 65.

Born This Day:

1929:  Link Wray, groundbreaking guitarist who pioneered the distorted guitar sound and invented the power chord, was born in Dunn, North Carolina; died November 5, 2005 of heart failure in Copenhagen at the age of 76.
1933:  Bunk Gardner, who played woodwinds and tenor sax 
for Mothers of Invention, was born in Cleveland, Ohio.
1936: Engelbert Humperdinck (real name Arnold George Dorsey) was born in Madras (now Chennai), India.
1945: Randy Cain, founding member of the Delfonics ("La-La (Means I Love You)" from 1968), was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; died April 9, 2009 in Maple Shade Township, New Jersey.

1945:  Goldy McJohn, keyboardist of Steppenwolf
1946:  Bob Henrit, drummer of Argent and the Kinks, was born in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, England.

1946:  Lesley Gore was born in Brooklyn, New York; died of lung cancer in Manhattan February 16, 2015.  (Note:  some websites claim Gore was born in New York City, but she was born in Brooklyn, according to the newspaper 'The New York Times'.)

1950:  Lou Gramm, great lead singer of Foreigner and a solo performer, was born in Rochester, New York.
1951:  Jo Callis, keyboardist, lead guitarist and songwriter for the Human League, was born in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England.
1954:  Prescott Niles, bassist of the Knack, was born in New York City.
1956:  David Rhodes, guitarist for Peter Gabriel and later a producer, was born in London.
1961:  Dr. Robert (real name Bruce Robert Howard), singer/songwriter of the Blow Monkeys ("Digging Your Scene" from 1986), was born in Haddington, Scotland.
1985:  Lily Allen was born in Hammersmith, London.