Saturday, August 20, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: August 21

1958:  Ricky Nelson recorded "Lonesome Town" at Master Recorders in Hollywood, California.
1961:  Bobby Lewis made it seven weeks in a row at #1 with "Tossin' And Turnin'".
1961:  Elvis Presley notched his sixth #1 album with Something for Everybody.
1965:  Gary Lewis & the Playboys had the #1 Easy Listening song for a third week with "Save Your Heart For Me".
1965:  Out of Our Heads by the Rolling Stones was the new #1 album.

                                                       The Righteous Brothers with one of their classics...

1965:  Sonny & Cher once again had the #1 song with "I Got You Babe".  Gary Lewis & the Playboys stepped up to 2 with "Save Your Heart For Me" while the Beatles jumped from 14 to 3 with "Help!".  The Beach Boys were right behind at #4 with "California Girls" while "Unchained Melody" was #5 for the Righteous Brothers.  The rest of the Top 10:  the former #1 "Satisfaction" from the Rolling Stones, the Four Tops at 7 with "It's The Same Old Song", Patty Duke had song #8--"Don't Just Stand There", Herman's Hermits fell with "I'm Henry VIII, I Am" and Billy Joe Royal had #10 with "Down In The Boondocks".
1966:  Rained out the night before, the Beatles performed a concert at Crosley Field in Cincinnati, Ohio, then boarded a plane for a show at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.  For the second show, the group performed under a tarp due to heavy rain.  It was this gig that convinced Paul McCartney that the group should stop touring.

1967:  Sam & Dave released the single "Soul Man".

1967:  Bob Dylan renewed his recording contract with Columbia Records.
1968:  "Mony Mony" by Tommy James and the Shondells returned to #1 in the U.K.
1969:  Led Zeppelin was in concert at the Carousel Theatre in Framingham, Massachusetts.

1971:  Olivia Newton-John had the top Adult song for the third week with the Bob Dylan song "If Not For You".
1971:  Marvin Gaye grabbed the #1 R&B hit for a second week with "Mercy Mercy Me" (The Ecology)".

1971:  Paul & Linda McCartney moved from 65 to 21 with "Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey".

1971:  The Bee Gees had their biggest hit to date as "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart" remained #1 for a third week.  "Mr. Big Stuff" from Jean Knight was #2 and John Denver was still at #3 after 18 weeks with "Take Me Home, Country Roads".  Marvin Gaye's "Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)" was catching fire, moving from 9 to 4 while James Taylor remained at 5 with "You've Got A Friend".  CCR was up from 15-6 with their ninth Top 10--"Sweet Hitch-Hiker".  The rest of the Top 10:  Chicago's double-sided "Beginnings"/"Colour My World" was at 7, the Five Man Electrical Band was at 8 with "Signs", Tommy James and "Draggin' The Line" and "Liar" gave Three Dog Night their sixth Top 10 song.
1971:  Tapestry by Carole King was the top album for the 10th week in a row. 
1972:  Police sprayed mace on lead singer Grace Slick as they scuffled with Jefferson Starship onstage at the Rubber Bowl in Akron, Ohio.
1975:  The Eagles were in concert at the Paramount Northwest in Seattle, Washington.

1976:  RCA Victor announced that sales of Elvis Presley records topped the 400 million mark.
1976:  The Rolling Stones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, 10cc, Todd Rundgren's Utopia and Hot Tuna performed at the Knebworth Festival in Knebworth Park in Stevenage, Hertfordshire, England.

1976:  England Dan & John Ford Coley climbed the final rung to #1 on the AC chart with "I'd Really Love To See You Tonight".
1979:  Rod Stewart and wife Alana Hamilton celebrated the birth of daughter Kimberly Alana.  (Note:  some websites report this occurred on August 20, but according to the newspaper 'The Daily Mail', she was born in August 21.)
1980:  Bill Ward, drummer of Black Sabbath, was fired after he did not show up for a gig at McNichols Arena in Denver, Colorado.  It would be his final appearance with the group until Live Aid in 1985.

1981:  Santana had one of the hottest songs of the week with "Hold On", which moved from #72 to #51.

                                                        The Go-Go's reached the Top 10...

1982:  Fleetwood Mac's Mirage held down the #1 spot on the Album chart, ahead of Eye of the Tiger from Survivor.  Asia stayed at 3 and John Cougar (Mellencamp) was at 4 with American Fool.  The rest of the Top 10:  Pictures At Eleven from Robert Plant, the Steve Miller Band was at 6 with Abracadabra, Good Trouble was the new release from REO Speedwagon at #7, Crosby, Stills & Nash remained at 8 with Daylight Again, the Go-Go's moved from 42 to 9 with Vacation and Genesis reached the Top 10 with Three Sides Live.
1982:  Chicago moved into the #1 position on the Adult Contemporary chart with "Hard To Say I'm Sorry".

                                                                           Mellencamp had a solid #2 song...

1982:  Survivor had the top song for a fifth week with "Eye Of The Tiger".  John Cougar (Mellencamp) had to settle for #2 for three weeks with "Hurts So Good".  The Steve Miller Band ("Abracadabra") and Fleetwood Mac ("Hold Me") remained at 3 and 4, respectively.  The rest of the Top 10:  Chicago with "Hard To Say I'm Sorry", Air Supply at #6 with "Even the Nights Are Better", REO Speedwagon's "Keep The Fire Burnin'", the Go-Go's moved up one with "Vacation", Crosby, Stills & Nash had song #9--"Wasted On The Way" and Paul McCartney slid into the Top 10 with "Take It Away".

1987:  The Soundtrack to "Dirty Dancing" was released.

1990:  B.B. King received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
1993:  Bernie Taupin, one of the top lyricists of the Rock Era, married Stephanie Haymes.

1993:  The Soundtrack to the great movie Sleepless In Seattle was #1 on the Album chart with Black Sunday from Cypress Hill in the runner-up position.  Janet by Janet Jackson was third, U2's Zooropa came in #4 and Core from Stone Temple Pilots was fifth.  UB40 owned #6 with Promises and Lies, "The Bodyguard" Soundtrack was #7, Rod Stewart had the #8 album with Unplugged...And Seated, Aerosmith's Get a Grip came in #9 and Blind Melon had a Top 10 album with their self-titled release.
1994:  Bob Dylan performed in Columbus, Ohio at the Ohio State Fair.
1996:  Rick James was released from Folsom Prison after spending two years in jail for assault.

1997:  Carlos Santana held a press conference at the Hard Rock Cafe in San Francisco, California to promote a limited-edition T-shirt featuring his artwork.  Santana autographed 500 shirts for distribution.
1997:  Be Here Now, the new Oasis album, moved 350,000 units on the first day.
2003:  The United States Internal Revenue Service confiscated belongings of Peabo Bryson to pay $1.2 million in back taxes that Bryson owed. 
2005:  The Rolling Stones kicked off yet another world tour at Fenway park in Boston, Massachusetts.
2005:  Bob Moog, inventor of the Moog synthesizer, died of brain cancer in Asheville, North Carolina at the age of 71.
2005:  McFly rose to the top of the U.K. chart with "I'll Be O.K.".
2005:  Staind had the top album in the U.K. with Chapter V.
2008:  Buddy Harman, drummer who worked with Elvis Presley ("Little Sister"), Roy Orbison ("Oh Pretty Woman") and played on over 18,000 songs, died of congestive heart failure at the age of 79.
2009:  Johnny Carter, member of both the Flamingos ("I Only Have Eyes for You") and the Dells ("Stay In My Corner" from 1968) died of lung cancer in Harvey, Illinois at the age of 75.

Born This Day:

1938:  Kenny Rogers was born in Houston, Texas.
1938:  Ernie Maresca, who co-wrote "The Wanderer" and "Runaround Sue" for Dion, was born in The Bronx, New York; died at his home in Pompano Beach, Florida July 8, 2015.  (Note:  some websites claim Maresca was born in 1939, and the notoriously wrong '' insists he was born April 21, 1939.  He was born August 21, 1938 according to the 'BBC'.)
1941:  Tom Costello of Santana

1944:  Jackie DeShannon (real name Sharon Meyers) was born in Hazel, Kentucky.  (Note:  'Billboard', United Press International, and the news paper 'Star-Daze' report she was born in 1944 , but according to the book 'Encyclopedia of Pop Music Aliases, 1950-2000' by Bob Leszczak, she was born in 1941.  Most credible sources say she was born in 1944) 
1947:  Carl Giammarese, guitarist and singer-songwriter of the Buckinghams, and later a producer, was born in Chicago, Illinois.
1951:  Joe Strummer, co-founder, lyricist, rhythm guitarist and lead vocalist of the Clash, was born in Ankara, Turkey.
1954:  Steve Smith, drummer of Journey, was born in Whitman, Massachusetts.
1957:  Peter Clark ("Budgie" of Siouxsie & the Banshees) was born in St. Helens, Lancashire, England.  (Note:  some na├»ve websites claim Clark was born in St. Helens, Merseyside, England.  St. Helens was not a part of the county of Merseyside until 1974, 17 years after Clark was born.  You will never find Merseyside listed on his official birth certificate.)  
1957:  Kim Sledge of Sister Sledge was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
1967:  Serj Tankian, lead singer, songwriter and keyboardist of System of a Down, was born in Beirut, Lebanon.
1984:  Melissa Schuman of Dream was born in Riverside, California.  (Note:  some websites report she was born in San Clemente, California.  According to '', she was born in Riverside.)

Number One Songs by Different Artists

In the 61 years of the Rock Era, there have only been nine songs to reach #1 for two or more artists.  These lucky few are featured below:

"Go Away Little Girl"
Steve Lawrence (1963)


Donny Osmond (1971)

"The Loco-Motion"
Little Eva (1962)


Grand Funk (1974)

"Please Mr. Postman"
Marvelettes (1961)


Carpenters (1975)

Shocking Blue (1970)


Bananarama (1986)

"Lean On Me"
Bill Withers (1972)


Club Nouveau (1987)

"You Keep Me Hangin' On"
Supremes (1966)


Kim Wilde (1987)

"When A Man Loves A Woman"
Percy Sledge (1966)


Michael Bolton (1991)

"I'll Be There"
Jackson 5 (1970)


Mariah Carey (1992)

"Lady Marmalade"
Labelle (1975)


Christina Aguilera, Pink, Lil' Kim & Mya (2001)

Rock Artists Who Debuted in the Fifties

These are the artists who defined rock and roll, who recorded Popular music (pop for short) in the early years of the Rock Era, in chronological order:

Bill Haley & the Comets

LaVern Baker

Pat Boone

Fats Domino

Chuck Berry



Little Richard

Clyde McPhatter

Elvis Presley

Roy Orbison


Marty Robbins

Johnny Mathis

Brenda Lee

Lloyd Price
Jim Reeves

Ricky Nelson

Everly Brothers

Jerry Lee Lewis

Paul Anka

B.B. King
Bobby Bland
Jimmie Rodgers

Buddy Holly & the Crickets

Jimmy Dean

Sam Cooke

Ray Charles

Jackie Wilson

Connie Francis

Frankie Avalon
Brook Benton
Duane Eddy


Dion & the Belmonts

Jan & Dean

Jack Scott
Jerry Butler

Bobby Darin

Little Anthony & the Imperials
Kingston Trio
Johnny Tillotson

Neil Sedaka

James Brown

Freddy Cannon
Chubby Checker
Bobby Rydell
Bobby Vee
Isley Brothers
Cliff Richard
Bill Black's Combo

Friday, August 19, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: August 20

1955:  A new singer debuted on the chart for the first time on this date.  "Maybellene" was his first hit and the man's name was Chuck Berry.
1960:  Connie Francis began her first movie Where the Boys Are in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
1964:  Shirley Bassey recorded "Goldfinger" in London for an upcoming James Bond movie of the same name.
1966:  "Ain't Too Proud To Beg" by the Temptations was #1 for the eighth week on the R&B chart.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: August 19

1957:  Pat Boone was featured on the cover of Newsweek magazine.
1959:  Another of the famous days in the Rock Era, as on this date Bobby Darin released the classic single "Mack The Knife".

1959:  Monday fell on this date, the day for new releases in the music business.  Paul Anka released "Put Your Head On My Shoulder".

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: August 18

1956:  One of the great early songs of the Rock Era, "My Prayer" from the Platters, was #1 on the R&B chart.
1958:  The Kalin Twins had the top U.K. song with "When".

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: August 17

1959:  Elvis Presley made history when he had the #1 song for the second straight week with "A Big Hunk O' Love".  Elvis had long ago easily set the record for most weeks at #1 and no one knew it at the time, but this second week at #1 with "A Big Hunk O' Love" is that one that gave him 60 total weeks at the top in his career, one more than the Beatles would register in their amazing career.  Presley would end up with 80.
1959:  Brook Benton remained at #1 on the R&B chart with "Thank You Pretty Baby".

The conclusion of a highly successful music festival in upstate New York, a replacement for the group Yes and Tears for Fears sat on top of the music chart--all that and more on This Date in Rock Music History...

Monday, August 15, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: August 16

1957:  Ricky Nelson recorded "Be-Bop Baby" at Master Recorders in Hollywood, California.
1957:  The Everly Brothers recorded "Wake Up Little Susie" in Nashville, Tennessee.
1957:  Buddy Holly & the Crickets played at none other than the Apollo Theater in the neighborhood of Harlem in Manhattan, New York for one week beginning on this date.  The tour was set up by Norman Petty, working with promoter Irving Feld.  (Note:  contrary to the movie 'The Buddy Holly Story' and numerous websites, which indicate that the Apollo didn't know the group was white, and did not discover this until they showed up, management at the Apollo did indeed know.  The Schiffman family, which owned the theatre, were aware that the Crickets were white.  Frank Schiffman's sons, Bobby and Jack, had seen the Crickets in Washington, D.C. during the first leg of the tour, according to the book 'Buddy Holly:  A Biography' by Ellis Amburn.  Unlike the other theatres which booked the Crickets only to be shocked that they were white, the Apollo booked them because black record-buyers were sending "That'll Be The Day" to the top of the R&B charts.)
1960:  Elvis Presley began filming of the movie Flaming Star.
1962:  Twelve-year-old Stevie Wonder released his first 45, "I Call It Pretty Music (But The Old People Call It The Blues)".  Marvin Gaye was the drummer.

The death of a king, the Beatles were busy in the recording studio, Crosby, Stills & Nash performed with someone else for the first time and a car sponsored by 3 Doors Down--all that and much more in the news on This Date in Rock Music History... 

Sunday, August 14, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: August 15

1958:  Buddy Holly and Maria Elena Santiago were married at Buddy's parents' home in Lubbock, Texas.

The most famous Rock Festival of all began on this date, a historic show by the Beatles and a free concert given by Paul Simon--all that and more happened on This Date in Rock Music History...