Saturday, September 24, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: September 25

1954:  Elvis released his second single on Sun Records--"Good Rockin' Tonight".
1956:  "Love Me Tender" by Elvis Presley became the first single in history to sell a million copies before its release.

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest--Part 17

We're enjoying those big first hits of Rock Era artists that set such a high bar that the artists could never attain again:

Jeff Healey Band
"Angel Eyes"

Blind since age one and a guitarist since three, Jeff Healey led this Toronto, Canada group to a #5 hit in 1989.  They managed a #91 song after that, so "Angel Eyes" was by far their best.

"Boogie Nights"

This interracial group formed in Germany and exploded on the scene in 1977 with this #2 smash, a Platinum song.  Two other Gold hits followed, but the best Heatwave could do after "Boogie Nights" was #7 with "The Groove Line".

Heavy D & the Boyz
"Now That We Found Love"

If you're a fan of the great movie Hitch starring Will Smith, you'll recognize this as the song played at the end of the movie.  Heavy D & the Boyz stalled at #11 but sold over one million copies of this song.

Bobby Hebb

This song was written by Bobby Hebb after two tragic events--the assassination of U.S. President John F. Kennedy and the death of Hebb's brother Hall.  He was devastated, but chose to be optimistic with this #2 hit.  Hebb reached #39 after that, so he isn't a One-Hit Wonder, but his first single shines above everything else he did.

"I Like The Way (The Kissing Game)"

This '90s group enjoyed seven hits, including three Top 10's, but this debut single led the way at #1.

Bertie Higgins
"Key Largo"

This artist from Florida once was a drummer with Tommy Roe from 1964 to 1966.  He and his girlfriend were big movie buffs, and so when the couple split, Bertie wrote this song about the great Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall movie Key Largo in an appeal to win her back.  It may not have done that, but it did win Bertie Higgins some fans, giving him a Gold record.  He had several other good songs, but nothing approached his first single.


This folk group adapted the 19th-century folk song "Michael Row The Boat Ashore" for this #1 hit in 1961.  Their next effort reached #13, the closest they would get after that.

Al Hirt

This great trumpeter once toured with both Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey, among others, prior to releasing this solo single in 1964.  It's another of the great instrumentals of the Rock Era, a #4 hit that he found impossible to top.

Brenda Holloway
"Every Little Bit Hurts"

Brenda Holloway never reached the Top 10, but she stopped just short at #13 with this great first hit.  Brenda only got as high as #25 with future releases and later became a backup singer for Joe Cocker.

Buddy Holly & the Crickets
"That'll Be The Day"

We'll never know if this super-talented artist could have topped this great first #1 single, because Holly and two others (Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper) were killed in a plane crash near Mason City, Iowa when Holly was 22 years old.  Holly and the group scored 13 hits, three of them posthumous ones.  They hit the Top 10 two other times, including the great #3 song "Peggy Sue", but that first single forever set the pace.

Friday, September 23, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: September 24

1955:  Elvis Presley performed on The Louisiana Hayride at the Shreveport Auditorium in Shreveport, Louisiana, broadcast on KWKH-TV.  
1955:  Chuck Berry was on top of the R&B chart for the eighth straight week with "Maybellene".

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest--Part 16

Enjoy 10 more artists as we salute those artists who landed that first big hit and were never able to match it afterwards:

R.B. Greaves
"Take A Letter Maria"

We heard Sam Cooke earlier in the feature; here is Sam's nephew, who enjoyed a big hit of his own his first try.  R.B. Greaves took this song to #2 and sold over one million copies.

Norman Greenbaum
"Spirit In The Sky"

This song was released at a time when the Baby Boomer generation was discovering God, and Norman Greenbaum had one of the biggest hits of 1970 with it.  

Guns N' Roses
"Sweet Child O' Mine"

Right out of the gate, this L.A. band took their first hit to the top.  Though they would return to the Top 10 five other times, it was their first hit that set the pace for them.

Jan Hammer
"Miami Vice Theme"

One of the only artists every from Czechoslovakia to score a hit in the Rock Era, this artist once toured with Sarah Vaughan as her conductor and keyboardist.  In 1985, he recorded a #1 instrumental for the television show Miami Vice.  It was the only Top 100 hit he would ever have.

Richard Harris
"MacArthur Park"

Here we have another of the One-Hit Wonders in this feature.  Actor Richard Harris recorded this song in 1968, which took off to #2.  He continued to record but never came close to this one.

George Harrison
"My Sweet Lord"

A member of the Beatles, Harrison never got more than a song or two of his own on group albums, so some people were surprised when his first single release became a classic.  It ruled at #1 for four weeks.  In addition to the great Beatles hits, Harrison generated 16 solo hits, including two more #1's and five other Top 10 songs, plus formed the great group Traveling Wilburys.  But Harrison's first solo hit remained far and away his biggest.

Wilbert Harrison
"Kansas City"

We're up to another great '50s song, this #1 from Wilbert Harrison in 1959.  After "Kansas City", Harrison continued to record, releasing his final single in 1971.  His next-best stalled at #32.

Edwin Hawkins Singers
"Oh Happy Day"

This Gospel group landed a #4 song in 1969 that sold over one million singles.  They were part of the Top 10 hit "Lay Down (Candles In The Rain)" by Melanie the next year, but their first remained their biggest career hit.

Bill Hayes
"The Ballad Of Davy Crockett"

Hayes gave us this monster hit, a #1 song for five weeks, just a few months before the Rock Era began in 1955.  It is from the ABC-TV Disneyland series.  Bill reached the Top 40 in 1957, but nothing he did was as good as this one.  Hayes later starred on the television soap opera Days Of Our Lives.

Roy Head
"Treat Her Right"

This artist was more successful with the much-smaller Country market, but he did cross over to #2 in 1965 with this one.  Head posted two other Top 40 hits later in the year.

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest--Part 15

We continue with great examples of artists who worked on their craft so hard that when they finally hit it big, that first hit was the biggest they would ever have:

"Keep On Dancing"

Here's a band from Memphis, Tennessee who reached the Top 5 in 1965.  They are officially a One-Hit Wonder, as they never hit the Top 40 again.

Barbara George
"I Know (You Don't Love Me No More"

This singer enjoyed an even earlier hit than the Gentrys, taking this song to #3 in 1962.

Gerry and the Pacemakers
"Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying"

Here's another song from the British Invasion, a group signed by Beatles manager Brian Epstein in 1962.  They played the same areas of Liverpool and Hamburg, Germany that the Beatles did.  Two years later, this song by Gerry & the Pacemakers caught on, hitting #4.  They were able to land two more Top 10's, but nothing as good as their first.

Nick Gilder
"Hot Child In The City"

This London-born artist moved to Canada and founded the group Sweeney Todd.  When that group disbanded, he released a solo album, which contained this monster hit in 1978.  It not only went to #1 but sold over two million copies.

Terry Gilkyson and the Easy Riders

Here's another folk group who scored their one and only big hit in 1957.

Glass Tiger
"Don't Forget Me (When I'm Gone)"

This group enlisted the help of fellow Canadian Bryan Adams on this #2 smash in 1986.  Their follow-up, "Someday", reached #7, the only other Top 10 Glass Tiger enjoyed.

Lesley Gore
"It's My Party"

The recently departed Lesley Gore hit #1 right out of the box with this smash in 1963.  She went on to chalk up 19 hits including four Top 10's, all in succession.  Her next-biggest was "You Don't Own Me", close to her first big hit but not quite.

Charlie Gracie

A regular on Dick Clark's Bandstand, Charlie Gracie climbed to #1 in 1957 with this one.  He scored a #16 song later in the year but people remember him for his first.

Billy Grammer
"Gotta' Travel On"

Billy Grammer was a respected session musician who regularly performed on The Jimmy Dean Show in 1957 and 1958.  He got as high as #4 with this one, the only big hit he ever had on his own.

Eddy Grant
"Electric Avenue"

Eddy Grant scored one of The Top #2 Songs of the Rock Era* with this Platinum song in 1983.  He was able to post another Top 40 song, but nothing near as good as this one.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: September 23

1956:  Mickey Dolenz of the Monkees first appeared on television on Circus Boy on NBC-TV.

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest--Part 14

We're moving our way through the list of artists who set their own standard with their first hit:

"Hocus Pocus"

If you're impressed by the guitar work in this song, you're not alone--Jan Akkerman is a virtuoso, and the Dutch group Focus found themselves in the Top 10 with this song in 1973.  Akkerman's astounding playing makes several of their songs a good listen, but "Hocus Pocus" was magical for them.

Fontane Sisters
"Hearts Of Stone"

Here's another of the artists whose first hit was just prior to the official start of the Rock Era.  They backed Perry Como on many of his hits from 1949 to 1952, then released this song just prior to the end of 1954.  It was a million-seller for the Fontane Sisters and a huge #1 smash.  They had 18 career hits, including the #3 song "Seventeen".

Franke & the Knockouts

This New Jersey act put out a great first song in 1981, underrated even at #10.  They were able to collect two other Top 40 hits, but nothing matched their first one.

Freddie and the Dreamers
"I'm Telling You Now"

Although Liverpool was the home of the Beatles and other groups of the British Invasion, nearby Manchester had its share of the success.  This Manchester group vaulted to #1 in 1965 with this song.  Their next-best effort was the #18 song "Do The Freddie".

"All Right Now"

Although this British act was a One-Hit Wonder, its members contributed to the Rock Era for years.  Lead singer Paul Rodgers and drummer Simon Kirke went on to form the great group Bad Company and Rodgers has sung lead for Queen in recent years.  

Friends Of Distinction
"Grazing In The Grass"

Floyd Butler and Harry Elston of this group were previously in a group called the Hi-Fi's, whose membership also included Marilyn McCoo and LaMonte McLemore, who would later find fame in supergroup the 5th Dimension.  The Friends of Distinction did OK too, rising to #3 and selling over one million copies of this great song.  You'll also remember them for "Love Or Let Me Be Lonely" the next year, but tough to match that great first hit.

Bobby Fuller Four
"I Fought The Law"

This group came up with the theme song for rebellious youth, always a lesson for future generations in that, no matter what the dispute, the law wins.  The Bobby Fuller Four reached #26 with their next song but never matched this great 1966 song.

"Nice To Be With You"

One of the top songs from 1972 came from this Detroit group.  They took the Mac Davis song "I Believe In Music" to #22, but they are best known for this one.

Gale Garnett
"We'll Sing In The Sunshine"

New Zealand-born Gale Garnett migrated tot he United States in 1951 and began work as an actress when she was 15.  If you're fortunate enough to own DVD's of one of the top TV shows in history, Bonanza, look up the episode "The Deserter" and you'll see Gale.  In 1964, Gale recorded this song, which went all the way to #4.  She made other efforts, but this by far is her best.

Bobbie Gentry
"Ode To Billie Joe"

Wow.  What a first song for this Mississippi artist.  She wrote this song about nearby Tallahatchie Bridge that had Rock fans talking about the ending for years.  When you can generate that kind of interest and response with a song, you've accomplished something.  Indeed.  Bobbie watched the song go to #1 in 1967, and 49 years later, its still one of the all-time classics.  Gentry won Best New Artist at the Grammy Awards that year.  Her next-best effort was a duet with Glen Campbell, "All I Have To Do Is Dream", a #27 song.

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest--Part 13

These artists did so well with their first hit that they were never able to match it:

Dionne Farris
"I Know"

This singer, who worked with TLC, El DeBarge and Arrested Development, gave us a great first song in 1995, but we were shocked when there was not another.

Jose Feliciano
"Light My Fire"

This blind, virtuoso acoustic guitarist began performing at age nine.  His remake of the Doors' classic earned him the Best New Artist Grammy Award.  A quality artist, to be sure, who also gave us the Christmas standard "Feliz Navidad", he never got to the Top 20 again.

Jay Ferguson
"Thunder Island"

You'll remember this artist as the leader of the group Spirit ("I Got A Line On You") prior to going solo.  In 1978, Jay Ferguson earned a spot in the Top 10.  Although his follow-up, "Shakedown Cruise", is a worthy listen for many, Jay never came close to that first one.

First Class
"Beach Baby"

It was a little surprising to many that this British studio group was never able to follow up their 1974 smash.  The best they did after that was #74.

Miss Toni Fisher
"The Big Hurt"

Miss Toni Fisher did not write this song about baseball great Frank Thomas, whose nickname was the title of Fisher's first hit in 1959.  It was manager Wayne Shanklin that wrote it, and Fisher took it to #3.  The song is famous for featuring a phasing effect as mixing engineer Larry Levine accidentally mixed the mono and stero versions of the song together but out of sync.  It is thought to be either the first or one of the first records to include phasing.  Levine later went on to help producer Phil Spector create his famous "wall of sound" recording technique.

Five Man Electrical Band

With due respect to pretenders, this original version by Canada's Five Man Electrical Band is the definitive one.  It not only reached #3 in 1971; it sold over one million copies.  The group was able to get to #26 after that, but nothing close to this great song.

Five Satins
"In The Still Of The Nite"

Lead singer Fred Parris wrote this now famous song, one of The Top Love Songs of the Rock Era*.  In 1956, it stalled at the unbelievable position of #24, though its status as one of The Top Unknown/Underrated Songs* is secure, as evidenced by that #24 song selling over one million copies.  The people making the charts back then must have been cross-eyed to miss that.  In any case, the group never could match their first hit, and it became the one they are known for.

"Come Softly To Me"

This trio from the capital of Washington state, Olympia, came up with one of the top songs early in the Rock Era with their great first hit.  They were able to reach the Top 10 twice after that, including another #1, "Mr. Blue".  But even that latter song paled in comparison to their great first song from 1959.

"Float On"

In 1977, this act not only reached #2 on the Popular chart but scored one of the biggest R&B hits of the '70s.  Unfortunately, that was the last Top 100 hit they had.

Flying Machine
"Smile A Little Smile For Me"

Here's another British studio group, who were able to score a Gold record with this #5 hit from 1969.  

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: September 22

1956:  We were first introduced to a great new act as the first single by the Coasters--"One Kiss Led To Another" debuted on this date.
1957:  Bobby Helms made his television debut on The Ed Sullivan Show, singing "My Special Angel".
1958:  With permission from the United States Army, Elvis Presley gave one last press conference at the Military Ocean Terminal in Brooklyn, New York before joining his 3rd Armored Division on the USS General Randall on the way to Bremerhaven, Germany.  (Note:  some websites report Elvis left Brooklyn on September 19.  He left his base at Fort Hood, Texas on September 19, but departed for Germany from Brooklyn on September 22, according to the official Graceland website.)
1958:  Connie Francis had the top U.K. song with "Carolina Moon, Stupid Cupid".
1958:  Tommy Edwards had one of the great early songs of the Rock Era with "It's All In The Game", which on this date reached #1 on the R&B chart.
1960:  The Beatles performed for the 37th consecutive night of a 48-night stay at the Indra Club, on Grosse Freiheit in Hamburg, West Germany.
1962:  Bob Dylan first appeared at Carnegie Hall in Manhattan, New York.

John Loudermilk Has Died

John Loudermilk, who wrote one of The Top 500 Songs of the Rock Era*, "Indian Reservation" for Paul Revere & the Raiders, died of bone cancer in Christiana, Tennessee.

Loudermilk wrote dozens of songs that became hits.  In addition to the classic mentioned above, he also wrote "Tobacco Road" for the Nashville Teens, "Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye" for the Casinos and "This Little Bird" for Marianne Faithfull.

Loudermilk was 89.

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest: The First 10 Segments

Here are handy links to the first 10 portions of our feature:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8

Part 9

Part 10

Brazil Makes Top 10

Thanks to Brazil for hosting the great Summer Olympics, and thanks for being regulars on Inside The Rock Era!

The Top 10 Listeners by Country This Week:

1.    United States
2.    Germany
3.    Canada
4.    United Kingdom
5.    France
6.    Mexico
7.    Brazil
8.    Australia
9.    Poland
10.  Spain

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest--Part 12

Here are 10 more artists who enjoyed great success with their first hit, so much so that future releases fell short:

Escape Club
"Wild, Wild West"

When your first single release goes to #1 and sells over a million copies, it puts a lot of pressure on you.  The Escape Club was able to land another Top 10 in 1991, but nothing close to their first.

David Essex
"Rock On"

This London artist portrayed Jesus Christ in the West End production of Godspell.  His first single went Top 5, but his best effort after that was #71.

The Essex
"Easier Said Than Done"

This group of United States Marines at Camp LeJeune, North Carolina formed a vocal quartet and moved all the way to #1 in 1963 with their first release.  The Essex were able to get a Top 15 song after that but never came close to their first.

"Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)"

This great duo reached #1 with their first worldwide single.  They enjoyed 14 hits after that, including two more Top 10's, but their biggest career hit is still their first.  David Stewart became an accomplished producer afterwards, working for Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Stevie Nicks, Bon Jovi, Ringo Starr and Mick Jagger, among others.

Everything But the Girl

This duo from London enjoyed some success in Europe, but their first worldwide single didn't happen until 1995, when they released "Missing".  It not only went to #2 but set a record at the time for weeks on the chart with an incredible 55.  They've put out some solid music, but that first worldwide release set the standard for them.

"Tell Him"

The Exciters hit #4 with this great song.  Unfortunately, they never landed inside the Top 40 again.

"More Than Words"

This group from Boston achieved moderate success on Modern Rock stations for several years, but they didn't enjoy score their first hit until 1991, when they jumped up to #1.  A follow-up, "Hole Hearted", got to #4, but nothing came close to that first big hit.

Shelley Fabares
"Johnny Angel"

This artist played Donna Reed's daughter on The Donna Reed Show.  In 1962, her first big hit rocketed to #1 for two weeks.  Although she managed just #21 after that, Shelley began a film career, starring with Elvis Presley in three of his movies among her other roles.

"Rock Me Amadeus"

Our next featured artist is from Vienna, Austria, and his first hit, a tribute to Vienna's own Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, was a monster hit in 1986.  Falco was not a One-Hit Wonder; he reached #18 with "Vienna Calling", but he is another example of an artist who achieved his biggest hit with his first.

Harold Faltermeyer
"Axel F"

Harold Faltermeyer was successful in other ways before he recorded his own song--he arranged and played keyboards for the movie soundtracks of Midnight Express and American Gigolo.  In 1985, his instrumental rose to #3, yet it was Harold's only hit.

Artists Whose First Hit Was Their Biggest--Part 11

Inside The Rock Era continues our look at the artists of the last 60 years who set quite a standard for themselves with their first release, because they could never top it.

Carl Douglas
"Kung Fu Fighting"

An engineering student in both the U.S. and England, Jamaican-born Carl Douglas rocketed to #1 in 1974, but never returned to the Top 40.

Joe Dowell
"Wooden Heart"

If you're from Germany or are familiar with German music, you probably know the folk song "Muss I Denn".  Joe Dowell based his first release on that song and rose to #1 in 1961 with it.  But the best Joe could do after that was #23.

Dream Academy
"Life In A Northern Town"

This group wanted to blend instruments such as strings, woodwinds, timpani and synthesizers to form a unique sound.  When they began, they were known as the Politics of Paradise.  They recorded a demo but were rejected by every record label before Warner Brothers finally signed them.  Their first single highlighted that unique sound and music fans loved it.  "Life In A Northern Town" went to #7, but even though the follow-up "The Love Parade" was a high-quality song, it stalled at #36, and the Dream Academy faded as quickly as they began.

Sheena Easton
"Morning Train (Nine To Five)"

This Scottish superstar used her first single release, which went to #1, to earn the Best New Artist Grammy Award.  She chalked up 20 hits, including seven Top 10's, but nothing matched her debut.

Edison Lighthouse
"Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)"

You could say lead singer Tony Burrows knew his way around a recording studio.  In addition to singing lead for this act, he also fronted the Brotherhood of Man, First Class, the Pipkins and White Plains.  Edison Lighthouse scored a Gold record with this Top 5 song in 1970.

Dave Edmunds
"I Hear You Knocking"

This artist reached #4 with this one in 1970.  He recorded some quality music over the next 15 years, including "Almost Saturday Night" in 1981, but never reached the Top 40 again.  He became a producer, working for the Stray Cats, Shakin' Stevens and Brinsley Schwartz.

Jonathan Edwards

When Jonathan Edwards started out, he opened for the Allman Brothers Band and B.B. King.  His first release was a big hit in 1971.

Tommy Edwards
"It's All In The Game"

Here's another artist who achieved one of the biggest hits early in the Rock Era, a #1 song for six weeks.  He got as high as #11 after that.

"Little Star"

Prior to striking it big, the Elegants performed near their homes on Staten Island, New York.  Their first release was a #1 smash in 1958, but that would be all the group could accomplish.


This group's first release was a major hit across the world, going to #1 in 1991 and selling over one million copies.  Their follow-up, "Lies", hit #18, meaning EMF isn't a One-Wonder, but they fit nicely in this feature.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

This Date in Rock Music History: September 21

1957:  Elite guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black quit as backup musicians for Elvis Presley after a salary dispute with Presley's manager Colonel Tom Parker.
1959:  "Shout" by the Isley Brothers was their first single release and it debuted on this date in history.
1959:  "I Want To Walk You Home" from Fats Domino topped the R&B chart.
1959:  The instrumental "Sleep Walk" from Santo & Johnny moved to #1.  The Browns slipped after four weeks at the top with "The Three Bells".  Lloyd Price remained at 3 with "I'm Gonna' Get Married" while the Everly Brothers scored their 14th hit and sixth Top 10 with "('Til) I Kissed You".  The rest of the Top 10:  Phil Phillips and "Sea Of Love", another instrumental--"Red River Rock" from Johnny & the Hurricanes, the classic "Mack The Knife" moved up to 7 for Bobby Darin, Sarah Vaughan had song #8--"Broken-Hearted Melody", Fats Domino said "I Want To Walk You Home" and Paul Anka shot up from 29 to 10 with "Put Your Head On My Shoulder".
1961:  The busy Beatles played at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, England by day and appeared with Gerry & the Pacemakers and Rory Storm & the Hurricanes at Litherland Town Hall in Liverpool by night.

1963:  Bobby Vinton made it three weeks at #1 on the Easy Listening chart with "Blue Velvet".
1964:  Elvis Presley was appointed "special deputy sheriff" in Shelby County, Tennessee.
1965:  The Moody Blues performed at Royal Albert Hall in London.
1965:  The Who began a tour of Scandinavia at De Marathon in The Hague, the Netherlands.  (Note:  most websites report this date as September 22, and say that lead singer Roger Daltrey punched drummer Keith Moon on the 22nd.  That incident happened on the 26th--more on that in the September 26th edition of the 'Calendar.'  Joe McMichael and "Irish Jack" Lyons, in their book 'The Who Concert File', report the beginning of the tour on September 21.)
1968:  Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell stayed at #1 for a fourth week on the R&B chart with "You're All I Need To Get By".

1968:  The Crazy World of Arthur Brown roared up the chart from 60 to 15 with "Fire".

1968:  The Bee Gees had the hottest song within the Top 10 as they went up from 23-9 with "I've Gotta' Get A Message To You".
1970:  Santana released the album Abraxas.
1970:  Freda Payne rose to #1 in the U.K. with "Band Of Gold".
1972 - ABC-TV debuted the show In Concert, created by promoter Don Kirshner.  Alice Cooper appeared in the first episode with a show taped at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York.
1974:  Carl Douglas had the top song in the U.K. with "Kung Fu Fighting".
1974:  Barry White remained at #1 for the third week on the R&B chart with "Can't Get Enough Of Your Love, Babe".

1974:  Olivia Newton-John had the top Easy Listening song for the second week with "I Honestly Love You".


1974:  Barry White enjoyed his first overall #1 with "Can't Get Enough Of Your Love, Babe".  Andy Kim moved to challenge with "Rock Me Gently" but Olivia Newton-John was close behind with "I Honestly Love You", which moved from 12 to 3.  Billy Preston was up with "Nothing From Nothing" while Eric Clapton fell badly with "I Shot The Sheriff".  The rest of the Top 10:  Dionne Warwick & the Spinners and "Then Came You", Paul Anka's former #1 "(You're) Having My Baby" was down to 7, the Guess Who had their 20th career hit with "Clap For The Wolfman", Stevie Wonder entered the Top 10 with "You Haven't Done Nothin'" and Johnny Bristol had song #10--"Hang On In There Baby".
1974:  Stevie Wonder remained at #1 on the Album chart with Fulfillingness' First Finale
.  Bad Company's debut was in the #2 slot.

1974:  Guitarist Jeff "Skunk" Baxter came over from Steely Dan and joined the Doobie Brothers.  Baxter, who had previously done studio work for the Doobies, had learned that Steely Dan was retiring from the road.
1974:  Walter Brennan ("Old Rivers"), who was chiefly an Oscar-winning actor in addition to a recording artist, died of emphysema at the age of 80 in Oxnard, California.
1976:  The Bee Gees released the album Children of the World.

1978:  Chic released their classic single "Le Freak" on Atlantic Records.  The song went on to become the top-selling record on Atlantic to that time.  (Note:  one website claims the song was released September 29.  "Le Freak" debuted on the Singles chart on September 28.  It is physically impossible for a song to be included on the Singles chart if it has not yet been released as a single.)

1979:  Rupert Holmes, up to this point a songwriter for other artists, decided to release one for himself--"Escape (The Pina Colada Song)".

1979:  Earth, Wind & Fire saluted this date in their 1979 hit "September"..."Do you remember the 21st night of September?"
1980:  The Michael Schenker Group made their British debut at Bristol's Colston Hall.
1980:  Elton John signed a six-year deal with Geffen Records.
1981:  Adam and the Ants had the #1 song in the U.K. with "Prince Charming".

1982:  Donald Fagan of Steely Dan released the single "I.G.Y. (What A Beautiful World)".
1985:  Madonna had the #1 album in the U.K. with Like A Virgin.


                                    Madonna had another Top 10 hit..

1985:  Dire Straits reached #1 with "Money For Nothing".  Madonna made it seven Top 10 songs in a row as "Dress You Up" moved from 14-10.
1985:  Kool & the Gang registered a fifth consecutive week at #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart with their classic "Cherish".

                                      Heart made a huge comeback...

1985:  Dire Straits continued to hold on to #1 on the Album chart with Brothers in Arms.  Sting was stuck at 2 with The Dream of the Blue Turtles while Tears For Fears owned #3--Songs From the Big Chair.  Bruce Springsteen was in his 66th week with Born in the U.S.A. and Bryan Adams' Reckless was still at #5 after 44 weeks of release.  The rest of a great Top 10:  Phil Collins and No Jacket Required, Billy Joel with Greatest Hits, Volume I & Volume II, Whitney Houston's debut at #8, the self-titled Heart at 9 and Motley Crue was bringing up the rear with Theatre of Pain.

1986:  Dionne Warwick was honored for her "exceptional service" in the fight against AIDS by the United States Department of Health and Human Services.
1987:  This isn't the best way to go out.  Jaco Pastorius, bass guitarist for Weather Report, who also worked with Joni Mitchell, David Sanborn and others, died at age 35 after trying to break into the Midnight Club in Fort Lauderdale, Florida after he had been barred, and employees of the Club beat him into a coma on the morning of September 12. 
1988:  While on their 232-date world tour, Def Leppard played the first of three nights at the Brendan Byrne Arena (now known as the Izod Center) in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
1989:  The Bangles broke up.
1989:  U2 played at the Perth Entertainment Centre in Perth, Australia.
1991:  Status Quo ("Pictures Of Matchstick Men") set a world record when they played four arenas in the U.K. in 11 hours and 11 minutes.  The group played at the Sheffield Arena in Sheffield, the Glasgow Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre in Glasgow, Scotland, the Birmingham National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham and Wembley Arena in London.  The "Rock 'Til You Drop' event took over a year to plan and raised over £2000,000 for children's charities. It took four stages, 60 drums, 200 amplifiers, 62 guitars, 165 cymbals, 12 miles of cable, 50 cameras, 2000,000 watts of power, 25000 lights, 250 crew, 8 helicopters, 5 jets, 20 limousines and 16 police escorts.
1991:  Dire Straits had the #1 album in the U.K. with On Every Street.

1991:  Curtis Stigers from Boise, Idaho had the week's fastest-rising song--"I Wonder Why", which moved from 81 to 60.

1991:  Color Me Badd moved up to the #1 spot with "I Adore Mi Amor".  Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch with Loleatta Holloway was up from 6-2 with "Good Vibrations" and Boyz II Men reached the third position with "Motownphilly".  C + C Music Factory had song #4--"Things That Make You Go Hmmmm...".  The rest of the Top 10:  The previous #1 from Paula Abdul--"The Promise Of A New Day", Bryan Adams and his former #1 "(Everything I Do) I Do It For You". Michael Bolton was stuck with "Time, Love And Tenderness", Cathy Dennis was facing "Too Many Walls" at #8, Firehouse had their one and only Top 10 with "Love Of A Lifetime" and Rod Stewart and the Temptations joined forces for "The Motown Song" at #10.

1991:  Metallica's "Black Album" was #1 for the fourth week, holding off Unforgettable With Love from Natalie Cole and Rush, which debuted at #3 with their great album Roll the Bones.
1991:  Bryan Adams reigned for an eighth week on the Adult Contemporary chart with "(Everything I Do) I Do It for You".
1993:  Nirvana released the album In Utero.  (Note:  Some sites report the release as September 13, but the official Nirvana website shows the release as September 21.)
1996:  The Fugees were at #1 on the Singles chart in the U.K. with "Ready Or Not".
1996:  R.E.M. owned the top album in the U.K. with New Adventures in Hi-Fi.

                                           Donna Lewis owned the runner-up spot...

1996:  "Macarena" by Los Deo Rio spent an eighth week at #1.  Donna Lewis remained at #2 with one of the top #2 songs of the Rock Era*--"I Love You Always Forever"--it was now in its fifth week as the bridesmaid. 
1999:  Mick Jones, Joe Strummer and Paul Simonon of the Clash attended the premiere of the Clash documentary Westway to the World in London.  (Note:  several websites falsely report the premiere was on September 22.  The story appeared in the BBC on September 22, but the premiere was on Tuesday, September 21.)
1999:  Alanis Morissette and Everlast performed on the new live music show "Reverb" on HBO-TV.

2000:  Bono of U2 testified on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. in an effort to get debt relief approved for third world nations.
2000:  The Red Hot Chili Peppers filmed a concert at the Memorial Coliseum in Portland, Oregon for later inclusion on the DVD Off the Map.

2001:  Superstars joined forces to help raise money for families of the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks of September 11.  "America:  A Tribute to Heroes" was shown on 35 broadcast and cable networks and raised over $150 million in pledges.
2002:  Pink scored the #1 U.K. song with "Just Like A Pill".
2003:  Duran Duran was in concert at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, California.
2004:  How far they sink.  Cat Stevens, who changed his name to Yusuf Islam, was denied entry into the United States after his name was on an anti-terrorist watch list because of ties to the loser group Hamas.

2011:  After 31 years and 15 studio albums, R.E.M. announced they were splitting up.

Born This Day:
1923:  Jimmy Young, a disc jockey who had a hit with his version of "Unchained Melody" in 1955, was born in Cinderford, Gloucestershire, England.
1932:  Don Preston, singer, songwriter and guitarist of Mothers of Invention, was born in Flint, Michigan.
1936:  Dickey Lee, who had a hit with "Patches" in 1962, was born in Memphis, Tennessee.
1944:  Jesse Ed Davis, popular session guitarist with John Lennon, Eric Clapton, the Monkees, Steve Miller, Jackson Browne and Harry Nilsson, was born in Norman, Oklahoma; died June 22, 1988 when he collapsed in a laundry room in Venice, California from heroin use.

Don Felder
1947:  Don Felder, ace guitarist of the Eagles, was born in Gainesville, Florida.
1954:  Phil Taylor, drummer of Motorhead, was born in Hasland, Derbyshire, England; died November 11, 2015 of liver failure.  (Note:  some websites report Taylor was born in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, England or simply say he was born in Chesterfield.  Taylor was born in Hasland, which is a suburb of Chesterfield.  To say he was born in Chesterfield is not true, since Chesterfield is not a county but a city.  Derbyshire is the correct County of Birth)
1959:  Corinne Drewery of Swing Out Sister was born in Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England.

1967:  Faith Hill was born in Ridgeland, Mississippi.  (Note:  some sources claim Hill was born in Jackson, Mississippi or Star, Mississippi (south of Jackson).  Hill was adopted in Star, but she was born in Ridgeland, a town north of Jackson.)
1967:  Timmy T ("One More Try" from 1991) was born in Fresno, California.
1967:  Tyler Stewart, drummer of Barenaked Ladies, was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
1968:  Trugoy (David Jude Jolicoeur) of De La Soul was born in Brooklyn, New York.

1972:  Liam Gallagher, former frontman of Oasis, was born in Burnage, Manchester, England.
1972:  David Silveria, drummer of Korn, was born in San Leandro, California.
1973:  Jimmy Constable of 911 was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, England.  (Note:  some websites report Jimmy was born in Toxteth, Liverpool.  Toxteth is merely an area of Liverpool; it is not a city.)
1977:  Sam Rivers, bassist of Limp Bizkit, was born in Jacksonville, Florida.