Saturday, January 27, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 28

1956:  Elvis Presley appeared on national television for the first time on The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show on CBS, performing "Shake, Rattle And Roll," "Flip, Flop And Fly" and "I Got A Woman".  Comedian and Stage Show producer Jackie Gleason said afterward, "He can't last. I tell you flatly, he can't last."

Friday, January 26, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 27

1956:  One of the most historic days of the Rock Era--Elvis Presley released the single "Heartbreak Hotel".  RCA had just purchased Elvis's contract from Sun Records for $35,000.  It seems the investment paid off.
1958:  Little Richard entered Oakwood Theological College in Huntsville, Alabama, where he was ordained as a Seventh Day Adventist Minister.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 26

Remember that this countdown is all about the R&B chart.  There are songs that did quite well on that chart but not well on the popular chart then others that were huge hits that might have you wondering why they weren't ranked higher.  Some were popular overall but not so much on the R&B chart.  So keep that in mind as we continue to work our way upward.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 25

1958:  "Jailhouse Rock" by Elvis Presley became the first single to debut on the U.K. chart at #1.
1960:  Sam Cooke recorded "Chain Gang" at the RCA Recording Studios in New York City.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 24

1958:  The Quarrymen performed at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, England, the group's first and last performance there until they changed their name to the Beatles.

Monday, January 22, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 23

1957:  The movie Don't Knock the Rock, starring Bill Haley & the Comets and Little Richard, premiered in Australia.  Haley & his group, who were touring in Australia, attended the opening.  The movie had premiered in New York City on December 12.
1961:  All signs were that Connie Francis had a big hit.  "Where The Boys Are" moved from 90 to 42.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 22

1959:  Buddy Holly left for Milwaukee to begin the Winter Dance Party tour.  (Note:  numerous websites say that Holly made 14 final recordings today, which cannot be true since he left early for Milwaukee, as noted above.  Holly made his last recordings ( "That's What They Say", "What To Do", "Peggy Sue Got Married," "That Makes It Tough", "Crying, Waiting Hoping" (often shown incorrectly as just "Crying"), "Learning The Game", "Wait 'Til The Sun Shines Nellie", "Drown In My Own Tears", "Maria Elena" (which is mostly Buddy's wife Maria talking and the noise of the apartment), "Dearest", "Love Is Strange", "Smoky Joe's CafĂ©"  "Buddy's Guitar", and "Slippin' And Slidin'") from December to early January alone with an acoustic guitar and an Ampex reel to reel tape recorder in his apartment in New York City.  The first two were recorded December 3, "Peggy Sue Got Married" was recorded December 5, "That Makes It Tough" was recorded December 8, "Crying, Waiting, Hoping" was recorded December 14, and "Learning The Game" was recorded on December 17.  The last eight songs were recorded sometime between January  1 and January 19, but there is no exact record, and they definitely were not recorded on December 22.  The songs were later released posthumously with dubs added and are referred to as "The Apartment Tapes".)
1960:  Sam Cooke signed with RCA Records.  (Note:  there is no definitive source that indicates the exact date Cooke signed the contract.  Although some websites say it occurred on January 21, most center on January 22, which was Cooke's 29th birthday.)

This Date in Rock Music History: January 21

1956:  It was week number three at #1 on the R&B chart for "The Great Pretender" from the Platters.  And it wasn't even close to done.

This Date in Rock Music History: January 20

1953:  Elvis Presley registered for the Selective Service System in the United States.  (Note:  numerous websites incorrectly report that Elvis received orders to report to military duty on January 20, 1958.  The only event that the date of January 20 refers to is the date Elvis registered for the draft, shortly after his 18th birthday.  On December 20, 1957, Elvis received his official draft notice.  He was able to get a deferment, then officially was inducted on March 24, 1958.  Some websites claim he received his draft notice on December 8, but it was the 20th, according to '' and the books 'Icons of Rock:  An Encyclopedia of the Legends Who Changed Music Forever' by  Scott Schinder and Andy Schwartz and Elvis for Kids:  A Biography of Elvis Presley Just for Kids!' by Sam Rogers.

1958:  An artist who would become one of the most successful in the early years of the Rock Era debuted on the chart with his first hit song on this date at the age of 18--"DeDe Dinah" Frankie Avalon.
1958:  Danny & the Juniors posted a third week at #1 on the R&B chart with "At The Hop".
1962:  Gene Chandler had a new song that was doing quite well, moving from #93 to #49 on this date--"Duke Of Earl".
1964:  The Beatles released the album Meet the Beatles in the United States, which served as their debut album in the States.

1964:  On the heels of their huge #1 "I Want To Hold Your Hand", the Beatles re-released the single "She Loves You" in the United States.
1965:  The Miracles recorded "Tracks Of My Tears".
1965:  The Rolling Stones, the Dave Clark Five, Petula Clark, Glen Campbell, the Kinks, Bobby Vee, Gerry & the Pacemakers and Bobby Sherman appeared on one heck of an episode of Shindig!  on ABC-TV.  

1965:  DJ Allan Freed, who coined the term "Rock & Roll" to describe the new music, died at the age of 43 in Palm Springs, California from uremia and cirrhosis brought on by alcoholism.

1966:  Staff Sergeant Barry Sadler released the single "The Ballad Of the Green Beret".  The song had originally been released only to the military on a small label, but when it became a big hit underground, RCA Records picked up the song and released it nationally.
1966:  Chad & Jeremy appeared on Laredo on NBC-TV.
1967:  Arthur Conley recorded "Sweet Soul Music".
1967:  Paul McCartney recorded his vocal for the Beatles' song "A Day In The Life".  He would later re-record the part on February 3.
1968:  The "Magical Mystery Tour" Soundtrack by the Beatles was the top album for a third week.  Disraeli Gears by Cream maneuvered from 15 to 7.

1968:  "Chain Of Fools" by Aretha Franklin was the new #1 on the R&B chart.
1968:  Paul Mauriat exploded from 84 to 47 with "Love Is Blue".
1968:  Jon Fred & His Playboy Band reached #1 with "Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)".
1969:  The Cowsills recorded "Hair" in New York City.
1969:  Elvis Presley recorded "In The Ghetto" at American Studios in Memphis, Tennessee.
1973:  Hot August Night by Neil Diamond entered the Top 10 on the Album chart.

1973:  Carly Simon moved to #1 on the Adult chart with "You're So Vain".
1973:  Stevie Wonder made it three weeks at #1 on the R&B chart with "Superstition".
1973:  Carly Simon had one of The Top Songs of the 70's* with "You're So Vain", #1 for a third week.  "Superstition" by Stevie Wonder was second.
1979:  Parliament's "Aqua Boogie (A Psychoalphadiscobetaaquadoloop) was #1 on the R&B chart.

     Foreigner proved they were for real with this album.

1979:  Barbra Streisand's Greatest Hits, Volume 2 was #1 for a third week on the Album chart.  Foreigner's second release, Double Vision, entered the Top 10.

1979:  "Le Freak", which had already spent three weeks at #1 before giving way to the Bee Gees' "Too Much Heaven", was back for a third time at the top for Chic.  "My Life" from Billy Joel remained third for the third week.  Olivia Newton-John entered the Top 10 with "A Little More Love" while Rod Stewart bounced from 22 to 10 with "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?"
1982:  Ozzy Osbourne bit the head off of a bat in Des Moines, Iowa and the idiot was hospitalized to undergo a series of rabies shots.

1983:  Def Leppard released their breakthrough album--Pyromania.
1985:  Andy Gibb was on Punky Brewster on NBC-TV.
1986:  Stevie Wonder and Bob Dylan performed at a Martin Luther King Day concert at the John F. Kennedy Performing Arts Center in Washington, D.C.
1988:  A stellar class in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame--The Beatles, the Beach Boys, the Supremes, Bob Dylan, the Drifters and Berry Gordy, Jr., along with Les Paul, Woody Guthrie and Leadbelly.

1990:  Rod Stewart had the #1 Adult Contemporary song with "Downtown Train".
1990:  Michael Bolton reached #1 with "How Am I Supposed to Live Without You".  Technotronic was held out for another week with "Pump Up The Jam" while previous #1 "Another Day In Paradise" by Phil Collins was third.  Jody Watley moved to #4 with "Everything" and Rod Stewart had his 40th career solo hit but just his 11th Top 10 with "Downtown Train".  The rest of the Top 10:  "Rhythm Nation", the former #2 from Janet Jackson, Lou Gramm had a solo hit with "Just Between You And Me", Tom Petty crashed the list with "Free Fallin'", Seduction was up from 15-9 with "Two To Make It Right" and Tesla's "Love Song" was #10.

       A host of great tracks on 'Jagged Little Pill'...

1996:  The "Waiting to Exhale" Soundtrack moved to #1 on the Album chart.  Daydream by Mariah Carey slipped to #2 with Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill still looming.  Hootie & the Blowfish were up to #4 after 78 weeks with Cracked Rear View and the new Garth Brooks album--Fresh Horses was fifth.  The rest of the Top 10:  The Greatest Hits Collection from Alan Jackson, Shania Twain entered the list with her breakthrough album The Woman In Me, CrazySexy Cool by TLC was still strong after 60 weeks, the Smashing Pumpkins had #9 with Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness and Bush couldn't get past 10 with Sixteen Stone.

        Everything But the Girl had a huge hit on their hands...

1996:  Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men had now spent eight weeks at #1 with "One Sweet Day".  Since dropping from #1, Whitney Houston had spent eight weeks at #2 with "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)".  LL Cool J was third with "Hey Lover", Everything but the Girl moved from 10-4 with "Missing" and Deep Blue Something had their one and only hit--"Breakfast At Tiffany's".  The rest of a solid Top 10:  "Name" from the Goo Goo Dolls, TLC's "Diggin' On You", Joan Osborne found the Top 10 with "One Of Us", Coolio's monster hit "Gangsta's Paradise" was now at #9 and Madonna collected her 36th career hit with "You'll See".
1999:  Scott Weiland of the Stone Temple Pilots, who was on probation for using heroin, was arrested for failing to provide a urine sample to his live-in drug treatment center.

2002:  Sting won the Golden Globe Award in Beverly Hills, California for the Best Song from a Motion Picture--"Until", from Kate & Leopold.

2004:  Terry Balsamo, guitarist of Cold, left the group to join Evanescence.

2012:  Larry Butler, keyboardist and vocalist with the Esquires and the Gentrys ("Keep On Dancin'"), songwriter (co-wrote "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song" for B.J. Thomas) and producer for Kenny Rogers, Debbie Boone and Mac Davis, died in his sleep at the age of 69 in Pensacola, Florida.

2012:  Etta James died of leukemia at the age of 73 in Riverside, California.

Born This Day:
1922:  Ray Anthony ("Peter Gunn" from 1959) was born in Bentleyville, Pennsylvania.
1924:  Lee Pockriss, songwriter who penned three of the great songs early in the Rock Era--"Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini" for Bryan Hyland, "Catch A Falling Star" for Perry Como and "Johnny Angel" for Shelley Fabares, as well as many more songs, was born in Brooklyn, New York; died November 14, 2011 of a long illness at his home in Bridgewater, Connecticut.
1931:  Earl Grant ("The End" from 1958) was born in Idabel, Oklahoma; died June 10, 1970 in a car accident in Lordsburg, New Mexico.

1933:  Ron Townson of the 5th Dimension was born in St. Louis, Missouri; died in Las Vegas, Nevada on August 2, 2001 of renal failure after a four-year battle with kidney disease.  (Note:  some websites report he died on August 3, but it was Thursday, August 2, according to 'The New York Times' and 'Billboard'.)
1942:  Billy Powell, a founding member of the O'Jays, was born in Canton, Ohio; died May 26, 1977 of cancer in Canton.  (Note:  some websites show his birth year as 1941, and others his birthday as December 9--according to both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, Powell was born on January 20, 1942.)

  Evans on right, as one half of the duo Zager & Evans...

1943:  Rick Evans of Zager & Evans ("In The Year 2525" from 1969) was born in Lincoln, Nebraska.
1945:  Eric Stewart, guitars, keyboards and vocals for the Mindbenders ("Groovy Kind Of Love" from 1966) and 10 c.c., was born in Droylsden, Lancashire, England.
1946:  Jimmy Chambers of Londonbeat ("I've Been Thinking About You" from 1990) was born in Trinidad.


1952:  Paul Stanley (real name:  Stanley Eisen), guitarist for Kiss, was born in Manhattan, New York.
1958:  Ian Hill, founding member and bassist for Judas Priest, was born in West Bromwich, England.
1969:  Nicholas Allen Jones, lyricist and bassist of the Manic Street Preachers, was born in Woodfieldside, South Wales.  (Note:  some websites report his birthplace as Blackwood, South Wales, but Jones says he was born in Woodfieldside.) 
1971:  Gary Barlow, songwriter and pianist for Take That ("Back For Good" from 1995), solo artist ("Forever Love" from 1996), who has written songs for Donny Osmond, Charlotte Church and others, was born in Frodsham, Cheshire, England.  (Note:  some websites claim Barlow was born in Frosham; that is a misspelling; there is no such town in England as Frosham.)
1979:  Rob Bourdon, drummer of Linkin Park, was born in Calabasas, California.
1981:  Nathan Connolly, guitarist of Snow Patrol, was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland.