| put out its first record sales chart in
1936. The first number 1 was
Stop! Look! Listen! by jazz artist, Joe Venuti. The final top hit
of the millennium was Smooth, a song credited to Santana featuring
Rob Thomas (of Matchbox 20). Smooth was at its
10th week at number 1 when 1999 ended.
| The first test broadcast of FM radio was made in
1940. It took over from AM
frequencies as the home of top 40 during the 1980s, having previously catered
more to adult crowds with jazz and classical music.
| The legendary Hank Williams died of heart
failure, caused by an overdose of alcohol and pills on New Years Day in
1953. He had the number 1 country
song that week, Ill Never Get Out of This World Alive. He was only
29 years old and was on his way to a Canton, Ohio performance.
| Elvis Presley spent $4 at the Memphis
Recording Service to record two songs: My Happiness and Thats
When Your Heartaches Begin, in 1954. The service was owned by Sam Phillips of Sun
Records. Three years later this week, Elvis would make his last
appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, performing Hound Dog, Love Me
Tender, Heartbreak Hotel and Dont Be Cruel. And in
1985, the U.S. Post Office issued
a set of Elvis stamps.
| Gibson Guitars got a patent for their Korina
Flying V model in 1958. It was
part of the Designer series and was used by guitarists in the late 60s
and the 1970s like Jimi Hendrix. The version of the guitar created in
1967 still lives on today.
| Johnny Cash made his first performance of
several at San Quentin Prison in 1960. He entertained the inmates for free, including
Merle Haggard, who was serving a little under three years for burglary.
Cash had already hit the country charts over 30 times, and had a couple
of current singles, Second Honeymoon on Columbia Records, and Mean
Eyed Cat from the Sun Records vaults.
| Decca Records heard an audition by
in 1962 and turned them down.
They signed Brian Poole and The Tremeloes instead. One of the reasons,
apparently, was that Poole and the boys lived closer. Ill bet that
saved Decca lots of money. Dick Rowe was the record executive who later became
known as the man who turned down
. Rowe got a second chance sometime later when he signed
The Rolling Stones on the advice of George
| Gary U.S. Bonds sued Chubby Checker
in 1963, claiming that
Checker stole Bonds biggest hit, Quarter to Three.
Dancin Party was the culprit a year after Bonds went to
number 1. The $100000 suit was settled out of court.
| The Top of the Pops was first aired by the BBC in
1964, with guests, The Rolling
Stones, Dusty Springfield and The Dave Clark Five.
Springfield was first, playing I Only Want to Be With You, her
latest top 10 hit in the U.K.
| In 1964, The Rolling Stones began their second U.K.
tour, but their first as headliners. Acts like The Swinging Blue Jeans,
The Ronettes and Marty Wilde supported them. The first Stones
album would come out a few months later.
| CBS purchased The Fender Guitar Company in
1965 for $13 million. They were
makers of the Stratocaster and Telecaster electric guitars, and now also make
the Deluxe and American Vintage series. Their line of acoustic guitars offered
the Concert, King, Kingman, Malibu, Palomino, Redondo, Shenandoah 12-string,
and Villager 12-string variations. These guitars were the only U.S. made Fender
acoustic models until the Spring Hill (1994) and the Guild (1995) went into
| In 1967, Carl Wilson refused to report to the local
draft board after getting his draft notice. He would eventually win his battle
against draft evasion charges, saying that he was a conscientious objector.
The Beach Boys were coming off the huge success of their latest single,
Good Vibrations, which hit number 1 in the U.S. just a few weeks before.
It was originally going to be included on an album titled Smile, but the
sessions were aborted. Also slated for the LP were Heroes and Villains,
Surfs Up, Child is Father of the Man and 8 other
| Thirty thousand copies of Unfinished Music No.
1: Two Virgins, an album by John Lennon and Yoko Ono, were seized at
a New Jersey airport in 1969. The
couple appeared naked together on the cover. The scandal also caused a vice
squad in Chicago to shut down a record store displaying the album.
Tetragrammaton Records distributed the record in the U.S. after Capitol refused
it. It was finally offered for sale in a brown paper wrapper.
| Davy Jones announced that he was leaving
The Monkees in 1970.
Peter Tork left a year earlier, and Michael Nesmith began a solo
career two months after the statement by Jones. Davy and
Mickey Dolenz packed it in after completing the Changes
| Neil Young returned to Canada in 1971 for the first time since making it
big, to perform live. He had recently released the classic After the Gold
Rush album, as well as Déjà Vu with Crosby, Stills
& Nash. Young played the Queen Elizabeth Theatre in Vancouver,
British Columbia, before linking back up with CSN on their current
| While at a Nashville jail in 1973, trying to bail out a member of his
band, Tex Ritter died of a heart attack.
| Bob Dylan and The Band had a reunion
of sorts when they began a U.S. tour in 1974. Dylan was promoting his Planet Waves
album while The Band had just released Moondog Matinee and
the single, Aint Got No Home. The results of the tour were
released six months later on Before the Flood (live), a double
| The year 1975 saw a riot outside of Boston Gardens auditorium by
fans waiting to buy
tickets. The show was later cancelled after damages
were reported to the tune of $30000.
| Beatle assistant, Mal Evans, died in
1976 from a police bullet after
he refused to put down an unloaded gun following a domestic dispute in Los
Angeles. Evans discovered and managed Badfinger early in their career.
They originally came to Apple Records as The Iveys, and released the
Maybe Tomorrow album. Evans also produced several tracks on the
| A murder trial against Sid Vicious began in
1979. He was charged with
stabbing his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen. Vicious had attempted suicide
twice while in a cell after his arrest and died a month later of a heroin
| John Denver had his album with The
Muppets, A Christmas Together, reach number 26 in the U.S. in
1980. It would go on to sell over
a million copies. He had appeared on a Christmas special with Jim Hensons
creations the previous month. His Rocky Mountain Christmas album from
1975 also sold very well.
| Paul McCartney had pretty good luck this
week in the 1980s when several of his songs hit the top 10. Sir Pauls
original holiday song, Wonderful Christmastime peaked at number 6 in
the U.K. in 1980, which was
followed in 1983 by a duet with the gloved one, The Girl is Mine (number
2 in the U.S.), and in 1986 with Spies Like Us (U.S. number 7). The bad
news is that he would have only two more top 40 hits in America, with Press
and My Brave Face.
| Fish had a promising beginning to 1981 when he successfully auditioned for
U.K. band, Marillion. He brought along lyrics to a song by the name of
The Web, which would appear two years later on their highly acclaimed
debut album, Script for a Jesters Tear. Derek Dick (his
real name), caught the Fish moniker from his landlady who told him he
used to wallow in the bath like a fish.
| The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra had a
platinum hit on their hands in 1982
with Hooked on Classics. A number of snippets from popular classical
pieces were put together to form a medley with a disco beat. The single made
the top 10 with the help of conductor Louis Clark, who had also served
as arranger with ELO.
| Thin Lizzy front man, Phil Lynott,
died in 1986 of heart failure and
pneumonia, with his wife at his bedside. He had been in a coma for eight days
after an overdose. Other notable members of the group at one time or another
included Gary Moore and Midge Ure. The group fell apart 2½
years before Lynott died, and ironically, their last album of unreleased
material was 1983s live album, Life.
| Elton John entered a Sydney hospital for
throat surgery in 1987. He had
recorded the album, Live in Australia, the previous month. It would
produce the top 10 hit, Candle in the Wind, several months later in
1988. Elton would have to wait until April before he could perform
| Tom Jones made a guest appearance on Late
Night With David Letterman in 1989. Jones, also known as The Voice, was
hot at the time with Kiss, a song he had recently recorded with The
Art of Noise. It was his first U.S. hit in almost a dozen years. The song
was from his current Move Closer album, which also included covers of
Satisfaction and At This Moment. The title track was originally
by Phyllis Nelson, but the best version was recorded by Marilyn
Martin, the singer who had a smash hit with a Phil Collins duet,
Separate Lives, written by Stephen Bishop and included on the
White Nights soundtrack from 1985.
| Sonny Bono died in 1998 from injuries sustained in a skiing accident. He had
most of his success singing as part of the Sonny and Cher team in the
1960s and early 70s, but also had the top 10 solo hit, Laugh at
Me. He was 62.
| The Bayou closed its doors in 1999 after a New Years gig. The
Washington night club saw the likes of U2, Jimi Hendrix, Billy
Joel, Mick Jagger and many others in its 50 years. It was formerly
known as The Hideaway Club back in the 1930s, and was torn down to make way for
a strip of new apartments, stores and a hotel.
|There was Peace on Earth when Country Joe
McDonald arrived in 1942.
|Roger Miller was born under a Kansas City Star
|For What Its Worth, George Martin
(1926), Stephen Stills
(1945) and John Paul Jones
(, 1946), were born.
|Arthur Conley (1946) and REMs lead singer, Michael Stipe
(1960), arrived somewhere
along Funky Street.
|Discoverer of Elvis Presley, Sam Phillips
(1923) and Wilbert
Harrison (1929) were born
nowhere near Kansas City.
|Syd Barrett (Pink Floyd, 1946) and Malcolm Young
(AC/DC, 1953) were
both delivered by Matilda Mother.
|Paul Revere (from The Raiders, 1942) and Kenny Loggins (1948) were born Hungry.
|Hank Williams Sr. died in 1953 of heart failure.
|Tex Ritter died of a heart attack in 1973. Randy California
(Spirit) drowned in 1997.
|Phil Lynott (Thin Lizzy) died of drug and
alcohol abuse in 1986 at the age
of 35. Les Brown passed away at the age of 88 in 2001.
|Beatle assistant, Mal Evans, was shot and
killed by Los Angeles police in 1976. Sonny Bono died in a skiing accident in
1998. King Biscuit Boy
(Richard Newell) died in his sleep in 2003 at the age of 59.
||Lou Rawls died from cancer in 2006.