| Hank Williams had become so unreliable at
the Grand Ole Opry that he was fired in 1952. Alcoholism was a contributing factor. Williams
had played at the Opry many times over the previous three years, and had
recently been divorced when his alcohol abuse had taken its toll. He died
4½ months later.
| Johnny Cash was married in Texas in
1954, with plans of becoming a
Memphis appliance salesman. He instead formed a band with Luther Perkins
and Marshall Grant, and was signed to Sun Records in
| American Bandstand first aired on U.S. television
in 1957. Dick Clark had replaced
Bob Horn the previous year when the show was still called Bandstand, and was
out of Philadelphia. Horn was involved in a scandal and executives had him
dismissed. Squeaky clean Clark moved in and hosted the show until 1989. It was
cancelled five months later with David Hirsch as its final
| Britains answer to Elvis, 17 year old
Cliff Richard, signed a record deal with EMI in 1958. He had already recorded a couple of tracks at Abbey
Road Studios, but wouldnt release his first single for a few weeks
| The Chubby one performed The Twist
for the first time on American Bandstand. Checker would hit number 1
with the song that year, in 1960,
and again 18 months later in 1962. It is the only song to go to the top of the
charts in the U.S. on two separate occasions.
| Ray Peterson wasnt selling too many
records in 1960. It was reported
that Decca Records discarded 25000 copies of his latest single, Tell Laura I
Love Her, because it was vulgar. The song told of the dying moments of a
teenager who was just in a car accident. It didnt make much difference,
however, as the song made the top 10, and was soon followed by
Petersons second big hit, Corinna, Corinna.
| It was in 1963 this week that Little Stevie Wonder had the
number 1 song with Fingertips Pt. 2. He was 13 years old when the
live recording was made.
| Two hundred teenagers saw the debut of
Londons, Ready, Steady, Go! TV show in 1963. The program broadcast guest appearances by
The Tremeloes, Brian Poole and Billy Fury. Originally 30
minutes long, it expanded to 50 minutes the following year, and soon attracted
the most popular artists, including
, The Lovin' Spoonful, The Rolling Stones, The Four
Tops, The Kinks and many others.
| John Lennon apologized at a press
conference held in 1966, for his
were more popular than Jesus now. The U.S. media took the quote out
of context and created a frenzy there, especially in the Bible belt.
Revolver was on the charts at the time, except in South Africa where
Beatle records were banned.
| Pink Floyd released their 1967 album, The Piper At the Gates of
Dawn. It was their debut effort, on which most songs were penned by Syd
Barrett. It did not contain the two singles released previously that year,
Arnold Layne and See Emily Play.
| Procol Harum recorded with the Edmonton
Symphony Orchestra in Alberta, Canada, in 1971. They captured a live version of Conquistador
on tape and released it the following year. The album release, Procol
Harum In Concert With The Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, made it into the top
5 in the U.S.
| After a split of over a year, The Bee Gees
were back with a number 1 single in 1971. How Can You Mend a Broken Heart stayed
at the top for 4 weeks in the U.S., and would be their only song to hit the top
before they went into disco mode. Four years later, Jive Talkin
started the downhill slide that lasted until the end of the
| The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band began recording
Will the Circle Be Unbroken in 1971, with an impressive guest list of country stars. It
was a triple album released the following year, and in 1989 they made a
| Columbia Records signed Aerosmith in
1972 for $125000, after a New
York performance. They would do Columbia proud with songs like Dream On,
Sweet Emotion and Walk This Way, before sinking to the lowest
depths of rock n roll. In 1985, the group moved to Geffen Records
for a $7 million advance on a five album deal. They would mount the biggest
comeback of all time over the next 10 years. After releasing Big Ones, a
greatest hits package, Steven Tyler and the boys returned to Columbia
with the Nine Lives album. In 1998 they finally had a number 1 hit, with
a song from the Armageddon soundtrack.
| ABBA hit the U.S. top 10 for the first time
when Waterloo made number 6 in 1974. They were on their first American tour, and dropped
in on The Mike Douglas Show along the way. Although they would eventually only
manage a single number 1 hit in America, the group was huge in
| Elton John played the first of seven sold
out concerts at Madison Square Garden in New York, in 1976. The $1.25 million generated broke the record set by
The Rolling Stones in 1975. John was promoting his recent single,
Dont Go Breaking My Heart, with Kiki Dee, as well as the
live album, Here and There. It was released almost twenty years later as
an expanded, double CD.
| Miss You by The Rolling Stones was
the number 1 song this week in 1978. It was their disco contribution. Shame, shame,
shame. Other tracks on the Some Girls album, like Shattered,
When the Whip Comes Down, Just My Imagination and Beast of
Burden were far better but not quite as radio-friendly,
| Rickie Lee Jones had her debut album go
platinum in 1979, about a month
after the LP and Chuck Es in Love single both peaked inside the
top 5 in the U.S. Unfortunately, Jones wasnt able to maintain the
level of success with subsequent releases.
| Talking Heads played at the Dr. Pepper
Festival in New Yorks, Central Park in 1979. They were promoting their third album, Fear of
Music, which contained the FM radio classic, Life During
| broadcast its first stereo concert in 1981. REO Speedwagon performed in
Denver, Colorado, having just released Hi Infidelity and the hit
singles, Keep On Loving You, Take It On the Run and Dont
Let Him Go.
| Stevie Nicks released her first solo album
in 1981. Bella Donna
contained four top 40 singles, Stop Draggin My Heart Around
(with Tom Petty), Leather and Lace (with Don Henley),
the rocker Edge of Seventeen and After the Glitter Fades. The
album was issued between the Fleetwood Mac releases, Fleetwood Mac
Live and Mirage. In 1998 Nicks would release the 3 CD box
| A feature film built around The Wall and
starring Bob Geldof hit movie theatres in New York in 1982. The film was conceived alongside the
double album by Pink Floyds, Roger Waters, but took a
little longer than the LP to complete.
| America peaked inside the U.S. top 40 for
the last time when The Border went to number 33 in 1983. It was from their Your Move
album, which was filled with easy listening gems like My Kinda
Woman, Shes a Runaway, Tonight is for Dreamers and
Dont Let Me Be Lonely. Once again, Russ Ballard contributed
a lot of the material, instrumental backing and production.
| Ray Parker Jr. had the top song this week
in 1984 with Ghostbusters.
Unfortunately, it sounded too much like Huey Lewis, I Want a
New Drug, and Parker had to pay up. Huey Lewis and The News
continued with the hits and had their first number 1 a year later with
The Power of Love.
| I Still Havent Found What Im
Looking For made it to number 1 in 1987, giving U2 its second top hit in the U.S.
The Joshua Tree album brought the group into superstardom, and
theyve never looked back. With or Without You was number 1 just a
couple months before, and Where the Streets Have No Name went top 20
later in the year.
| After 57 weeks on the albums chart, Guns
N Roses finally hit number 1 with Appetite for Destruction in
1988. Singles from the album,
Sweet Child O Mine, Welcome to the Jungle and Paradise
City all made the top 10.
| Jeff Porcaro, one of the most popular
drummers of the 1970s, died in 1992. He suffered cardiac arrest at the age of only 38,
caused by hardening of the arteries after years of cocaine use. Porcaro
played on Silk Degrees, the breakthrough album by Boz Scaggs
in 1976, before forming Toto. Over the years he would also
contribute to such albums as The Wall, Gaucho, The End of the
Innocence, Luck of the Draw and many others.
| Lisa Loeb hit number 1 for the first of 3
weeks in 1994, with a song
included on the Reality Bites soundtrack. Actor and friend Ethan Hawke
asked her to provide a song for the upcoming movie and Stay (I Missed You)
was it. Loeb was in good company on the album; also making
contributions were U2, Squeeze, Crowded House and Lenny
| Jerry Garcia, leader of The Grateful
Dead, died in 1995 at a
California rehabilitation centre. The official cause of death was a heart
attack brought on by hardening of the arteries. The Grateful Dead earned
approximately $50 million each year from touring and sales of previous
| Dick Latvala died in 1999, after being in a coma that was
caused by a heart attack. Since 1993, he had been compiling a series of
Dicks Picks albums for The Grateful Dead. The group hired
him in the 1980s to look after their archives, which included a vast collection
of live performances. The last album released before his death was
Dicks Picks 14, in July of 1999. He was 56.
|Sammi Smith (1943), Rick Derringer (1947), and Samantha Sang (1953) first caused a lot of Emotion on this
|Isaac Hayes (1942) and Carole Pope (Rough Trade, 1949) felt All Touch when they were
|I Just Cant Help Believing that Freddie
Slack (1910), Stan Freberg
(1926), B.J. Thomas
(1942), Andy Fraser
Alexei Sayle (1952) and
Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden, 1958) all celebrate birthdays.
|Joe Tex (1933), Michael Johnson (1944) and The Edge (U2, 1961) were the Pride of their
parents when they arrived.
|You Might Think it was on a different day that
Rinus Gerritsen (Golden Earring, 1946), Barbara Mason (1947), Benjamin Orr (The
Cars, 1947) and Whitney
Houston (1963) celebrate
birthdays, but it isnt.
|Jimmy Dean (1928), Bobby Hatfield (The Righteous
Brothers, 1940), Ronnie
Spector (The Ronettes, 1945), Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull, 1947) and Patti Austin (1948) became the Soul and Inspiration
of their parents.
|Eric Carmen (1949) and Alan Frew (Glass Tiger, 1959) were born with Hungry
|Marilyn Monroe died of an overdose of
barbiturates in 1962. Norma
Jean Baker had a number of jazz releases, but her most famous song was,
Happy Birthday Mr. President. Drummer Jeff Porcaro
died of cardiac arrest in 1992.
||Rick James died in his sleep of heart failure in
2004. He was only
|Esther Phillips died of liver and kidney failure
|Julian Edwin Cannonball Adderley died
of a stroke in 1975.
|Jerry Garcia (The Grateful Dead) died of a
heart attack caused by hardening of the arteries, in 1995.
|Freddie Slack passed away in 1965.