| Elvis Presley released his second single on
Sun Records in 1954. He covered
Good Rockin Tonight, a song made popular in 1948 by Wynonie
Harris. Its B-side was I Dont Care If the Sun Dont
Shine, written by Mack David. The single did not do nearly as well as his
first, That s All Right.
| Elvis Presley ended his first 12 months
with RCA Records in 1956 after
selling over 10 million records. Songs like Heartbreak Hotel, I Want
You I Need You I Love You, Hound Dog and Dont Be Cruel
led the way to the bank. RCA bought Elvis from Sun Records in
| Buddy Holly and The Crickets had their only
number one, Thatll Be the Day, this week in 1957. Their next two singles, Peggy Sue
and Oh, Boy! also made the top 10, while Maybe Baby and It
Doesnt Matter Anymore (written by Paul Anka) were top
| The Rolling Stones began their first U.K.
tour in 1963. They played 32
dates, opening for acts like The Everly Brothers, Bo Diddley and
Little Richard. Poison Ivy, a recent single and the follow-up to
Come On, had just been cancelled.
| Roy Orbison had the biggest hit of his
career in 1964 when Oh, Pretty
Woman hit the top for the first of three weeks. The song toppled House
of the Rising Sun by The Animals to become Orbisons
second number 1 single. He would return to the top 10 in
| The Association had their first of two
number 1 hits when Cherish beat out the competition for the beginning of
a 3 week run in 1966. The New
Christy Minstrels almost recorded the track but Association member
and songwriter, Terry Kirkman, held onto Cherish instead of
selling it for a quick buck ($1000 actually). The finished recording played for
3 minutes and 25 seconds, but the singles label listed the time as 3:00
so that DJs wouldnt be discouraged from playing a long
| The Box Tops had the number 1 song in
1967 this week. The Letter
was less than two minutes long, but 16 year old lead singer, Alex
Chilton, made it an instant classic. They almost repeated the triumph with
Cry Like a Baby months later, but it stalled at number 2. Soul Deep
from 1969, was their last single to reach the top 40, giving the band a
successful two year run. Chilton also gave us the theme song from That
70s Show. He wrote In the Street in 1972 with bandmate, Chris
Bell, while in Big Star. Cheap Trick re-recorded the song for
That 70s Show and the soundtrack, That 70s Show Presents That
70s Album: Rockin.
| It was announced in 1968 that Janis Joplin would be leaving Big
Brother and The Holding Company at the end of the year. They had been
together since 1965, and their last appearance together would be on December
7th in Hawaii. Janis would soon be backed by the Kozmic
| Seven minutes and eleven seconds of Hey Jude
were number 1 in 1968. The
song about Julian Lennon was their biggest, staying at the top for eight
weeks. Hey Jude was also the number 1 song of the 1960s. Initially,
George Harrison wanted to mimic Paul McCartneys vocals at
the beginning of the song, but Macca told him that less was more. And
when the recording of the song started, Ringo was using the facilities,
but made it back just in time to add his drums to the track.
| An American newspaper broke the story in 1969 that Paul McCartney had died
on November 9th, 1966, and was subsequently replaced by British
look-alike, William Campbell. Its somewhat interesting that its
also the same day that John first met Yoko. Coincidence? When
McCartney was asked to comment by a reporter visiting Maccas
farm, he replied, Do I look dead? Im as fit as a fiddle.
Campbell and the surviving Beatles released their final studio album,
Abbey Road, a few days later.
| Grand Funks, Were An
American Band made it to number 1, in 1973. They would repeat the success in 1974. Many
long-time fans were sorry to hear the new commercial sound of the band.
Grand Funk spent the next couple of years releasing top 10 singles. A
live version of Were An American Band can be found on 1997s,
| Bad Company had their only number 1 album
in the U.S. when their debut LP hit the top for a week in 1974. The success came on the strength of
songs like Cant Get Enough, Rock Steady, Ready for Love
and the title track. Paul Rodgers and Simon Kirke had come
out of Free, while Mick Ralphs had played guitar with Mott the
Hoople and Boz Burrell was bass player for King Crimson
before the group formed in 1973. They produced six albums together before
disbanding in 1983. After reforming a few times over the years, and with
various members, the original Bad Company briefly reunited in 1998 to
record four new songs for their latest compilation, The Original Bad Co.
Anthology, which also included some B-sides and outtakes.
| Jackie Wilson went into a coma in 1975. It was brought on by a stroke he
suffered while on stage. Wilson clung to life in a hospital for another
nine years before he died in 1984. Mr. Excitement, as he was known, was
the ultimate stage performer from which many other artists learned their moves.
He made Michael Jackson look like a statue.
| Blue Öyster Cult had their amazing
Agents of Fortune album jump onto the albums chart in 1976. (Dont Fear) The Reaper was a huge
single taken from the LP, making it to number 12 and onto radio play lists
everywhere. Another top 40 single, Burnin for You, would follow
five years later.
| John Bonham died on September
25th, 1980, after a
drinking binge. The drummer died at Jimmy Pages house after taking
approximately 40 shots of vodka, and choking on his own vomit after falling
asleep. Rehearsals were being carried out by the group for an upcoming U.S.
tour. It proved to be the end of
| Billy Joel had the number 1 song this week
in 1983 as Tell Her About It
hit the top. It was his second of three number ones. Six years later, in
1989, he had a very rough week.
Joel sued his former manager (and former brother-in-law) for fraud,
while The Piano Man himself was in the New York University Medical
Center having kidney stones removed.
| Aerosmith sold their souls in 1986 to get back onto the charts.
Steven Tyler and Joe Perry appeared on a cover version of Walk
This Way by rappers Run DMC, that made the top 10. Dude (Looks
Like a Lady) would hit the top 20 for Aerosmith the next year, with
more hits to follow.
| David Bowie ran out of steam in 1987 when Never Let Me Down became
his last single to chart in that decade. It only made it as high as number 27
in the U.S. while in the U.K. it stalled at number 34. It was the second single
from the album of the same name, which had contributions from Peter
| Without the use of a single musical instrument,
Bobby McFerrin hit number 1 in the U.S. in 1988. He did it with a composition that
had been hanging around in his head for almost five years. Dont Worry,
Be Happy was also included in the movie, Cocktail, which helped take it to
the top for 2 weeks. The song was initially found on McFerrins Simple
| Marillions lead singer, Fish,
began a solo career in 1988.
Steve Hogarth replaced him the following year. Marillion was
basically a U.K. phenom trying desperately to recreate the Peter Gabriel
years of Genesis. Fish has even worked with Genesis
member, Tony Banks, on several projects. He also found himself
touring Europe in a band with David Gilmour and a couple of singers both
named Paul Young in the summer of 2000.
| The third consecutive generation of Nelsons
hit the top when (Cant Live Without Your) Love and Affection
made number 1 in the U.S. in 1990. Rock band Nelson was made up of the twin sons
of Ricky Nelson, who had a couple of chart toppers of his own in the
late 1950s and early 1960s. Before that, Ozzie Nelson took And Then
Some to the peak position in 1935. He had over three dozen hits in the
1930s. Three more songs by Nelson made the top 40 in the early
| Marvin Gaye had his name added to the
Walkway of Stars on Hollywood Boulevard in 1990, six years after he died. The following year,
Marvin Jr. recorded some material with Lou Rawls, while daughter
Nona Gaye also made her music business debut.
| Time-Warner cancelled its distribution of
Interscope Records in 1995. The
huge record company (now owned by AOL), decided that it didnt need the
criticism of the smaller label, which had gained a reputation for signing rap
artists. Tha Dogg Pound was ready to release its first Interscope album,
but Time-Warner refused. Interscope currently releases its products through
|Ray Charles (1930) arrived in The Heat of the Night, as did
Ben E. King (1938),
Bruce Springsteen (1949)
and Lita Ford (1959).
|Linda McCartney (1941) and Gerry Marsden (Gerry & The
Pacemakers, 1942) took the
Ferry Cross the Mersey of life.
|Four Strong Winds were blowing when Ian Tyson
(1933) and Ron Tabak
|In a Twist of Fate, Bryan Ferry (Roxy
Music, 1945) and Olivia
experienced the Magic of birth.
|The doctor was just Takin Care of Business
when he delivered Randy Bachman (1943) and Meat Loaf (1947).
|Helen Shapiro was born Little Miss Lonely
|Jerry Lee Lewis (1935), Tommy Boyce (1939) and Mark Farner (Grand Funk, 1948) first felt a Whole Lotta
Shakin Going On.
|Robbie McIntosh (Average White Band) died
of drug poisoning in 1974.
|John Bonham () died
in 1980 after choking on his own
||Robert Palmer died of a heart attack in 2003.
|Miles Davis passed away at the age of 65, in