This Week in Music History
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This Week in Music History: Beatles’ Boosted Bass…Cher’s Sweetie Shuffle…Cash’s Comeback…Ox’s Adieu

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The Events That Rocked Music—The Week of June 23

1888: The first known use of mobile recording equipment occurs at the Crystal Palace in London, when one of Edison’s wax cylinder machines is set up in the press gallery to record an excerpt from the oratorio Israel in Egypt during the Handel Festival...the recording, which has become badly degraded over the decades, features the voices of several thousand singers…

1966: The Beatles’ latest single “Paperback Writer” takes the top spot on the pop chart…the record has a notable boost in the bass insisted on by John Lennon after hearing Wilson Pickett records with far more thump than previous Beatles output…Paul’s switch to a Rickenbacker bass, a speaker-turned-mic used in the studio to capture low frequencies, and a newly devised mastering compressor built by Abbey Road engineers are combined to  give the track the sound Lennon’s longing for…

1967: A worldwide audience of 40 million witnesses a satellite broadcast of The Beatles performing "All You Need is Love" … chiming in on backing vocals are Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Graham Nash, and Keith Moon …Procol Harum’s “A Whiter Shade of Pale” enter the pop chart…the song, featuring abstract lyrics and an organ part borrowed from Bach’s Orchestral Suite in D, will become staple of rock radio and also the subject of a lawsuit years later between organist Matthew Fisher and frontman Gary Brooker about who wrote what…

1968: The Small Faces album Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake hits #1 on the UK album chart…the album comes in a circular sleeve made to look like a tobacco tin, and features a side-long suite called “Happiness Stan” with linking narration provided by gobbledygook-spouting comic Stan Unwin…this will prove to be the Face’s last album with guitarist Steve Marriott, who quits to form Humble Pie with Peter Frampton…

1969: Mick Taylor makes his stage debut with The Rolling Stones at a concert in Rome...he replaces Brian Jones and will stay with the band until 1975 when he retires and is replaced by Ron Wood...Taylor holds the distinction of being the only Stones  guitarist to quit the band and live...The Jimi Hendrix Experience plays their last gig together at the Denver Pop Festival…bassist Noel Redding quits the band after the show…

1970: The Festival Express gets underway as a stellar lineup of bands boards a chartered Canadian train to play a series of concerts across the country…acts include Janis Joplin, The Grateful Dead, The Band, Delaney & Bonnie & Friends, Buddy Guy, and many more…a rolling non-stop party, the tour is a financial failure but spawns a 2003 documentary that captures much of the action onstage as well as jams and hijinks onboard the train…

1974: Cher divorces Sonny Bono ending their 10-year marital and musical partnership…four days later she marries Gregg Allman with whom she splits a mere 10 days later…

1975: Singer-songwriter Tim Buckley plays to a sold-out crowd of 1,800 in Dallas in the final show of a U.S. tour…it turns out to be his final show ever when he succumbs to a heroin OD the next day…

1977: Elvis makes his last public appearance at Market Square Arena in Indianapolis …Elton John achieves a lifelong ambition when he becomes chairman of the Watford Football Club…

1978: Peter Frampton suffers a broken arm and cracked ribs in a Bahamian auto wreck…

1980: Led Zeppelin leaves the stage in Nuremberg, Germany after just three songs when drummer John Bonham collapses…the aborted show was part of the band’s final tour…

1985: A U.S. patent is granted to Seymour Duncan for his stacked single-coil humbucker pickup design…John Lennon's 1965 Rolls Phantom V limo sporting a psychedelic paint job fetches $3,006,385 at a Sotheby's auction in New York …

1988: James McCleese dies of a heart attack while serving a sentence for drugs at the Otisville Correctional Facility in New York … in happier days, working under the stage name Jimmy Soul, he scored a number-one chart hit in 1962 with "If You Wanna Be Happy" based on the calypso tune "Ugly Woman" by Roaring Lion… the unrelentingly upbeat tune advised potential husbands to seek out ugly women as wives … rap trio The Fat Boys sues Miller Beer over a TV ad that features three lookalike rappers…The Guardian newspaper reports that due to manufacturing defects, many previously sold CDs will become unplayable in the future…

1990: A Gibson acoustic guitar once owned by Buddy Holly brings in $237,000 at a Sotheby’s auction…the instrument comes with a tooled-leather case that that the bespectacled rocker had fashioned himself…

1991: Frank Zappa takes part in a Czech concert tagged “Adieu Soviet Army” celebrating the departure of Soviet troops…it’s Zappa’s last onstage appearance before succumbing to prostate cancer in 1993…Zappa had previously been named as cultural attache to Czechoslovakia by President Våclav Havel, a big fan…

1994: Five rock fans are shot and injured by a crazed gunman at the Glastonbury Festival in England …Aerosmith becomes the first major act to permit fans to download a full song of theirs on the Internet…

1995: Pearl Jam pulls the plug on its current tour saying they don't want to cooperate with monopolistic Ticketmaster…

1997: Radiohead’s OK Computer becomes the top-selling record on the UK album chart…a commercial and critical success, the LP will win a Grammy for Best Alternative Music Performance…

1998: Johnny Cash returns to the stage for the first time since being diagnosed with Shy-Drager Syndrome months earlier...he walks onstage surprising Kris Kristofferson who is singing “Sunday Morning Coming Down” at a Cash and Waylon Jennings tribute concert at The Ryman Auditorium in Nashville...the song was the one a young and unknown Kristofferson had hand-delivered to Cash after landing a helicopter on his lawn in a creative ploy to get his music into the hands of someone who could help him gain recognition as a songwriter…

1999: Eric Clapton auctions off 100 of his guitars to raise funds for his Crossroads Center, a drug and alcohol addiction treatment facility in Antigua...among the guitars sold is his famous “Brownie,” which fetches a cool $497,500, topping the previous record-setting $320,000 paid for Jimi Hendrix’s Strat…

2000: Michael Jackson is slapped with a lawsuit by German promoter Marcel Avram...the suit alleges that Jackson refused to perform two scheduled events...it is a small problem for Jackson compared with future trials he will face…nine people die and 24 are injured when the crowd surges toward the stage at Denmark's Roskilde Festival because the PA isn’t getting enough sound to the back ... Pearl Jam is the band playing at the time of the incident … Eminem's mother goes to court against her son claiming defamation of character in an $11 million suit over the the line "My mother smokes more dope than I do" from the rapper’s single '”My Name Is”…Debbie Mathers will net $1,600 for her trouble…

2001: The Beatles’ hometown announces that its air terminal will be renamed the Liverpool John Lennon Airport…

2002: Who bassist John Entwistle dies in Las Vegas one day before the band is to begin a tour of the U.S. in that city ... the official cause of death is "moderate usage of cocaine superimposed upon ischemic heart disease caused by naturally occurring arteriosclerosis" ... after hiring bassist Pino Palladino, the band starts the tour just three days late ... Entwistle arrived in Las Vegas early for an exhibit of his artwork at a local gallery ... he is remembered as one of rock's most influential bassists—and one of its loudest…Rolling Stone issues a list of pop music’s  top-earning acts: Madonna is No.5 with $49.5 million, Dave Matthews Band is at No.4 with $52.7 million, The Beatles are at No.3 with $58 million, Dr. Dre is No.2 with $63 million, and topping the list is U2 with $75 million…

2004: Rapper DMX is arrested at New York’s Kennedy Airport for allegedly attempting to steal a car and identifying himself as a federal agent...he is charged with possession of a weapon and crack…

2007: James Blunt's multimillion-selling ballad "You’re Beautiful" is voted the most irritating song of all time…Paul McCartney drops in on Amoeba Records in Hollywood to play an intimate live in-store gig…diehard Macca-maniacs camped out on Sunset Boulevard for three days and flew in from as far away as Japan to attend the free "secret" show…

2008: Celine Dion’s rendition of AC/DC’s “You Shook Me” is given the dubious distinction of being the “Worst Ever Cover Song” in a Total Guitar magazine survey…Chief Justice John Roberts of the U.S. Supreme Court quotes Bob Dylan in writing a dissenting opinion and nearly gets it right…the law clerk who checked the quote on Dylan’s website found it phrased there as ‘When you got nothing, you got nothing to lose”…but as anyone who has actually heard “Like a Rolling Stone” knows, the line as recorded is “When you ain’t got nothing, you got nothing to lose”…

2009: Chris Brown pleads guilty to one count of assault on his former girlfriend, Rihanna…the singer is sentenced to five years probation and ordered to do six months community service…the judge also orders the former couple to stay at least 50 yards apart from each other; that distance is reduced to 10 yards at entertainment-industry events…

2010: Gregg Allman get a fresh liver installed after battling Hepatitis C for years…the formerly hard-living Allman Brothers frontman issues a press statement saying, "I changed my ways years ago, but we can't turn back time. Every day is a gift."…

2012: The chief medical officer of Russia says the The Beatles were to blame for the country's drug problems…Yevgeny Bryun claims Russia’s youth first got introduced to the idea of drug-taking when The Beatles traveled to India to expand their minds…meanwhile in Prague, Lamb of God frontman Randy Blythe is arrested by Czech police on manslaughter charges stemming from a 2010 show in the same city in which a fan who jumped on stage got in a tussle with Blythe and subsequently died after being tossed off the stage…Blythe is acquitted after the court finds the club’s lack of security was to blame…   

2013: A crypt in which Elvis was originally buried is withdrawn from an auction in L.A. when more than 10,000 fans petition Julien’s Auctions to cancel the sale, arguing the artifact should be maintained as a shrine…

This Week’s Births

June 23: jazz singer Helen Humes (1913), jazz arranger/composer George Russell (1923),  country singer June Carter Cash (1929), Crickets guitarist and backup vocalist Niki Sullivan (1937), original Beatles bassist Stuart Sutcliffe (1940), Brit rocker Adam Faith (1940), Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter (1941), Canned Heat bassist Larry Taylor (1942), Paul Goddard of Atlanta Rhythm Section (1945), record producer, engineer, and musician Brendan O'Brien (1960), drummer Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth (1962), Richard Coles of The Communards (1962), Oasis guitarist Paul “Bonehead” Arthurs (1965), Chico DeBarge of DeBarge (1966), Breeders drummer James McPherson (1966), singer-songwriter KT Tunstall (1975), Welsh pop singer Duffy born Aimee Anne Duffy (1984)

June 24: honkin’ jazz and R&B sax player Jimmy Forrest (1920), opera singer Matilda Sissieretta Joyner Jones aka "Black Patti" (1933), Latin music star Carlos Gardel (1935), theatrical rocker Arthur Brown (1942), Traffic multi-instrumentalist Chris Wood (1944), guitar wizard Jeff Beck (1944), Family guitarist Charlie Whitney (1944), Colin Blunstone of The Zombies (1945), Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac (1947), keyboardist Patrick Moraz (1948), Dire Straits bassist John Illsley (1949), Terry Wilson AKA Astro of UB.40 (1957), Black Crowes guitarist Jeff Cease (1957), multi-instrumentalist and singer Andy McCluskey (1959), Curt Smith of Tears for Fears (1961), Dennis Danell of Social Distortion (1961), Rammstein guitarist Richard Zven Kruspe (1967), pop singer Glenn Medeiros (1970), Mario Calires of The Wallflowers (1973),

June 25: king of zydeco accordion Clifton Chenier (1929), Memphis soul singer Eddie Floyd (1935), Harold Melvin of The Blue Notes (1939), Johnnie Richardson of Johnnie & Joe (1940), Clint Warwick of The Moody Blues (1940), Harry Womack of The Valentinos (1945), singer-songwriter Carly Simon (1945), Ian McDonald of Foreigner (1946), Allen Lanier of Blue Oyster Cult (1946), sax player Ian McDonald (1946), Chilliwack multi-instrumental. Brian “Too Loud” McLeod (1952), Tim Finn of Split Enz (1952), David Paich of Toto (1954), pop singer George Michael (1963), Nickelback bassist Mike Kroeger (1972)

June 26: influential bluesman Big Bill Broonzy (1898), Elvis’s manager Colonel Tom Parker (1909), The 5th Dimension's Billy Davis Jr. (1938), British keyboardist and singer Georgie Fame (1943), Rindy Ross of Quarterflash (1951), The Clash's Mick Jones (1955), singer Chris Isaak (1956),  Scandal singer Patty Smyth (1957) Gun Club vocalist Jeffrey Lee Pierce (1958), Terri Nunn of Berlin (1959), singer Harriet Wheeler of The Sundays (1963), Colin Greenwood of Radiohead (1969), EMF drummer Mark Decloedt (1969), country singer Gretchen Wilson (1973), OneRepublic frontman Ryan Tedder (1979), Kings of Leon drummer Nathan Followill (1979)

June 27: opera diva Carlotta Patti (1889), songwriter Doc Pomus (1925), Beach Boy Bruce Johnston (1944), drummer Joey Covington of Hot Tuna and Jefferson Airplane/Starship (1945), Squeeze drummer Gilson Lavis (1951), singer-songwriter Lisa Germano (1958), country singer Lorrie Morgan (1959), Margo Timmins of the Cowboy Junkies (1961), vocalist Ray Slijngaard (1971), Avril Lavigne band guitarist Evan David Taubenfeld (1983)

June 28: pianist and music writer Arnold Shaw (1909), bluegrass guitarist Lester Flatt (1914), Procol Harum drummer Bobby Harrison (1943), Procol Harum bassist David Knights (1945), Dixie Dregs guitarist Steve Morse (1954), bassist Andy Coulson of All About Eve (1963), pop singer Beverley Craven (1963), The Killers bassist Mark Stoermer (1977)

June 29: Bo Diddley drummer Frank Kirkland (1927), Leonard Lee of Shirley and Lee (1936), singer Little Eva born Eva Narcissus Boyd (1943), Roger Spear of The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band (1943),  twins Derv and Lincoln Gordon of The Equals (1948), Deep Purple Drummer Ian Paice (1948), Colin Hay of Men at Work (1953), Five Star singer Stedman Pearson (1964), Nicole Scherzinger of Eden's Crush (1978), Evanescence bassist Tim McCord (1979)

This Week’s Deaths

June 23: producer Lou Romeo (1995), Hi Records founder John Novarese (1993), bassist Pete Quaife of The KInks (2010)

June 24:  Dixie Hummingbirds lead singer Ira Tucker Sr. (2008), Devo drummer Alan Myers (2013)

June 25: songwriter Johnny Mercer (1975), West Coast blues guitarist Pee Wee Crayton (1985), songwriter Boudleaux Bryant (1985), Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist Hillel Slovak (1988), James McCleese aka Jimmy Soul (1988), Royaltones guitarist Bob Sanderson (1994), legendary Atlantic Records producer Arif Mardin (2006), Sky Saxon of The Seeds (2009), King of Pop Michael Jackson (2009),

June 26: bebop trumpeter Clifford Brown (1956), C&W singer Johnny Bond (1978), Pink Fairies guitarist Mick Wayne (1994), songwriter Brandon Chase (1996)

June 27: Steve Peregrin Took of T-Rex (1980), 7 Year Bitch guitarist Stefanie Sargent 1992), The Fourmost guitarist and singer Brian O’Hara (199), John Entwistle (2002), pop singer and actress Gale Storm (2009)

June 28: Harry Mills of The Mills Brothers (1982) punk scene veteran Rob Graves (1990), punk rocker G.G. Allin (1993), Kiss manager Bill Aucoin (2010)

June 29: revolutionary reed player Eric Dolphy (1964), pianist and Ink Spots singer Shorty Long (1969), folk rock singer Tim Buckley (1975), admired slide guitarist and founder of Little Feat Lowell George (1979), organist Richard “Groove” Holmes (1991), singer Rosemary Clooney (2002)

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