This Week in Music History

Bolan Breaks Out … Blackmore Spoofed … Les Celebrated

Posted on .

Historic Events that Rocked Music—The Week of November 9, 2015

Marc Bolan Ritchie Blackmore Les Paul

1955: Billboard names Elvis Presley Most Promising Country & Western Artist in its annual poll of disc jockeys…this same week songwriter Mae Axton plays Elvis a demo of her new, decidedly non-country song, “Heartbreak Hotel”…it’ll become The King’s first major pop hit a couple of months later…

1958: Lou Rawls and Sam Cooke are both injured in an Arkansas auto wreck that kills their chauffeur…

1959: Johnny & The Moondogs fail to pass the final elimination round in Manchester for British television’s TV Star Search… the band lacks money to cover a hotel room for the night, they hightail it back to Liverpool before a final vote is taken…it’s the next day before the lads who will later morph into The Beatles learn that they failed to move the needle on the “clapometer” far enough…

1960: The Shirelles release “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” with songwriter Carole King on drums…also this week, Patsy Cline waxes the classic country weeper "I Fall to Pieces" …

1961: "Crazy" hits the country charts for Patsy Cline…it will become her signature song…

1964: Britain’s Decca Records releases The Rolling Stones single, “Little Red Rooster”…written by bassist and producer Willie Dixon and recorded by the Stones at the legendary Chess Records studio in Chicago, it has the distinction of being the only blues tune to top the UK pop chart…

 

The Stones in ‘64 work out on the Howlin’ Wolf chestnut, “Little Red Rooster.” Check the slide work by Brian Jones.

1965: The former Toby Tyler, now known as Marc Bolan, makes his first appearance on British TV’s Ready Steady Go…his glory days as T. Rex frontman lie in the future… The Jefferson Airplane sign with RCA Records for a then-unprecedented $25,000…the band will later come to regret not signing with a more hip label…

1966: A made-for-TV pop band hits #1 with their debut album, The Monkees...to be fair, the band includes a couple of actual musicians—Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork...some serious songwriting talent is also hired to write their songs, namely Carole King, Gerry Goffin, Neil Diamond, Bobby Hart and Tommy Boyce…even Leon Russell will produce subsequent Monkees sessions...

1967: The Beatles film three different promos for their new single “Hello Goodbye”…wearing both their Sgt. Peppers uniforms and Carnaby Street fashions, The Fab Four frolic on camera doing the twist and generally acting silly…because of a musician’s union ban on lip-syncing, the clips won’t make it to British TV…

1969: Janis Joplin is arrested in her dressing room at a concert in Tampa for cursing at cops...earlier, in the auditorium, when a policeman using a bullhorn orders fans to sit down, she tells him “Don’t @#&* with these people. Hey mister, what are you so uptight about? Did you buy a five-dollar ticket?”...she also gets all potty-mouth with cops backstage when they insist that SHE tell the audience to sit down...Joplin gets out on a $500 bond… charges of using “vulgar and indecent language” are eventually dropped…

1972 Allman Brothers bass man Berry Oakley crashes into the side of a city bus three blocks from where Duane Allman met his demise in a motorcycle accident a year earlier...Oakley refuses treatment at the scene and goes home, only to die of a brain hemorrhage later that night after being rushed to a hospital…

1973: Jerry Lee Lewis, Jr., son of the Killer, meets his demise in a car wreck on a rural highway near Hernando, Mississippi...at 19, he's developed his chops on the drums and has just played on TV's Midnight Special with his dad's band...it's the second time Lewis has lost a son…11 years earlier his only other son drowned in the family swimming pool…

1974: While Deep Purple's Ritchie Blackmore plays a concert in San Francisco, someone impersonating the smokin' guitar man smashes up a borrowed Porsche in Iowa City…

 

Whoah dude! Ritchie Blackmore, seen in this 1973 clip, was the subject of a hoax a year later.

1976: Rod Stewart’s single “Tonight’s The Night” takes the top spot on the pop chart…the song features heavy breathing and sultry whispering by Stewart’s girlfriend, actress Britt Ekland…some stations refuse to play it since the lyrics refer to the seduction of a virgin…

1978: The newly sober Alice Cooper releases his latest LP, From the Inside, an account of his stay in rehab…

1981: The U.S. pop chart experiences an Aussie invasion this week when Olivia Newton-John, Little River Band, Air Supply, and Rick Springfield all register hit singles…

1984: Madonna’s album Like a Virgin comes out, leaving listeners wondering in what way she is…

1987: Sly Stone turns up an hour late for an L.A. comeback concert and is promptly arrested for failing to pay child support…meanwhile, Dire Straits set a UK album sales record with their Money for Nothing LP…they move more than five million discs at home while also scoring four top 40 singles with “Money for Nothing,“ “So Far Away,“ “Walk of Life,“ “Brothers in Arms“ and “Your Latest Trick“…

1988: Whitney Houston's debut album goes multi platinum with nine million copies sold...only Boston has ever matched this performance with a debut LP…also this week, Steve Love, former Beach Boys manager and brother of lead singer Mike Love, gets five years probation for embezzling nearly a million bucks from the group…

1990: It’s a bad week for two former members of The Faces…a woman sues Rod Stewart claiming a soccer ball he booted into the crowd during a concert damaged a tendon in her middle finger making sex with her husband painful…this same week in England, Rolling Stones guitarist Ron Wood suffers two broken legs when he is hit by a passing car…Wood’s vehicle has broken down on the busy M4 motorway near Marlborough and he is trying to wave traffic past…and finally this week, German producer Frank Farian reveals that Robert Pilatus and Fabrice Morvan, collectively known as Milli Vanilli, never sang on their debut record, "Girl You Know It's True"...the producer acknowledges the duo lip-synced during personal appearances...eventually Milli Vanilli will give back their Grammys and lapse into obscurity…

1991: More than a thousand fans at a New Kids On the Block concert in Berlin receive first aid after the Kids drive em into a frenzy…

1997: Versatile session guitarist Teddy Tedesco, a member of the legendary Wrecking Crew, succumbs to lung cancer…he’s among the most-recorded axemen in history having played on countless records with everybody from The Beach Boys to Ella Fitzgerald to Frank Zappa…

1998: Motley Crue fans have cause for celebration when S'Crue, a store stuffed with Crue-related merch, opens on West LA's trendy Melrose Boulevard…

2000: As the growing impact of the Internet on music continues to be felt, record retailer HMV says it will not stock The Offspring’s new single because the band is offering it as a free download at its website…this same week Michael Abram, the man who a year earlier broke into George Harrison’s home and stabbed Harrison before being subdued by the ex-Beatle and his wife, is found guilty by reason of insanity and ordered confined to a mental hospital indefinitely…

2002: Texas billionaire David Bonderman gets the Rolling Stones to play his 60th birthday party in Las Vegas…he coughs up $7 million for the privilege…

2004: Bill Wyman, the 68 year-old former Rolling Stones bassman, announces he will retire from touring with the Rhythm Kings, his current band...also this week, Apple introduces a special black U2 version of the iPod with the band members’ names laser-etched on the case...the unit is launched with an ad featuring the band performing its new single “Vertigo”...it’s the first time in a 25-year career that U2 has licensed music for commercial purposes...and finally this week, rapper Ol’ Dirty Bastard dies of a lethal combination of cocaine and a prescription painkiller at RZA’s New York studio…

2006: Former Procol Harum organist Matthew Fisher appears in a British court claiming his distinctive organ work played an important role in the success of the smash hit “A Whiter Shade of Pale” and that he is due a payday...there is no word as to whether J.S. Bach whose melody was appropriated for the song will also be getting in line for payment...a month later the judge awards Fisher a 40 percent share in royalties going back to 2005 when he filed suit...this decision will then be overturned in 2008 when another judge rules Fisher’s claim came too late and restores full publishing rights to Procol Harum frontman Gary Brooker…Bach is still cut out of the deal…

2007: Guitar Hero III does more than $115 million in sales its first week out...this same week The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame hosts a tribute to Jerry Lee Lewis with Chrissie Hynde, Wanda Jackson. Kris Kristofferson, and others covering The Killer’s songs...Lewis’ cousin, the televangelist Jimmy Swaggart, turns in a bluesy rendition of the hymn “Precious Lord Take My Hand” after delivering an emotional speech about learning to play piano on the same instrument as his cousin...uncharacteristically, Lewis plays a serious and haunting version of “Over the Rainbow”...

2008: In the wake of their monster album Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends selling a gazillion copies worldwide, Coldplay are named the hottest selling act at the World Music Awards in Monaco…

 

Coldplay ruled the world with their 2008 international megahit, “Viva La Vida.”

2009: Six decades of six-string greats gather at the American Music Masters Tribute Concert honoring Les Paul …Patti Smith Group guitarist Lenny Kaye neatly summarizes Paul’s contributions: “Before Les, guitars were only amplified. Les made them truly electric.”…during his acceptance speech Paul quips, “Everybody thought I was a guitar until I played here tonight.”…

2011: A sign John Lennon created for his 1969 bed-in war protest with Yoko in Montreal bearing the words “Bed Peace” goes for $155,600 at a Christie’s auction…

2012: The original collage created for the cover of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart Club Band brings in $87,000 at a Sotheby’s auction in London…

2014: Legendary producer Glyn Johns releases his autobiography Sound Man…among the revelations: Dylan wanted to make a collaborative album with The Beatles and Stones; Jagger played a pair of nightsticks on the bridge of “Let’s Spend the Night Together” after a couple of cops intruded on the session; and John’s relief at being dropped as The Eagles’ producer, recalling sessions that included “Fairly heavy substance abuse with hundreds of hours in the studio with the band being at each other’s throats, disappearing up their own arses.”…

This Week’s Births

November 9: bandleader Tommy Dorsey (1905), Leroy Fann of Ruby & The Romantics (1936), Tom Fogerty of CCR (1941), Phil May of The Pretty Things (1944), Alan Gratzer of REO Speedwagon (1948), Joe Bouchard of Blue Oyster Cult (1948), Marshall Tucker Band bassist Tommy Caldwell (1949), Pepa of Salt-N-Pepa born Sandra Denton (1961), Brad “Scarface” Jordan of the Geto Boys (1969), Jamaican R&B and reggae singer-songwriter Diana King (1970), blues and roots-music singer and guitarist Susan Tedeschi (1970), Nick Lachey of 98 Degrees (1973), Uncle Kracker born Matthew Shafer (1974), Sisqó of R&B group Dru Hill (1977)

November 10: singer-songwriter Bonny "Mack" Rice (1935), eccentric British rocker Screaming Lord Sutch (1940), pop singer Kyu Sakamoto (1941), singer-songwriter Dave Loggins (1947), country singer-songwriter Donna Fargo (1947), Glen Buxton of the Alice Cooper band (1947), Greg Lake of Emerson, Lake & Palmer (1948), Ronnie Hammond of The Atlanta Rhythm Section (1950), Mario Cipollina of Huey Lewis and The News (1954), Simply Red drummer Chris Joyce (1957), Frank Maudsley of A Flock of Seagulls (1959), Steve Mackey of Pulp (1966), Massive Attack’s Andrew Vowles (1967), West Coast rapper Warren G (1970), rapper Big Pun(isher) born Christopher Rios (1971), guitarist Daren Jay "DJ" Ashba (1972), Jimmy Eat World frontman Jim Adkins (1975), hip-hop artist Eve (Jihan Jeffers-Cooper) (1978), Babyshambles bassist Drew McConnell (1978), Silverchair bassist Chris Joannou (1979)

November 11: jazz singer Ernestine Allen (1920), jazz pianist Mose Allison (1923), R&B singer Lavern Baker (1929), New Orleans session sax man David Lastie (1934), Opal Courtney Jr. of The Spaniels (1936), Tornadoes keyboardist Roger Lavern (1938), The Youngbloods' frontman Jesse Colin Young (1944), Chris Dreja of The Yardbirds (1945), guitarist Vince Martell of Vanilla Fudge (1945), Chip Hawkins of The Tremeloes (1946), Pat Daugherty of Black Oak Arkansas (1947), Andy Partridge of XTC (1953), singer-songwriter-guitarist Marshall Crenshaw (1953), Ian Craig Marsh of Heaven 17 (1956), Mike Mesaros of The Smithereens (1957), Tony Gad of Aswad (1957), The Libertines drummer Gary Powell (1969), LeToya Luckett formerly of Destiny's Child (1980), Don Addrisi of The Addrisi Brothers (1984)

November 12: rural bluesman Bukka White (1906), singer Jo Stafford (1920), songwriter Bob Crewe (1930), songwriter Mort Shuman (1936), Ruby Nash Curtis of Ruby & The Romantics (1939), singer Brian Hyland (1943), John Maus AKA John Walker of The Walker Brothers (1943), organist Booker T. Jones of Booker T and The MGs (1944), Neil Young (1945), soul and funk musician Arthur Tavares (1946), Donald Roeser AKA Buck Dharma of Blue Oyster Cult (1947), Wings guitarist Laurence Juber (1952), Errol Brown of Hot Chocolate (1948), Pogues drummer Andrew Ranken (1953), Leslie McKeown of The Bay City Rollers (1955), Dave Ellefson of Megadeth (1964), folk-rocker Vic Chesnutt (1964), singer Tevin Campbell (1976), hip-hop singer Omarion AKA Omari Grandberry (1984)

November 13: jazz pianist and bandleader Bennie Moten (1894), Hi Records chief John Novarese (1923), R&B singer Justine "Baby" Washington (1940), Annette Kleinbard of The Teddy Bears (1941), gospel and soul singer Odia Coates (1941), soul singer Timmy Thomas (1943), guitarist Roger Steen of The Tubes (1949), Bill Gibson of Huey Lewis and the News (1951), Walter Kibby of Fishbone (1964), Strokes bassist Nikolai Fraiture (1979)

November 14: composer Aaron Copland (1900), EMI chief Sir Joseph Lockwood (1904), pop singer Johnny Desmond (1919), composer Joonas Kokkonen (1920), Chicago harp player Carey Bell (1936), Cornell Gunter of The Coasters (1938), Freddie Garrity of Freddie and the Dreamers (1940), Sherri Payne of The Supremes (1944), accordionist Buckwheat Zydeco (1947), James Young of Styx (1948), singer-songwriter Stephen Bishop (1951), Frankie Banali of Quiet Riot (1953), bassist Alec Such of Bon Jovi (1956), rapper Joseph “Run” Simmons of Run-DMC (1966), Brian Yale of Matchbox Twenty (1968), drummer Travis Barker of Blink-182 (1975), singer Adina Howard (1975)

November 15: elevator-music maestro Mantovani (1905), Ike Turner’s pianist Clayton Love (1927), soul singer Joe Hinton (1929), pop singer Petula Clark (1932), R&B singer Clyde McPhatter (1932), record producer and blues scholar Pete Welding (1935), R&B singer Little Willie John born William J. Woods (1937), record producer-pianist Jim Dickinson (1941), bassist Rick Kemp of Steeleye Span (1941), Frida of ABBA (1945), Steve Fossen of Heart (1949), Bizarros drummer Rick Garberson (1950), Michael Cooper of Con Funk Shun (1952), singer Alexander O'Neal (1953), Tony Thompson of Chic (1954), jazz and fusion guitarist Kevin Eubanks (1957), Joe Leeway of Thompson Twins (1957), keyboardist Christian "Flake" Lorenz of Rammstein (1966), Ol' Dirty Bastard AKA Russell Jones of Wu-Tang Clan (1968), Chad Kroeger of Nickelback (1974)

This Week’s Deaths

November 9: Badfinger bassist Tom Evans (1983), singer Miriam Makeba (2008), Major Harris of The Delfonics (2012)

November 10: blues singer Ida Cox (1967), pop singer Ronnie Dyson (1990), jazz singer Carmen McRae (1994), session guitarist Tommy Tedesco (1997), Motown house band keyboardist Johnny Griffith (2002), R&B singer Gerald Levert (2006)

November 11: Patrick “Paddy” Clancy of The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem (1998), Beau Brummels drummer John Peterson (2007), Henry “Big Hank” Jackson of Sugarhill Gang (2014)

November 12: Cause and Effect keyboardist Sean Rowley (1992), blues fingerpicker and Robert Plant pal Rainer Ptacek (1997), jazz pianist and Sting sideman Kenny Kirkland (1998), Chic drummer Tony Thompson (2003), Jimi Hendrix drummer Mitch Mitchell (2008), drummer-singer-songwriter Doyle Bramhall (2011)

November 13: drummer Jerry Lee Lewis, Jr. (1973), drummer Ronnie Bond of the The Troggs (1992), jazz and R&B keyboardist Bill Doggett (1996), Donald Mills of The Mills Brothers (1999), R.J. Vealey of the Atlanta Rhythm Section (1999), Russell Jones AKA Ol’ Dirty Bastard of Wu-Tang Clan (2004)

November 14: country bluesman Rube Lacey (1969), dub pioneer Keith Hudson (1984), singer Dallas Taylor of The Danderliers (1986), keyboardist John Cascella of the John Mellencamp band (1992), fiddler Martin Fay of The Chieftains (2012)

November 15: disco producer Jacques Morali (1991), composer-arranger Saul Chaplin (1997)

Tags: This Month in Music History

Add comment

Security code
Refresh

The HUB by Musician's Friend Logo

DON'T MISS THE LATEST UPDATES!
CONNECT WITH MUSICIAN'S FRIEND

FIND GREAT DEALS NOW
ON MUSICIANSFRIEND.COM

Stupid Deal of the Day (SDOTD) Musicians Friend Backstage Pass  Open Box Musical Instruments at Musician's Friend

SHOPPING TOOLS

  • BACKSTAGE PASS Rewards Program
  • Guitar Case Finder
  • Give a Gift Certificate
  • Clearance
  • Private Reserve Guitars

SHOP BY CATEGORY

  • Hot Deals
  • On Sale
  • Pre-Order
  • New Arrivals
  • Top Rated Gear
  • Best Sellers