SBC: The Week That Was

Jimmy Jacobs jacobslawoffice@GMAIL.COM
Fri Sep 10 13:12:22 EDT 2010

Muddy Goes Folky 
 Monkees Go Zany 
 Kanye Goes Off 

This is the week that was in matters musical

1814, after watching the British attack Fort McHenry Francis, Scott Key
writes the words that will become the lyrics to "The Star Spangled Banner" 

the melody comes from a popular British drinking song 
 the tune will be
adopted as the U.S. national anthem over 100 years later on March 3, 1931,
and because of its rather extreme range from lowest note to highest note and
idiosyncratic lyrics, the song continues to be badly butchered by amateur
and (allegedly) professional singers 
 repeated efforts to replace "Banner"
with the more peaceful, vocal-friendly "America, The Beautiful" are rebuffed

1955, Little Richard records "Tutti Frutti" in New Orleans at Cosmo
Matassa's J&M Studios 
 backing musicians include Huey Smith ("Rockin'
Pneumonia and Boogie Woogie Flu") on piano, Lee Allen on tenor sax, and Earl
Palmer on drums, all part of Fats Domino's band 
 original lyric: "tutti
frutti, good booty" 

1960, the FCC bans payola, outlawing the pervasive practice of record
companies making payments to radio DJs to spin their releases 
 the practice
resurges four decades later and New York State Attorney General Eliot
Spitzer collects hefty fines from all the major labels for engaging in the
pay-to-play game 

1963, after trying to cash in on the Twist craze, record companies move on
to the surf music boom 
 which brings us to the rise in popularity of folk
music among the masses 
 though it's not his idea, Muddy Waters records
Muddy Waters: Folk Singer for Chess Records at Tel Mar Studios in Chicago 

helping Muddy connect with his folkier side are Buddy Guy on second acoustic
guitar, Clifton James on drums, and Chess stalwart Willie Dixon on bass 
folk album in name only, the tunes are mostly written by Muddy and/or Willie
and includes blues classics like "Good Morning Little School Girl" 
1968, Chess will subject Muddy to recording a psychedelic-blues album with
funk session men complete with wah-wah pedal 
 Electric Mud features Muddy
gamely working his way through The Rolling Stones' "Let's Spend The Night
how about that for acknowledging your roots? 
 next thing you know
Otis Redding will be recording "Satisfaction" 

1964, a pair of enterprising Beatles fans pack themselves into a carton
marked "Beatles Fan Mail" and arrange to have it delivered to the Baltimore
Civic Center where the Fab Four are appearing 
 their plot is foiled when
the girls are discovered by guards checking deliveries 
 Rod Stewart rasps
his first single—the blues chestnut "Good Morning Little Schoolgirl" 
different kind of rasping characterizes Dave Davies guitar as he power
chords The Kinks "You Really Got Me" to #1 in the U.K. this same week 

1965, 8-track players are introduced 
 notable for their low fidelity and
propensity for eating their closed-loop tapes, they will give way to
superior cassette-based players in the 1970s 
 The Toys, a New York-based
girl group, score a #2 pop hit with "Lover's Concerto" 
 the song is based
on a Bach minuet 

1966, zany situation comedy interspersed with A Hard Day's Night-style music
videos, hey hey it's The Monkees, the half-hour show debuts on NBC-TV
starring four young men—Mickey Dolenz, Mike Nesmith, Peter Tork, and Davy
Jones—who answered an audition ad in Variety 
 the group is formed, and a
surefire hit single released to promote the show 
 the success of the
Pre-Fab Four will force a David Jones in England to change his name to David
 after scoring hits in the guise of a crooner and rock 'n' roller,
Bobby Darin reinvents himself as a folk singer with the release of "If I
Were a Carpenter" 
 the Tim Hardin tune reinvigorates his flagging career 

1967, The Beatles begin filming Magical Mystery Tour, which they will soon
experience as their first "flop" 

1968, Roy Orbison's home in Hendersonville, Tennessee, burns down while he's
touring England 
 his two eldest sons die in the fire 

1969, during Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young's set at the Big Sur Festival, a
yahoo in the crowd starts heckling the band for being rich rock stars 

Stills, wearing a flamboyant fur coat, leaps off the stage, chases the
heckler down, and administers a pounding while from the stage Crosby pleads
for "Peace and love, peace and love" 
 Stills gets back onstage and
reflects, "Y'know, we think about what that guy was saying, and we look at
these coats and these pretty guitars and fancy cars and say, 'Wow man, what
am I doin'?" 
 building on their successful performance at the Woodstock
festival, Santana release their first album 
 Jimi Hendrix, also fresh from
Woodstock, appears on The Dick Cavett Show and performs a medley of "Machine
 here's a classic quote from the interview, Cavett: Do you
consider yourself a disciplined guy, do you get up every day and work?
Hendrix: Oh, I try to get up every day 

1970, an English group called Mungo Jerry join the ranks of the U.S.
one-hit-wonders with their good-timey single "In The Summertime" 
jugband-inflected ditty peaks at number 3 on the U.S. charts 
singles stiffed in the States 
 quite a comedown for a group promoted as
"The New Beatles" with 10 Top 40 hits in England 
 Jimi Hendrix is
interviewed by Keith Altham for BBC Radio and Record Mirror 
 it will be his
final interview 

1978, The Grateful Dead do a three-night stand at the Son Et Lumiere Theater
in Giza, Egypt, with the Great Pyramids as a backdrop 

1979, the first rap single "Rapper's Delight" by The Sugarhill Gang is
 Patti Smith plays a concert before 85,000 fans at a stadium in
Florence, Italy 
 after the show she retires from showbiz in Detroit with
former MC5 guitarist Fred Smith 

1980, XTC's new album is Black Sea containing "Majors and Generals" and
"Respectable Street" 

1981, Devo's contribution to the Heavy Metal soundtrack, an update of Lee
Dorsey's "Working In A Coal Mine" is turned into a single 
 San Francisco's
The Residents' release Mark of the Mole, the first album in "The Mole
from the Land Down Under, Men At Work release their debut single
"Who Can It Be Now?" 

1984, the burgeoning MTV network holds its first Video Music Awards ceremony
at New York's Radio City Music Hall 
 the show is co-hosted by Bette Midler
and Dan Aykroyd and honors the top music videos of the year 
 the event is
conceived as a hip alternative to the Grammys 
 winners including Michael
Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, The Police, and Herbie Hancock are awarded Moon Man
trophies that depict an astronaut with an American flag, one of the
network's earliest icons 

1987, former Wailer Peter Tosh is shot to death in his Jamaican home during
a robbery 
 an article in Rolling Stone suggests the killing was actually
the result of a feud 
 Tosh's previous home had been burned down by an
arsonist a year earlier 
 brilliant but mentally troubled bassist Jaco
Pastorius tries to get back into the Midnight Club in Fort Lauderdale,
Florida, and is severely beaten by a bouncer 
 Jaco dies two weeks later
from his injuries 
 the soundtrack to La Bamba, featuring Los Lobos, begins
a two-week stay at #1 on the U.S. album charts 

1988, British glam-rock star Gary Glitter makes a court appearance on
charges of producing child porn and sexual assault 
 he is later convicted
and imprisoned 
 Guns N' Roses "Sweet Child O' Mine" tops the charts in the
 the signature opening riff was improvised by guitarist Slash while
warming up 

1991, in a publicity stunt, Alice Cooper sells copies of his new album Hey
Stoopid in New York's Times Square for 99 cents a pop 
 Nirvana's anthemic
"Smells Like Teen Spirit" is released 
 it's part grunge, punk, and heavy
 future American Idol judge Paula Adbul racks up her sixth #1 single
on the U.S. charts with "The Promise Of A New Day" 

1995, Coolio's "Gangsta's Paradise" tops the U.S. charts 
 it will later go
on to win a Grammy 

1996, Wal-Mart refuses to carry Sheryl Crow's second album because the song
"Love is a Good Thing" includes the lyrics, "Watch out sister/Watch out
brother/Watch our children as they kill each other/With a gun they bought at
the Wal-Mart discount stores." 
 rapper/film actor Tupac Shakur dies in a
drive-by shooting in Las Vegas 

2000, the soundtrack for Almost Famous is released 
 it's notable for
including four vintage Led Zeppelin tracks—a first for any soundtrack 

Robert Plant and Jimmy Page agree to the tunes' inclusion after falling in
love with Cameron Crowe's filmed semi-autobiographical remembrance of a rock
journalist-groupie in the '70s 
 Page/Plant withhold permission for use of
"Stairway to Heaven" so the scene that is built around it is cut from the
final print 
 years later, the cut scene is included as a special-edition
DVD extra 
 viewers can cue up their copy of "Stairway" and watch the actors
reacting to the song—for example, air drumming—as it plays in the main
character's living room 

2004, Johnny Ramone dies in his Los Angeles home after five years battling
prostate cancer 
 Johnny exits surrounded by his wife Linda Cummings and
friends Eddie Vedder, singer Rob Zombie and his wife Sherrie Zombie, Lisa
Marie Presley, Pete Yorn, Vincent Gallo, and Talia Shire 

2007, Mötley Crüe files a $20 million lawsuit against drummer Tommy Lee
after his announcement that he's leaving the band 
 also in a litigious mood
this week, Prince is reported to be preparing lawsuits against websites such
as BitTorrent, YouTube, and eBay charging wholesale piracy of his songs and
 in his campaign to stamp out Prince-targeted piracy he has retained
London-based Web Sheriff, a company that scours the web for illegal usage of
copyrighted material 

2008, R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck's Rickenbacker guitar is ripped off
following a Helsinki gig 
 a generous reward is offered for the axe that has
been a mainstay of the band's studio and live dates since the early 1980s 

2009, fans around the world queue up at record outlets to get their hands on
the newly remastered Beatles back catalog 
 aside from the 14 individual
album reissues, shoppers spring for two different $200 box sets 
 EMI ships
5,000,000 discs and sees 235,000 of them sold in the first two days giving
the faltering CD business a much-needed boost
 Phil Collins today revealed
he will never drum again because he is suffering from a painful spine injury

 Collins, 58, whose hits include "In The Air Tonight", said: "After playing
drums for 50 years, I've had to stop" 
 Kanye West apologizes for
interrupting Taylor Swift at the VMAs 
 Swift was making her acceptance
speech for best female video at the MTV VMA awards in New York 
 the rapper
rushed the stage and grabbed the mic from Swift telling the audience that
Beyonce should have won for her video "Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)"

"Taylor, I'm really happy for you, and I'm gonna let you finish, but Beyonce
had one of the best videos of all time," said West, as an embarrassed
Beyonce looked on from the audience 

and that was the week that was.

[Compiled by the Musician's Friend copywriting staff]

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