SBC: The Week That Was
Thu Mar 17 15:36:33 EDT 2011
The Fat Lady Sings . John and Yoko Wed & Bed . Courtney Loves Dave .
This is the week that was in matters musical.
1939, Kathryn "Kate" Smith records a revised version of a composition Irving
Berlin had originally written in 1918, titled "God Bless America" . the
5'10", 235-pound entertainer becomes famous for singing the song before
Philadelphia Flyers hockey games, at which it was said "It ain't begun 'til
the fat lady sings!" .
1948, Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra are featured in
the first televised symphonic concert .
1952, Cleveland DJ Alan Freed mounts his first rock 'n' roll show dubbed The
Moondog Coronation Ball . the venue holds 10,000 but 30,000 rock-hungry
teens turn up causing the cops to call off the show . the resulting riot is
a precursor to the coming age of rock .
1956, Carl Perkins receives severe injuries in a Delaware auto accident . he
was on his way to the Big Apple to perform on Perry Como's TV variety show .
the El Capris enjoy a minor hit with the tune "(Shimmy Shimmy) Ko Ko Wop" .
the song will resurface as a hit for Little Anthony and the Imperials in
1960 . in an early instance of political correctness, it's retitled "Shimmy
Shimmy Ko Ko Bop" .
1957, Elvis Presley buys Graceland Farms, a house and farm on the outskirts
of Memphis that is still a mecca for fans of "The King" .
1958, Tom and Jerry, aka Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel, release their first
song, appropriately titled "Our Song" . Hank Williams Jr. makes his stage
debut in Swainsboro, Georgia, at the tender age of eight, continuing a
family tradition .
1962, Bob Dylan releases his self-titled debut album selling a measly 5,000
copies in its first year .
1963, The Beatles first album Please Please Me is released in the UK . no
one seems to take notice either . Not! .
1965, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and Bill Wyman are busted for peeing on a
petrol station wall after they're refused admittance to the loo .
1967, The Grateful Dead release their first album . Jerry Garcia reveals
that it was recorded on "dietwatcher's speed and pot" and that "the tempo
was way too fast" .
1968, Donovan travels to India to study transcendental meditation under
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi . the Beatles are soon to follow . Donovan teaches
Lennon a finger-picking technique (Travis-picking) that he teaches to
Harrison. It makes its way onto the songs "Julia" and "Dear Prudence" . the
latter written about actress Mia Farrow's sister who was also there at the
time . Donovan pens the hit "Jennifer Juniper" for his girlfriend Jennifer
Boyd who is also present . a late night jam in L.A.'s Laurel Canyon with
Eric Clapton and Buffalo Springfield is broken up by the police who, upon
arriving, smell marijuana . Stills escapes through a window; Clapton is
somehow set free; the rest, including Neil Young, spend the night in jail
and later plead guilty to disturbing the peace in exchange for having the
drug charges dropped . The Bee Gees make their U.S. television debut on The
Ed Sullivan Show. They performed "To Love Somebody" and "Words" . Sullivan
says it "was a very good shooow" .
1969, John and Yoko are married in Gibraltar . two days later they begin
their famous "bed-in for peace" .
1970, David Bowie and Angela Barnett (the inspiration for his hit song
"Golden Years") are married at Bromley Register Office in Beckenham Lane,
1973, Yoko Ono is granted permission to live in the U.S. permanently . the
person who grants her permission must not be a big Beatles fan .
1977, The John Denver TV special "Thank God I'm a Country Boy" is aired on
1982, soul-singing smoothie Teddy Pendergrass is paralyzed from the waist
down in Philly when he flips his Rolls attempting to avoid another auto .
Randy Rhoads, lead guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne's band, is killed when a
plane he is flying in crashes into a home and explodes . the band has
stopped at the Leesburg, Florida, home of its bus driver, Andrew Aycock, a
licensed pilot . Aycock "borrows" a plane from a nearby airfield and invites
Rhoads and costume designer Rachel Youngblood to take a quick flight . as
Ozzy and the rest of the band sleep on the bus, Aycock circles and buzzes it
three times without incident . on the fourth pass, the aircraft bumps the
bus, clips a wing, and crashes into a nearby house, erupting in flames . all
three onboard are killed . a postmortem exam finds cocaine in Aycock's
1985, Spin magazine begins publishing . Billy Joel and model Christie
Brinkley are married in New York . less than 10 years later the uptown girl
tells the piano man she's movin' out and they divorce .
1987, U2 releases The Joshua Tree, which spends 9 weeks at the top of the
Billboard charts, only surpassed by Whitney Houston's album from the
previous year and the Dirty Dancing soundtrack . but it is proof nobody puts
Bono in a corner . The "Soul Train Music Awards" debuts, becoming the first
televised awards ceremony exclusively celebrating black producers,
songwriters, and recording artists .
1990, Gloria Estefan is seriously hurt when a tractor-trailer smacks into
her band's tour bus near Scranton, Pennsylvania . she returns to touring 11
months later .
1991, Eric Clapton's 4-year-old son, Conor, falls 56 floors out the window
of a New York apartment building in a freak accident . the little boy is in
the custody of his mother, Italian actress Lori Del Santo . they are
visiting New York and staying in a friend's apartment . the housekeeper has
just cleaned a room and opened the window to air it out when young Conor
comes dashing by and falls out the window . Clapton is in his hotel nearby .
he had just taken Conor to the circus the previous evening . "Tears in
Heaven," "The Circus Left Town," and "Lonely Stranger" are all inspired by
the deep impact the accident has on Conor's grieving father .
1994, Bruce Springsteen wins the Oscar for Best Original Song for "Streets
of Philadelphia" . the song is from the film Philadelphia, and is the first
ever written by Springsteen specifically for a film . Four guns and 25 boxes
of ammo are confiscated from Kurt Cobain (Nirvana) after his wife, Courtney
Love, calls police fearing he is going to commit suicide . He does commit
suicide about 3 weeks later . The Rolling Stones announce that Darryl Jones
will replace drummer Bill Wyman who no longer wants to tour .
1996, The Beatles last charting single, "Real Love," begins its climb up the
Top 100 and will eventually rise to #11 . the song is based on a demo cut by
John Lennon in 1979 to which the other Beatles added new vocals 16 years
after Lennon's death . The original four Sex Pistols reunite in 1996 for the
six-month Filthy Lucre Tour, with dates in Europe, North and South America,
Australia, and Japan .
1999, rapper Ol' Dirty Bastard is arrested yet again, this time in New York
City when police claim to have found crack cocaine in his vehicle after
pulling him over for missing license plates . ODB is charged with
misdemeanor drug possession and driving with a suspended license . he will
be arrested again five days later after police pull him over because once
again, the vehicle he is driving has no license plates .
2000, the Recording Industry Association of America certifies 17 million
copies sold of Shania Twain's album Come On Over, making it the best-selling
album by a solo female artist and surpassing Garth Brooks' No Fences for
best-selling country album of all time . Brooks eventually proved he's
"still the one" with the release of Double Live, currently the only country
album with more sales than Come On Over, proving once again he has plenty of
friends in low places .
2002, The Ramones are inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame at the 17th
annual induction dinner . Pearl Jam frontman and self-admitted Ramones
fanatic Eddie Vedder is their presenter . with a freshly cut mohawk atop his
shaved head, Vedder delivers a 16-minute-long tribute to the band before
bringing them onstage .
2004, Courtney Love repeatedly flashes her breasts during an appearance on
The Late Show with David Letterman . later that night she plays an
unannounced gig at the New York club, Plaid, where she throws a mic stand
into the audience and is arrested for reckless endangerment . the next night
she turns up at the Bowery Ballroom with the legend "EAT MY F**K" emblazoned
in 10-inch high letters on her tank top, then tops off the night with a
Kodak moment in which she is photographed breast-feeding a fan at a local
Wendy's . like the man said, "All you need is Love" .
2005, rapper Lil' Kim is convicted of perjury for lying to a federal grand
jury in connection with a 2001 shooting involving her manager and a former
member of her posse .
2006, Utah Jazz forward Carlos Boozer withdraws a civil suit he filed
against Prince resulting from the Purple One's redecoration of the mansion
he rents from the basketballer . among Prince's improvements: lavender
stripes painted on various surfaces, installation of purple-and-black
carpets, and modifications to the plumbing system to accommodate several
beauty-salon chairs . Aerosmith is obliged to cancel the rest of its tour
dates when Steven Tyler is operated on for unspecified throat problems .
2007, members of the '70s Scots pop band Bay City Rollers sue Arista, their
former label, charging that they are owed millions in unpaid royalties .
Elsrock, an outdoor heavy-metal rock festival, is given conditional approval
to put on its show outside the town of Rijssen, located in the Netherlands'
Bible Belt . the proviso prohibits cursing and blasphemy . the 2006 version
of the festival had outraged residents . in explaining why the permit was
granted, Mayor Bort Koelewijn cites "the stated readiness of the organizers
to make sure that no blasphemous words are used, and that the honor of God's
name is not besmirched" .
2008, a judge awards Heather Mills nearly $50 million in her divorce from
Paul McCartney . R.E.M. singer Michael Stipe publicly reveals he's gay in an
interview with Spin magazine .
2010, Justin Bieber releases My World 2.0, taking him from a YouTube
sensation to mega-superstar and garners several nominations and accolades .
Bieber Fever and Beiber backlash sweeps the nation and the world .
. and that was the week that was in matters musical.
[Compiled by the Musician's Friend copywriting staff]
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