SBC: The Week That Was
Thu Sep 8 16:53:16 EDT 2011
Discounting Crows ... Crowe's Countdown ... Elton Meltdown ...
This is the week that was in matters musical . . .
1958, the first stereo records and phonographs hit the marketplace . . .
demo LPs simulating planes taking off and the sound of ping-pong balls
caroming between the left and right speakers are all the rage . . .
1960, Nancy Sinatra weds pop singer Tommy Sands . . . in five years the
Sands run out on the dissolving marriage . . . Nancy dons her boots and
walks . . . the FCC bans payola, 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, first record companies forced their artists to cash in on The Twist
craze, then the surf music boom . . . and now Muddy Waters is recording
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 . . . a folk album in name only, the tunes are mostly written by Muddy
and/or Willie and include unplugged blues classics like "Good Morning
Little School Girl" . . . in 1968, Chess will subject Muddy to recording a
"psychedelic" album with funk session men and wah-wah pedals . . . Electric
Mud features Muddy essaying his way through The Rolling Stones' "Let's
Spend The Night Together" . . . how about that for acknowledging your
roots? . . . what's next? . . . Otis Redding recording "Satisfaction?" . .
1964, Rod Stewart cuts his first single-the blues chestnut "Good Morning
Little Schoolgirl" . . . a pair of enterprising Beatles fans pack
themselves into a carton marked "Beatles Fan Mail" and 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
. . .
1965, an ad in Variety announces auditions for the new TV show The Monkees
. . . would-be Monkees who fail to make the cut include Stephen Stills,
Danny Hutton later of Three Dog Night, songwriter Paul Williams, and
Charles Manson . . . interesting how different people deal with
disappointment . . .
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 heckles 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'?'" . . . apparently, Still's water runs deep . . .
1970, from the One-Hit Wonders Department: the good timey, washboard and
jug band sound of Mungo Jerry reaches #3 on the U.S. pop charts with their
debut single "In The Summertime" . . . Mungomania briefly takes hold of the
U.K. as the band shuffles its way to 10 top singles . . . but the U.S.
quickly tires of the shtick . . . singer Ray Dorset finally calls it quits
later in the '70s . . .
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 . . . proving
that eventually, what happens in Egypt winds up in Vegas . . .
1981, Pink Floyd begins production on the film version of The Wall . . .
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 .
. . winners are awarded Moon Man trophies that depict an astronaut with an
American flag, one of the network's earliest icons . . .
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 . . . smart . . .
1995, Paul McCartney's hand-written lyrics to the Beatles' classic "Getting
Better" sell for a cool quarter-million dollars at a Sotheby's auction . .
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" . . . rumors that Wal-Mart employees
started a band called Discounting Crows are unfounded . . .
1999, record mogul Sean "Puffy" Combs is ordered to attend an anger
management class after being convicted of attacking the president of
Interscope Records, Steve Stoute . . . lucky for Stoute the Puff man
doesn't shop at Wal-Mart . . .
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
teenaged rock journalist in the '70s . . . however, Page/Plant don't allow
Crowe to use "Stairway to Heaven" for a scene in the theatrical release . .
. in the subsequent director's cut DVD version, Crowe shows the deleted
scene and instructs viewers to cue up their CDs of "Stairway" and wait for
the onscreen countdown to press play so the scene can be experienced the
way Crowe intended it, as the actors respond to the lyrics and musical
changes in the song . . .
2003, The Pixies announce that band members have buried the hatchet and
will embark on a reunion tour in 2004 . . . the Pixies dust the
competition, going on to huge success in the face of a lackluster touring
season . . .
2004, a jet-lagged Elton John, set upon by Taiwanese paparazzi, has a hissy
fit calling them "rude, vile pigs!" . . .
2005, Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown, versatile blues, cajun, jazz, and R&B
guitarist, vocalist, and fiddler, dies in Baton Rouge at his brother's
house after leaving his home in Slidell, LA, due to Hurricane Katrina . . .
Britney Spears gives birth to a baby boy by Cesarean section at the UCLA
Medical Center in Santa Monica, California, with her backup dancer and beau
Kevin Federline by her side . . . Sony BMG and EMI manage to further
alienate music buyers by incorporating copy-protection software that's
incompatible with the iPod, the world's most popular MP3 player . . . some
of the releases affected are by artists such as The Dave Matthews Band,
Switchfoot, and Foo Fighters . . .
2006, Paul McCartney agrees to donate $3 million to Adopt-a-Minefield after
having backed out of playing a benefit for the charity hosted by his
estranged wife Heather Mills . . . apparently, Pat Benetar was right, love
is a battlefield . . . after being found guilty of tax evasion, the IRS
orders Ron Isley to pay $3.1 million in delinquent taxes and sentences him
to 37 months in prison . . . the 65-year-old Isley, who is rebounding from
kidney cancer and a stroke, will probably do his time in a federal prison
hospital . . . Linda Ronstadt cancels the balance of her 2006 tour schedule
after undergoing surgery for an unspecified condition . . . a documentary
about Kurt Cobain is debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival . .
. titled Kurt Cobain: About a Son, the film is based on more than 25 hours
of audio interviews with the Nirvana frontman recorded for a biography that
was scratched following Cobain's suicide in 1994 . . . filmmaker AJ Schnack
edited down the tapes in which the troubled Cobain recalls his childhood,
domestic troubles, and the downside of fame, matching them up with
newly-created stills of places significant to Cobain . . . Athens, Georgia,
music fans get an unexpected thrill when R.E.M. shows up unannounced at a
fundraiser at the 40 Watt Club . . . drummer Bill Berry, who split the band
in 1997 to become a gentleman farmer, decides that being a rude rocker is
more fun and rejoins his bandmates to rip through a set of faves . . .
2009, Kanye West apologizes for interrupting Taylor Swift at the MTV Video
Music Awards . . . despite the apology on his blog, West still writes,
"Beyonce's video was the best of this decade!!! I'm Still Happy for
Taylor!!!!" . . . it seems he isn't the only one with this sentiment . . .
Beyonce actually does win the video of the year for Single Ladies and
promptly invites Swift to join her on stage during her acceptance speech .
. . Swift says afterwards, "I thought I couldn't love Beyonce more, and
then tonight happened." . . . while Beyonce and Taylor Swift put on a show
of solidarity, West is booed off the stage and subsequently asked to leave
the show . . . numerous attendees tweet their disapproval during the
awards: Katy Perry tweets "F*** Kanye, it's like you stepped on a kitten,"
while Pink writes, "Kanye West is the biggest piece of shit on earth. Quote
Me." . . . this isn't the first time West has rushed the stage at an awards
ceremony to protest an award's recipient . . . during the MTV Europe Music
Awards in 2006, the rapper lost it after Justice v Simian's We Are Your
Friends scooped best video instead of West's Touch the Sky . . .
. . . and that was the week that was in matters musical.
[Compiled by the Musician's Friend copywriting staff]
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