TLW's Rock and Roll Historyscope
By T.L. Winslow (TLW), the Historyscoper™
© Copyright by T.L. Winslow. All Rights Reserved.
Original Pub. Date: Mar. 20, 2011. Last Update: May 21, 2013.
Rock and Roll (Rock & Roll) (Rock 'n' Roll) (Rock 'n Roll) (often shortened to just Rock) is the most popular genre of music in the world, passing for pop a lot of the time, indeed, the boundary is wide and fuzzy - sorry, Barbra Streisand and Susan Boyle are too far over the line. Rock and Roll developed during the 1940s and 1950s from Blues, Jazz, Gospel Music, and Country Music, especially Rockabilly, which was influenced by Appalachian Folk Music. It was the great melting pot of the races in the U.S., and ended up taking the entire world by storm, especially after the Baby Boom Generation of 1946-64 came of age. Rock and Roll Genres include Acid Rock, Bluebeat, Bubblegum Rock, Country Rock, Death Rock, Doo-Wop, Electro-Industrial, Emo(core) Rock, Funk Rock, Glam (Glitter) Rock, Goa Trance Music, Gothic (Goth) Rock, Groove Metal Rock, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal Rock, Hip Hop, Industrial Music, Jazz Rock (Fusion), New Jack Swing, Psychedelic Rock, Power Pop, Punk Rock, Rap, Reggae, Reggaeton, Rocksteady, Ska, Stoner Rock, Synthpop, Trip Hop, and many others.
Did you know that the entire history of rock and roll can be scoped in your browser free with the Historyscoper, complete with the music and videos? Giant music libraries were once the privilege of only the rich, but now everybody's got access to almost everything for free on YouTube, so all you need to finally master rock and roll history is an Internet map or overlay of text and links. Think of this as a mind meld of Google, Wikipedia, and YouTube, created by a Historyscoper with a giant sponge brain that has seen it all and done it all, and wants you to follow in his footsteps, as in I was blind, and now I see, and hear too.
So why spend your time scoping its depths rather than partying or getting stoned or laid, check my profile on Assbook? Easy. You came in with an innate need for knowledge that can trump other needs, even drugs, sex, and rock and roll, but this particular Historyscope lets you cheat :). But why do this now when I'm only 16? You may be young, but you will inherit the world one day, and might suspect that current stars Justin Bieber, Hannah Montana, Owl City, the Jonas Brothers, Lady Gaga, and Taylor Swift are lame, and are wise enough to take time out to look out the back of Planet Bus and see what the old farts did so you can redirect the life you have left to a better path. Maybe you're a burned-out old fart like TLW, great, you're probably either retired, underemployed, or unemployed, and time is passing faster and faster. Good news, this is the perfect time to relive the parts you missed at warp speed, with the power of the Internet and the young whippersnappers who provide it giving you instant access to the videos and music so you can feed your entire mind, not just one hemisphere - the best American generation, had it all, still do, maybe the last Social Security checks, you can win them all. Think of a Historyscope as an online college degree program that requires a long concentrated period of study, but rewards you with the coolness of knowledge, and the tools to forever gain more. Unlike expensive colleges with their faculty and campuses, with the Historyscoper the Internet is the ultimate history learning tool, and the price is right, so let's rock and roll!
Every journey begins with a single step, the blue pill or the red pill, which will it be? The undisputed King of Rock and Roll is Elvis Aaron Presley (1935-77), so if you just want to start at the top and quit, sayonara. Seriously, there's way way more, all neatly laid out for you like a Golden Brick Road by TLW, and I pity the fool who takes the blue pill and goes back to sleep, so let's get started and see how deep the rabbit hole goes.
The term rock and roll goes back to the 1916 Gospel phonograph record (Little Wonder Records #339) The Camp Meeting Jubilee. The term "rocking and rolling" was first used outside the Gospel context in the 1922 record My Man Rocks Me With One Steady Roll, complete with the sexual double entendre, sung by Trixie Smith (1895-1943). The term rock and roll was also used in the 1933 Hal Roach film Asleep in the Feet, starring ZaSu Pitts and Thelma Todd.
Let's start at the beginning. We can count out the Asians, Native Americans, and original Europeans, their folk music lacks the rock and roll backbeat. The original rock music was the fabled African Jungle Music, complete with that funky jungle drum beat, but too bad there was no recording equipment so we have to just try to imagine the music as they're hunting down a tasty white man, or better yet, let pre-PC Hollyweird do it for us, starring Cornel Wilde in The Naked Prey (1966). Rock and roll can also be traced to Haitian Voodoo (Vodou) and Louisiana Voodoo. Too bad, they didn't have the Guitar (Persian "tar" = string), which was in use in Europe by the year 1200, in two forms, the Moorish guitar (Guitarra Moresca) and the Latin guitar (Guitarra Latina) - it was all about Christian vs. Muslim back then, not white vs. black, and look like you give a damn. About the same time Christian knights began embroidering their family insignia on their surcoats, coining the term "coat of arms". Also about the same time chaperon ("little cape") headgear, consisting of a hood and a short cape was invented in W Europe, and it slowly grew into a complex, versatile and expensive fashion item, with a cornette (liripipe) (tippit) (becchetto) tail tied on top, a patte (cockscomb) (foggia) cape hanging behind, and a round bourrelet (rondel) (mazzocchio) tied around the face or twisted under the neck (beginning of a tie); by 1300 some prefered to wear it upside-down, and some prefered a scarf-like cornette. After getting official approval from the pope in 1452, who issued the bull Dum Diversas, authorizing them to round up and enslave diverse dumb Saracens (Muslims) and pagans (blacks), followed in 1455 by the bull Romanus Pontifex, granting them a superior right over other Christian nations to enslave any non-Christian people captured during the discovery of new lands in specific regions, the Portuguese wasted no time in sailing down the west coast of Africa and filling their ships with African natives, launching the Atlantic slave trade, which one might call the true beginning of rock and roll, if it weren't so tragic. Actually, the Muslim Arab world was busy filling their ships with African natives from the east coast of Africa, who never got the chance to rock and roll, so maybe God has a sense of humor. On Oct. 12, 1492 mystery man Christopher Columbus (1451-1506) discovered Central America for Roman Catholic Spain, after which Portugal discovered South America, and since they didn't know about North America or how far west of South America it was, the pope split the New World between them on an east-west line that cheated Portugal badly and left room for the Protestants of Northern Europe and Britain (founded in 1517 in Germany by Martin Luther) to stake their claim, starting with Jamestown, Virginia in 1609, which made it big economically with tobacco, causing them to begin importing African slaves in 1619, and systematically develop the doctrine of white supremacy, reaching 500K imported by 1808, which led the fledgling United States of America (founded July 4, 1776) down the garden path to the all-out U.S. Civil War (1861-5), white against white to free the slaves. Yes, they were free on paper, those out of jail that is, but whites still controlled them economically and dominated them socially, clear up until the big American Civil Rights Movement of 1954-68 made several breakthroughs, culminating in the election of the first African-American president #44 (2009-) Barack Hussein Obama II (1961-), who on the evening of his inauguration on Jan. 20, 2009 hosted the first-ever pres. ball open to the residents of mainly-black Washington, D.C., sweetly dancing with his wife Michelle to music by African-American singer Beyonce (Beyoncé) Giselle Knowles (1981-), who sang the 1960 Etta James hit At Last. So, if you don't get it, African-American music played a big role in healing the black-white racial divide, and the advent of rock and roll was a major factor. Racism has always been misguided and evil, and it must go, it really must go, it don't rock.
Speaking of Protestants and their contributions to rock and roll. English king (1509-47) Henry VIII (1491-1547), known for having six wives and for breaking England off from the Roman Catholic Church and Vatican control so that its descendants could colonize North America and invent rock and roll might be considered the father of pop music with his hit song Green Grows the Holly, which went on to become the origin of the Mexican word "gringo", not that it's relevant so blow me, I'm Hen-er-ey the Eighth I am, Hen-er-ey the Eighth I Am I Am. On June 17, 1579 English explorer Sir Francis Drake (1540-96) discovered California, too bad Hollywood wasn't there yet or they'd have captured it on film. In 1609 English explorer Henry Hudson (-1611) discovered New York Bay in the name of the Dutch, who in 1625 founded New Amsterdam, after which on May 24, 1626 its dir.-gen. Peter Minuit (1580-1638) bought the island of Manhattan from the Native Americans for a box of trinkets worth 60 Dutch guilders ($24). In 1664 after the British kicked the Dutch out, New Amsterdam became New York City, after which European Jews flocked in, which is why it was later called Jew York :). The second highest concentration of Jews flocked to Los Angeles, and pumped up the sleepy town of Hollywood into the entertainment center of the world starting in 1909, the Jews always look for a home with a sea escape route.
In 1877 Thomas Alva Edison (1847-1931) invented the phonograph, which used cylinders. On Nov. 8, 1887 German immigrant Emile Berliner (1851-1929) patented the Gramophone in the U.S., which also used cylinders, but upgraded to discs in 1888, which he began marketing in Europe in 1889 to toy companies while he worked to improve audio quality. In 1892 Berliner founded the U.S. Gramophone Co. in Washington, D.C., selling 7-in. disc records starting in Nov. 1894. In 1897 the U.K. Gramophone Co. was founded in London by William Barry Owen and Trevor Williams to partner with Emile Berliner's co., followed by a German branch in 1898. In 1899 Francis James Barraud (1856-1924) painted the famous painting His Master's Voice, featuring stray fox-bull terrier mix Nipper (1884-95), owned by his brother Mark Barraud (-1887) then adopted by him; it orginally used a black cylinder phonograph horn, which was deemed too dark, so Barry Owen of the U.S. Gramophone Co. suggested his co.'s Gramophone with shiny horn, then bought the revised painting for £100, and sold it to the Victor Talking Machine Co., founded in 1901 in Camden, N.J. by Eldridge Reeves Johnson (1867-1945), with Emile Berliner as a probable shadow partner as a strategy to defeat patent-stealer Zonophone. Nipper listening to "His Master's Voice" on a Victrola became their trademark, first appearing on a record label on July 1, 1902, then becoming the RCA Victor dog in 1929, going on to become the most famous dog in the world. Meanwhile in 1895 Italian-born inventor Guglielmo Marconi (1874-1937) built the first working radio system, imagine the musical potential, by 1925 even Afghanistan had a radio station. Meanwhile in 1885 Tin Pan Alley in Manhattan on West 28th St. between 5th and 6th Ave. was created when a number of music publishers set up shop, churning out sheet music; with the rise of the phonograph and radio, it began a steep decline. Jews were instrumental in Tin Pan Alley's success, along with the entire U.S. entertainment industry, working to help whites accept not only themselves but blacks, it's a long story so I'll skip it. To top it all, on Oct. 28, 1886 the Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island in New York Harbor was dedicated, inviting the white (incl. Jewish) part of Europe to move on in and start partying, as long as each one passed inspection and had enough money to prove he/she wouldn't be a drain on society. Meanwhile the U.S. erected a sick double-dealing de facto wall of apartheid with their brown-skinned next-door neighbors in Mexico, which welcomed them as migrant laborers but went nonlinear if they tried to stay permanently. It took until 1965 for the gates to be opened to non-whites from overseas with Ted Kennedy's 1965 U.S. Immigration Act, although Mexicans were still groaning under apartheid, which continues to this day, even Pres. Obama told them to get back in line behind Muslims from North Africa and the Middle East. Speaking of Muslims, too bad, Ted Kennedy's 1965 Immigration Act allowed Muslims from the Muslim world to immigrate, which was a big mistake that threatens to spoil everything, is there something about kill the infidels you don't understand, Islam prohibits music itself, there's no fun in Islam according to Ayatollah Khomeini, ask me about supremacy, intolerance, jihad and Sharia later, a melting pot requires material that can melt not explode like gasoline, it's not about racism, if they would renounce Islam for sex, drugs, and rock and roll they might be okay. Did I mention the Lost Generation of people born in 1883-1900, who had to groan through WWI and WWII to obtain their prize of running a world in which they were outnumbered by the younger generations, the first falling for them as role models, the second tuning them out and turning on to sex, drugs, and rock and roll, your body can't tell the difference, sugar is sugar?
On Jan. 22, 1889 Columbia Records (Columbia Graphophone Co.) was founded in Washington, D.C. from the American Graphophone Co., successor to the Volta Graphophone Co., becoming the first record company; at first it supplied U.S. govt. depts. with phonographs for use as dictation machines. In 1938 CBS bought it for $750K, signing Frank Sinatra and making big bucks in the 1940s with over 200 of his songs. In 1896 Parlophone (Parlophon) was founded in Germany by the Carl Lindstrom Co., becoming a top jazz label in the 1920s; in 1927 it was acquired by Columbia Graphophone Co. Meanwhile in 1914 Regal Recordings was founded as a subsidiary of the British branch of Columbia Gramophone, merging in 1932 with Zonophone of Britain to become Regal Zonophone, later absorbed by EMI. In 1924 MCA (Music Corp. of America) was founded by Jules C. Stein (1896-1981) et al. as a music booking agency in Chicago, Ill., going on to book big bands incl. King Oliver and Jelly Roll Morton, and becoming the world's largest talent agency by the late 1930s, moving to Beverly Hills in 1939 and gaining the nickname "The Octopus", triggering endless monopoly investigations by the U.S. Dept. of Justice. In 1936 Lewis Robert "Lew" Wasserman (1913-2002) joined it, rising to head in 1948, and becoming famous for taking down the Hollywood studio system, causing him to be known as the Pope of Hollywood. In 1929 Decca Records was founded in Britain by Sir Edward Roberts Lewis (1900-80), who established a U.S. label in 1934, which signed big name black entertainers incl. Louis Armstrong, Count Basie, Billie Holiday, the Mills Brothers, and the Ink Spots, as well as top white entertainers incl. Judy Garland, the Andrews Sisters, and the Dorsey Brothers; too bad, WWII caused connections between the two organizations to be severed for decades. In 1942 songwriter John Herndon "Johnny" Mercer (1909-76), songwriter-film producer George Gard "Buddy" DeSylva (1895-1950), and record store owner Glen Wallichs (1910-71) founded Capitol Records (originally Liberty Records) in Los Angeles, Calif., becoming the first record company on the U.S. West Coast. In Sept. 1947 Ahmet Ertegun (1923-2006), son of a Turkish ambassador founded Atlantic Records in New York City, going on to sign and popularize Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, and the Rolling Stones.
After the emancipation of the African slaves, some went into the music business. In 1895 Ragtime was created, and popularized by Scott Joplin (1867-1917), who had an internat. hit in 1899 with Maple Leaf Rag. The Greatest Generation of people born in 1901-24 in the West won a big V in WWII, making the world safe for rock and roll. Jelly Roll Morton (1885-1941) claimed to invent Jazz in 1902. In 1912 the word Jazz was coined on the U.S. west coast, coming to refer to music in Chicago around 1915, after which it swept the U.S. and replaced Ragtime in popularity, soon reaching Europe. In Feb. 1917 the first jazz record, Livery Stable Blues was released by the Original Dixieland Jazz Band of New Orleans, La. (founded 1916).
On Nov. 22, 1903 new old Pope (1903-14) Pius X (1835-1914) issued the bull, er, bull Tra le Sollecitudini (Amidst the Cares), banning castratos and requiring boys to sing soprano and contraltro parts in the Church, while banning women from singing with men, and reaffirming the Gregorian chant over Renaissance polyphony, also banning the piano and percussion instruments.
In 1914-18 horrible senseless insane World War I caused the fit to hit the shan as it showed the entire non-white world that whites weren't such a superior master race after all when they started an industrial interracial extermination fest, shooting and blowing each other up like cockroaches in the name of outdated empires that ended up kaput. After WWI black-white relations began making inroads fast via entertainment of all types. In 1919 white entertainer George White (1890-1968) began producing George White's Scandals on Broadway (until 1939), with scores by George Gershwin, Richard A. Whiting et al., introducing African-Am. dances such as the Charleston and Black Bottom to white audiences, along with songs such as Lucky Day (1926), and Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries (1931) (both written by Ray Henderson, Buddy G. DeSylva, and Lew Brown). In 1924 naughty black American singer-dancer-stripper ("the Bronze Venus") ("the Bronze Pearl") ("the Creole Goddess") Josephine Baker (Freda Josephine McDonald) (1906-75) (born in St. Louis, Mo. of a white father and black washerwoman mother) became a star in Paris with such acts as the seminude "Danse Sauvage", and the "Banana Dance", costumed in a girdle of rhinestone-studded bananas. In her career she became the first African-American female to star in a major motion picture, to integrate a U.S. concert hall, and to become a world-famous entertainer, appearing in the Ziegfeld Follies with Bob Hope and Fanny Brice, and ending up one of the richest black women in the world and a nat. heroine in France with a Legion of Honor for supporting the WWII resistance, becoming a French citizen in 1937, then contributing to the U.S. civil right movement before being offered and declining the leadership of the U.S. civil rights movement in 1968 by Coretta Scott King after the MLK Jr. assassination, then dying broke. In 1974 she made a 50th anniv. comeback with an entrance on a motorcyle.
The Silent Generation of people born in 1925-45 went through Hell in the Great Depression, which messed their minds up permanently, causing them to spoil their Baby Boomer kids, priming the rock and roll explosion of the 1960s, thanks mom and pop, never trust anybody over 30. In 1925 the Electrola record label was founded in Berlin by the Gramophone Co., merging in 1931 with the Columbia Gramophone Co. ("His Master's Voice" label) to form the Electric and Musical Industries Ltd. (EMI) label.
On Jan. 1, 1926 Irish-Am. Dem. Greenwich Village alderman and Tin Pan Alley songwriter James John "Jimmy" "Beau James" Walker (1881-1946) was sworn in as mayor of New York City, becoming known as Beau James as he made the Big Apple friendly to the Jazz Age by allowing speakeasies to proliferate while he enjoyed chorus girls, leaving his wife for Ziegeld Follies showgirl Betty Compton (1907-44). Too bad, the Great Depression gave Cardinal Patrick Hayes an excuse to come down on his case, blaming his immorality for everything, leading to corruption investigations, after which he resigned on Sept. 1, 1932 and skipped to Europe for awhile to avoid prosecution and marry his Betty; after the heat died down, he returned and became pres. of jazz label Majestic Records, mismanaging it until it folded in 1948.
In the 1930s the Big Band Era and the Swing Era began. Top jazz entertainers incl. Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington (1899-1974), known for the signature tune Take the 'A' Train (by Billy Strayhorn) (1941), Louis Daniel "Satchmo" "Pops" Armstrong (1901-71), known for When the Saints Go Marching In, and Hello, Dolly! (1964), William "Count" Basie (1904-84), known for One O'Clock Jump (1937), Cabell "Cab" Calloway III (1907-94), known for Minnie the Moocher (1931), Billie "Lady Day" Holiday (Eleanora Fagan) (1915-59), known for Strange Fruit (1939) ("NAACP propaganda" - Time mag.), and Ella Jane "Lady Ella" "First Lady of Song" Fitzgerald (1917-96), known for A-Tisket, A-Tasket (1938), and Oh, Lady Be Good (1947). Not all jazz musicians were black, which was no surprise, as white audiences would only listen to white musicians. Top white jazz entertainers incl. Alton Glenn Miller (1904-44), known for In the Mood (1939), Tuxedo Junction (1939), Moonlight Serenade (1939), Little Brown Jug (1939), Pennsylvania 6-5000 (1940), American Patrol (1941), Chattanooga Choo Choo (1941), and A String of Pearls (1942), Benjamin David "Benny" "King of Swing" Goodman (1909-86), known for Sing, Sing, Sing (1935), and The Dorsey Brothers, known for Lullaby of Broadway (1935).
In 1931 the Electric Guitar was invented for jazz musicians by George Delmetia Beauchamp (1899-1941), who founded the Ro-Pat-In (Electro-Patent-Instrument) Co. in Los Angeles, Calif. along with Swiss-born Adolph Rickenbacker (1886-1976) (cousin of WWI flying ace Eddie Rickenbacker), and Paul Barth. Rickenbacker invented the Frying Pan (Pancake) Guitar, made of cast aluminum, first produced in 1932, and discontinued in 1939 after 2.7K were made. The first solid body Spanish style electric guitar was made by Vivi-Tone in 1934, followed by the Electro Spanish, made of Bakelite and marketed by Rickenbacker in 1935 after they changed the co. name to Rickenbacker Electro Stringed Instrument Co.
In 1931 Am. composer Henry Dixon Cowell (1897-1965) invented the Rhythmicon (Polyrhythmophone), the first electronic rhythm machine.
In 1936-7 after allegedly making a Faustian bargain with the Devil, Hazlehust, Miss.-born blues singer Robert Leroy Johnson (1911-38) released his landmark Miss. Delta Blues recordings that later influenced Eric Clapton et al., getting him inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as an "early influence". His best-known recordings are Sweet Home Chicago, and Malted Milk. On Aug. 16, 1938 he died a tragic early death after being poisoned by a jealous husband, becoming the first member of the 27 Club.
In 1938 Cotton Plant, Ark.-born gospel singer-songwriter Sister Rosetta Tharpe (1915-73) released the singles Rock Me, and This Train, which made her an instant hit in the secular music market while shocking the gospel music market by combining secular with sacred music, pioneering rock and roll with the 1944 single Strange Things Happening Everyday, recorded with Decca Boogie Woogie pianist Samuel Blythe "Sammy" Price (1908-92).
In 1939 Am. guitarist Les Paul (1915-2009) invented the Log, one of the first solid-body electric guitars, along with Charles Leonidas "Leo" Fender (1909-91), whose electric guitar was the first to be mass-produced. In 1946 the Fender Electric Instrument Manufacturing Co. (later Fender Musical Instruments Corp.) was founded in Fullerton, Calif. by Fender to design and produce electric guitars and amplifiers, helping to launch rock and roll, starting with the Telecaster in fall 1949, followed by the Stratocaster in 1954. In 1952 the Gibson Les Paul solid body electric guitar was first sold by the Gibson Guitar Co. of Kalamazoo, Mich., becoming a worthy competitor. In 1957 the Epiphone Co., founded in 1873 in Smyrna (Izmir), Turkey by Anastasios Stathopoulos (-1915) to make fiddles and lutes, which moved to the U.S. in 1903 and began making guitars in 1928 was acquired by their main rival Gibson, going on to produce the Epiphone Casino guitar, which was made famous by the Beatles.
In 1939 Kansas City, Mo.-born Joseph Vernor "Big Joe" Turner Jr. (1911-85) released Cherry Red, along with Roll 'Em Pete, the first rock & roll record?
In 1939 Asheville, N.C.-born country singer Buddy Jones (1906-56) released Rockin' Rollin' Mamma, which contains one the first uses of the term "rock and roll" in music, and it's by a white singer?; "Waves on the ocean, waves in the sea/ But that gal of mine rolls just right for me/ Rockin' rollin' mamma, I love the way you rock and roll".
Speaking of jungle music. In 1939 South African Zulu musician Solomon Popoli Linda (1909-62) and The Evening Birds released the single Mbube (Zulu "lion"), an a capella song written by Linda that became a big hit in South Africa, selling 100K copies, about King Chaka the Lion, who didn't die when whitey took over his country, but went to sleep, and will one day awaken; the chorus is "uyimbube" (you're a lion). Too bad, when The Weavers covered the song in 1952 they changed the title and chorus to Wimoweh, and didn't pay Linda proper royalties, causing him to lose millions until his family began suing in 2004. Meanwhile in 1961 the Brooklyn, N.Y. doowop group The Tokens, consisting of Neil Sedaka (1939-) (quit in 1957), Hank Medress (1938-2007), Cynthia Zolotin (quit in 1957), Jay Siegel, Mitch Margo (tenor), Phil Margo (baritone), and Joe Venneri (guitar) released the #1 U.S. single Wimoweh: The Lion Sleeps Tonight (#11 in the U.K.), and the coverup was complete until the Internet Age?
The Dust Bowl of 1930-40, created by severe dust storms in the U.S. and Canadian prairies displaced many families, especially in Oklahoma, causing "Okies" to be treated like merde by authorities in states they were trying to settle in. In July 1940 Comsymp (Communist sympathizer) Okemah, Okla.-born folk musician ("the Oklahoma Cowboy") Woodrow Wilson "Woody" Guthrie (1912-67), known for the slogan "This Machine Kills Fascists" displayed on his guitar released his debut album Dust Bowl Ballads, the first-ever concept album, featuring the tracks Dust Bowl Blues, Dust Bowl Refugee, Dust Can't Kill Me, Pretty Boy Floyd, and Tom Joad. In 1941 the Almanac Singers (him and Pete Seeger) released the album Songs for John Doe, against U.S. entry into WWII, which features the track The Strange Death of John Doe. After Pearl Harbor, they released Round and Round Hitler's Grave, supporting U.S. entry. In 1945 Woody pub. This Land Is Your Land, his counter-version of Irving Berlin's "God Bless America".
In Feb. 1942 RCA awarded the first-ever Gold Record to Glenn Miller (1904-44) for his hit Chattanooga Choo Choo, signifying 1M copies sold. The first gold LP was awarded to the album Calypso by Harry Belafonte (1927-). In 1958 the Recording Industry Assoc. of America (RIAA) trademarked the term gold record in the U.S. to signify 500K copies sold, and on Mar. 14, 1958 they certified Catch a Falling Star by Perry Como (1912-2001) as the first RIAA gold single, and Oklahoma! Soundtrack as the first gold album in July 1958. In 1976 they certified the single Disco Lady by Johnnie Taylor (1934-2000), and the album Their Greatest Hits (1975-1975) by the Eagles as the first platinum records (1M sold).
In 1945 World War II (begun 1939) ended, leaving the U.S. in military control of the world, with half its wealth, and after the 90%-white GIs returned home they began having babies like rabbits, creating the Baby Boomers (born in 1946-64), history's most privileged generation, incl. TLW - they didn't start rock and roll, but they finished it, I hope not.
Speaking of electric. On Feb. 1, 1946 a press conference was held at the U. of Penn. to unveil the ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Calculator) computer, developed by physicist John William Mauchly (1907-80) and electronics engineers John Adam Presper "Pres" Eckert Jr. (1919-95) and Arthur Walter Burks (1915-2008). It performs 5K additions per second, and consists of 18K vacuum tubes, taking 15K sq. ft. of floor space and weighing 30 tons; when it was first switched on the lights all over Philly allegedly dimmed. Later the patent suit Honeywell v. Sperry Rand awarded John Vincent Atanasoff (1903-95) priority over ENIAC in 1973 as the inventor of the modern electronic digital computer, invalidating ENIAC's 1964 patent and putting it into the public domain, freeing computers up for rock and roll as well as everything else that ain't so serious.
On June 20, 1948 (Sun.) (8-9 p.m. ET) The Ed Sullivan Show (Toast of the Town), hosted by New York Daily News Broadway columnist (former boxer) Edward Vincent "Ed" Sullivan (1901-74) ("a really big shoe") debuted on CBS-TV (until June 6, 1971) with Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, Monica Lewis, and Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II, becoming the longest-running show in TV history, switching to color in 1965 after playing a key role in showcasing up-and-coming rock and roll performers.
In Sept. 1948 Miss.-born talking blues musician John Lee Hooker (1917-2001) released the singles Boogie Chillen', Hobo Blues, and Crawling King Snake, laying the foundations for rock and roll. In 1962 he released Boom Boom (#60 in the U.S.).
In 1949 (after RCA tried and failed in 1931) CBS successfully introduced the 10"/12" diam. 33-1/3 rpm LP (long-playing) vinyl record, invented in 1948 by German-Hungarian engineer Peter Carl Goldmark (1906-77), causing RCA in 1949 to market the 45 pm record as a competitor, allowing the masses to buy more and more and more music by the album or track, helping to launch the pop/rock era. Columbia Records began releasing 45 rpm records in 1951, allowing games to be played by record companies with packaging and promotion.
In 1949 Hunt City, Ill.-born folk singer Burl Icle Ivanhoe Ives (1909-95) released the single (Ghost Riders) in the Sky: A Cowboy Legend (#21 in the U.S.), written by Stanley Davis "Stan" Jones (1914-63) (who worked for the Nat. Park Service in Death Valley, Calif., where he met film dir. John Ford and became good friends, going on to write many Western songs for him), which ended up getting covered umpteen zillion times, blurring the line between country and rock, incl. by Vaughn Monroe (1911-73) in 1949 (#1 in the U.S.), Bing Crosby in 1949 (#14 in the U.S.), Peggy Lee in 1949, Spike Jones in 1949, The Ramrods in 1961 (#30 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.), Dick Dale in 1963, Elvis Presley in 1970, Johnny Cash in 1979, The Outlaws in 1980, The Shadows in 1980, Deborah Harry in 1998, and Spiderbait for the 2007 Nicolas Cage film Ghost Rider. Even The Lawrence Welk Champagne Orchestra.
In 1949 the first rock and roll record to sell a million copies was released by Antoine Dominique "Fats" Domino Jr. (1928-): Detroit City Blues, and its flip side The Fat Man. He went on to release the hits Ain't That A Shame (#10 in the U.S.) in 1955, Blueberry Hill (#2 in the U.S.) in 1956, I'm Walkin' (#4 in the U.S.) in 1957, and Whole Lotta Loving (#6 in the U.S.) in 1958.
In May 1950 Pakistani PM (1947-51) Liaquat Ali Khan (1895-1951) visited the U.S., and uttered the immortal soundbyte: "As I let myself ponder over this, I suddenly see the United States of America as an island, a fabulously prosperous island. And all around this island I see the unhealthy sea of misery, povery, and squalor in which millions of human beings are trying to keep their heads above water. At such moments I fear for this great nation as one fears for a dear friend." Show me the Carfax, comrade? Speaking of Communism, in 1950 the Greenwich Village folk music quartet The Weavers, incl. Peter "Pete" Seeger (1919-), Ronnie Gilbert (1926-), Lee Hays (1914-81), and Fred Hellerman (1927-) (who later produced Arlo Guthrie's album "Alice Restaurant") had a #1 U.S. hit with Goodnight, Irene by Leadbelly. Seeger's banjo carries the legend "This Machine Surrounds Hate and Forces It to Surrender". Too bad in 1950 the right-wing journal Counterattack pub. Red Channels: The Report of Communist Influence in Radio and Television, listing 151 intellectuals, entertainers and journalists incl. Leonard Bernstein, Lee J. Cobb, Aaron Copland, Jose Ferrer, John Garfield, Ruth Gordon, Ben Grauer, Dashiell Hammett, E.Y. Harburg, Lillian Hellman, Judy Holliday, Lena Horne, Langston Hughes, Burl Ives, Sam Jaffe, Gypsy Rose Lee, Burgess Meredith, Zero Mostel, Dorothy Parker, Edward G. Robinson, Pete Seeger, William L. Shirer, Louis Untermeyer, and Orson Welles, creating a de facto industry blacklist, using the for-profit corp. AWARE Inc. as a clearance service to check for Commie sympathies, and forcing The Weavers to disband in 1951. On Aug. 18, 1955 Seeger refused to take the Fifth Amendment in front of the House Un-Am. Activities Committtee (HUAC), and stood on the First Amendment, saying "I am not going to answer any questions as to my association, my philosophical or religious beliefs or my political beliefs, or how I voted in any election, or any of these private affairs. I think these are very improper questions for any American to be asked, especially under such compulsion as this." On July 26, 1957 the U.S. House of Reps voted 373-9 to cite Seeger, Arthur Miller, and five others with contempt of Congress for failing to cooperate with HUAC; the experience caused Seeger to begin writing (with Joe Hickerson) the 1961 hit song Where Have All the Flowers Gone?, starting with a passage from the Mikhail Sholokhov novel "And Quiet Flows the Don". They convicted him in Mar. 1961 and sentenced him to 10 years, but he got his conviction overtured in May 1962, going on to write or co-write (with Lee Hays) hit songs "If I Had a Hammer", and "Turn, Turn, Turn!" Meanwhile in 1960 he was barred by the school board of San Diego, Calif. from performing at a high school unless he signed an oath that he won't promote a Communist agenda or attempt to overthrow the govt., and after he refused, the ACLU obtained an injunction forcing the concert to be held; they finally apologized in Feb. 2009 after he finally officially quit the CPUSA, with the soundbyte "I should have asked to see the gulags when I was in the U.S.S.R. [in 1965]", and wrote Big Joe Blues condemning Stalin, also uttering the soundbyte "I certainly should apologize for saying that Stalin was a hard driver rather than a very cruel leader." Meanwhile he uttered the soundbytes "Some may find [my songs] merely diverting melodies. Others may find them incitements to Red revolution. And who will say if either or both is wrong? Not I", and "I like to say I'm more conservative than Goldwater. He just wanted to turn the clock back to when there was no income tax. I want to turn the clock back to when people lived in small villages and took care of each other", and "I still call myself a Communist, because Communism is no more what Russia made of it than Christianity is what the churches make of it." When will we ever learn, when will we ever learn? Go figure, in 1962 German film star Marlene Dietrich (1901-92) recorded Seeger's hit Where Have All the Flowers Gone?, which became a big hit in Germany in English and German as "Sag Mir, Wo die Blumen Sind"; she went on perform it in Israel, breaking the taboo of using German publicly there - quit stealing my style, bitch? In 1963 Seeger et al. organized a concert at Carnegie Hall in New York City featuring the Freedom Singers to benefit the Highlander Folk School in Tenn., bringing the anthem We Shall Overcome (written by Highlander student Zilphia Horton in 1947) to public attention. In 1963 he also released the hit single Little Boxes, written by Malvina Reynolds (1900-78). On Mar. 8, 1965 the U.S. Supreme Court in U.S. v. Seeger (named for Daniel Andrew Seeger, not singer Peter Seeger, although it should be?) unanimously expanded the definition of conscientious objector to people who are not members of any religious denomination, such as agnostics and atheists, the test being a "sincere and meaningful belief which occupies in the life of its possessor a place parallel to that filled by the God of those who had been granted the exemption from the military draft." In 1966 Seeger founded Hudson River Sloop Clearwater to fight pollution in the Hudson River, and in 1969 launched the sloop Clearwater, with crew incl. singer Don McLean; the Hudson River Shad catch fell to 50 tons in 1966, most of it tainted, causing the Dept. of Interior Bureau of Commercial Fisheries to stop keeping records of it; meanwhile the U.S. becomes the last major nation to abandon the 3-mi. limit for fishing, extending it to 12 mi.; in 1976 they upped it to 200 mi. Also in 1966 Seeger released the album Dangerous Songs!?, which features the track Beans in My Ears (by Len Chandler), containing the lyric "Mrs. Jay's son Alby has beans in his ears", which the anti-war crowd took to mean LBJ. In 1967 Seeger and Hector Angulo (1932-) released the single Guantanamera, with lyrics taken from an 1895 poem by Cuban revolutionary Jose Marti (1853-95). In 1967 Seeger released the single Waist Deep in the Big Muddy, with the lyrics "Every time I read the paper, those old feelings come on/ We are waist deep in the Big Muddy/ and the big fool says to push on." Too bad, the song was cut from the Sept. 1967 "Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour", then reinstated in Jan. 1968, probably helping the network decide to cancel the show.
In 1950 Chess Records was founded in Chicago, Ill. by Polish-born Jewish brothers Leonard Chess (Lejzor Czyz) (1917-69) and Phil Chess (Fiszel Czyz) (1921-), going on to sign R&B artists Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley, Etta James, Jackie Brenston and His Delta Cats, The Flamingos, The Moonglows, Aretha Franklin, Chuck Berry et al.; in 1952 they founded Checker Records for radio play; in Dec. 1955 they founded Argo Records, which changed its name in 1965 to Cadet Records. In 1950 Elektra Records was founded by nobodies Jac Holzman and Paul Rickolt for a joint investment of $600, going on to concentrate on folk music and protest singers, not selling very much until they decided to go into psychedelic rock in 1966, signing The Doors, Love, The Stooges, and MC5, how elektrifying. In 1950 the first 45 rpm jukeboxes (replacing 78 rpm models) were introduced by Seeburg Corp. (known as the Trashcan) and Ristaucrat Inc. of Appleton, Wisc.; in 1951 Victor and Columbia agreed to split the record market, with Victor selling LPs and Columbia selling 45 rpm records. In 1953 Epic Records was founded by CBS for jazz and pop, expanding to all genres by 1960, later signing the Dave Clark Five, The Hollies, Donovan, The Yardbirds, Jeff Beck et al., followed in the 1970s by Boston, ABBA, Cheap Trick, The Clash, REO Speedwagon et al. In 1953 Vee-Jay Records was founded in Gary, Ind. by Vivian Carter (1921-89) and James C. Bracken (1909-72) to concentrate on black music, signing John Lee Hooker, The Pips, The Dells et al., and later signing their first white act The Four Seasons, and acquiring the rights to some early Beatles records, can I ask you something, where did you get those shoes. In 1956 Verve Records was founded by Norman Granz (1918-2001) as a merger of Clef Records (founded 1946) and Norgram Records (founded 1953) to distribute jazz records; MGM purchased it in 1961 for $3M, and created Verve Folkways for folk music in 1964, and later signed some rock acts incl. the Righteous Brothers, Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention, The Velvet Underground, and The Blues Project. In 1957 Stax Records (originally Satellite Records) was founded in Memphis, Tenn. by white businesspeople Jim Stewart and his sister Estelle Axton, launching the Memphis soul sound, incl. Booker T and the M.G.'s, The Veltones, and Otis Redding, Johnnie Taylor, Isaac Hayes, the Staple Singers, and Wilson Pickett. In 1959 Island Records was founded in Jamaica by Christopher Percy Gordon "Chris" Blackwell (1937-), and named after the 1955 Alec Waugh novel; it moved to the U.K. in May 1962, and sold out to PolyGram in 1989, becoming the largest indie record label, turning the world on to reggae music. Also in 1959 the FBI learned that MCA represented 75% of the top entertainment talent (TV, movies, radio), most of whom were obtained through "predatory practices"; during his 60 years ruling MCA, its head Lew Wasserman was investigated by the feds 10 times. In 1962 MCA formed MCA Records and purchased Decca Records, Coral Records, and Brunswick Records, followed in 1967 by Kapp Records; Universal Pictures came along with the Decca deal, and in 1966 MCA formed Uni (Universal City) Records.
In Mar. 1951 Jackie Brenston (1930-79) and his Delta Cats recorded Rocket 88, which was produced by Ike Wister Turner (1931-2007) and later billed as the first rock & roll record. On Mar. 27, 1952 the financial success helped studio owner Samuel Cornelius "Sam" Phillips (1923-2003) of 706 Union St. in Memphis, Tenn. to found Sun Records, with the soundbyte "If I could find a white man who sings with the Negro feel, I'll make a million dollars", going on to discover Howlin' Wolf, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash et al.
In 1951 6'6" 300 lb. Chicago electric blues musician Chester Arthur "Howlin' Wolf" Burnett (1910-76) released the singles How Many More Years (#4 in the U.S.), and Moanin' at Midnight (#10), followed in 1956 by Smoke Stack Lightning (#8), and I Asked for Water (She Gave Me Gasoline) (#8), followed in 1960 by Back Door Man, Spoonful, and Wang Dang Doodle. His Jan. 11, 1962 album Howlin' Wolf (Rocking Chair Album) (#58 in the U.S.) became a classic of blues.
In 1951 deaf bi (closet gay) alcoholic singer-songwriter-pianist John Alvin "Johnnie" Ray (1924-90) released the single Whiskey and Gin, followed by the double hit single Cry and The Little White Cloud That Cried, which sold 2M copies and made him a teen idol; his perf. features beating up his piano, writhing on the floor, and crying, causing him to become known as "Mr. Emotion", "the Nabob of Sob", and "the Prince of Wails". Too bad, he had to cover up by marrying Marilyn Morrison in 1952-4 while hooking up with his mgr. Bill Franklin. In 1952 he released the duet Candy Lips with Doris Day (1924-). In 1956 he released Just Walkin' in the Rain (#1 in the U.K.), followed in 1957 by You Don't Owe Me A Thing (#10 in the U.S.). During the 1960-70s his career went kaput, but he survived via a mention in the 1982 Dexys Midnight Runners hit "Come On Eileen" ("Poor old Johnnie Ray sounded sad upon the radio/ He moved a million hearts in mono"), followed in 1989 by the Billy Joel single "We Didn't Start the Fire", where he was mentioned between Red China and South Pacific. He died of cirrhosis of the liver.
In Apr. 1952 Lloyd "Mr. Personality" Price (1933-) released his million-selling debut single Lawdy Miss Clawdy, which was the #4 record of the year, and the first rock and roll hit from New Orleans, crossing over to the white market. Unfortunately, the U.S. was still segregated, and black performers could usually only sell to black audiences, giving white performers who weren't afraid of the stigma of being called "nigger lover" the golden opportunity to cover their songs and reap giant financial rewards.
Case in point. In 1952 R&B singer Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton (1926-84) released Hound Dog, which sold 2M copies. It was written by songwriting team Jerome "Jerry" Leiber (1933-2011) and Michael "Mike" Stoller (1933-), who went on to write hits for Elvis Presley incl. "Jailhouse Rock", then turned around and cranked out hits for black rockers using white teen vernacular, incl. "Young Blood", "There Goes My Baby", and "Yakety Yak". On Mar. 21, 1952 the rock and roll frenzy began when a riot broke out at the Moondog Coronation Ball, promoted by former Cleveland, Ohio disc jockey Alan "Moondog" Freed (1921-65) of New York radio station WINS 1010. On Jan. 14-15, 1954 the Rock 'n' Roll Jubilee at the St. Nicholas Arena in New York City was promoted by Freed, who tried unsuccessfully to copyright the term rock and roll, if he was Bill Gates he might have done it and been a zillionaire. On Oct. 7, 1952 Bob Horn's Bandstand debuted on WFIL-TV in Philadelphia, Penn., with host Bob (Donald Loyd) Horn (1916-); after he was fired for drunk driving on July 9, 1956, on Aug. 5, 1957 (Mon.) American Bandstand, hosted by ever-youthful Richard Wagstaff "Dick" Clark (1929-2012) debuted on ABC-TV (until 1989), becoming famous for the soundbyte "It's got a good beat and you can dance to it."
Also in 1952 Memphis, Tenn.-born Rosco Gordon (1928-2002) released the hit R&B singles Booted, and No More Doggin', which invented the "ska" beat.
Also in 1952 the Recording Industry Assoc. of America (RIAA) was founded to administer technical standards for recordings and manage collective rights and protect copyrights. Too bad, as the digital age made piracy too easy, they sometimes stunk themselves up by stomping little guys.
Another case in point. In 1953 Albany, Ga.-born Ray Charles (Robinson) (1930-2004) (blind at age 7) released his first R&B hit single Mess Around on Atlantic Records, followed by It Should've Been Me (1954), I Got a Woman (1955), Come Back Baby (1955), This Little Girl of Mine (1955), A Fool for You (1955), Drown in My Own Tears (1956), and What'd I Say (1959) (#6 in the U.S.). The Nov. 1959 album The Genius of Ray Charles announced his breakout from R&B to the pop-rock stage, landing him a deal with ABC-Paramount, where he became the first to own his own masters. He then scored with the hits Georgia on My Mind (1960) (#1 in the U.S.), Hit the Road Jack (1960) (#1 in the U.S.), I Can't Stop Loving You (1962) (#1 in the U.S.), and Crying Time (1966) (#6 in the U.S.). The 2004 biographical film Ray starred Jamie Foxx.
In 1953 the New York City-based R&B/doo-wop group The Drifters, fronted by Durham, N.C.-born Clyde Lensley McPhatter (1932-72), known for pioneering the injection of a gospel singing style into R&B released their first hit Money Honey (written by Jesse Stone AKA Charles E. Calhoun, who later wrote "Shake, Rattle & Roll"), followed by Honey Love (You'll Want Me to Want You) (1953) (#21 in the U.S.), There Goes My Baby (by Ben E. King) (1959) (#2 in the U.S.), Save the Last Dance for Me (1960) (#1 in the U.S.), Up On the Roof (1963) (#5 in the U.S.), On Broadway (by Kenny Young and Arthur Resnick) (1963) (#9 in the U.S.), and Under the Boardwalk (1964) (#4 in the U.S.). Meanwhile in 1955 McPhatter went solo, releasing Love Has Joined Us Together (w/Ruth Brown), followed by Treasure of Love (1956) (#16 in the U.S.), A Lover's Question (1958) (#6 in the U.S.), and Lover Please (1962) (#7 in the U.S.). His singing style was emulated by Ben E. King, Smokey Robinson et al.
Around 1953 the Greaser subculture began in the NE and S U.S., with the hoods loving the greased-back hairstyle, leather jackets, motorcycle boots, blue jeans, etc., and going for hot rods, motorcycles, and rockabilly; about the same time the Teddy Boy subculture began in London, spreading across the U.K., becoming known for their love of U.S. rock & roll, their quiff haircuts, and their Edwardian-style clothes from Savile Row (tapered trousers, long jackets, fancy waistcoats); too bad, they turned into teen gangs with a white racist streak, culminating with the 1958 Notting Hill Race Riots against West Indian immigrants.
In 1953 City Lights Bookshop (named after the 1931 Charlie Chaplin film City Lights) at 261 Columbus Ave. in San Francisco, Calif. was founded by unwholesome-but-not-exiled bearded New York-born poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti (1919-) and Peter D. Martin as the first all-paperback bookstore in the U.S., and it became home to the growing anti-materialist nonviolent anti-establishment Beatnik Movement (AKA the Beat Generation) (they had grappled with affluence and lost, and were consequently beat?), which began in Los Angeles' Venice West. Males likeed beards, khaki trousers, and sandals; females liked tousled hair, black leotards, and thick "raccoon" makeup around their eyes. Jean-Louis "Jack" Kerouac (1922-69), (Irwin) Allen Ginsberg (1926-97), and William Seward Burroughs II (1914-97) became the Beat Trinity, producing benzedrine-fueled speed-rap "bop kaballa". Times Square bi con artist and junkie Herbert Huncke (1915-96), AKA "the Mayor of 42nd St." gave the Beats their name. Speaking of Beatniks, in 1950 the Hungry I (hungry i) nightclub at 546 Broadway in North Beach, San Francisco, Calif. opened, becoming the launching pad for many acts incl. Bill Cosby, Ronnie Schell, The Kingston Trio, Glenn Yarbrough, Prof. Irwin Corey, Godfrey Cambridge, Mort Sahl, We Five, The Mamas and the Papas, Laura Nyro, and Barbra Streisand.
In Feb. 1954 the first commercial stereophonic recordings were made by RCA of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Charles Munch, which performed "The Damnation of Faust" by Hector Berlioz. In Apr. 1954 Kansas City, Mo.-born "Boss of the Blues" Joseph Vernon "Big Joe" Turner Jr. (1911-85) released Shake, Rattle and Roll, written by Jesse Stone under the alias Charles E. Calhoun; since he wasn't white, it peaked at #22 on the Billboard chart. It features the lyrics "Get outa that bed, wash yo' face an' hands", and "Wearin' those dresses, the Sun comes shinin' through! I can' t believe my eyes, all that mess belongs to you." Later in 1954 white rockers William John Clifton "Bill" Haley (1925-81) and the Comets released their cover of Shake, Rattle and Roll, with toned-down lyrics, their first gold record, which went #1 in the U.S. and became the first major internat. rock and roll hit (first to chart in Britain in Dec. 1954), selling 1M copies. Their previously unsuccessful record Rock Around the Clock (released on Apr. 14, 1954 by Decca) then took off after appearing in the 1955 film Blackboard Jungle starring square Glenn Ford, selling 25M copies and becoming a watershed event that earned Haley the title of Father of Rock and Roll after it became the first million-selling record in both Britain and Germany, and he became the first major American rock singer to tour Europe. Haley (with that lone curl on his forehead) got bigger in Europe than in the U.S. The term "teenybopper" was coined to refer to teenies who go for the rock and roll culture, and by the 1960s is extended to pop music. On Feb. 1, 1956 Haley released the hit See You Later, Alligator before getting eclipsed by Elvis the Pelvis.
On May 17, 1954 after hearing arguments by NAACP counsel Thurgood Marshall, the U.S. Supreme (Earl Warren) Court (which incl. three Southerners) ruled unanimously 9-0 in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka that "separate but equal" public schools are inherently unequal and therefore unconstitutional, citing the 14th Amendment to reverse the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson decision, and ending "the long habit of deception and evasion" (Ralph Ellison); assoc. justice Robert Jackson leaves the hospital (heart attack) to be present; chief justice Earl Warren (in office for 6 mo.) begins at 12:52 p.m. and meanders until 1:20 without indicating the decision made (no advance copies given to the press), then says, "To separate [black kids] from others of similar age and qualifications solely because of their race generates a feeling of inferiority as to their status in the community that may affect their hearts and minds in a way never to be done... We conclude that in the field of public education the doctrine of 'separate but equal' has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal."
Speaking of Elvis. Whenever there is a titanic struggle between good and evil, a hero will arise, Sir William Wallace, erin go bragh. On July 5, 1954 Tupelo, Miss.-born white former truck driver Elvis Aaron Presley (1935-77), who walked into the Memphis Recording Service at Sun Records on July 18, 1953 and paid $4 to cut his first record, consisting of My Happiness and That's When Your Heartaches Begin for his mother's birthday (although they didn't own a record player) held his first commercial recording session with Sun Records, then on July 7, 1954 made his radio debut on station WHBQ in Memphis with his debut single That's All Right (Mama) (first recorded in 1946 by Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup) after rogue DJ Dewey "Daddy-O" Phillips (1926-68) took the risk of playing a single that could be taken as black music or white music, causing a sensation, playing it 14 straight times while Elvis watched a movie to calm his nerves, then interviewing him to establish that he was white, becoming "the first salvos in an undeclared war on segregated radio stations." (Rolling Stone mag.) "What he actually did was take 'black' and 'white' music and transform them into this third thing." (Greg Drew) Knoxville, Tenn. record merchant Sam Morrison of Bell Sales Co. then played the record on loudspeakers to the public, selling hundreds of copies, incl. two to an RCA talent scout, which resulted in RCA buying Elvis' contract from Sun Records. "None of us would have made it without Elvis." (Buddy Holly) "Before Elvis there was nothing." (John Lennon) "I guess the first thing people want to know is why I can't stand still when I'm singing. Some people tap their feet, ome people snap their fingers, and some people just sway back and forth. I sort of do 'em all together, I guess. Singing rhythm and blues really knocks it out." (Elvis) In 1956 Elvis sold 10M singles and 800K LPs, question, if you were president would you be submissive to your husband. Between 1954-7 Sun Records also signed Johnny Cash, "The Killer" Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, Charlie Rich, and Conway Twitty (under his real name Harold Jenkins).
In Oct. 1954 Regency introduced the first consumer transistor radio, the TR-1, with 4 transistors and a 22.5 volt battery that lasts 20 hours, all for $49.95; the Japanese soon took over the market with far cheaper models.
In 1954 Sylvia Wright coins the word "mondegreen" in a Harper's Mag. article for the process of hearing song lyrics wrong, citing the folk ballad "The Bonny Earl of Murray": "They hae slain the Earl of Murray/ And laid him on the green" (And Lady Mondegreen).
Meanwhile African-Americans were busy turning R&B into rock and roll, share what you love with who you love. In 1954 Miss.-born Muddy Waters (McKinley Morganfield) (1913-83) released the singles Hoochie Coochie Man, I'm Ready, and I Just Want to Make Love to You (by Willie Dixon), "the most macho songs in his repertoire" (Robert Palmer), which turned the Rolling Stones onto him, causing them to name their group after his 1950 single Rollin' Stone. In 1954 the African-American doo-wop group The Penguins, from Los Angeles, Calif., incl. Cleveland Duncan (1935-), Curtis Williams (1934-79), Dexter Tisby (1935-), and Bruce Tate (1937-73) released their hit single Earth Angel (Will You Be Mine) (#8 in the U.S.), which was cashed, er, covered in 1955 by the white group The Crew Cuts, from Toronto, Ont., Canada, incl. John Perkins (1931-), Ray Perkins (1932-), Rudi Maugeri (1931-2004), and Pat Barrett (1933-), who released Earth Angel (Will You Be Mine) (#2 in the U.S.); in 1954 they had a #1 U.S. hit with Sh-Boom (Life Could Be A Dream), which was a cover of Sh-Boom (Life Could Be A Dream) (#2 in the U.S.) by the African-American doo-wop group The Chords from Bronx, N.Y., incl. Carl Feaster, Claude Feaster, Jimmy Keyes, Floyd "Buddy" McRae, and Ricky Edwards (bass), one of the first doo-wop or rock and roll records to reach the Bilboard top-10, introducing white audiences to black R&B; too bad, they sold the rights to it too quick, getting ripped-off. You guessed it, back then, for whites short hair was a statement of rebellion from the long-hairs of the white classical set.
Between 1955 and 1959 the U.S. music record market increased from $213M to $603M (600M records), and rock and roll's share increased from 15.7% to 42.7%; the market share of the four majors dropped from 78% to 44%, while the share of independent record cos. increased from 22% to 56%.
In 1955 the Harlem, N.Y. black rock and roll and doo-wop group The Cadillacs (formerly The Carnations) had a hit with Speedo, helping to attract white audiences. Also in 1955 the LA group The Platters, fronted by Tony Williams (1928-92) and Zola Taylor (1938-2007) released their first hit single Only You (And You Alone) (#8 in the U.S.), followed on Nov. 3, 1955 by The Great Pretender (#1 in the U.S.). Also in 1955 Macon, Georgia-born Little Richard (Richard Wayne Penniman) (1932-), who began performing on the road in 1945 made his first recordings, and began charting 17 original hits in less than three years, incl. Tutti-Frutti (1955) (#17 in the U.S.), Long Tall Sally (1956) (#6 in the U.S.), Slippin' and Slidin' (1956) (#33 in the U.S.), Lucille (1956) (#21 in the U.S.), Keep A-Knockin' (1957) (#8 in the U.S.), and Good Golly, Miss Molly (1958) (#10 in the U.S.). He once said "The blues had an illegitimate baby and we named it rock 'n' roll." Too bad, he suddenly quit rock and roll on Oct. 12, 1957 after becoming a born-again Christian.
Also on Nov. 20, 1955 African-American R&B star Bo Diddley (Elias McDaniel) (Ellas Otha Bates) (1928-2008) (named after the homemade Diddley Bow string instrument, and known for his rectangular Gretsch guitar called the Twang Machine) appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show, and pissed Sullivan off by switching from Tennessee Ernie Ford's hit Sixteen Tons (1955) to his own R&B #1 song Bo Diddley (1955), getting him banned from the show. That didn't stop him from releasing a string of good stuff, which never charted very high again, incl. You Can't Judge a Book by the Cover (1962) (#48), although Pres. Barack Obama later named his Portuguese Water Dog Bo after him.
Also in 1955 African-American singer ("Miss Peaches") ("the Matriarch of R&B") Etta James (Jamesetta Hawkins) (1938-2012), who was born in Los Angeles, Calif. to unmarried 14-y.-o. Dorothy Hawkins, and claims her father was famous white pool shark Rudolf Walter "Minnesota Fats" Wanderone (Wanderon) Jr. (1913-96) released her debut album Etta James, which features the tracks The Wallflower (Dance with Me, Henry), and Good Rockin' Daddy. Album #3 At Last! (1960) features the tracks At Last (#47 in the U.S.), Trust in Me (#30), All I Could Do Was Cry (#33), My Dearest Darling (#34), If I Can't Have You (w/Harvey Fuqua) (#52), and Spoonful (w/Harvey Fuqua) (#78).
Also in 1955 American film star James Byron Dean (1931-55) burst onto the scene with the film Rebel Without a Cause, which defined the angst-ridden teen rebel that loves rock and roll, they covered up that he was bi. On Sept. 30, 1955 young Dean died in a car crash, making him into a Messianic figure.
Also in 1955 St. Louis, Missouri-born Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry (1926-) released Maybellene, first of a string of pioneering rock and roll hits, followed by Roll Over Beethoven (1956), Rock and Roll Music (1957), and Johnny B. Goode (1958). His guitar showmanship (invention of the duckwalk et al.) and melding of R&B into rock became a seminal influence, as portrayed by Michael J. Fox in the movie "Back to the Future".
Heroes will arise, along with blatant profit-takers, it's Godly Capitalism. In 1955 pure white Christian old-fashioned-everything square singer Charles Eugene "Pat" Boone (1934-) (an alleged direct descendant of Daniel Boone) had a #1 hit with a cover of Fats Domino's Ain't That A Shame, launching his career of covering black R&B hits for white audiences, incl. I'll Be Home (1956) (#6), Long Tall Sally (1956) (#8), I Almost Lost My Mind (1956) (#1), Friendly Persuasion (1956) (#5), Don't Forbid Me (1957) (#1), Love Letters in the Sand (1957) (#1), April Love (1957) (#1), A Wonderful Time Up There (1958) (#4), and Sugar Moon (1958) (#5). During this time he set a record of 220 consecutive weeks on the charts with more than one song, becoming the #2 best-selling artist of the 1950s behind Elvis Presley. He then began a slide, scraping bottom in 1959 with The Wang Dang Taffy-Apple Tango (#62 in the U.S.), but hit #1 again in May 1961 with Moody River ("Moody River your bloody water took my baby's life"), and #6 in 1962 with Speedy Gonzales, after which he dropped off the charts in the wake of the Beatles Invasion, selling a total of 45M square albums, incl. 38 square top-40 hits, and a square 12-movie Hollywood career, be sure and drink your milk.
Did I mention I'll Be Home? Also in 1955 the Chicago, Ill. black doowop group The Flamingos (formed in 1953), originally The Swallows, El Flamingos, and The Five Flamingos, incl. Jacob "Jake" Carey, Ezekial "Zeke" Carey, Paul Wilson, John E. "Johnny" Carter, Sollie McElroy, Tommy Hunt, and Terry "Buzzy" Johnson released their first hit I'll Be Home, which went #5 on Billboard's R&B chart, only to see Pat Boone's 1956 version I'll Be Home reach #6 on the Billboard-200 chart and #1 in the U.K. In 1956 The Flamingos appeared in Will Price's B&W film Rock, Rock, Rock, which stars 13-y.-o. Tuesday Weld as Dori Graham (singing dubbed by Connie Francis), who has to get the money to buy a strapless gown for the prom, and showcases rock acts incl. them, Chuck Berry, LaVern Baker, Teddy Randazzo, The Moonglows, and Frankie Lymon and The Teenagers; DJ Alan Freed appears as himself. In 1959 The Flamingos released their big hit I Only Have Eyes for You (#1 in the U.S.), a cover of a 1934 movie song. They followed it with R&B hits Mio Amore (1959) (#74 in the U.S.), I Was Such A Fool (1959), Your Other Love (by Doc Pomus) (1960) (#54 in the U.S.), and Nobody Loves Me Like You Do (by Sam Cooke) (1960) (#30 in the U.S.). In 1998 PepsiCo. used "I Only Have Eyes for You" in an ad without paying them, and they sued successfully for $250K.
In 1955 after walking into Sun Records a year earlier and being told that his gospel songs were unmarketable, white baritone singer John R. "Johnny" Cash (1932-2003) (later known as "the Man in Black") released his first Sun recordings Hey Porter, and Cry! Cry! Cry! Cash is known for the immortal soundbyte: "I love songs about horses, railroads, land, judgment day, family, hard times, whiskey, courtship, marriage, adultery, separation, murder, war, prison, rambling, damnation, home, salvation, death, pride, humor, piety, rebellion, patriotism, larceny, determination, tragedy, rowdiness, heartbreak and love. And mother. And God." In Jan. 1956 Rockabilly (hillbilly rock) (a term clung to by whites to differentiate themselves from blacks) was launched with the release of three new versions of old songs by white rockers Elvis Presley ("Heartbreak Hotel"), Johnny Cash ("Folsom Prison Blues"), and Carl Perkins ("Blue Suede Shoes"), starting on Dec. 15, 1955 with Folsom Prison Blues (#32 in the U.S.), by Johnny Cash, followed on Jan. 1, 1956 by Blue Suede Shoes (#2 in the U.S.) by Carl Lee Perkins (1932-98), followed on Jan. 27, 1956 by Heartbreak Hotel by Elvis Aaron Presley (1935-77) on RCA Victor, becoming his first #1 and first milliion-seller, the best-selling single of 1958. On Mar. 23, 1956 after his records began to sell, and his new agent (since Aug. 18, 1955), super-smart Cuban cigar-chomping Dutch-born (pretends to be U.S.-born) impresario Col. Tom Parker (Andreas Cornelis van Kuijk) (1909-97) bought his contract from Sun Records for $35K, and signed him with Stephen H. Sholes (1911-68) of RCA Records, Elvis released his debut studio album Elvis Presley, which contained his cover of Blue Suede Shoes, which he recorded as a favor to his friend Carl Perkins, who got into an automobile accident on Mar. 22, causing sales of his version to rise again, while Elvis' stalled at #20 on the US. charts (the Billboard Hot 100 chart wasn't started until Aug. 4, 1958, the first #1 being Ricky Nelson's "Poor Little Fool"). On May 12, 1956 Elvis released I Want You, I Need You, I Love You, which made it to #3. On July 13, 1956 Elvis released his version of Big Mama Thornton's Hound Dog, which he performed on June 5 on The Milton Berle Show (his 2nd appearance), doing his N-word-like sexual hip gyrations, which were seen by 40M, pissing off the conservatives, who began a campaign to ban him before he corrupted and dragged their white women down to the level of the N-word men with "nigger music", imagine them white mens' nightmares about black men with giant penii seducing them with hot jungle music, thump thump. He then sang it again on July 1 on The Steve Allen Show in a tuxedo while serenading a Basset Hound wearing a top hat, after which Allen (who hated rock and roll) presented him with a large roll of toilet paper with "signatures of eight thousand fans". He performed it again on Sept. 9 on The Ed Sullivan Show, hosted by Charles Laughton and seen by 60M viewers, then did it again on Oct. 28. The song sold 4M copies, spending 11 weeks at #1. It was the B-side of the single Don't Be Cruel, and both sides topped the charts independently, with Hound Dog topping not only the pop charts, but the country and R&B charts, becoming the first record in history to do it. On Oct. 6, 1956 Elvis released Love Me Tender, based on the 1861 U.S. Civil War song "Aura Lee", which went to #1. On Mar. 22, 1957 he released All Shook Up, which went to #1 in the U.S., and became his first #1 hit in the U.K., after which he went on to rack up 20 #1 hits on the British charts, compared to 17 by the Beatles. On Sept. 24, 1957 he released another #1 hit, Jailhouse Rock. Elvis "the Pelvis" Presley then toured the American South and West, wearing drape suits, mascara, and tight pants, dying his blonde hair jet black and slicking it down with pomade, and bucking his hips against his guitar, wowing girl teens in pedal pushers who carve his name on their forearms with pen knives, as well as older women (who are more direct). When asked in Amarillo, Tex. if he wanted to get married, he replied, "Why buy a cow when you can get the milk through the fence?" Col. Tom Parker squeezed huge percentages out of Elvis' earnings, reaching 50% by the end of Elvis' life (even though without him he might never have reached superstar status, so don't knock it?) By the time he croaked in his bathroom on Aug. 16, 1977, a bloated drug-addicted sexual athlete, his career scored 18 U.S. #1 hits, compared to 20 for the Beatles. End of story - the King Is Dead, Long Live the King, what's the latest Elvis sighting?
On May 1, 1956 Johnny Cash and his Tennessee Two released their first #1 U.S. hit I Walk the Line, which sold 2M copies. On Dec. 4, 1956 (Tue.) the Million Dollar Quartet, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins had a jam session at Sun Records, incl. half gospel songs, becoming the first supergroup, a group composed of members of other groups. On Apr. 19, 1963 Johnny Cash released another #1 U.S. hit (for 7 weeks) Ring of Fire, written by June Carter and Merle Kilgore; "I fell into a burning ring of fire./ I went down down down, and the flames went higher./ And it burns burns burns, the ring of fire, the ring of fire." On Jan. 13, 1968 Johnny Cash gave his famous Folsom Prison Concert, and in May 1968 released the album At Folsom Prison (#13 in the U.S.), which features him performing his 1955 hit Folsom Prison Blues. On Feb. 22, 1968 after a spiritual epiphany in Nickajack Cave N of Chattanooga in Tenn. caused him to give up his amphetamine-barbituate addictions, he proposed onstage at London Gardens in London, Ont. to twice-married fellow country singer June Valerie Carter (1929-2003), and married her on Mar. 1, 1968 in Franklin, Ky., after which he became a regular at the Christian Evangel Temple in Nashville, while she became the love of his life. In Aug. 1967 they released the album Carryin' On, which features Jackson ("We got married in a fever, hotter than a pepper sprout"). On June 4, 1969 he released the album At San Quentin, which features A Boy Named Sue (#2 in the U.S.), written by Playboy cartoonist Sheldon Allan "Shel" Silverstein (1930-99). On June 7, 1969 The Johnny Cash Show debuted on ABC-TV for 58 episodes (until 1971), going on to feed his outlaw image by refusing to cut the word "stoned" from Kris Kristofferson's "Sunday Morning Coming Down", hosting Vietnam protester Peter Seeger, and flaunting his Christian faith; meanwhile on June 8 the last Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour aired after CBS-TV cancelled it, as we'll cover later.
In 1956 blacks in Jamaica developed Ska music. The same year Elektra pioneered the compilation record, containing multiple artists. Also in 1956 Okla.-born "Queen of Rockabilly" Wanda Lavonne Jackson (1937-) released album #2 Rockin' with Wanda, which features the tracks I Gotta Know, Hot Dog! That Made Him Mad, Fujiyama Mama, Honey Bop, Rock Your Baby, and Mean, Mean Man (#40 in the U.K.), all making her the first woman in rock and roll. Too bad, in 1965 she switched to country.
On Mar. 21, 1956 Fred F. Sears' Rock Around the Clock, starring Bill Haley and his Comets, a raucous celebration of rock and roll was released, causing a riot in London in Sept. after a young audience of over 3K Teddy Boys viewed it and went on a rampage. That didn't stop greed machine Hollywood from releasing five more rock and roll movies this year, incl. Fred F. Sears' Don't Knock the Rock (featuring Bill Haley and the Comets singing "Calling All Comets" and "Rip It Up"), and Robert D. Webb's Love Me Tender (Nov. 15) (movie debut of Elvis Presley). Meanwhile Tommy Steele (1936-) tried to become the English Elvis, but the British rock and roll invasion wasn't for this decade, sorry.
On June 4, 1956 Gene Vincent (Vincent Eugene Craddock) (1935-71) and His Blue Caps released the rockabilly hit Be-Bop-A-Lula (#7 in the U.S.), which sold 2M copies. The same year they also released minor hits Race with the Devil (Sept. 10), and Blue Jean Bop (Oct.). They released a string of other minor hits through 1960.
In 1956 African-American singer-songwriter Franklin Joseph "Frankie" Lymon (1946-28) and The Teenagers released the #1 R&B hit Why Do Fools Fall in Love (#6 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.)., after which the white Canadian group The Diamonds, incl. "Diamond" Dave Somerville (1933-) (lead), Ted Kowalski (tenor), Phil Levitt (baritone), and Bill Reed (bass) released a cover Why Do Fools Fall in Love (their debut single) that reached #12 in the U.S., which they followed with a cover of "The Church Bells May Ring" by The Willows, which reached #14 in the U.S., causing them to make a career out of covering black groups for white audiences, incl. The Clovers, The Heartbeats, who in 1960 released A Thousand Miles Away, and The Gladiolas, who in 1956 released the #11 R&B hit Little Darlin', which the Diamonds made a white mint on with their Feb. 8, 1957 cover Little Darlin' (#2 in the U.S.). In 1958 The Diamonds released their non-cover hit single The Stroll (by Clyde Otis and Nancy Lee) (#4 in the U.S.), which started a dance craze.
In 1956 Cleveland, Ohio-born African-Am. singer Jalacy "Screamin' Jay" Hawkins (1929-2000) released his single I Put a Spell on You, pioneering shock rock, playing the African voodoo witch doctor image up, complete with a big bone in his nose and a smoking skull; he allegedly left 75 illegitimate children.
Meanwhile in 1956 Little Richard's friend James Joseph Brown (1933-2006), AKA The Godfather of Soul and The Hardest-Working Man in Show Business released his first million-selling hit single Please, Please, Please with his group The Flames. When Little Richard left the music biz in Oct. 1957 to become a preacher, Brown filled out his tour dates, and several of Richard's band members joined his group, which changed its name to The Famous Flames (Bobby Byrd, Bobby Bennett, Lloyd Stallworth), after which in Feb. 1959 they released the hit Try Me, becoming the first of 17 #1 R&B singles over the next two decades, incl. Think (1960), Night Train (1962), and Lost Someone. On Oct. 24, 1962 James Brown and the Famous Flames recorded a live album Live at the Apollo (released in May 1963) (#2 in the U.S.), finally giving him national popularity. In 1963 he released Prisoner of Love, his first top-20 U.S. hit. In June 1965 he released Papa's Got a Brand New Bag (#8 in the U.S.), followed in Oct. 1965 by I Got You (I Feel Good (#3 in the U.S.). In July 1967 he released the 7-min. track Cold Sweat (#7 in the U.S.), the first true funk song, followed in Apr. 1968 by I Got the Feelin' (#6 in the U.K.), followed in June 1969 by Mother Popcorn (You Got to Have a Mother for Me) (#11 in the U.S.). After the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-68) on Apr. 4, 1968, Brown made public statements in Boston that helped calm blacks, who were rioting nationwide, and released Say It Loud - I'm Black and I'm Proud, which changed America's racial vocabulary. He went on to release 99 top-100 U.S. hits, #2 after Elvis Presley.
In 1956 the R&B crossover group The Dells, from Harvey, Ill., incl. Johnny Carter (-2009) (lead falsetto), Johnny Funches (baritone), Mickey McGill, Verne Allison, and Chuck Barksdale released their 1-hit wonder debut single Oh What A Night, which sold 1M copies; in 1969 they remade it with baritone Marvin Junior as lead vocalist, selling 1M copies again.
In 1956 Philly-born Charlie Gracie (Charles Anthony Graci) (1936-) (born on the same day as Bobby Darin) released his 1-hit wonder Butterfly (#5 in the U.S.), which sold 2M copies, becoming the first rock hit from Philly. He followed it with Fabulous (1956) (#16), and Wandering Eyes (#71). This bankrolled the new Cameo Records label (the first one was based in Manhattan, N.Y. from 1922-30 and produced low-cost jazz dance records), which later scored hits with Bobby Rydell, Chubby Checker, and ? and the Mysterians before folding in 1967. In 1957-8 Gracie toured the U.K., gaining new fans incl. The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Graham Nash, Van Morrison, and Joe Cocker.
On Sept. 25, 1957 after a great fight with Ark. gov. (1955-67) Orval Eugene Faubus (1910-94), while 300 U.S. Army troops ordered in by Pres. Eisenhower stood guard, nine black children called the Little Rock Nine were escorted to Central High School in Little Rock, Ark. amid white racist crowds, breaking the back of the white supremacist establishment.
In 1957 "The Killer" Jerry Lee Lewis (1935-) released Great Balls of Fire and Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On, making him an international star. Too bad, in May 1958 while on tour in Britain it leaked out that his wife Myra Gale Brown (1944-) was not only his first cousin once removed, but was only 13, causing him to be blacklisted in the U.S., ruining his career, to the relief of Christian conservatives like Johnny Cash, who believed his sexual inuendoes and onstage machinations were leading his fans straight to Hell, it's on the left, on the left, no, on the right.
Also in 1957 after seeing Elvis Presley perform, Dallas, Tex.-based country singer Arnold Joseph "Groovey Joe" Poovey (1941-98) released his first rockabilly single Move Around, followed in 1958 by Ten Long Fingers, before switching back to country music under the name Johnny Dallas.
By the way, from day one conservative religious thinkers have warned that rock music is definitely Satanic, never mind, put your hands up. Here's a soundbyte from an ancient deep thinker who could be adduced by either side, a student of Plato and the teacher of Alexander the Great, world class all the way: "Some [music] makes men sad and grave, like the so-called Mixolydian, others enfeeble the mind, like the relaxed modes, another, again, produces a moderate and settled temper, which appears to be the peculiar effect of the Dorian; the Phrygian inspires enthusiasm... The same principles apply to rhythms; some have a character of rest, others of motion, and of these latter again, some have a more vulgar, others a nobler movement... Music has a power of forming the character, and should therefore be introduced into the education of the young." - Aristotle (-384 to -322), Politics, Book 8.
Duh, message received. In 1957 the wholesome The Four Coins, from Cannonsburg, Penn., formerly The Four Keys, incl. George Mahramas (lead singer), George Mentalis (tenor), Jack Mahramas (baritone), and Jim Gregorakis (bass) released their wholesome big hit Shangri-La (#11 in the U.S.), which became the most-played record of 1957. Also in 1957 the wholesome Everly Brothers (Don, born 1937, and Phil, born 1939) released Wake Up Little Suzie (#1 in the U.S.), written by husband-wife team Boudleaux Bryant (1920-87) and Felice Bryant (1925-2003), who also wrote their hits Bye Bye Love (1957) (#2 in the U.S.) and All I Have to Do is Dream (1958) (#1 in the U.S.) before going country with "Rocky Top". In 1958 they released Bird "Dog (#3 in the U.S.), followed in 1959 by Cathy's Clown (#1 in the U.S.) before fading from the charts. In 1957 another wholesome white star appeared, Eric Hilliard "Ricky" Nelson (1940-85), one of the stars of the ABC-TV sitcom The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (Oct. 3, 1952 to Sept. 3, 1966), who bore a striking resemblance to Clark Kent AKA Superman. In 1957 he released the #1 album Ricky, followed in 1958 with the #1 single Poor Little Fool. In 1961 he released the hits Travelin' Man, and Hello Mary Lou, the latter written by Conn.-born Gene Francis Alan Pitney (1940-2006), who went on to compose the 1960s hits "Rubber Ball" by Bobby Vee, "He's A Rebel" by the Crystals, and sing "I Shot Liberty Valance" for the 1962 John Wayne flick. In 1972 after falling off the charts and getting pissed off at a Madison Square Garden audience for booing him even though he was doing new material, Ricky returned for one last hit with Garden Party. He died in an airplane crash on Dec. 31, 1985 after growing into a mutiple drug addict and superman sexual athlete who admitted to doing it with thousands of women. Back to Pitney. After releasing (The Man Who Shot) Liberty Valance (#3 in the U.S.) in Apr. 1962, he followed it in Aug. 1962 with Only Love Can Break a Heart (#4 in the U.S.). In July 1964 he released the hit It Hurts to Be In Love (#6 in the U.S., #36 in the U.K.), followed in Oct. 1964 with I'm Gonna Be Strong (#5 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), finally succombing to the Beatles Invasion.
Talk about good timing. On Mar. 17, 1957 a year after his #1 hit Heartbreak Hotel, after his East Memphis, Tenn. house at 1034 Audubon Dr. was haunted by fans, Elvis Presley bought a 23-room 14-acre estate in South Memphis (3734 Elvis Presley Blvd.) (4 mi. from the Miss. border) (built 1940) for $100K, called Graceland after Grace Toof, daughter of Canadian-born Memphis Daily Appeal publisher S.C. Toof (1834-1910). On Dec. 20, 1957 he received a draft notice, and on Mar. 24, 1958 he was inducted into the U.S. Army in Memphis, Tenn., and was sent too the U.S. Army base in Bad Nauheim-Friedberg, Hesse, West Germany, spending 17 mo. (until 1960); in Dec. 2011 the Elvis Museum in Dusseldorf opened, becoming the biggest outside the U.S. On Jan. 14, 1960 Pvt. Elvis Presley was promoted to sgt., meeting 14-y.-o. Priscilla Beaulieu (pr. boy-YOO) (born Priscilla Ann Wagner) (1945-), going on to avoid looking like another Jerry Lee Lewis and waiting until May 1, 1967 to marry her in Las Vegas at the Aladdin Hotel; they divorced in 1973. Coincidentally or not, on June 12, 1967 ("Loving Day") in the case of Loving v. Virginia; the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously struck down the 1924 Va. Racial Integrity Act, along with all 16 state laws against "miscegenation" (interracial marriage), legalizing the 1958 marriage of Mildred Delores "Bean" Loving (nee Jeter) (1939-2008) (black) and Richard Perry Loving (1933-75) (white). Speaking of interracial marriage, on May 26, 1994 20 days after divorcing fellow Scientologist, white musician hubby (since Oct. 3, 1988) Daniel "Danny" Keough (1964-), Elvis's and Priscilla's daughter Lisa Marie Presley (1968-) marries black superstar singer Michael Jackson. In Jan. 1994 Jackson's lawyers settled a civil case for $20M involving alleged sexual molestation of 13-y.-o. white Jordan "Jordy" Chandler (1980-) at his Calif. Neverland estate, causing his Beverly Hills plastic surgeon dad Evan Chandler (1944-2009) to have his life ruined by rabid Jacko fans, committing suicide on Nov. 5, 2009. After standing by him during more accusations of male child molestations, she filed for divorce in Jan. 1996.
Speaking about interracial romance, on Aug. 27, 1957 Robert Rossen's Island in the Sun based on the 1955 Alec Waugh novel debuted, starring Harry Belafonte and Joan Fontaine as mixed-race lovers on a Caribbean island during British rule, who were rumored to be engaging in off-screen hanky-panky, you gotta work on that tan, bro. It features an interracial screen kiss, causing a ruckus in the U.S., and launched reggae music into the U.S. with Island Records.
In 1957 13-y.-0. 4'7" Atlanta, Ga.-born singer Brenda Lee (Brenda Mae Tarpley) (1944-) released single #4 Dynamite (#72 in the U.S.) (which gave her the title "Little Miss Dynamite"), followed by One Step at A Time (1957) (#43 in the U.S.), Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree (Nov. 1958) (#14 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.) (written by Johnny Marks - sold only 5K the first year, but eventually sold 5M copies), Sweet Nothin's (1959) (#4 in the U.S. and U.K.) (first top-10 hit), Let's Jump the Broomstick (1959) (#12 in the U.K.), I'm Sorry (1960) (#1 in the U.S., #12 in the U.K.) (the new "Nashville Sound", adopted by Ray Charles for "Georgia On My Mind"), I Want to Be Wanted (1960) (#1 in the U.S., #31 in the U.K.), All the Way (1961), Dum Dum (1961), Fool #1 (1961) (#3 in the U.S., #38 in the U.K.), Break It To Me Gently (1962) (#4 in the U.S., #46 in the U.K.), All Alone Am I (1962) (#3 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.), Losing You (1963) (#6 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.), The Grass Was Greener (1963) (#17 in the U.S.), As Usual (1963) (#12 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.), Jingle Bell Rock (1964), Too Many Rivers (1965) (#13 in the U.S., #22 in the U.K.), and Coming on Strong (1966) (#11 in the U.S.). Too bad, her voice changed, and her career tanked, maybe it was the British Invasion, maybe not.
In Apr. 1958 Dunn, N.C.-born rocker Fred Lincoln "Link" Wray (1929-2005) released his debut single Rumble (#16 in the U.S.), which displayed his invention of the power chord, making heavy rock possible. In Apr. 1958 the white-sounding LA R&B/rock and roll vocal group (first to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame) The Coasters, incl. Carl Gardner (1928-2011), Billy Guy (1936-2002), Will J. "Dub" Jones (1928-2000), and Cornelius E. "Cornell" Gunter (1936-90) released Yakety Yak (#1 in the U.S.), followed in 1959 by Charlie Brown (#2 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), Along Came Jones (#9 in the U.S.), and Poison Ivy (#7 in the U.S., #15 in the U.K.), forcing racist thinkers who wanted to turn "Negro" R&B into (separate) "Caucasian" rock and roll to get more and more befuddled, yakety yak, don't talk back. In June 1958 white cowboy actor (Pete Nolan in "Rawhide", Frank Miller in "High Noon") Shelby F. "Sheb" Wooley (1921-2003) released the #1 U.S. hit The Purple People Eater. In Aug. 1958 The Teddy Bears, consisting of Harvey Philip "Phil" Spector (1939-) (who wrote it for his late father), Marshall Leib, Harvey Goldstein, Annette Kleinbard (Carol Connors) (1940-), and Sander L. "Sandy" Nelson (1938-) (drums) released To Know Him is To Love Him (#1 in the U.S.). In 1959 Sandy Nelson released hit instrumentals Teen Beat (#4 in the U.S.), which sold 1M copies, followed by Let There Be Drums (1961) (#7), and Drums Are My Beat (1962) (#29). In Mar. 1960 after hearing "To Know Him Is To Love Him" in Germany and contacting her, Elvis Presley met Annette Kleibard when he returned to the U.S., and they hooked up for several years. In 1958 the New York City doo-wop group Little Anthony and the Imperials, fronted by falsetto-singing Jerome Anthony Gourdine released their first million-selling hit Tears on My Pillow (#4 in the U.S.), along with Two People in the World; in Aug. 1964 they released I'm On the Outside (Looking In) (#15 in the U.S.), followed in Oct. by Goin' Out of My Head (#6 in the U.S.); in Jan. 1965 they released Hurt So Bad (#10 in the U.S.). In 1958 The Champs from Santa Paula, Calif., fronted by Daniel "Danny" Flores (1929-2006) AKA Chuck Rio (vocals, sax) ("Godfather of Latino Rock") released the #1 U.S. hit Tequila, launching the rock and roll instrumental craze; it was produced by Challenge Records, owned by rich cowboy star Gene Autry. Also in 1958 the New York R&B doo-wop group The Crests, fronted by Italian-American Johnny Maestro (Mastrangelo) (1940-2010), along with two male blacks (J.T. Carter, Talmoudge Gough), one female black (Patricia Van Dross, elder sister of Luther Vandross), and a Puerto Rican (Harold Torres) released 16 Candles, which went #2 in the U.S. and sold 1M copies. Also in 1958 the 6-member Newark, N.J.-based African-American doo-wop group The Monotones released their 1-hit wonder The Book of Love (#5 in the U.S.). Also in 1958 Dion Francis DiMucci (1939-) and The Belmonts (Fred Milano, Carlo Mastroangelo) released I Wonder Why (#22 in the U.S.), followed by No One Knows (1958) (#19 in the U.S.), A Teenager in Love (1959) (#5 in the U.S.), Where or When (1960) (#3 in the U.S.), Runaround Sue (Sept. 12, 1961) (#1 in the U.S.), The Wanderer (Nov. 1961) (#2 in the U.S.), Lovers Who Wander (1962) (#3 in the U.S.), Little Diane (1962) (#8 in the U.S.), Love Came to Me (1962) (#10 in the U.S.), Ruby Baby (1962) (#2 in the U.S.), Donna the Prima Donna (1963) (#6 in the U.S.), and Drip Drop (1963) (#6 in the U.S.). Too bad, the Beatles Invasion killed his popularity, but he more than made up for it with his 1968 #4 hit Abraham, Martin and John, about Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., and JFK ("Can you tell me where he's gone/ He freed a lot of people, but it seems the good die young,/ I just looked around and he's gone") (talking about himself? :). Also in 1958 the white female singing quartet The Chordettes, from Sheboygan, Wisc., incl. Janet Ertel (1913-88), Carol Buschmann, Lynn Evans, and Jinny Osborn (Lockard) (nee Virginia Cole) (1928-2003), known for their big 1954 hit Mister Sandman (by Pat Ballard) (#1 in the U.S., #11 in the U.K.) released their hit quasi-rock single Lollipop (written by Julius Dixson and Beverly Ross) (#2 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.). Also in 1958 The Poni-Tails, from Cleveland, Ohio, incl. Toni Cistone, Karen Topinka, and Patti McCabe released their 1-hit wonder Born Too Late (#7 in the U.S.).
On June 2, 1958 the folk singing trio The Kingston Trio, based in Palo Alto, Calif., incl. Donald David "Dave" Guard (1934-91), Robert Castle "Bob" Shane (1934-), and Nicholas Wells "Nick" Reynolds (1933-2008), who was later replaced by John Stewart (1939-2008) released their debut album The Kingston Trio (#1 in the U.S.), which features the smash hit Tom Dooley (#1 in the U.S.) (3M copies), based on Confederate soldier Thomas C. "Tom" Dula (1845-68). In 1959, you guessed it, they released the single Wimoweh/ The Lion Sleeps Tonight. They went on to make both folk music and LPs popular.
Also in 1958 Philly-born teen idol Frankie Avalon (Francis Thomas Avallone) (1939-) released his debut single De De Dinah (#7 in the U.S.), holding his nose while recording it. He went on to chart 31 U.S. Billboard-200 singles, by late 1962, incl. Bobby Sox to Stockings (1959) (#8 in the U.S.), A Boy Without A Girl (1959) (#10 in the U.S.), Just Ask Your Heart (1959) (#7 in the U.S.), and his big hits Venus (1959) (#1 in the U.S., #16 in the U.K.), and Why (1959) (#1 in the U.S., #20 in the U.K.), call him a 1-year wonder. In 1960 as his singing career faded fast, he branched out into acting, starting with John Wayne's The Alamo (Oct. 24, 1960), about the 1836 white-is-right battle, starring Wayne as Col. Davy Crockett, Laurence Harvey as Col. William Travis, Richard Widmark as Jim Bowie, and Frankie Avalon as Smitty, who sings Ballad of the Alamo; the Mexican army has 7K extras; John Ford helped Wayne direct the finale; "The mission that become a fortress. The fortress that became a shrine." Irwin Allen's Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (July 12, 1961) stars Walter Pidgeon as Adm. Harriman Nelson, designer of the U.S. submarine Seaview, Robert Sterling as Capt. Lee Crane, and Joan Fontaine as pshrink Dr. Susan Hiller; Frankie Avalon appears and sings the theme song Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. William Asher's Beach Party (Aug. 7, 1962) (American-Internat.) stars teen pop idols Frankie Avalon (1939-) and Annette Funicello (1942-) as corny moral Catholic Italian-Am. (but you're not supposed to notice) heteros playing with fire on the beaches of S Calif., while square Robert Cummings, er, Cummings plays a scientist studying teenage mating habits; Beach Boy Brian Wilson appears as an extra; although the other girls wear bikinis, Funicello wears a modest 1-piece swimsuit, but later loosens up to a bikini reaching to her navel. The sequel William Asher's Muscle Beach Party (Mar. 25, 1964), starring Frankie, Annette, and foot-long muscleman "Rock Stevens" (Peter Lupus) features Dick Dale and The Del-Tones, and the last screen appearance of Peter Lorre, as well as the screen debut of "Little" Stevie Wonder. There were a total of seven Am. Internat. beach party movies, incl. "Bikini Beach" (1964), "Pajama Party" (1964), "Bikini Blanket Bingo" (1965), "How to Stuff a Wild Bikini" (1965), and "The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini (1966), finally becoming irrelevant when the real beachgoers got into heavy sex, drugs and rock & roll, along with VD, ODs and radicalism, while counting themselves lucky for not having been wasted in Vietnam.Also in 1958 after hooking up with Brill Bldg. songwriter (former classmate at Bronx H.S. of Science) Don Kirshner (1934-2011), Bronx, N.Y.-born teen idol Bobby Darin (Walden Robert Perciville Cassotto) (1936-73) (who was educated at Bronx High School of Science and Hunter College, and allegedly changed him name after seeing a Chinese restaurant sign saying "[MAN]DARIN DUCK") released his first hit single Splish Splash (#3 in the U.S., #18 in the U.K.), which features the sound of him taking a bath, and became the first 8-track recording on vinyl. He followed it with Dream Lover (1959) (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), Mack the Knife (1959) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), Beyond the Sea (1960) (#6 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.), Lazy River (1961) (#14 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby (1961) (#5 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.), Things (1962) (#3 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), and If I Were a Carpenter (1966) (#8 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.). Meanwhile in 1960 after romancing Connie Francis, whom her strict Italian daddy ran out of the house with a gun, breaking her heart, he married "Gidget" actress Sandra Dee (Alexandra Zuck) (1942-2005) after meeting her on the set of his first film, Robert Mulligan's Come September (released Aug. 9, 1961) starring Rock Hudson and Gina Lollobrigida, in which he sings Multiplication ("Multiplication, that's the game, and each generation plays the same") to closet gay Rock sucking Hudson?); after multiplying with son Dodd in 1961, they divorced in 1967. Kirshner went on to manage The Monkees and The Archies, and launch the careers of Neil Diamond, Carole King, and Kansas, becoming known as "the Man With the Golden Ear", hosting the hit syndicated TV show Don Kirshner's Rock Concert (Sept. 27, 1973-1981), starting with a live performance by The Rolling Stones; the show eschewed lip-synching and let them all perform live, and was cancelled as the MTV Era began.
Rock and roll started in the U.S., but it didn't take long to travel over The Pond. In 1958 Lucknow, India-born English singer Cliff Richard (Harry Rodger Webb) (1940-) and The Shadows released Move It (Aug. 29) (#2 in the U.K.), written by Ian Samwell, the first genuine British rock and roll record, causing John Lennon to later issue the soundbyte "Before Cliff and the Shadows, there had been nothing worth listening to in British music"; pioneering the 4-member rock group format, members incl. Ken Pavey, Harry Webb, Ian "Sammy" Samwell (1937-2003), Terry Smart (drums), John Farrar (1946-), Norman Mitham, Jet Harris (1939-)/Brian Locking (1940-)/John Rostill (1942-73), and Alan Hawkshaw, some of whom later hooked up with Olivia Newton-John. They followed with High Class Baby (1958) (#7 in the U.K.), Livin' Lovin' Doll (1959), Mean Streak (1959), Living Doll (1959) (written by Lionel Bart), A Voice in the Wilderness (1959), The Shrine on the Second Floor (1959), Travellin' Light (1959), I Love You (1959), Theme for a Dream (1959), Early in the Morning (1959) (with Marty Wilde), Move On Down the Line (1960), Rooster (1962), Bachelor Boy (1962), Do You Wanna Dance (1962). Move On Down the Line (1962), Summer Holiday (1963), It's All in the Game (1963), Bachelor Boy (1963), Lucky Lips (1963), Don't Talk to Him (1963), The Next Time (1963), On the Beach (1964), Constantly (1964), The Twelfth of Never (1964), I'm the Lonely One (1964), I Could Easily (Fall in Love with You) (1964), Don't Talk to Him (1964), Lucky Lips (1965), The Minute You're Gone (1965), Wind Me Up (1965), Visions (1966), Time Drags By (1966), Wind Me Up (1966), The Day I Met Marie (1967), and I'll Come Running (1967), and Ghost Riders in the Sky (1980). Knighted in 1995, Sir Cliff Richard went on to have 14 #1 hits in the U.K. and 3 #1 U.S. hits, and sell 260M records worldwide. In 1996 he attended the Wimbledon tennis tournament, and when it rained he entertained the crowd at the officials' request unaware that it was being televised by the BBC, causing the announcer to joke "We'll probably get one hell of a bill."
In 1958 Sunflower, Miss.-born soul singer-songwriter Jerry Butler Jr. (1939-) released his debut single For Your Precious Love (#11 in the U.S.) with his backup group The Impressions. He followed it with He Will Break Your Heart (1960) (#7 in the U.S.), Moon River (1961) (#11) (bigger hit than Andy Williams' version, which only charted as an LP track), Let It Be Me (w/Betty Everett) (1964) (#5 in the U.S.), and Only the Strong Survive (1969) (#4 in the U.S.).
Also in 1958 Vallejo, Calif.-born "Godfather of R&B" Johnny Otis (Ioannis Aleandres Veliotes) (1921-2012) (a dark Greek who preferred to live as a black), known for Double Crossing Blues (1948) released Hand Jive (#9 in the U.S.).
Also in Philip "Phil" Ramone (1934-2013) et al. founded A&R Recording in New York City, going on to produce Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Bob Dylan, Peter Paul and mary, Paul Simon, Carly Simon, James Taylor, Rod Stewart, The Guess Who, Stevie Wonder, Dionne Warwick, Marilyn Monroe's "Happy Birthday, Mr. President" et al.
Also in 1958 the first Scopitone jukeboxes equipped with color 16mm film clips and magnetic soundtrack began to be installed in Europe, spreading to the U.S., with 500 machines installed by 1964, becoming the first music videos, often with campy sets. The last film for a Scopitone was made in 1978.
In 1959 new U. of Calif. pres. (1958-67) Clark Kerr (1911-2003) uttered the immortal soundbyte: "The employers will love this generation [of college students]... They are going to be easy to handle. There aren't going to be any riots." Also in 1959 the word "bit" came into vogue in U.S.: "the protest bit", "the love bit", etc.; nothing about 1s and 0s yet, although the same year Austrian-born Am. business expert Peter Ferdinand Drucker (1909-2005) coined the term "knowledge worker", who's the ultimate, guess, starts with TLW.
On Feb. 3, 1959 the Day the Music Died saw American rockers Buddy Holly (Charles Hardin Holley) (b. 1936), Ritchie Valens (Ricardo Esteban Valenzuela Reyes) (b. 1941), and The Big Bopper (Jiles Perry "J.P." "Jape" Richardson Jr.) (b. 1930) killed in a winter airplane accident near Clear Lake (outside Mason City), Iowa in a chartered Beech Bonanza N3749N headed for their next engagement in Moorhead, Minn. (sister city of Fargo, N.D.); Waylon Jennings and Holly's bassist Tommy Allsup (who leaves his wallet onboard, which is later recovered) relinquish their seats at the last minute as Jennings gives up his seat to the Big Bopper and Valens wins a coin toss with Allsup; on Feb. 4 the audience in Fargo expecting to see them sees Bobby Vee and the Shadows for the first time instead. Buddy Holly's hits incl. Peggy Sue (1957) (#3 in the U.S.), and Oh Boy! (1957) (#10 in the U.S.). Ritchie Valens' big 1958 hits were La Bamba (#22 in the U.S.), and Donna (#2 in the U.S.). The Big Bopper's big 1958 hit was Chantilly Lace (#6 in the U.S.). While much has been made of their sudden deaths, the truth is that they were all square 1950s throwbacks and wouldn't have done well in the 1960s, although we'll never know for sure.
On Apr. 10, 1959 Paul Wendkos' film Gidget ("girl midget") debuted, starring Sandra Dee as 17-y.-o. Francis Lawrence AKA Gidget, who chases surfer Moondoggie (James Darren), mainstreaming the white Calif. surfing culture. The Gidget Theme was performed by The Four Preps, from Hollywood High School in Calif., incl. Bruce Belland (1936-), Ed Cobb (1938-99), Glen Larson (1937-), and Marv Ingram (Marvin Inabnett), who had a #2 U.S. hit in 1958 with 26 Miles (Santa Catalina), and a #13 U.S. hit in 1960 with Down By the Station. Philadelphia, Penn.-born James Darren (James William Ercolani) (1936-) went on to score with hit singles Goodbye, Cruel World (#3 in the U.S.), composed by Noel Regney (1922-2002) and Gloria Shayne Baker (1923-2008), which sold 1M copies, followed by Her Royal Majesty (1962) (#6 in the U.S.).
On July 11-12, 1959 the first Newport Folk Festival in R.I. was held, featuring new performer Joan Baez, introduced by folk singer Samuel Robert "Bob" Gibson (1931-96). At the 1963 festival Joan Baez introduced Bob Dylan.
Rock came out of R&B and soul, and as time went on they intertwined. In 1959 the Detroit, Mich. R&B vocal group The Falcons, incl. Eddie Lee Floyd (1937-) and Bonnie "Sir Mack" Rice (1933-) released their million-selling single You're So Fine (first true soul song?), after which in 1966 Floyd went on to release Knock on Wood, while Rice wrote "Respect Yourself" and other songs. On Sept. 21, 1959 the Cincinnati, Ohio soul group The Isley Brothers, O'Kelly Isley Jr. (1937-86), Rudolph Bernard "Rudy" Isley (1939-), Ronald Isley (1941-), and Vernon Isley released their first hit Shout (#47 in the U.S.), followed by This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You) (1966) (#6 in the U.S.), and It's Your Thing (1969) (#2 in the U.S.) ("It's your thing/ Do what you wanna do/ I can't tell you/ Who to sock it to"). Their 1972 album Brother, Brother, Brother features the tracks Brother, Brother, Brother, and Pop That Thang. Their Aug. 1973 album 3+3 (#8 in the U.S.) was their first to go platinum; it features the tracks Who's That Lady (#6 in the U.S.), What It Comes Down To (#55 in the U.S.), and Summer Breeze (#60 in the U.S.). In 1984 (as Isley-Jasper-Isley) they scored with Caravan of Love.
The 1950s ended with rock and roll struggling to come out of its shell and become a force instead of a farce. On Nov. 30, 1959 Edmond T. Greville's Beat Girl (Wild for Kicks), a late-arriving 1950s youth rebellion flick from Britain debuted, starring blonde-blue English singer (wannabe James Dean?) Adam Faith (Terence "Terry" Nelhams-Wright) (1940-2003), and co-starring Gillian Hills (1944-) ("the English Brigitte Bardot") (Barbie Doll lookalike?), plus Christopher Lee and Oliver Reed, showing the London underground and its Elvis imitators, strippers and potheads; topless stripping scenes got it banned for awhile in the U.K., making it more popular? The lame music by John Barry confused rock and roll with a jazz workout by a brass orchestra; "If it's beat - jazz, that is." In 1960 Adam Faith released the John Barry single Made You (#5 in the U.K.) from "Beat Girl", which was banned by the BBC, making it more popular? Also in 1959 after George Henry Martin (1926-) became mgr. of Parlophone in 1955, and decided to branch out by signing them, Adam Faith and The Roulettes released their debut single What Do You Want? (#1 in the U.K.), the first #1 hit for Parlophone Records. They went on to become the first act in the U.K. to have their first seven singles go top-5, following it with Poor Me (1960) (#1 in the U.K.); Someone Else's Baby (1960) (#2 in the U.K.), When Johnny Comes Marching Home (1960) (#5 in the U.K.), How About That! (1960) (#4 in the U.K.), Lonely Pup (In A Christmas Shop) (1960) (#4 in the U.K.), Who Am I! (1961) (#5 in the U.K.), Easy Going Me (1961) (#12 in the U.K.), Don't You Know It (1961) (#12 in the U.K.), The Time Has Come (1961) (#4 in the U.K.), Lonesome (1962) (#12 in the U.K.), As You Like It (1962) (#5 in the U.K.), Don't That Beat All (1962) (#8 in the U.K.), Baby Take a Bow (1962) (#22 in the U.K.). The First Time (1963) (#5 in the U.K.), Walkin' Tall (1963) (#23 in the U.K.), We Are in Love (1963) (#11 in the U.K.), If He Tells You (1964) (#25 in the U.K.), I Love Being in Love With You (1964) (#33 in the U.K.), A Message to Martha (Kentucky Bluebird) (1964) (#12 in the U.K.), Stop Feeling Sorry for Yourself (1965) (#23 in the U.K.), Someone's Taken Maria Away (1965) (#34 in the U.K.), and Cheryl's Goin' Home (1966) (#46 in the U.K.) (last single to chart) - he stayed square and was phased-out. Speaking of a farce turning into a force, in 1959 the Raton, N.M. rock group Jimmy Gilmer (1940-) and The Fireballs, originally Chuck Tharp (-2006) (vocals), George Tomsco (guitar), Dan Trammell (guitar), Stan Lark (bass), and Eric Budd (drums), who recorded at Norman Petty's Studio in Clovis, N.M. where Buddy Holly got his start, and mainly cranked out instrumentals released their first hit single Torquay, followed by Bulldog (1960), Vaquero (1960), Quite A Party (1961) (#29 in the U.K.), and Carioca (1962). After changing their lineup to Jimmy Gilmer (1940-) (vocals), and Doug Roberts (-1981) (drums) they released the far cooler Sugar Shack (1963) (#1 in the U.S., #45 in the U.K.), Long Long Ponytail (1963), Daisy Petal Pickin' (1964) (#15 in the U.S.), and Bottle of Wine (1968) (#9 in the U.S.).
In the early 1960s the Brill Bldg. Era of mainly Jewish pop music composers working out of the Brill Bldg. (built 1930) at 1619 Broadway in the former Tin Pan Alley section of Manhattan in New York City spawned several Billboard 200 songwriting teams, incl. Burt Bacharach (1928-) and Hal David (1921-) ("Walk On By", "Anyone Who Had a Heart"), Carole King (1942-) and Gerry Goffin (1939-) ("Up On the Roof", "Will You Love Me Tomorrow"), Barry Mann (1939-) and Cynthia Weil (1940-) ("On Broadway"), Jerome "Jerry" Leiber (1933-2011) and Michael "Mike" Stoller (1933-) ("West Side Story"), Doc Pomus (1925-91) and Mort Shuman (1936-91) ("Save the Last Dance for Me", "This Magic Moment"), Neil Sedaka (1939-) and Howard Greenfield (1936-86) (Breaking Up Is Hard to Do", "Rainy Jane", "Workin' on a Groovy Thing", "Everybody's Somebody's Fool"), and Jeff Barry (1938-) and Ellie Greenwich (1940-) ("Chapel of Love", "Leader of the Pack"), producing a string of hits that emphasized the writers, producers and arrangers more than the singers, until do-it-all groups like the Beatles changed the rules by the middle of the decade.
In 1960 singer Frank Sinatra left Capital Records and formed his own record co., Reprise Records (pr. rih-PREEZE) with Dean Martin, causing him to be called "the chairman of the board"; too bad, after mismanagement and poor sales, it was sold to Warner Bros. Records in 1963, going on to sign The Kinks, Arlo Guthrie, Neil Young, Norman Greenbaum, Tiny Tim, Captain Beefheart, Frank Zappa and the Mothers, Gram Parsons, The Fugs, Jethro Tull, T.Rex, Gordon Lightfoot et al.
In Mar. 1960 Grand Rapids, Mich.-born Del Shannon (Charles Weedon Westover) (1934-90) released his #1 U.S.-U.K. hit Runaway, which introduced the Musitron electric synthesizer. He followed it in June 1960 with Hats Off to Larry (#5 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), followed in Nov. 1964 by Keep Searchin' (We'll Follow the Sun) (#9 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.). after which he had a string of ever-sinking singles ending with "Comin' Back to Me" in June 1969 (#127 in the U.S.). In Dec. 1981 he made a mini-comeback with Sea of Love (#33 in the U.S.).
On May 9, 1960 the U.S. Food and Drug Admin. (FDA) approved the contraceptive Enovid (Enavid), AKA the birth control pill, developed by Austrian-born American chemist Carl Djerassi (1923-) of G.D. Searle & Co. of Chicago. The cost was only $10-$11 per mo. for 20 pills, and for the first time in history women were liberated to have sex without fear of pregnancy, causing a run on pharmacies by non-Catholics and Catholics alike, despite the prohibition of birth control pills for Roman Catholics by Vatican II in 1962-5. By 1961 500K women were using it, and 10M by 1973. The stage was set for Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll, a term allegedly coined in the single Sex and Drugs and Rock & Roll released on Aug. 26, 1977 by the English punk rock group Ian Robins Dury (1942-2000) and The Blockheads, who later had a minor hit in 1978 with Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick ("In the deserts of Sudan/ And the gardens of Japan/ From Milan to Yucatan/ Every woman, every man/ Hit me with your rhythm stick"), and another in 1981 with Spasticus Autisticus (a satire of the Internat. Year of Disabled Persons). On cue, in June 1960 teen idol Brian Hyland (1943-) released his #1 U.S. hit Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini, about a girl who wanted to wear it but kept having second thoughts, selling 2M copies. In 1962 Hyland followed it with Sealed With a Kiss (#3 in the U.S.). Hyland was touring with Dick Clark's "Caravan of Stars" in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963, and saw JFK's motorcade passing by but forgot to remove the lens cap from his camera, I don't want to say goodbye for the summer, knowing your love we'll miss, oh let us make a pledge to meet in September, and seal it with a kiss. In 1970 Hyland released the million-selling hit Gypsy Woman (#3 in the U.S.), by Curtis Mayfield.
On May 5, 1960 Vernon, Tex.-born 4-octave-range singer Roy Kelton Orbison (1936-88), known for wearing black clothes and black sunglasses to cover for his childhood jaundice and congenital poor eyesight, with black dye in his prematurely white hair, making him look like Elvis' sick brother released his first of 22 1960s hit singles Only the Lonely (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), followed by Running Scared (Mar. 1961) (#1 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), Crying (July 1961) (#2 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.), Dream Baby (How Long Must I Dream?) (Jan. 1962) (#4 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), In Dreams (Feb. 1963) (#7 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), Falling (May 1963) (#22 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), Blue Bayou (Aug. 1, 1963) (#29 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), Pretty Paper (Nov. 1963) (#15 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), It's Over (Apr. 1964) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), and Oh, Pretty Woman (Aug. 1964) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.). That's right, the Beatles Invasion even killed him.
On Aug. 6, 1960 the appearance of Chubby Checker (Ernest Evans) (1941-) on the Dick Clark Saturday Night Show to perform Let's Do the Twist launched the U.S. Twist Craze, giving rock and roll its first signature dance, with just the right amount of wild animal sexuality to upset the square grownups. The first Twist record was "The Twist", the B-side of "Teardrops On Your Letter" (1959) by Hank Ballard. The fad actually started at the Peppermint Lounge, a New York nightclub located in the Knickerbocker Hotel at 128 West 45th St., where the multiracial group Joey Dee and the Starliters recorded the million-selling Peppermint Twist (released 1961) and other Twist records, incl. a 1962 cover of the Isley Brothers' Shout (#6 in the U.S.). On Feb. 20, 2007 he released the album Knock Down the Walls, which featured the hit Knock Down the Walls (#1 on the U.S. dance charts). Meanwhile in 1960 black singer Gary U.S. Bonds (Gary Levone Anderson) (1939-) released his first hit New Orleans (#6 in the U.S.). In June 1961 he released Quarter to Three (#1 in the U.S.), which sold 1M copies, followed by School Is Out (#5 in the U.S.), School Is In (#28 in the U.S.), and Dear Lady Twist (Dec. 11) (#9 in the U.S.). In 1962 he released Twist Twist Senora (#10 in the U.S.), Seven Day Weekend (#27 in the U.S.), and Copy Cat (#92 in the U.S.). On Jan. 27, 1962 the San Francisco Bay Area hosted the Chubby Checker Twist Party at the Cow Palace (attendance 17K), and 1962 became the Year of the Twist, with Let's Do the Twist by Chubby Checker becoming the #1 Billboard pop song of the year, followed by Peppermint Twist by Joey Dee and the Starliters at #5, Slow Twistin' by Dee Dee Sharp (1945-) at #36, Dear Lady Twist by Gary U.S. Bonds at #47, Twistin' the Night Away by Sam Cooke at #61, Twist and Shout by the Isley Brothers at #89, and Twist, Twist Senora by Gary U.S. Bonds at #98. By 1964 Western countries go ape for the Twist, with the Frug, Funky Chicken, Monkey, and Watusi varieties coming and going, along with discotheques with go-go girls.
On Dec. 5, 1960 The Ventures, formed in 1959 in Tacoma, Wash., incl. Don Wilson (guitar), Bob Bogle (guitar), Nokie Edwards (guitar), and Mel Tyler (1934-96) (drums) released their debut Walk Don't Run (#11 in the U.S.), which features the single Walk Don't Run (#2 in the U.S.), and Perfidia. After no record co. would sign them, they founded Horizon Records to distribute it, and they went on to become the #1 instrumental band of all time, with 100M+ records sold, inspiring rockers incl. the Beatles, Stephen Stills, Carl Wilson, Keith Moon, Alan White, Roger Glover et al. They were pioneers of the concept album, such as "Surfing" (1963), and "The Ventures in Space" (1964). On May 10, 1969 they released the album Hawaii Five-O (#11 in the U.S.), which features the hit TV theme Hawaii Five-O (#4 in the U.S.).
In 1960 the Hollywood Argyles released the #1 U.S. hit single Alley Oop, written by Dallas Frazier (1939-), and produced by Kim Fowley (1939-) (a student at Univ. H.S. in West Los Angeles) along with Sandy Nelson, Jan Berry and Dean Torrence, who lived at the corner of Hollywood Blvd. and Argyle St., and paid musicians $25 per session to record for him, incl. Norm Davis (lead vocals), Gary Paxton (1938-), Sander L. "Sandy" Nelson (1938-) (drums), and Ted Winters (jug?). It was the first song played on May 2, 1960 by WLS-AM in Chicago after they changed from farm programming to rock and roll.
Also in 1960 rockabilly singer John Joseph "Johnny" Burnette (1934-64) released his 1-hit wonder You're Sixteen (#8 in the U.S.), by Robert B. Sherman and Richard M. Sherman, which was covered in 1974 by Ringo Starr, who hit #1. In 1980 his son Rocky Burnette equalled his charting performance.
In 1960 The Shirelles, incl. Shirley Owens (Shirley Alston Reeves)/Doris Coley, Doris Jackson, Beverly Lee, and Addie Harris "Micki" McPherson released the Carole King song Will You Love Me Tomorrow, which reached #1 in the U.S., launching the Girl Group Era. In Feb. 1962 Michele Ann Marie "Shelley" Fabares (1944-), niece of Nannete Fabray, who played oldest child Mary Stone in "The Donna Reed Show" from 1958-63 had a #1 U.S. hit with Johnny Angel. In July 1963 The Angels, consisting of Linda Jansen (Jankowski) (lead vocals), and sisters Barbara Allbut and Phyllis Albut released their #1 U.S. hit My Boyfriend's Back. In June 1963 New York City-born Lesley Gore (Lesley Sue Goldstein) (1946-) released her debut album I'll Cry if I Want To (#24 in the U.S.), which features the tracks It's My Party (Apr. 1963) (#1 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), and Judy's Turn to Cry (#5). Album #2 Lesley Gore Sings of Mixed-Up Hearts (Nov. 1963) features She's a Fool (#5), and You Don't Own Me (#2). Album #3 Boys, Boys, Boys (Apr. 1964) features That's the Way Boys Are, and I Don't Wanna Be a Loser. Album #4 Girl Talk (Oct. 1964) features Maybe I Know, Hey Now, Sometimes I Wish I Were a Boy, and Look of Love, after which her albums tanked deeper and deeper until the 1967 album "Magic Colors" was cancelled. She waited until 2005 to announce that she's a lesbian. Also in 1963 the Bronx, N.Y. girl group The Chiffons, incl. Judy Craig, Patricia Bennett, Barbara Lee, and Sylvia Peterson released their first #1 U.S. million-selling single He's So Fine (by Lonnie Mack) (#1 in the U.S., #16 in the U.K.) (later unintentionally plagarized by Beatle George Harrison in My Sweet Lord), followed by One Fine Day (by Gerry Goffin and Carole King) (1963) (#5 in the U.S., #29 in the U.K.), I Have A Boyfriend (1963) (#36 in the U.S.) (which was playing on Dallas radio station KLIF on Nov. 22, 1963, and was interrupted by the first bulletin of the JFK assassination), and Sweet Talkin' Guy (1966) (#10 in the U.S., #31 in the U.K.). Also in 1963 English singer Dusty Springfield (Mary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O'Brien) (1939-99) went solo after her group "The Springfields" broke up, becoming "the White Lady of Soul", starting with the single I Only Want to Be With You (#12 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), making her the 2nd artist of the British Invasion after the Beatles to make the Billboard 200, starting at #77 in Jan. 1964, while the Beatles had "She Loves You" at #69, and "I Want to Hold Your Hand" at #3. She followed with Wishin' and Hopin' (May 1964) (#6 in the U.S.), I Just Don't Know What to Do with Myself (1964), I Only Want to Be With You (1964), Losing You (1964), Stay Awhile (1964), You Don't Have to Say You Love Me (Mar. 28, 1966) (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), and Son of a Preacher Man (Nov. 8, 1968) (#10 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), which was written by John Hurley and Ronnie Wilkins, and originally offered to Aretha Franklin, who changed her mind too late after it became a hit. Her keeper album Dusty in Memphis (Jan. 13, 1969) features Preacher Man, plus The Windmills of Your Mind (#31 in the U.S.) from the 1968 film "The Thomas Crown Affair, and Breakfast in Bed. In 1964 Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller founded Red Bird Records mainly for girl groups, their first release being Chapel of Love (#1 in the U.S.) by The Dixie Cups, a black high school-sounding New Orleans group, originally called Little Miss and the Muffets, incl. Barbara Ann Hawkins (1943-), Rosa Lee Hawkins (1944-), and Joan Marie Johnson (1945-). On July 20, 1964 The Shangri-Las, a white girl group from New York City named after a restaurant in Queens, N.Y., incl. sisters Mary Weiss (1948-) and Elizabeth "Betty" Weiss (1946-), and identical twins Marguerite "Marge" Ganser (1948-96) and Mary Ann Ganser (1948-70) released their debut single (by Red Bird Records) Remember (Walking in the Sand) (#5 in the U.S., #14 in the U.K.) by George "Shadow" Morton. They followed it with Leader of the Pack (1964) (#1 in the U.S.) (banned in the U.K., then hit #3 in 1972 after ban was lifted), by George "Shadow" Morton, Jeff Barry, and Ellie Greenwich. "I met him at the candy store/He turned around and smiled at me/ You get the picture?/ That's when I fell for the Leader of the Pack". A classic 1960s "death disk", complete with a motorcycle crash at the end; piano accompaniment was by Billy Joel; Betty sung on the records but didn't tour with the group until late 1965, which performed with the Beatles, James Brown (who was surprised to discover they were white), and other top acts. In 1963 R&B singer Shirley Ellis (Shirley Marie Elliston) (1941-) released the #8 U.S. hit The Nitty Gritty, followed by The Name Game (1964) (#3) and The Clapping Song (1965) (#8); "Chuck Chuck mo chuck, bananafanafo fuck, mee mi mo muck, Chuck". In 1963 Hazel, Ky.-born singer-songwriter Jackie DeShannon (Sharon Lee Myers) (1944-) released her first hit Needles and Pins (#84 in the U.S.), written by Sonny Bono (1935-98) and Jack Nitzsche (1937-2000), followed by What the World Needs Now Is Love (Apr. 15, 1965) (#7 in the U.S.) ("What the world needs now is love, sweet love/ It's the only thing that there's just too little of"), written by Hal David and Burt Bacharach, and Put a Little Love in Your Heart (1969) (#4 in the U.S.). What the World Needs Now Is Love was first offered to Dionne Warwick, who turned it down, then changed her mind and released her own version What the World Needs Now Is Love in 1965.
With all these lame Yankee girl acts stinking rock up, did I mention rock and roll's British White Knight saviors the Beatles? In the early 1960s over the Pond in Liverpool, England beside the Mersey River, the Merseybeat, AKA British Beat or just plain Beat Music, a fusion of rock and roll with R&B, soul, doo wop, skiffle etc. was developed, spawning the big British Musical Invasion of the U.S. in 1964, led by guess who the Beatles. In Jan. 1960 the teenie Merseybeat Quarrymen band, formed in Mar. 1957 by John Winston Lennon (1940-80), adding James Paul McCartney (1942-) in July 1957 and George Harrison (1943-2001) in Mar. 1958 signed bassist Stuart Fergusson Victor Sutcliffe (1940-62), followed on Aug. 12 by drummer Randolph Peter "Pete" Best (1941-) ("the forgotten Beatle") (son of the owner of the Casbah Club in Liverpool), leaving on Aug. 16 for Hamburg, Germany, and playing at the Indra Club of porno shop owner Bruno Koschmider on Aug. 17 for 48 nights, followed by the Kaiserkeller in Oct., then the rival Top Ten Club, pissing Koschmider off, who gets Harrison deported on Nov. 21 for lying to authorities about his age and having no work permit, followed by McCartney and Best a week later for setting fire to a condom in their filthy living quarters, causing damage to it, leaving Sutcliffe behind with his babe Astrid Kirchherr (1938-); they began wearing cowboy boots, jeans, and leather jackets before Hamburg?; on Dec. 17 they played at the Casbah Club in Liverpool; meanwhile they changed their name to Johnny and the Moondogs, Long John and the Beetles (after Buddy Holly and the Crickets), the Silver Beetles, and finally the Beatles. In 1960 English (Liverpool) Elvis clone (sans black hair dye) singer Billy Fury (1940-83), whose 1959 debut single Maybe Tomorrow hit #18 in the U.K., released Colette (#9), followed by That's Love (#19), Wondrous Place (#25), and A Thousand Stars (#14), going on to release 24 U.K. hits in the 1960s without a #1. In 1960 he dumped his backup band The Blue Flames (incl. keyboardist Georgie Fame, who took them over) and held auditions, offering the job to the Silver Beetles (later the Beatles) for £20 a week on the condition that they dump bass player Stuart Sutcliffe, which John Lennon refused after securing his autograph, after which the Beatles toured Scotland with Johnny Gentle and Duffy Power. On Feb. 21, 1961 (Tue.) (lunchtime) the Beatles debuted at the Cavern Club (10 Mathew St.) in Liverpool, making 292 appearances until Aug. 3, 1963, where rival Merseybeat band The Undertakers, fronted by John Richard "Jackie" Lomax (1944-) were more popular. Meanwhile in Apr. 1961 they returned to Hamburg and performed at the Top Ten Club, then were signed by George Henry Martin (1926-) of Polydor on June 22, 1961, releasing My Bonnie (Mein Herz ist Bei Dir Nur) as the Beat Brothers, backing Tony Sheridan (1940-) on Oct. 31 in Germany (released on Jan. 5, 1962 by Polydor); meanwhile on Nov. 9, 1961 Brian Epstein (1934-67) saw the Beatles play for the first time at the Cavern Club, and they signed a 5-year contract with him on Jan. 24, 1962. On Jan. 1, 1962 British Decca exec Richard Paul "Dick" Rowe (1921-86) watched a 1-hour Beatles audition paid for by Epstein, where they cover Bobby Vee's "Take Good Care of My Baby", and turned them down in favor of Brian Poole and the Tremeloes, with the soundbyte "We don't like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out." Rowe later makes up for his mistake by taking George Harrison's advice and signing the Rolling Stones, talk to the hand. Too bad, on Apr. 10, 1962 Beatles founding member, bassist and Ray Ban-wearing artist Stuart Sutcliffe (b. 1940) died in Hamburg, Germany of a brain hemorrhage from a fractured skull suffered in a fight in Jan. 1961 in Lathom Hall, England, for which he refused medical attention; the Beatles returned to Hamburg from Apr. 13-May 31, playing at the opening of the Star Club, then signed with Parlophone Records (founded in Germany in 1896) on Sept. 15, 1962, which released the Beatles' first eight albums. On Aug. 16, 1962 Brian Epstein drops Madras-born drummer Pete Best (the best-looking one who has the most girl fans, but whose curly hair doesn't adapt to the new mop-top Beatles haircut), then on Sept. 11 the Beatles recorded their first tracks for EMI Studios with new drummer Ringo Starr (Richard Starkey) (1940-) (formerly of Rory Storm and the Hurricanes) taking his place; girl fans shouted "Pete forever, Ringo never!" until the Beatles got more popular; meanwhile Best's solo career flopped and his looks withered, and he ended up as a forklift driver in a London warehouse, and a baker working for £8 a week; too bad, after wasting their time with Pye Records, The Undertakers signed with Epstein only to have his untimely death ruin all the plans, after which the Beatles tried to save Lomax's career in vain, helping him release Sour Milk Sea in 1968, written by George Harrison, and featuring Harrison and Eric Clapton on guitar, Paul McCartney on bass, Ringo Starr on drums, and Nicky Hopkins on piano - Best Bakers? On Oct. 5, 1962 the Beatles released their first single, Love Me Do, which peaked at #17 in the U.K., followed by #1 in the U.S. in 1964.
One folk singer who definitely doesn't belong in the Girl Band category is Staten Island, N.Y.-born folk singer and activist Joan Chandos Baez (1941-), daughter of Mexican-born physicist Albert Baez (1912-2007) (co-inventor of the X-ray microscope), whose debut album Joan Baez was released in Oct. 1960. In 1962 she released the single Kumbaya, followed in 1965 by the single There But for Fortune, written by Phil Ochs, becoming her first hit in the U.K. Album #5 Farewell, Angelina (1965) features Farewell, Angelina, With God on Our Side, and Oh, Freedom. In 1971 she released her hit The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down (#3 in the U.S.), written by Robbie Robertson, and first released in 1969 by The Band.
In Apr. 1961 the FCC approved FM radio, giving hi-fi lovers incl. hi-fi rock lovers their outlet for free music. In 1961 Jewish-American entrepreneurs Harvey Philip "Phil" Spector (1939-) and Lester Sill (1918-94) founded Philles Records (combo of Phil and Les) in Philly, soon moving to Los Angeles, Calif. and setting up Gold Star Studios at the corner of Santa Monica Blvd. and Vine St., going on to issue He's a Rebel by the Crystals, followed by 38 more singles and 12 albums by The Crystals, The Ronettes, Bob B. Soxx and the Blue Jeans, Ike Turner (1931-2007) and Tina Turner (1939-), and The Righteous Brothers, all characterized by innocence, until the arrival of the Beatles killed it by 1966. The 1963 album A Christmas Gift to You from Phil Spector features Bobby Sheen and Darlene Love, and became the greatest rock & roll Xmas album of all time; it features the tracks The Bells of St. Mary's, and Here Comes Santa Claus, by Bob B. Soxx and the Blue Jeans. In 1964 The Righteous Brothers, consisting of Robert Lee "Bobby" Hatfield (1940-2003) and William Thomas "Bill" Medley (1940-) released their #1 U.S.-U.K. hit You've Got That Lovin' Feeling (song with the most airplay in the 20th cent.), followed in 1965 by their #4 U.S. hit Unchained Melody, and in 1966 by their #1 U.S. hit (You're My) Soul and Inspiration. In Jan. 1969 Ike and Tina Turner released their big hit Proud Mary (#2 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.). Spector developed his Wall of Sound musical production technique there with Jewish-American audio engineer Larry Levine (1928-2008), which sounds well on AM radio and jukeboxes, using large numbers of electric and acoustic guitars in parallel, plus a resonant echo chamber in the bathroom. They used the Wrecking Crew, a group of session musicians that went on to work with the Beach Boys, Byrds, Monkees (getting them into trouble with fans), Simon and Garfunkel, Carpenters, 5th Dimension, Partridge Family, John Denver et al.
On June 1, 1961 Butler, Mo.-born Robert Anson Heinlein (1907-88) pub. the seminal science-fiction novel Stranger in a Strange Land, which revels in organized religion-free counterculture free love, and coins the word "grok", becoming the Bible of the 1960s hippie movement.
Meanwhile in 1961 after founding Tamla Motown Records in Detroit ("Motor Town"), Mich. in 1959 to crank out R&B and soul records known as "the Motown Sound" and inject a steady stream of color into mainstream U.S. music, and releasing the first Motown hit by Barrett Strong (1941-), Money (That's What I Want) (#23) in 1959, former featherweight boxer and failed record store owner Berry Gordy Jr. (1929-), signed The Supremes, featuring lead singer Diana Ross (1944-). In 1962 the Holland-Dozier-Holland Motown songwriting team was formed, consisting of Lamont Herbert Dozier (1941-), and brothers Brian Holland (1941-) and Edward "Eddie" Holland Jr. (1939-), who went on to score 25 Billboard #1 hits incl. "Baby Love", "Stop! In the Name of Love", "You Keep Me Hanging On", "(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave", and "How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)"; in 1967 they broke with Berry Gordy and formed Invictus Records, going on to sign Freda Payne and Chairmen of the Board. In 1963 The Supremes, after releasing eight singles from 1961-3 which never charted in the top-40, causing them to become known as the "no-hit Supremes", incl. Diane Ernestine "Diana" Ross (1944-), Florence Glenda "Flo" "Blondie" Ballard (1943-76), Mary Wilson (1944-), Betty McGlown (1943-), and Barbara Diane Martin (1944), all from the Brewster-Douglass housing project in Detroit, Mich. released When the Lovelight Starts Shining Through His Eyes (#23 in the U.S.), their first top-20 single, followed by Where Did Our Love Go in Aug. 1964, their first #1 hit, after which they charted nine more #1 singles by May 1967, incl. Baby Love (1964), Come See About Me (1964), Stop! In the Name of Love (1964), Back In My Arms Again (1964), I Hear a Symphony (1965), You Can't Hurry Love (1966), You Keep Me Hangin' On (1966), Love Is Here and Now You're Gone (1967), and The Happening (1967). They followed that with #1 singles Love Child (1968), and Someday We'll Be Together (1969). Another Motown star was the girl group Martha Reeves and the Vandellas (named after Van Dyke St. in Detroit and Della Reese, not after the Ethiopian succubus), whose first hit single Come and Get These Memories (#29) was released in Feb. 1963, followed by (Love Is Like a) Heat Wave (July 9, 1963) (#4), Quicksand (Oct. 1963) (#8), Dancing in the Streets (July 21, 1964) (#2), Nowhere to Run (Feb. 10, 1965) (#8), and Jimmy Mack (Feb. 3, 1967) (#10). In 1970 Diana Ross went solo, with her debut album Diana Ross (May), which features Reach Out and Touch (Somebody's Hand). Another Motown star was William "Smokey" Robinson Jr. (1940-) best known as the lead vocalist of the Miracles, who earned the title "King of Motown", and served as Motown Records' vice-pres. from 1961-88. Hits include: Shop Around (1960), You've Really Got a Hold on Me (1962), The Tracks of My Tears (1965), and The Tears of a Clown (1970) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.). Another early Motown star was Mary Esther Wells (1943-92), who in 1962 released her first hit Two Lovers, followed on Mar. 13, 1964 by her million-selling #1 U.S. hit My Guy, earning her the title "Queen of Motown". Yet another product of Motown are the Jackson 5 (Five), born in a Jehovah's Witness family in Gary, Ind., incl. Sigmund Esco "Jackie" Jackson (1951-), Toriano Adaryll "Tito" Jackson (1953-), Jermaine La Jaune Jackson (1954-) (who went Muslim), Marlon David Jackson (1957-), and baby Michael Joseph Jackson (1958-2009), who were formed in 1964 and joined Motown in 1968, then with Diana Ross introducing them to the public on Aug. 11, 1969 went on to score #1 hits with I Want You Back (1969), ABC (1970), The Love You Save (1970), and I'll Be There (1970). Back to Barrett Strong. After giving up singing, he teamed up with songwriter Norman Whitfield (1940-2008), going on to crank out Motown hits incl. "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone", "I Heard It Through the Grapevine", "Psychedelic Shack", and "War". In 1965 another top Motown act Junior (Jr.) Walker (Autry DeWalt Mixon Jr.) (1931-95) (singer and saxophonist) and the All Stars, incl. Tony Washington (drums), Willie Woods (guitar), and Vic Thomas (keyboards) released their debut single Shotgun (#4 in the U.S.), followed by Do the Boomerang (July 3, 1965), Shake and Fingerpop (1965), Cleo's Back (1965), (I'm a) Road Runner (1966), Cleo's Mood (1966), Pucker Up Buttercup (1967), Come See About Me (1967), What Does It Take (To Win Your Love) (1969), These Eyes (1969), Gotta Hold On To This Feeling (1970), Do You See My Love (For You Growing) (1970), and Take Me Girl I'm Ready (1971) (#16 in the U.K.). After releasing their first hit single Every Beat of My Heart (#6 in the U.S.) in 1961, Gladys Maria Knight (1944-) and The Pips signed with Motown Records, then in 1967 released their first big hit I Heard It Through the Grapevine (#2 in the U.S., #47 in the U.K.), followed by If I Were Your Woman (1970) (#9 in the U.S.), and Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye) (1972) (#2 in the U.S., #31 in the U.K.). In 1973 after switching to Buddah Records, they released Midnight Train to Georgia (#1 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.), and I've Got to Use My Imagination (#4 in the U.S.), followed in 1974 by (You Are the) Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me (#3 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.), and On and On (#5 in the U.S.).
Speaking of I Heard It Through the Grapevine. On June 8, 1961 4-octave range singer and Motown session drummer Marvin Pentz Gaye (Gay) Jr. (1939-84) (formerly of the Moonglows), who was courting 1st wife (Jan. 8, 1964-Mar. 1977) Anna Gordy (1922-), eldest sister of Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr. released his debut album The Soulful Moods of Marvin Gaye (2nd Motown LP after "Hi... We're the Miracles"), which features the tracks Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide, Never Let You Go, and You Don't Know What Love Is, none of which were hits. Album #2 That Stubborn Kinda Fellow (Dec. 1962) features background singing by Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, and produced his first hit singles Stubborn Kind of Fellow, Hitch Hike, and Pride and Joy, launching his career as "Prince of Soul" and best-selling Motown solo artist of the 1960s. On Apr. 15, 1964 he released his only duet album with Mary Wells, Together (#42 in the U.S.), becoming his first charting album, after which Wells left Motown. Tracks included Once Upon a Time, and What's the Matter With You Baby. Album #6 How Sweet It Is to Be Loved By You (Jan. 1965) features the hit track How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You). Album #8 Moods of Marvin Gaye (May 23, 1966) features the #1 R&B hits I'll Be Doggone, and Ain't That Peculiar, both co-written by Smokey Robinson. On Aug. 25, 1966 he released his 2nd duet album, this time with Kim Weston, Take Two, which features It Takes Two, and What Good Am I Without You? Funny but Weston hiked out of Motown quick after doing it, er, with him too. On Aug. 29, 1967 he released his 3rd duet album with new partner Tammi Terrell (Thomasina Winifred Montgomery) (1945-70), United, which features the hit tracks Ain't No Mountain High Enough (#69 in the U.S.), Your Precious Love, Somethin' Stupid, and If I Could Build My Whole World Around You. Their 2nd duet album You're All I Need (Aug. 1968) features Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing, and You're All I Need to Get By. He did one last album with her, Easy (Sept. 6, 1969), which features Good Lovin' Ain't Easy to Come By before she died tragically of a brain tumor on Mar. 16, 1970. Album #9 In the Groove/I Heard It Through the Grapevine (Aug. 26, 1968), was his big breakthrough, featuring the hit track I Heard It Through the Grapevine (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.); it has an eerie suicidal quality that made it #1?; he originally thought it "sucked" and turned it down. Too bad, on Apr. 1, 1984 his father Marvin Gay Sr. shot him to death after an argument, and got five years of probation.
In June 1961 Fargo, N.D.-born Bobby Vee (Robert Thomas Velline) (1943-) released his first hit single Take Good Care of My Baby #1 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), followed by Devil or Angel (1961) (#6 in the U.S.), Rubber Ball (1961) (#6 in the U.S.), More Than I Can Say (1961) (#4 in the U.S.), Run to Him (1961) (#2 in the U.S.), The Night Has a Thousand Eyes (1963) (#3 in the U.S.), and Come Back When You Grow Up (1967) (#3 in the U.S.).
On Aug. 13, 1961 the mean nasty rock music-hating Soviet Union began erecting the Berlin Wall, which became a symbol of why the West is the Best. It's a long story, but on Nov. 9, 1989 the wall came down after the barrage of rock music from MTV proved too much too resist, three hankies please.
On Mar. 19, 1962 folk singer Bob Dylan (Robert Allen Zimmerman) (1941-) released his debut album Bob Dylan on Columbia Records. The cover features him wearing a Huck Finn cap and a coat borrowed from James Dean. After Bob Dylan's first major concert, Billboard Mag. called him "the stuff of which legends are made". He told people he's part Sioux and has travelled with carnivals, when he's really a middle-class Jewish kid from Hibbing, Minn. Tracks incl. Talkin' New York, and Song to Woody. On May 27, 1963 Dylan released his 2nd album The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan, which included the tracks Blowin' in the Wind, and Don't Think Twice, It's Alright ("You just kinda wasted my... precious time"). On Jan. 13, 1964 Dylan released album #3 The Times They Are a-Changin', with classic cover photo by rock photographer Barry Feinstein (1931-2011), which included the track The Times They Are A-Changin'. In summer 1963 the 1963 Newport Folk Festival features Peter, Paul and Mary, Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Tom Paxton, and new protest singer Philip David "Phil" Ochs (1940-76). On Aug. 8, 1964 Dylan released album #4 Another Side of Bob Dylan, causing Irwin Silber to claim that he "somehow lost touch with people" and got caught in "the paraphernalia of fame". Tracks include: All I Really Want to Do, and Motorpsycho Nitemare. On July 24-25, 1965 (Sat.-Sun.) the 1965 Newport Folk Festival saw folk music finally reach commercial status, becoming Folk Judgment Day when Dylan betrayed his fans by going electric, causing shouts of "Get rid of that electric guitar", after which the festival (founded 1959) closed. Protest singer Phil Ochs (who was invited to the 1963 Newport Folk Festival but not to this one) praised Dylan's courage in defying the folk music authorities. Dick Farina (Fariña) (1937-66) and Mimi Baez Farina (1945-2001) (sister of Joan Baez) sang while the audience was drenched in the rain and loving it, setting the stage for the bohemian hippie lifestyle of the 60s. On Apr. 9, 1969 Dylan released album #9 Nashville Skyline (#3 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), containing his big hit Lay Lady Lay. In 1973 his hit song Knockin' on Heaven's Door (from the 1973 film "Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid") reached #12 in the U.S.
In May 1962 the New York City folk trio Peter, Paul and Mary, composed of Peter Yarrow (1938-), Noel Paul Stookey (1937-) (the non-Jew of the trio), and Ky.-born Mary Allin Travers (1936-2009) (who grew up in Greenwich Village) released their debut album Peter, Paul and Mary, which reached #1 in the U.S., and features hit tracks If I Had a Hammer, and Lemon Tree. They were put together and managed by Albert Grossman (1926-86), who later signed Bob Dylan, and Janis Joplin and the Holding Co. Album #2 Moving (Jan. 1963) features the #2 U.S. hit Puff the Magic Dragon. Album #3 In the Wind (Oct. 1963) reached #1 in the U.S. right months the Beatles Invasion and a few weeks before JFK was assassinated. It contained the tracks Blowin' in the Wind (by Bob Dylan) (#2 in the U.S.), and Don't Think Twice, It's All Right (#9 in the U.S.). Album #7 Album 1700 (Mar. 18, 1967) contained their final hit Leaving on a Jet Plane (written by John Denver, launching his career) (#15 in the U.S.). In 1963 Dallas, Tex.-born singer Trini Lopez (1937-) released his debut album Trini Lopez Live at PJ's (#3 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), which sold 1M copies, and features the tracks If I Had a Hammer (#3 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), Kansas City (#23 in the U.S., #35 in the U.K.), and La Bamba. In 1964 he designed the Trini Lopez Standard and Trini Lopez Deluxe guitars for the Gibson Guitar Corp. In 1965 he released Lemon Tree (#20 in the U.S.).
On July 10, 1962 (night) Bell Labs' Telstar I, the world's first privately-funded commercial communication satellite was launched from Cape Canaveral, carrying 12 voice circuits with a combined throughput of 768K bps; on July 23 the first transatlantic broadcast of a TV signal occurred between Earth stations in Andover, Maine, Goonhilly, Cornwall, and Pleumeur-Boudou, France; although the first images were supposed to be of JFK in a trans-Atlantic press conference, he wasn't ready on time so a ML ballgame between the Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field actually showed Ernie Banks first, with BBC broadcaster Richard Dimbleby uttering the soundbyte "There is a face - it's a man's face!", and yes, it was black; meanwhile this year the U.K. transmitted the first color TV pictures via satellite. On Aug. 17, 1962 the Tornados wasted no time in releasing the #1 instrumental hit (in the U.S. and U.K.) Telstar.
The Beatles were the Good Side of the Force, leaving an opening for the Bad Side of the Force to launch its Death Telstar. On July 12, 1962 the English Chelsea blues band Rolling Stones played their first gig at the Marquee Club at 165 Oxford St., London; their first single was a cover of the Chuck Berry song "Come On". Members eventually included Michael Philip "Mick" Jagger (1943-) (vocals) (who bears a striking resemblance to actor Don Knotts?), Keith Richards (1943-) (guitar), Brian (Lewis Brian Hopkins) Jones (1942-69) (guitar), Ian Andrew Robert Stewart (1938-85) (piano), Bill Wyman (William George Perks) (1936-) (bass), and Charles Robert "Charlie" Watts (1941-) (drums). The group was named for the Muddy Waters song "Rollin' Stone". Stewart was dismissed from the band in May 1963 but continued on as road mgr. and session pianist. On Jan. 6, 1964 the Rolling Stones began their first tour as a headline act, along with The Ronettes.
On Aug. 25 1962 Robert George "Bobby" "Boris" Pickett (1938-2007) released his hit Monster Mash, which forever gets trotted out every Halloween.
On Oct. 29, 1962 The Beach Boys, Brian Wilson (1942-), Carl Wilson (1946-98), Dennis Wilson (1944-83), Mike Love (1941-), Al Jardine (1942-), David Marks (1948-), and Bruce Johnson (1942-) (four of whom are related) introduced their new cool skin-cancer-friendly mainly white Southern Calif. musical style with their hit Surfin' Safari. Album #11 Pet Sounds (May 16, 1966) became of the top albums of all time, featuring the hits Wouldn't It Be Nice, and Sloop John B, and God Only Knows. Their hit single Good Vibrations, released on Oct. 10, 1966, title based on mommy telling them that dogs could sense things, was described as "a pocket symphony" by Derek Taylor; it uses the electro-Theremin AKA Tannerin. Also in 1963 their nearest competitors Jan and Dean, consisting of William Jan Berry (1941-2004) and Dean Ormsby Torrence (1940-) released the #1 hit Surf City, followed by Drag City (1963) (#10), The Little Old Lady from Pasadena (1964) (#3), and Dead Man's Curve (1964) (#8). In 1964 the Rip Chords released Hey Little Cobra (#4 in the U.S.) (an uncanny imitation of Jan and Dean), written by Carol Connors (Annette Kleinbard) (1940-) of the Teddy Bears after she purchased her first Cobra (she later co-wrote the "Rocky" theme "Gonna Fly Now" with Ayn Robbins); sung by Bruce Arthur Johnston (Benjamin Baldwin) (1942-) (who joined the Beach Boys on Apr. 9, 1965 after Glen Campbell quit, recording "California Girls" with them) and Terry Melcher (1942-2004) (son of Doris Day, who became a producer for the Byrds and Paul Revere and The Raiders, and whose Bel Air, Los Angeles home was later the scene of the murder of Sharon Tate by the Manson family). Too bad, Jan and Dean lived their own song when on Apr. 12, 1966 (same day that the U.S. used B-52 bombers for the first time against the North Vietnamese, targeting military and industrial installations) Jan almost died in a car accident near Dead Man's Curve on Whittier Blvd. in Beverly Hills after crashing his Corvette into a parked truck and sustaining head injuries incl. brain damage and partial paralysis, causing their music career to rip and become a dead man and old lady and stop until 1978. Let's not forget the Surfaris, from Glendora, Calif., incl. Ron Wilson (1945-89) (drums), Jim Fuller (1947-) (guitar), Bob Berryhill (1947-) (guitar), Pat Connolly (1947-) (bass), and Jim Pash (1948-) (sax), who in early 1963 released their million-selling instrumental Wipe Out (#2 in the U.S) (original title "Switchblade"), which became the #1 Calif. surfer anthem; it starts out with the sound of a breaking surf board; they also released Surfer Joe, and Point Panic (surfing spot in Hawaii).
Also in 1962 Jay and the Americans, from Belle Harbor, Queens, N.Y., fronted by John "Jay" Traynor (1943-), and incl. Howard Kane (Kirschenbaum), Kenny Vance (Rosenberg), Sandy Deanne (Yaguda), and Martin Sanders (Kupersmith) released their first hit She Cried (#5), followed by Only in America (1963) (#28) ("Only in America can a guy from anywhere go to sleep a pauper and wake up a millionaire"). Traynor was then replaced by Jay Black (David Blatt) (1938-), after which they had more success, starting with Come a Little Bit Closer (1964) (#2), then Cara Mia (1965) (#4), This Magic Moment (1968) (#9) (1M copies), and Walkin' in the Rain (#19).
Also in 1962 Boston, Mass.-born lefty rocker Dick Dale (Richard Anthony Monsour) (1937-) ("King of the Surf Guitar"), who played his right-handed Fender Stratocaster upside-down and backwards released his debut album Surfers' Choice, containing his 1-hit wonder Misirlou (Greek for "Egyptian Girl"), a rebetika (Greek refugee from Turkey) song first performed by Michalis Patrinos in Athens in 1927; he did it on a bet that he couldn't play a song on only one string of his guitar. It was features in the 1994 Quentin Tarantino film Pulp Fiction. The album also contained the track Let's Go Trippin', the first surf rock song. Album #3 King of the Surf Guitar (1963) features King of the Surf Guitar, Ghost Riders in the Sky, and Hava Nagila. Album #4 Mr. Eliminator (1964) features Mr. Eliminator, and the Misirlou-like The Victor. Dale's guitar style influenced Italian composer Ennio Morricone (1928-) in such Sergio Leone Spaghetti Westerns as A Fistful of Dollars (1964), featuring the Fistful of Dollars Theme, along with For a Few Dollars More (1965), The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966), and Once Upon a Time in the West (1968).
In 1962 Atlanta, Ga.-born singer Tommy Roe (1942-) released his debut single Sheila (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), pioneering bubblegum rock, followed by Susie Darlin' (1962), Piddle De Pat (1962), Everybody (1963), The Folk Singer (1963), Carol (1964), Come On (1964), Party Girl (1964), Sweet Pea (1966), Hooray for Hazel (1966), It's Now Winters Day (1967), Little Miss Sunshine (1967), Sing Along With Me (1967), Dizzy (1969), Heather Honey (1969), Jack and Jill (1969), Stir It Up and Serve It (1970), We Can Make Music (1970), and Working Class Hero (by John Lennon) (1973). In 1962 LA-born singer Chris Montez (Ezekiel Christopher Montanez) (1943-) released his debut single Let's Dance (#4 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), followed by Some Kinda Fun (1962), Call Me (Nov. 1965) (#22 in the U.S.) (his voice is so high he's mistaken for a woman), and Time After Time (1966) (#36 in the U.S.). On Mar. 9, 1963 the Beatles started a British tour with him and Tommy Roe, after which one night John Lennon fought with him at a London bar and poured a beer over his head, before or after which Montez uttered the soundbyte "Who are these guys, the Beatles? I try to keep up with the British scene, but I don't know their work."
Also in 1962 falsetto singer Frankie Valli (Francis Stephen Castelluccio) (1934-) and his N.J.-based group The Four Seasons began releasing a string of hits, incl. Sherry (1962) (#1 in the U.S.), Big Girls Don't Cry (1962) (#1 in the U.S.), Walk Like a Man (1963) (#1 in the U.S.); Candy Girl (1963) (#3 in the U.S.), Dawn (Go Away) (1964) (#3 in the U.S.), Rag Doll (1964) (#1 in the U.S.), Let's Hang On! (1965) (#3 in the U.S.), Working My Way Back to You (1966) (#9 in the U.S.), Opus 17 (Don't You Worry 'bout Me) (1966) (#13 in the U.S.), I've Got You Under My Skin (1966) (#9 in the U.S.), and Tell It to the Rain (1966) (#10 in the U.S.), lasting surprisingly long under the onslaught of the British Musical Invasion.
In 1962 Polish-American singer Bobby Vinton (Stanley Robert Vintula Jr.) (1935-) (born in Canonsburg, Penn., along with Perry Como) released his debut single Roses are Red (My Love) (#1 in the U.S., #15 in the U.K.), followed by Rain Rain Go Away (1962) (#12 in the U.S.), I Love You the Way You Are (1962) (#38 in the U.S.), Trouble is My Middle Name (1963) (#33 in the U.S.), Over the Mountain (Across the Sea) (1963) (#21 in the U.S.), Blue on Blue (1963) (#3 in the U.S.), Blue Velvet (1963) #1 in the U.S.), There! I've Said It Again (1964) (#1 in the U.S., #34 in the U.K.), My Heart Belongs to Only You (1964) (#9 in the U.S.), Tell Me Why (1964) (#13 in the U.S.), Clinging Vine (1964) (#17 in the U.S.), Mr. Lonely (1964) (#1 in the U.S.), The Bell That Couldn't Jingle (1964), (#23 in the U.S.), Dearest Santa 1965) (#8 in the U.S.), What Color (Is a Man) (1965) (written by Marge Barton; "If you color him blue, son, he may not be a happy man. If you color him red, son, someone may steal his land. If you color him green or yellow, he may be jealous and cowardly. If you color him black, son, he may never be free. Then he told his son, put your crayons away. Try your best to understand. Man is never made of any color, and color never made any man."), I Love How You Love Me (1968) (#9 in the U.S.), Halfway to Paradise (1968) (#23 in the U.S.), To Know You Is to Love You (#34 in the U.S.), The Days of Sand and Shovels (#34 in the U.S.), Sealed With a Kiss (1972) (#19 in the U.S.), and My Melody of Love (1974) (#3 in the U.S.). According to Billboard Mag., he was "the all-time most successful love singer of the Rock Era", with more #1 Billboard hits from 1962-72 than any male vocalist.
Speaking of Brill Bldg. songwriters Hal David and Burt Bacharach, in 1962 East Orange, N.J.-born singer Marie Dionne Warwick (1940-) began partnering with them to produce 56 Billboard 100 singles by 1998, starting with Don't Make Me Over (#21 in the U.S.), followed by Anyone Who Had a Heart (1963) (#8 in the U.S., #42 in the U.K.), Walk On By (1964) (#6 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.), Message to Michael (1966) (#8 in the U.S.), I Say a Little Prayer (1967) (#4 in the U.S.), Valley of the Dolls Theme (1967) (by Andre Previn and Dory Previn) (#2 in the U.S., #28 in the U.K.) (originally written for Judy Garland before she was fired from the film), Do You Know the Way to San Jose? (1968) (#10 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.), Promises, Promises (1968) (#19 in the U.S.), This Girl's in Love With You (1969) (#7 in the U.S.), I'll Never Fall in Love Again (1969) (#6 in the U.S.), Then Came You (w/the Spinners) (1974) (#1 in the U.S., #29 in the U.K.), Deja Vu (1979) (#15 in the U.S.), Heartbreaker (w/the Bee Gees) (1982), Friends in Love (w/Johnny Mathis) (1982), That's What Friends Are For (w/Elton John, Gladys Knight, and Stevie Wonder) (#1 in the U.S., #16 in the U.K.), and What the World Needs Now Is Love (w/TheHipHopNationUnited) (#87 in the U.S.).
Also in 1962 the 1-hit wonder The Rivingtons, a black doowop group from Calif., incl. Carl White (1933-80) (lead vocals), Al Frazier (-2005) (tenor), John "Sonny" Harris (baritone), and Turner "Rocky" Wilson Jr. (bass) released their novelty hit Papa Oom Mow Mow (#48 in the U.S.), followed by The Bird's the Word, produced by Kim Fowley (1939-).
In 1962 the racially integrated Memphis soul band Booker T. and the M.G.'s, consisting of Booker T. Jones (1944-) (keyboards), Steven Lee "Steve" "the Colonel" Cropper (1954-) (guitar), Lewie Steinberg (1933-) (bass), and Al Jackson Jr. (1935-75) (drums) released their debut hit single Green Onions (#3 in the U.S.). In 1965 Steinberg was replaced by Donald "Duck" Dunn (1941-). In 1975 Jackson was murdered, leaving a trio. Dunn and Cropper later played with The Blues Brothers.
Also in 1962 Alabama-born Arthur Alexander (1940-93) released the album You Better Move On, which included the song Anna (Go to Him) (Sept. 17); the lyric is actually "Go with him"; the Beatles recorded it for their 1963 British album "Please Please Me", and later it was parodied on the Fox TV Network show Married: With Children.
Also in 1962 A&M Records was founded in Los Angeles by Tijuana Brass musician Herbert "Herb" "Dore" Alpert (1935-) and Jerome S. "Jerry" Moss (1935-), going on to become the world's largest independent record company. In 1966 they moved their HQ to 1416 N La Brea Ave. (near Sunset Blvd.) in Hollywood, on the grounds of the old Charlie Chaplin Studios. They went on to sign a variety of pop and folk groups incl. the Carpenters, Quincy Jones, the Captain and Tennille, Joan Baez, Phil Ochs, Gene Clark, and Billy Preston, and in the late 1960s added rock groups incl. Procol Harum, Humble Pie, Free, The Move, Spooky Tooth, Fairport Convention, Joe Cocker, Cat Stevens, Carole King, Hummingbird, Cheech & Chong, Nazareth, Y&T, The Tubes, Styx, Supertramp, and Peter Frampton; in 1977 they signed The Sex Pistols but dropped them within a week.
Also in 1962 the instrumental rock group The Spotnicks, formerly The Rebels, Rock-Teddy and The Blue Caps, and The Frazers, incl. Bo Winberg (1939-), Bo Starander (1942-) (guitar), Bjorn Thelin (1942-) (bass), and Ove Johansson (drums), known for wearing spacesuits on stage became the first Swedish group to have internat. success, starting with Orange Blossom Special (#30 in the U.K., #1 in Australia), Hava Nagila (1962) (#13 in the U.K.), Rocket Man (1962), Johnny Guitar (1962), Amapola (1963), and Karelia (1964). They went on to sell 18M records.
Also around 1962 U.S. mainly white teenies began forming Garage Rock Bands, incl. The Barbarians (Cape Cod, Mass.), The Birdwatchers (Miami, Fla.), The Count Five (San Jose, Calif.), The D-Men (New York City), The Fifth Estate (Stamford, Conn.), The Kingsmen (Portland, Ore.), The Music Explosion (Mansfield, Ohio), The Music Machine (Los Angeles, Calif.), The Rationals (Ann Arbor, Mich.), The Remains (Boston, Mass.), Paul Revere and The Raiders (Boise, Idaho), The Rivieras (South Bend, Ind.), The Seeds (Los Angeles, Calif.), The Shadows of Knight (Chicago, Ill.), Tommy James (1947-) and The Shondells (Niles, Mich.), The Sonics (Tacoma, Wash.), The Standells (Los Angeles, Calif.), The Swingin' Medallions (Greenwood, S.C.), The Trashmen (Minneapolis, Minn.), and The Unrelated Segments (Detroit, Mich.). The 1963 The Kingsmen hit Louie Louie (by Richard Berry) became the #1 garage band cover because it's so easy anybody can play its three chords, and everybody knows it has dirty lyrics although they're not sure just where. After most got lucky to even become 1-hit wonders, they peaked in 1966, fell out of the charts by 1968, and became kaput by 1970.
On Feb. 2, 1963 the Beatles started their first U.K. tour, getting the Beatles Screaming Mob Treatment everywhere. On Mar. 22, 1963 they released their debut album Please Please Me; 8 of the 14 songs were written by Lennon and McCartney. Tracks incl. I Saw Her Standing There, Misery, Anna (Go to Him) (by Arthur Alexander), Chains (by Gerry Goffin and Carole King), Boys (by Luther Dixon and Wes Farrell), Ask Me Why, Please Please Me (Jan. 11) (first hit in the U.K.), Love Me Do, P.S. I Love You, Baby It's You (by Mack David, Barney Williams and Burt Bacharach), Do You Want to Know a Secret?, A Taste of Honey (by Bobby Scott and Ric Marlow), There's a Place, Twist and Shout (by Phil Medley and Bert Russell), From Me to You (Apr. 11) (first to chart in the U.S., at #116), She Loves You (Aug. 23) (first to be labeled "Lennon/McCartney" rather than "McCartney/Lennon"), and I Want to (Wanna) Hold Your Hand (Nov. 29) (first made on 4-track equipment, and first Billboard #1 hit). On Sept. 1, 1963 (Sun.) the Beatles made their first U.S. TV appearance on ABC-TV's Big Night Out. On Oct. 13, 1963 after the Beatles made it big with She Loves You (written by Paul and John on June 26 and recorded on July 1) and before recording I Want to Hold Your Hand (Oct. 17), they played at the London Palladium on Argyll St. off Oxford St. in Westminster, London (founded 1910), and the next morning the British press coined the term "Beatlemania". On Nov. 4 they played at the Prince Wales Theatre in London before the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret at the Royal Command Peformance, and John made the quip "Would the people in the cheaper seats clap your hands, and the rest of you, if you'll just rattle your jewelry." The Beatles went on to score 49 top-40 U.S. hits. Just prior to making it big, cutest Beatle Paul McCartney had an affair with Dorothy "Dot" Rhone, who miscarried his baby before he dumped her.
In Mar. 1963 the English (Liverpool) group Gerry and the Pacemakers, originally Gerry Marsden and the Mars Bars, managed by Brian Epstein, and fronted by Gerard "Gerry" Marsden (1942-) released their debut single How Do You Do It? (by Mitch Murray) (#1 in the U.K.), followed by I Like It (by Mitch Murray) (May 1963) (#1 in the U.K.), and You'll Never Walk Alone (by Rodgers and Hammerstein) (Oct. 1963) (#1 in the U.K.), becoming the first group to have #1 U.K. singles with their first three releases (next Frankie Goes to Hollywood). In 1964 they released I'm the One (Jan.) (#2 in the U.K.), Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying (Apr.) (#4 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), It's Gonna Be Alright (Sept.) (#24 in the U.K.), and Ferry Cross the Mersey (Dec.) (#8 in the U.K.), which they performed in the 1965 film (A Hard Day's Night wannabe) Ferry Cross the Mersey, which flopped. They disbanded in Oct. 1966.
In May 1963 the English (Lancashire) rock band The Hollies (named after Christmas holly), incl. Harold Allan Clarke (1942-) (vocals), Graham William Nash (1942-) (guitar), Eric Haydock (1943-) (bass), Tony Hicks (1943-) (guitar), and Robert Hartley "Bobby" Elliott (1942-) (drums) released their debut single Ain't That Just Like Me (#25 in the U.K.), followed by a cover of The Coasters' Searchin' (#12), and Stay (#8). They took the Beatles' slot at the Cavern Club in 1963, and ended up #3 in the British Invasion after the Beatles and Rolling Stones. In Feb. 1964 they released Just One Look (#2 in the U.K.), followed by Here I Go Again (#4), and We're Through (#7). In 1965 they released I'm Alive (#1), Yes I Will (#9), and Look Through My Window (#4). In 1966 they released I Can't Let It Go (#2 in the U.K., #42 in the U.S.), Bus Stop (#5 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.), and Stop Stop Stop (#7 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.). In 1967 they released Carrie Anne (#9 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.). In 1969 they released the album He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother, which features the track He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother (#7 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), written by Sidney Keith "Bob" Russell (1914-70). On Feb. 1, 1972 they released Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress (#2 in the U.S., #32 in the U.K.).
Meanwhile in the U.S. in May 1963 genius-IQ Harvard psychology prof. Timothy Leary (1920-96), who tried LSD for the first time a year earlier, predicted that 1M people will try it within ten years, and was kicked out of his position at Harvard U., along with Jewish psychology prof. Richard Alpert (1931-), who later went to India and returned as guru Baba Ram Dass. The LSD and marijuana drug culture went bigtime by the mid-1960s, finding its way into rock music of course.
In Dec. 1963 the English Merseybeat band The Swinging Blue Jeans, incl. Ray Ennis (1942-), Les Braid (1937-2005), Ralph Ellis (1942-), Norman Kuhlke (1942-), and Terry Sylvester (1946-) released their 1-hit wonder Hippy Hippy Shake (#21 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.), written by Chan Romero in 1959. The Beatles recorded their cover of it already in July 1963. Since one bandmember almost looks like John Lennon, one almost looks like Paul McCartney, and they almost sound like the Beatles, and are from Liverpool too, this forever mixes people up about what hippies are or where they came from? Also in 1963 English singer Mickie Most (Michael Peter Hayes) (1938-2003) released the forgettable mickey mouse U.K. hit Mister Porter. After this he got a job putting records on racks, and in 1976 founded RAK Records (get it?) after discovering the Animals, Herman's Hermits, Donovan, Lulu, Suzi Quatro, and the Jeff Beck Group - did he make the most of it?
In 1963 the New York City Phil Spector girl group The Ronettes, fronted by Phil Spector's babe ("the Original Bad Girl of Rock & Roll") Ronnie Spector (Veronica Yvette Bennett) (1943-), along with her elder sister Estelle Bennett and their cousin Nedra Talley released their first hit single Be My Baby (#1 in the U.S.), followed by Baby, I Love You (1963) (#24), (The Best Part of) Breakin' Up (1964) (#48), and Walking in the Rain (1964) (#20). Too bad, Phil got jealous of their popularity and began backstabbing them to allow The Supremes to eclipse them, giving their song "Chapel of Love" to The Dixie Cups, then refusing to permit Ronnie to tour with the group as it accompanied the Beatles in a 14-city tour of the U.S. in Aug. 1966, substituting their cousin Elaine, causing them to break up in 1967, after which he finished her off by marrying her and keeping her barefoot and pregnant in their Calif. mansion until they divorced in 1972, by which time a comeback was a guaranteed non-starter.
In 1963 Catholic-turned-Rastafarian half-white half-black Robert Nesta "Bob" Marley (1945-81) and the Wailers began recording at the new Studio One record studio on Brentford Rd. in Kingston, Jamaica (first black-owned studio in Jamaica), run by Clement Seymour "Sir Coxsone" Dodd (1932-2004). Their first releases were covers, and their album photos showed them in suits and ties, and it took until the late 60s before they got real, wore dreadlocks and sang political songs. On Apr. 13, 1973 he released Catch a Fire, his Island Records debut, making him an internat. star, which features the tracks Stir It Up, Slave Driver, and 400 Years. His next album Burnin' (Oct. 18, 1973) (last with Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer) features I Shot the Sheriff, and Get Up, Stand Up. The album Rastaman Vibration (Apr. 30, 1976) was his only one to go #1 in the U.S., and features War, and Roots, Rock, Reggae. The album Exodus (June 3, 1977) was voted most important album of the 20th cent. in 1999 by Time mag., and features the tracks Natural Mystic, Exodus, Jamming, and Waiting in Vain. Survival (Oct. 2, 1979) went militant and proclaimed African solidarity, causing the govt. of South Africa to ban it; it features the tracks Africa Unite, Zimbabwe, and So Much Trouble in the World. Uprising (album) (last during his lifetime) (June 10, 1980) was devoted to his Rastafarian beliefs, and features the tracks Redemption Song ("Emancipate yourself from mental slavery/ None but ourselves can free our minds"), Zion Train, Could You Be Loved, and Forever Loving Jah. Marley died on May 11, 1981 in Miami, Fla. from malignant melanoma in his right big toe and/or brain cancer - he loved them foot-long bongs. His posthumous album Confrontation (album) (May 23, 1983) features the hit track Buffalo Soldier. The May 8, 1984 posthumous compilation album Legend was the best-selling reggae album of all time, selling 25M copies worldwide.
In 1963 Saginaw, Mich.-born blind singer Stevie Wonder (Stevland Hardaway Judkins) (Morris) (1950-) released his debut album Recorded Live: The 12-Year-Old Genius, which features Fingertips, and Fingertips - Part 2, the first live single to reach #1 on the Billboard pop singles chart. In 1965 he released the hit single Uptight (Everything's Alright). On Nov. 16, 1966 after his voice changed he released album #6 Down to Earth, which features the hit A Place in the Sun. Album #7 I Was Made to Love Her (Aug. 27, 1967) features the hit I Was Made to Love Her. Album #9 Eivets Rednow (Nov. 20, 1968) was an instrumental album released under his name spelled backwards, and features The Alfie Theme (by Burt Bacharach and Hal David). Album #10 For Once in My Life (Dec. 10, 1968) features the hits For Once in My Life, and Shoo-Be-Doo-Be-Doo-Da-Day. Album #11 My Cherie Amour (Aug. 29, 1969) features the hits My Cherie Amour, Yester-Me, Yester-You, Yesterday, and Light My Fire (by the Doors).
Also in 1963 the English (Manchester) band Freddie and the Dreamers, fronted by 5'3" lenseless horn-rimmed glasses-wearing Freddie Garrity (1936-2006) (who invented the Freddie, a silly dance where you throw your arms up while standing on one leg), and incl. Roy Crewdson (1941-) (vocals), Derek Quinn (1942-) (guitar), Pete Birrell (1941-) (bass), and Bernie Dwyer (1940-2002) (drums) released If You Gotta Make a Fool of Somebody (by James Ray) (#3 in the U.K.), followed by I'm Telling You Now (#1 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), and You Were Made for Me (#3 in the U.K.). In 1964 they released I Understand (#5 in the U.K.). In 1965 they released Do the Freddie (#18 in the U.S.), creating a minor dance craze, causing Chubby Checker to kick in with Let's Do the Freddie.
Also in 1963 the English (Birmingham) rock band The Rockin' Berries, incl. Clive Lea (1942-) (vocals), Chuck Botfield (1943-) (guitar), Geoffrey "Geoff" Turton (1944-) (guitar), Roy Austin (1943-)/Bobby Thompson (1942-) (bass), and Terence "Terry" Bond (1943) (drums), a non-Liverpool group who look like the Beatles and sing like the Beach Boys released their debut single Wah Wah Woo, followed by Itty Bitty Pieces (1963) He's in Town (by Gerry Goffin and Carole King) (1964) (#3 in the U.K.), What In the World's Come Over You (1964) (#23 in the U.K.), I Didn't Mean to Hurt You (1964) (#43 in the U.K.), Poor Man's Son (1965) (#5 in the U.K.), You're My Girl (by Gerry Goffin and Carole King) (1965) (#40 in the U.S.), and The Water Is Over My Head (co-written by Al Kooper) (1965) (#43 in the U.S.). Too bad, no Southern Calif. beaches in rainy England.
Also in 1963 the English (Liverpool) Merseyside band The Searchers, founded in 1959 by Mike Pender (1942-) (guitar, vocals) and John McNally (1941-) (guitar, vocals), and incl. Anthony Paul "Tony" Jackson (1938-2003)/Frank Allen (1943-) (bass), and Chris Curtis (Crummy) (1941-2005) (drums), and named after the 1956 John Wayne Western "The Searchers" released their debut single Sweets for My Sweet (#1 in the U.K.), followed by Sugar and Spice (1963) (#2 in the U.K.), Needles and Pins (1964) (#13 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) (2nd Liverpool group to have a top-20 U.S. hit), Don't Throw Your Love Away (1964) (#16 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), When You Walk in the Room (1964) (#35 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), Someday We're Gonna Love Again (1964) (#34 in the U.S., #11 in the U.K.), Love Potion No. 9 (1964) (#3 in the U.S.), What Have They Done to the Rain (1964) (#29 in the U.S., #13 in the U.K.), Bumble Bee (1965), Goodbye Mr. Love (1965) (#52 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), He's Got No Love (1965) (#79 in the U.S., #12 in the U.K.), When I Get Home (1965) (#35 in the U.K.), and Take Me for What I'm Worth (1965) (#76 in the U.S., #20 in the U.K.).
1963 ended in a big bummer when on Nov. 22, 1963 U.S. president (since 1961) John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy (1917-63) was assassinated as we watched on TV in Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas, becoming the watershed moment of the 20th century and a source of endless conspiracy theories reaching to the very top. During the mourning period Belgian closeted lesbian Dominican nun Soeur Sourir ("Sister Smile") (Sister Luc Gabriel) (Jeanine Deckers) (1933-85), from the Fichermont Convent near Waterloo, Belgium broke the ice and cheered people up when she released her debut album The Singing Nun, which features the tracks Tous les Chemins, and Dominique (#1 in the U.S.), written by Noel Regney (1922-2002), about the 13th cent. Roman Catholic anti-Cathar Crusade, named after his 2nd wife Dominique Gillain. "Dominique" was the second-ever foreign language Billboard #1 hit after Sukiyaki (original title "Ue o Muite Aruko" = "I Look Up When I Walk") (hit #1 in June) by Kyu ("nine") Sakamoto (Hisashi Oshima) (1941-85), composed by Hachidai Nakamura (1931-92), lyrics by Rokusuke Ei (1933-), about a man who looks up and whistles while walking so his tears won't fall; the next foreign language #1 was "Eres Tu" in 1973, ask the conspiracy theorists what they think. Almost the day the mourning period for JFK ended, the U.S. pop-rock music scene was all about them ever-smiling mop-topped English Beatles, who dominated the industry for the rest of the decade, starting on Jan. 3, 1964, when they made their North American TV debut on the Jack Paar Show. On Jan. 10, 1964 Vee-Jay Records of Chicago released Introducing... the Beatles, beating Capitol Records, which released Meet the Beatles! on Jan. 20, after which the two companies went to court, and Vee-Jay was allowed to continue distributing its album after replacing "Love Me Do" and "P.S. I Love You" with "Ask Me Why" and "Please Please Me" on Feb. 10, rising to #2 on the Billboard album charts after "Meet the Beatles!"; on Oct. 15 their license expired after selling 1.3M mono and 41K stereo copies; "I Saw Her Standing There" ended up on both rival albums. On Jan. 18, 1964 the Beatles debuted on the U.S. Billboard Top 40 chart at #35 with "I Want to Hold Your Hand", rocketing to #1 on Jan. 25; on Mar. 21 "She Loves You" was #1 for 2 weeks; on Apr. 4 they held the top 5 positions ("Can't Buy Me Love", "Twist and Shout", "She Loves You", "Please Please Me"); Dolly Parton later utters the soundbyte "Like all young teenage girls back then, I fell in love with the Beatles. Back there in the Smoky Mountains, it was like something had been dropped from outer space." On Feb. 6, 1964 Paris and London agreed to build a rail tunnel (Chunnel) under the English Channel; the same day the Wall Street Journal reports that a group at Wayne State U. had begun a movement to "stamp out the Beatles"; the group was actually from the U. of Detroit. On Feb. 7, 1964 (Fri.) after Capitol Records exec Alan Wendell Livingston (1917-) (the same guy who created Bozo the Clown) signed them, the British Rock and Roll Invasion of the U.S. along with Beatlemania were kicked into high gear by did-I-mention The Beatles as they landed at John F. Kennedy Airport on Pan Am Flight 101 (Boeing 707, #N704PA), and then on Feb. 9 (Sun.) (8:00 p.m.) mesmerized 73.7M viewers in 23M homes on The Ed Sullivan Show on CBS-TV, performing "All My Loving", "Till There Was You" (from the musical "The Music Man"), "She Loves You", "I Saw Her Standing There", and "I Want to Hold Your Hand"; at 4:30 p.m. they taped "Twist and Shout", "Please Please Me", and "I Want to Hold Your Hand" (aired Feb. 23); other performers included the Oliver Kids (from the musical "Oliver!") (incl. Davy Jones, later of The Monkees) (singing "I'll Do Anything"), Frank Gorshin (later the Riddler in Batman), Myron Cohen, Mitzi Gaynor, and Gordon and Sheila McRae; the Beatles were paid $3K for the 4:30 p.m. taping and $3.5K for the 8:00 live performance in Studio 50 (728 seats, up to $50K per ticket); no major crime was reported in New York City between 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m., causing John Lennon to utter the soundbyte "Even the criminals stayed home", and Washington Post ed. B.F. Henry to utter the sarcastic soundbyte "During the hour they were on Ed Sullivan's show, there wasn't a hubcap stolen in America"; the Beatles began filming "A Hard Day's Night" in Mar. So, after the head of their nation was whacked in front of their eyes, the U.S. TV networks presented four young virtually dickless white men who look and sing like dykes (a cross between Alvin and the Chipmunks and Pee-Wee Herman?) and and croon electronically-enhanced female masturbatory love songs in 4-part harmony as the new messiahs for the U.S. Baby Boomer "still living with parents" market, taking their minds off the JFK tragedy and giving Britain its payoff for their part in the conspiracy, naw? Walter Cronkite, whose Dec. 10, 1963 interview launched their success in the U.S., greeted them backstage and had his gaga-eyed daughters pose with them; more Beatles appearances on Ed Sullivan followed on Feb. 16 from the Deauville Hotel in Miami, Fla., Feb. 23, and May 24 (interview about their new movie "A Hard Day's Night). On Feb. 7, 1964 Baskin-Robbins introduced Beatle Nut ice cream. On Feb. 11, 1964 the Beatles made their first live appearance in North Am. in the Washington, D.C. Coliseum; tickets ran $2-$4; the concert was shown on closed-circuit TV on Mar. 14-15; on Feb. 12 the Beatles played two shows at Carnegie Hall in New York City. On Feb. 15, 1964 the Meet the Beatles! album (released Jan. 20) went #1 in the U.S., and stayed there for 11 weeks. On Feb. 18, 1964 after Sonny Liston said that he didn't want to meet the "bums", the Beatles visited with Cassius Clay in Fla. while in training for his match with Liston; too bad, the cocky Beatles got out-cocked by cock of the walk Clay, after which John Lennon uttered the soundbyte, "That man made a fool of us." On May 4, 1964 back in the U.K., the Beatles performed a vetty silly British Pyramus and Thisbe from Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" on BBC-TV, with Paul playing Pyramus, John playing Lady Thisbe, George playing Moonshine, and Ringo playing the Lion, that's it, they're establishment now. Meanwhile on June 1, 1964 (4 mo. after the Beatles) the still non-establishment Rolling Stones arrived in the U.S. for the first time to do TV and eight concerts (the first on June 2 in a high school stadium in Lynn, Mass.), and nobody cared? On Aug. 28, 1964 Bob Dylan and the Beatles met for the first time in New York City, and he introduced them to the joys of marijuana, with Paul being particularly thrilled, uttering the soundbyte "I'm thinking for the first time, really thinking" - did mother Mary come to him speaking words of wisdom? Did I mention Richard Lester's A Hard Day's Night? It was released on July 6, 1964 in the U.K., Aug. 11 in the U.S. The title was thought up by Ringo. It was the Beatles' first film and the first-ever music video. The title song begins with a G7 plus a ninth minus a fourth. John replies "Turn left at Greenland" to the question "How do you find America?"; Ringo replies "I'm a mocker" to the question "Are you a mod or a rocker?"; George replies "Arthur" to the question "What do you call that hairdo?" "Steptoe and Son" star Wilfrid Brambell plays Paul McCartney's grandather, always being called "a very clean old man" in deference to the TV show, where his son Harold always calls him "you dirty old man".
The white masses in the U.S. were slow to respond to the British Invasion, since it involved a paradigm change and lifestyle decision of putting away their Brylcreem and switching from Elvis-style greaser to Beatles-style sosh, along with the faggot jokes, complete with gang wars, all this leaving the field to the black R&B guys. In 1967 16-y.-o. white American female novelist S.E. (Susan Elloise) Hinton (1950-) pub. her first novel The Outsiders, which became a junior-senior high school literary hit, revolutionizing young adult fiction with realistic portrayals. Narrated by Poboy Curtis, it's about the war between the Greasers (incl. Ponyboy Curtis, Soda, and Darry) and the wealthy privileged Socs (Soshes) in Tulsa, Okla. "When I stepped out into the bright sunlight from the darkness of the movie house, I had only two things on my mind: Paul Newman and a ride home..." (first and last sentence).
On Jan. 1, 1964 Dawson, Ga.-born soul singer ("King of Soul") Otis Ray Redding Jr. (1941-67) released his debut album Pain in My Heart (#103 in the U.S., #28 in the U.K.), which features the tracks Pain in My Heart (#61 in the U.S.). These Arms of Mine (#85 in the U.S.), That's What My Heart Needs, Security (#97 in the U.S.). Album #2 The Great Otis Redding Sings Soul Ballads (album #2) (Mar.) (#75 in the U.S., #30 in the U.K.) features For Your Precious Love (by Jerry Butler). Album #3 Otis Blue: Otis Redding Sings Soul (Sept. 15, 1965) (#75 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.) Ole Man Trouble, My Girl (by Smokey Robinson and Ronald White), I've Been Loving You Too Long, and Respect. Album #4 The Soul Album (Apr. 1) (#54 in the U.S., #22 in the U.K.) features Cigarettes and Coffee. Album #5 Complete & Unbelievable: The Otis Redding Dictionary of Soul (Oct. 15, 1967) features Fa-Fa-Fa-Fa-Fa (Sad Song), Try a Little Tenderness, and My Lover's Prayer. On Mar. 16 he and Carla Thomas (1942-) released a duet album King and Queen, which features Tramp (#26 in the U.S.), Knock on Wood (#30 in the U.S.) (by Eddie Floyd), and Lovey Dovey (#60 in the U.S.). On July 10, 1967 he released his first and last live album Live in Europe. On Dec. 10, 1967 he died in a crash of his private plane in Madison, Wisc. three days after recording his biggest hit single (Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay (#1 in the U., #3 in the U.K.), which was released six weeks later in Jan. 1968; "Nothing to live for, and looks like nothing's gonna come my way." The posthumous album The Immortal Otis Redding (June 1968) features The Happy Song (Dum-Dum), I've Got Dreams to Remember, and Hard to Handle. The posthumous album Love Man (June 20, 1969) features Love Man, and Free Me.
On Jan. 10, 1964 the south England group Manfred Mann, composed of Manfred Mann (Manfred Sepse Lubowitz) (1940-) (from South Africa) (keyboards), Michael "Mike" Hugg (1942-) (drums), Michael "Mike" Vickers (1940-) (guitar/sax), Dave Richmond (bass), and Paul Jones (Pond) (1942-) (lead vocals) released the single 5-4-3-2-1 (#5 in the U.K.), followed by Hubble Bubble (Toil and Trouble) on Apr. 10, the #1 U.K.-U.K. hit Do Wah Diddy Diddy on July 10, and Sha La La (#12 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.) on Oct. 9, then If You Gotta Go, Go Now (#2 in the U.K.) on Sept. 10, 1965. In 1966 Paul Jones went solo and released their single High Time, and in July 1966 was replaced by Michael David "Mike" d'Abo (1944-), cousin of English actress Maryam D'Abo (1960-). In 1966 Manfred Mann released the singles Pretty Flamingo (Apr. 15) (#1 in the U.K.) (bass played by Jack Bruce of John Mayall's Bluesbreakers), You Gave Me Somebody to Love (July 1), Poison Ivy (July 1), Just Like a Woman (July 29), and Semi-Detached Suburban Mr. James (Oct. 21). In 1967 they released Ha Ha Said the Clown (Mar. 23), Sweet Pea (May 5), and So Long, Dad (Aug. 25). In 1968 they released The Mighty Quinn (Jan. 12) (#1 in the U.K.) (by Bob Dylan, about an Eskimo), Theme from "Up the Junction" (Feb. 23), My Name is Jack (June 7), and Fox on the Run (Nov. 29) (#5 in the U.K.). On Apr. 18, 1969 they released their last single Ragamuffin Man.
On Feb. 6, 1964 the Wall Street Journal reported that a group at Wayne State U. has launched a movement to "stamp out the Beatles"; the group is actually from the U. of Detroit. On Feb. 28, 1964 the English duo Peter and Gordon, consisting of Peter Asher (1944-) (short redhead with glasses), and Gordon Trueman Riviere Waller (1945-2009) (looks like John Lennon?) released their first single A World Without Love (Feb. 28) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), written by Paul McCartney, who thought it wasn't good enough for the Beatles. Since Peter's redheaded sister Jane Asher (1946-) was dating him, they got to cover his songs (the ones written without John Lennon), some pub. under the alias Bernard Webb - the beginning of the Beatles breakup over McCartney's ego? In 1966 they released album #6 Woman, incl. the hits Woman (Jan. 10), and Lady Godiva (Sept. 9).In Feb. 1964 New York City-born singer Johnny Rivers (John Henry Ramistella) (1942-) released his debut album Johnny Rivers at the Whisky a Go Go (#12 in the U.S.), which features the Chuck Berry cover Memphis (#2 in the U.S.). Album #2 Here We a Go Go Again! (1964) (#38 in the U.S.) features the hits Maybelline (by Chuck Berry), and Midnight Special. Album #3 In Action! (1964) (#42 in the U.S.) features the hit Mountain of Love. Album #4 Meanwhile Back at the Whisky a Go Go (1965) (#21 in the U.S.) features Seventh Son (#7 in the U.S.). In 1966 he released his million-selling hit Secret Agent Man (#3 in the U.S.). Not bad for carving out a niche in the Beatles era without having to grow long hair, just covering up your Italian descent.
In Mar. 1964 while Beatlemania captured the masses, the alternative non-insectoid (more bluesy and dark) group The Animals from Newcastle upon Tyne, England released their debut track Baby Let Me Take You Home (#21 in the U.S.). Their lineup features Eric Victor "Eggs" Burdon (1941-) on vocals (likes to break eggs over naked girls, causing him to be rumored to be the Eggman in the Beatles' song "I Am the Walrus"), Alan Price (1942-) on keyboards, Hilton Stewart Paterson Valentine (1943-) on guitar, Bryan James "Chas" Chandler (1938-96) on bass, and John Steel (1941-) on drums. Their name is a play on the Beatles, get it? More releases followed in 1964, incl. Around and Around, Blue Feeling, Gonna Send You Back to Walker, Talkin' 'Bout You, their breakthrough megahit House of the Rising Sun (June 19) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) (first British Invasion #1 not connected with the Beatles) (first folk rock hit?), Bring It On Home to Me, Boom Boom, I Believe to My Soul, and I'm Crying (Sept.) (#19 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.). In Jan. 1965 they released Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood (#15 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), followed by We Gotta Get Out of This Place, and It's My Life, with Dave Rowberry (1940-2003) replacing Alan Price on keyboards. In Oct. 1966 they released Don't Bring Me Down. Too bad, their mgr. Michael Jeffrey ripped them off, and they changed their name to Eric Burdon and the New Animals and go psychedelic, with John Weider (violin/bass), Vic Briggs (piano), and Danny McCulloch (bass). On Apr. 8, 1967 they released When I Was Young (#15 in the U.S.), followed by San Franciscan Nights (#9 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.), and Monterey (Nov.) (#15 in the U.S.), about the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival, with prophetic lyrics, such as "Young gods smiled upon the crowd/ Their music being born of love/ Children danced night and day/ Religion was being born/ Down in Monterey"; "The Byrds and the Airplane did fly/ Oh, Ravi Shankar's music made me cry", "Her Majesty's Prince Jones smiled as he moved among the crowd/ Ten thousand electric guitars were groovin' real loud", "If you wanna find the truth in life/ Don't pass music by". In Jan. 1968 they released Sky Pilot (#14 in the U.S.) (British for a military chaplain). They broke up in 1968, and in 1969 Eric Burdon joined the group War in Long Beach, Calif.
On June 1, 1964 super-prolific singer-songwriter Dolly Rebecca Parton (1946-), having left the day after high school graduation spent her first day in Nashville in search of a record deal; the second day was spent on her back, and the third at the plastic surgeon's office? In 1966 she married nobody Carl Dean, who enjoyed her big boobs and scrawny behind for the next 4+ decades while remaining out of sight in the background. In 1967 she had a country hit with Dumb Blonde, followed in 1968 by Just Because I'm a Woman, resulting in becoming a country star and replacing "Pretty Miss" Norma Jean Beasler (1938-) on The Porter Wagoner Show in 1967. Of course that wasn't enough for her, and she plotted to become a crossover star too. On Oct. 31, 1971 she released her debut album Coat of Many Colors, which features the track Coat of Many Colors. In 1974 she released the single Jolene. Her 1977 album Here You Come Again features Here You Come Again (#3 in the U.S.), composed by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, her first crossover hit, and Two Doors Down. She followed it with the album Heartbreaker (Aug. 12, 1978), which features Baby I'm Burnin', and I Really Got the Feeling. On Dec. 19, 1980 the Colin Higgins film 9 to 5 (Nine to Five) debuted, starring Dolly Parton, Lily Tomlin, and Jane Fonda as secys. whose sexist boss Dabney Coleman let them humorously enact the women's libbers' dream of ganging up and 'getting' him; it features Dolly's hit song 9 to 5 (#1 in the U.S.), which she allegedly wrote on the set by typing on her fingernails. In 1986 the Dollywood theme park owned by Parton opened in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. in the Smokies.
In June 1964 the English (Twickenham, London) white R&B band The Downliners Sect, (an English version of Sam the Sam and the Pharaohs), incl. Don Craine (1945-), Keith Grant (1946-), Terry Gibson (1947-), Ray Sone, and Johnny Sutton (1945-) (drums) released their debut single Baby, What's Wrong, followed in Sept. by Little Egypt, and in Nov. by Find Out What's Happening. Their 1964 debut album was The Sect. In early 1965 they released the single Wreck of the Old '97, followed in June by I Got Mine, and in Oct. by Bad Storm Coming. In Jan. 1966 they released the single All Night Worker, followed in June by Glendora, followed in Sept. by The Cost of Living (Sept.).
On July 24, 1964 the English rock band The Zombies, formed in 1961 in St. Albans, Hertfordshire England, incl. Rodney Terence "Rod" Argent (1945-), Paul Ashley Warren Atkinson (1946-2004), Colin Edward Michael Bluntstone (1945-), Christopher Taylor "Chris" White (1943-) (bass), and Hugh Grundy released their first hit single She's Not There (#2 in the U.S., #12 in the U.K.). In 1965 they released the hit single Tell Her No (#6 in the U.S.). On Apr. 19, 1968 they released the album Odessey and Oracle ("odyssey" wass misspeled, er, was misspelled by cover designers), which features the tracks Time of the Season (#3 in the U.S.), Care of Cell 44, and This Will Be Our Year. They disbanded before the album was released, and it flopped, although it is now considered one of the top 100 rock albums of all time.
On Aug. 4, 1964 the English (London) rock band The Kinks, consisting of Dave Davies (1947-), Ray Davies (1944-), Pete Quaife (1943-) (bass), and Mick Avory (drums) released their first hit single You Really Got Me (#7 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), which was features on their debut album Kinks (Oct. 2, 1964). After releasing their 2nd hit single All Day and All of the Night (Oct. 23, 1964) (#7 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), and covering Louie Louie, album #2 Kinda Kinks (Mar. 5, 1965), features Tired of Waiting for You (#6 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), and Dancing in the Street. They then released the singles + Everybody's Gonna Be Happy (Mar. 19, 1965) (#17 in the U.K.), Set Me Free (May 21, 1965) (#23 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), See My Friends (July 30, 1965) (#10 in the U.K.), and A Well Respected Man, containing er, social commentary. Album #3 The Kink Kontroversy Nov. 26, 1965) features Till the End of the Day, Dedicated Follower of Fashion, and Where Have All the Good Times Gone. Album #4 Face to Face (Oct. 28, 1966) features Sunny Afternoon (#1 in the U.K.), and Dandy. Album #7 Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire) (Oct. 10, 1969) was big with the critics, and features the tracks Victoria, Shangri-La, and Mr. Churchill Says. Album #8 Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround, Part One (Nov. 27, 1970) (#35 in the U.S.) features Lola (#9 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), and Apeman (#5 in the U.K.). They disbanded in 1996 after 23 studio albums.
On Sept. 16, 1964 prime-time London-based Shindig! debuted on ABC-TV (until Jan. 8, 1966), showcasing top musical acts, hosted by Los Angeles disc jockey Jimmy O'Neill; the first episode features the Beatles. On Jan. 12, 1965 NBC-TV countered with Hullabaloo! (until Aug. 29, 1966), which features a different host each week, and records from both England and Calif.; it was later replaced by "The Monkees".
On Nov. 6, 1964 Epsom, Surrey-born English singer Petula Sally Olwen Clark (1932-) released the #1 U.S. and internat. hit Downtown, followed by I Know A Place (Mar. 1965) (#3 in the U.S., #17 in the U.K.), My Love (Is Warmer Than the Sunshine) (Dec. 1965) (#1 in the U.S., #4 in the U.S.), A Sign Of the Times (1966) (#11 in the U.S., #49 in the U.K.), I Couldn't Live Without Your Love (1966) (#9 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), Who Am I (1966) (#21 in the U.S., #52 in the U.K.), Colour My World (#16 in the U.S., #52 in the U.K.), This Is My Song (Feb. 1967) (#3 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), and Don't Sleep in the Subway (Apr. 1967) (#5 in the U.S.). She went on to sell 68M records.
On Dec. 11, 1964 black Clarksdale, Miss.-born Chicago soul singer Samuel Dale "Sam" Cooke (1931-64, known for 29 top-40 hits since 1957 incl. You Send Me (1957) (#1), Chain Gang (1960) (#2), Wonderful World (1960) (#12), Cupid (1961) (#17), Twistin' the Night Away (1962) (#9), Bring It On Home to Me (1962) (#13), and Another Saturday Night (1963) (#10) was killed in South Los Angeles, Calif. by Bertha Franklin, mgr. of the $3 per night no-tell Hacienda Motel while wearing a sport coat over his nude body after a young woman named Evelyn Carr ran from his room with his clothes and money and he went to her office demanding to know her whereabouts; she later claimed to have been kidnapped from a nightclub and brought there, but later was arrested for prostitution - the reverse O.J. case? He left the posthumous hit single A Change is Gonna Come (1964) (#31 in the U.S.), which Rosa Parks listened to after the assassination of MLK Jr. Also in 1964 Lou Adler (1933-), husband (1964-80) of Shelley Fabares co-founded Dunhill Records, with clients incl. Jan & Dean, Sam Cooke, The Mamas & the Papas, Johnny Rivers, Barry McGuire, and The Grass Roots. In 1967 it sold out to ABC Records for $3M, and Adler went on to produce the 1967 Monterey Internat. Pop Festival, later becoming known for sitting alongside Jack Nicholson at L.A. Lakers NBA games.
In 1964 the English (West Midlands) Beatles clone group The Applejacks, incl. Al Jackson, Martin Baggott, Phil Cash, Don Gould (keyboards), Megan Davies (bass), and Gerry Freeman (drums) released their first hit single Tell Me When (written by Geoff Stephens and Les Reed) (#7 in the U.K.), followed by Like Dreamers Do (by John Lennon and Paul McCartney) (#20 in the U.K.), followed by Three Little Words (I Love You) (#23 in the U.K.), their last hit. Later in the year members Megan Davies and Gerry Freeman got married in the British rock & roll romance of the year.
In 1964 English string-backed folk singing duo Chad and Jeremy, consisting of horn-rimmed glasses-wearing Chad Stuart (David Stuart Chadwick) (1941-) and Jeremy Clyde (Michael Thomas Jeremy Clyde) (1941-) released their debut single Yesterday's Gone, followed by A Summer Song (1964) (#7 in the U.S.), Willow Weep for Me (1965), and Before and After (1965). In the U.S. they began appearing on TV shows incl. "The Dick Van Dyke Show", "The Patty Duke Show", "Batman", even "The Dating Game (Clyde appeared as a bachelor contestant and won the date).
In 1964 Manchester, England-based Wayne Fontana (Glyn Geoffrey Ellis) (1945-) and The Mindbenders scored their first hit with Um, Um, Um, Um, Um, Um (#5 in the U.K.), followed by Game of Love (#1 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.). In 1966 Fontana scores the solo hit Pamela Pamela (#11 in the U.K.).
In 1964 Scottish singer Lulu (Marie McDonald McLaughlin Lawrie) (1948-) released her debut single Shout (by the Isley Brothers) (#7 in the U.K.), followed in 1967 with To Sir, With Love (#1 in the U.S.), the theme song from James Clavell's To Sir, With Love (June 14, 1967), based on the 1959 autobio. novel by Guyanese writer E. R. Braithwaite, starring Sidney Poitier as black schoolteacher Mark Thackeray, who has an advanced degree but can't get a job in his field because of discrimination and ends up teaching white English students Barbara "Bags" Pegg (Lulu), Grace Evans (Faith Brook), Theo Weston (Geoffrey Bayldon) et al. In 1974 she sung the The Man With the Golden Gun Theme.
In 1964 English R&B group Georgie Fame (1943-) and the Blue Flames released their debut album Rhythm and Blues at the Flamingo, which features the tracks Green Onions, and Bend a Little. Album #2 Fame At Last (Oct. 1964) (#15 in the U.K.) was their first to chart. Album #3 Yeh Yeh (1965) features Yeh Yeh (#1 in the U.K.), and Like We Used to Be. Album #4 Sweet Things (1966) features Get Away (#1 in the U.K.), Sunny (#13 in the U.K.), and Sitting in the Park (#12 in the U.K.). On Dec. 26, 1966 the Fame in '67 Show opened for three weeks at London's Saville Theatre, featuring them along with Cat Stevens, who had just released his first hit song "I Love My Dog". They were the only U.K. act to be invited to perform with the first Motown Review in the U.K., which included The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, and Martha Reeves and the Vandellas. Album #5 The Two Faces of Fame (1967) features Because I Love You, and Try My World. Album #6 The Third Face of Fame (1968) features the movie theme The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde (#7 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.). Album #7 Seventh Son (1969) features Seventh Son.
In 1964 English (Swanley, Kent) singer Crispian St. Peters (1939-2010) released You Were On My Mind (#2 in the U.K.) (written in 1964 by Sylvia Tyson), followed in summer 1996 by The Pied Piper (#4 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.). In 1965 the San Francisco, Calif. group We Five, consisting of Beverly Bivens, Michael Stewart, Jerry Burgan, Peter Fullerton, and Bob Jones released their cover of You Were On My Mind, which went #3 in the U.S.
Also in 1964 the English (Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire) humorous pop-rock group The Barron Knights, original name Knights of the Round Table, known for parodying top pop groups incl. the Dave Clark Five, Beatles, and Rolling Stones, incl. Duke D'Mond (1943-) (vocals), Barron Anthony (Anthony John Osmond) (1934-) (vocals), Leslie John "Butch" Baker (1941-), Peter Langford (1943-) (bass), Dave Alan Ballinger (1939-) (drums) released their first hit single Call Up the Groups (#3 in the U.K.), followed by Pop Go the Workers (1965) (#5 in the U.K.), and Merry Gentle Pops (1965) (#9 in the U.K.).
In 1964 the English (London) rock band ("the uglier cousins of the Rolling Stones") The Pretty Things, (who started out wearing black suits and ties and shades - the model for the Blues Brothers?), named after the 1955 Bo Diddley song "Pretty Thing", incl. former Rolling Stones member Richard Clifford "Dick" Taylor (1943-), Phil May (Phillip Arthur Dennis Wadey) (1944-), Brian Pendleton (1944-2001), John Stax (John Edward Lee Fullegar) (1944-) (bass), and Vivian St. John "Viv" Prince (1941-) (drums) released their debut single Rosalyn (#41 in the U.K.), followed the same year by Don't Bring Me Down (by Johnny Dee) (#10 in the U.K.), and Honey I Need (#13 in the U.K.). Their Mar. 1965 debut album The Pretty Things features the tracks Pretty Thing (by Willie Dixon), Road Runner, She's Fine, She's Mine, and Rosalyn. Album #2 Get the Picture (Dec. 1965) features Buzz the Jerk, and Get the Picture. In 1966 they released the singles Midnight to Six Man, Come See Me, A House in the Country, and Progress (Dec.). Album #3 Emotions (Apr. 18, 1967) features Growing In My Mind. Album #4 S.F. Sorrow (Dec., 1968), one of the first rock concept slash rock opera albums, about Sebastian F. Sorrow features S.F. Sorrow Is Born, Bracelets of Fingers, Balloon Burning, and Baron Saturday. Album #5 Parachute (June 1970) features She Was Tall, She Was High, In the Square, and Sickle Clowns. Album #6 Freeway Madness (Dec. 1972) features Rip Off Train, and Love is Good. Album #7 Silk Torpedo (1974) features Singapore Silk Torpedo, and Atlanta.
Back to protest singer Philip David "Phil" Ochs (1940-76) (pronounced like Oaks). In 1964 he released his debut album All the News That's Fit to Sing, and became known as the "singing journalist" grooving on the tidbit that the New York Times was founded by no-relation Adolph Ochs; it features Power and the Glory, and The Bells. Album #2 I Ain't Marching Anymore (1965) features I Ain't Marching Anymore ("It's always the old who lead us to the war/ It's always the young who fall/ But look at all we've won with a saber and a gun/ Tell me is it worth it all?/ I ain't marching any more, no I ain't marching anymore"), Draft Dodger Rag ("Oh I'm just a typical American boy from a typical American town/ I believe in God and Senator Dodd and akeepin' old Castro down,/ And when it came my time to serve I knew, better red than dead,/ But when I got to my old draft board, buddy, this is what I said,/ Sarge, I'm only eighteen, I got a ruptured spleen,/ And I always carry a purse/ I got eyes like a bat, and my feet are flat, and my asthma's getting worse"), That Was the President (tribute to JFK) ("The bullets of the false revenge have struck us once again/ As the angry seas have struck upon the sand,/ And it seemed as though a friendless world had lost itself a friend/ That was the president and that was the man"), Talking Birmingham Jam ("You see, Alabama is a sovereign state/ With sovereign dogs and sovereign hate/ They stand for the Bible, for the Constitution/ They stand against the Communist revolution/ They say, It's pinkos like you that freed the slaves"), Links on the Chain ("Come you ranks of labor, come you union core/ And see if you remember the struggles of before,/ When you were standing helpless on the outside of the door/ And you started building links on the chain/ On the chain, you started building links on the chain"). Album #3 Phil Ochs in Concert (1966) features There But For Fortune, Bracero, Canons of Christianity, Cops of the World, Ringing of Revolution, and I'm Gonna Say It Now. Album #4 Pleasures of the Harbor (Oct. 31, 1967) features Pleasures of the Harbor (based on the 1940 John Wayne flick "The Long Voyage Home"), Outside of a Small Circle of Friends (the Kitty Genovese murder) (gets banned from radio for suggesting that smoking marijuana is more fun than drinking beer), The Party, The Crucifixion (his masterpiece?) (compares JFK to Christ, bringing RK to tears in an 1968 performance). Album #5 Tape from California (July 1968) features Tape from California, The War Is Over (if people just declare it's over, it will be?), The Harder They Fall, White Boots Marching in a Yellow Land, When In Rome (13 min. on depression). Album #6 Rehearsals for Retirement (1960) has cover showing Ochs' tombstone, with the words "Died: Chicago, Illinois, 1968", and features the tracks Pretty Smart On My Part (about a right-winger who plans to assassinate the U.S. pres., causing a special note to be put in his lengthy FBI file), William Butler Years Visits Lincoln Park and Escapes Unscathed (the 1968 Dem. Convention), The World Began in Eden and Ended in Los Angeles, and Doesn't Lenny Live Here Anymore. Too bad, on Mar. 27, 1970 Ochs held a concert at Carnegie Hall in New York City, shocking fans by deciding that the Yippies and other leftist protesters were going in the wrong direction, and showing up in a gold lame Elvis Presley lookalike Nudie Cohn suit and singing covers of songs by Presley, Conway Twitty, Buddy Holly and Merle Haggard; after a telephone bomb threat cut it short, he told pissed-off fans he will get them into a 2nd show for free, and breaks the glass to the box office, cutting his hand, then breaks into the lockbox, getting him banned for life after the 2nd show; after telling fans that Buddy Holly songs are "just as much Phil Ochs as anything else" and getting booed, he told them to "not be like Spiro Agnew... You can be a bigot from all sides. You can be a bigot against blacks. You can be a bigot against music." His last album Gunfight at Carnegie Hall (album #7) (1975) was his famous gold-suited Mar. 27, 1970 Carnegie Hall concert. On Apr. 9, 1976 he committed suicide by hanging in Far Rockaway, N.Y. after changing his name to John Butler Train and telling people that he had murdered Ochs.
Speaking of protest singers. In 1964 Canadian Cree activist singer Beverly "Buffy" Sainte-Marie (1941-) released her debut album It's My Way!, which features Now That the Buffalo's Gone (mistreatment of Native Ams.), Codeine, and Universal Soldier, proclaiming her as the Vietnam era's Pocahontas with a guitar. In 1968 she released the album I'm Gonna Be a Country Girl Again, which features I'm Gonna Be a Country Girl Again, and Take My Hand for Awhile. In 1970 she released the hit single The Circle Game from the 1970 film The Strawberry Statement, directed by Stuart Hagmann.
In Feb. 1965 the English (London) group The Yardbirds, consisting of future superstar guitarists Eric Patrick Clapton (1945-), Geoffrey Arnold "Jeff" Beck (1944-), and James Patrick "Jimmy" Page (1944-), along with Paul Samwell-Smith (1943-) (bass), Keith William Relf (1943-76) (harmonica), Chris Dreja (1945-) (guitar), and James Stanley "Jim" McCarty (1943-) released their first hit single For Your Love (#6 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), followed by Heart Full of Soul (June 1965), Shapes of Things (Mar. 1966) (#11 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), and Over Under Sideways Down (May 1966) (#13 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.). They broke up in 1968, and lead guitarist Jimmy Page formed Led Zeppelin.
In Apr. 1965 The Beau Brummels, from San Francisco, Calif., incl. Sal Valentino (1942-) (vocals), Ron Elliott (1943-) (guitar), Ron Meagher (1946-) (bass), John Declan Mulligan (1938-) (guitar), and John Petersen (1942-2007) (drums) released their debut album Introducing the Beau Brummels (#24 in the U.S.), which features the tracks Laugh Laugh (#15 in the U.S.), (Cry) Just a Little (#8 in the U.S.), and Oh Lonesome Me (by Don Gibson). They were the first U.S. band that sounded like the Beatles, pioneering the San Francisco Sound. Album #2 The Beau Brummels, Volume 2 (Aug. 1965) features You Tell Me Why (#38 in the U.S.), and Don't Talk to Strangers (#52 in the U.S.). Album #4 Triangle (July 1967) (#197 in the U.S.) features Magic Hollow, and Only Dreamin' Now. Album #5 Bradley's Barn (Oct. 1968) was named after a recording studio in Nashville used by Buddy Holly in 1956, and pioneered country rock, featuring the tracks Long Walking Down to Misery, and Cherokee Girl.
On June 27, 1965 ABC-TV debuted Where the Action Is, a Dick Clark bandstand show on a Calif. beach featuring "house band" Paul Revere and The Raiders, who released Louie Louie in 1963 and portrayed themselves as the Yankee answer to the redcoat British invasion, fronted by former bakery employee Mark Lindsay (1942-), who sold hamburger buns to restaurant owner Paul Revere Dick (1938-) in Caldwell, Idaho, the rest is history. In 1966 they released their first hit single Hungry (#6 in the U.S.), followed by Kicks (1966) (#4 in the U.S.), Him Or Me - What's It Gonna Be? (1967), and Indian Reservation (The Lament of the Cherokee Reservation Indian) (1971) (#1 in the U.S.).
On July 10, 1965 the Rolling Stones single Satisfaction (a song about commercialism, based on a cool guitar riff created by Keith Richards in his sleep) went #1 on the U.S. pop charts for four weeks, shocking the older generation with the casual sexual connotations in its lyrics, incl. "can't get no girl reaction" and "I'm trying to make some girl, who tells me baby better come back later next week 'cause you see I'm on a losing streak" (her period), becoming the perfect theme song of the year leading into the big 1966. On July 29, 1965 Elizabeth II attended the debut of Richard Lester's Help! (original title "Eight Arms to Hold You"), the Beatles' 2nd film, about an Arab cult chasing the Fab Four in order to acquire Ringo's ruby ring. The Beatles ride skibobs to the song "Ticket to Ride". The closing credits thank the inventor of the sewing machine. The film score was composed by the Beatles along with English film composer Kenneth "Ken" Thorne (1924-). It debuted in New York City on Aug. 11. The Beatles album Help was released on Aug. 6, 1965, featuring the title song Help! and Ticket to Ride. On Aug. 15, 1965 the Beatles on their 2nd U.S. tour performed at New York's Shea Stadium before 55K, then appeared on Sept. 12 on the Ed Sullivan Show. On Sept. 25, 1965 the animated series The Beatles debuted on ABC-TV for 39 episodes (until Sept. 7, 1969), with each episode named after a Beatles song, the story based on the lyrics, and the tune played sometime during the episode; the voices of John and George were provided by Paul Frees (1920-86). On Oct. 9, 1965 Yesterday went #1 in the U.S. for four weeks. On Oct. 17, 1965 a time capsule, a twin to the one buried during the 1939 New York World's Fair was buried 10 ft. away at the close of the 1964 World's Fair; this one included a bikini and a Beatles record - which has more hair on it? On Oct. 26, 1965 after being nominated by former Merseyside MP Harold Wilson, Queen Elizabeth II awarded the Beatles the Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in Buckingham Palace; only Paul was pleased; John uttered the soundbyte "I thought you had to drive tanks and win wars to get the MBE." They gave an interview about it on June 12 after the initial announcement - just bring in big tax bucks? On Dec. 3, 1965 the Beatles began their final U.K. concert tour in Glasgow. On Dec. 25, 1965 (Christmas) after knocking "I Want to Hold Your Hand" off the top of the British charts with Glad All Over (causing them to become the 2nd British Invasion group after the Beatles to appear on the Ed Sullivan Show), The Dave Clark Five (AKA DC5) single Over and Over (written by Bobby Day) went #1 in the U.S., passing the Beatles, becoming their only #1 hit, with fan mags. touting them as the U.S. answer to the Beatles even as they tanked and disbanded in late 1970. Meanwhile in 1965 after leaving EMI, Beatles producer ("the Fifth Beatle") George Henry Martin (1926-) opened the Associated Independent Recording Co. in London, going on to set up a recording studio on the Ireland-like Caribbean island of Montserrat in the 1970s, becoming a vacation-work spot for Elton John, The Rolling Stones, Duran Duran, The Police, Supertramp et al.
In July 1965 the English (Birmingham) beat group The Spencer Davis Group, formed by Welsh musician Spencer David Nelson Davis (1936-), along with Steve Winwood (1948-) (vocals, guitar) and Muff Winwood (1943-) (bass) released their debut album First Album. Album #2 Second Album (Jan. 1966) features the track Keep On Running, which was played on black U.S. radio stations only until they aws their photo, causing them to drop it, although it became a hit in Britain. Album #3 Gimme Some Lovin' (1966) features Gimme Some Lovin', Let Me Down Easy, Somebody Help Me; and When I Come Home. Album #5 I'm a Man (July 1967) features I'm a Man, Time Seller, Don't Want You No More, and Mr. Second-Class, after which Steve Winwood left to form Traffic, and Muff Winwood went to Island Records.
Speaking of Paul Kantner. In Sept. 1965 the new San Francisco psychedelic hippie group Jefferson Airplane performed at the first acid rock dance at Longshoreman's Hall, launching their recording career. On Sept. 1, 1966 they released their debut album Jefferson Airplane Takes Off. Vocalist Signe Toly Anderson (1941-) and drummer Alexander Lee "Skip" Spence (1946-99) were then replaced by vocalist Grace Slick (Grace Barnett Wing) (1939-) and drummer Spencer Dryden (1938-2005), and Skip Spence went to Moby Grape. Other members were Paul Lorin Kantner (1941-), Marty Balin (Martyn Jerel Buchwald) (1942-), Jorma Ludwik Kaukonen Jr. (1940-), and John William "Jack" Casady (1944-). In Feb. 1967 they released their 2nd album Surrealistic Pillow, containing the hit tracks White Rabbit and Somebody to Love, which stoked the fucking-like-rabbits love-somebody-anybody 1967 Summer of Love, that actually began on Jan. 14, 1967 with the Great Human Be-In, which drew 20K-30K, and introduced the U.S. masses to the LSD-soaked flower power Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Fran along with the word psychedelic, and the hippie lifestyle that felt it okay to openly do group sex, drugs, and rock and roll, along with leftist politics, especially anti-Vietnam protests, along with general disapproval of their parents and their world, with it being their mission to start over, albeit their parents gave them the greatest world ever known, materially and militarily, and all they could do was give it away and ruin their kids' world, which they did? The Summer of Love drew up to 100K from around the U.S., coming in VW buses and hitchhiking, after which Haight-Ashbury clones began sprouting up across the U.S. This might also be considered to be the Summer of Rock, when it inseminated the minds of the entire Baby Boomer Generation for better or worse. The downside was venereal diseases, hard drugs and drug ODs, forced prostitution, etc., but never mind. At least the U.S. developed its own counter-British center for rock and roll, right after the Beatles made their last stand there, wouldn't you love somebody to love, you better find somebody to love, yikes, here comes the hate and ashes. In 1969 when Grace Slick was recovering from throat node surgery, Jack Casady and Jorma Kaukonen formed the blues rock band Hot Tuna along with drummer Sammy Piazza. Their debut album Hot Tuna (May 1970) (#30 in the U.S.) features Hesitation Blues, How Long Blues, I Know You Rider, and Come Back Baby. Album #5 America's Choice (May 1975) (#75 in the U.S.) features Funky #7, and Walkin' Blues.
In Sept. 1965 American pop folk duo Simon & Garfunkel (formed in 1957 as Tom & Jerry) released their #1 U.S. hit The Sound of Silence, which was features in their album #2 Sounds of Silence (Jan. 17, 1966), and in the 1967 film The Graduate. It was first released as a folksy acoustic version in their debut album Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M. (Oct. 19, 1964), which flopped after the Beatles drowned them out, but which was hopped-up by their producer without their knowledge and released as a single, making them into reluctant stars, I was going to go through my whole life being fat before I lost the weight. The album also included the hits I Am a Rock, Richard Cory, and Kathy's Song. Album #3 Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme (Oct. 10, 1966) (#4 in the U.S.) includes the hit tracks Scarborough Fair/Canticle, 7 O'Clock News/Silent Night, The Dangling Conversation, A Poem on the Underground Wall, and Homeward Bound. The Graduate Soundtrack album (Jan. 21, 1968) includes their hit Mrs. Robinson, along with "The Sounds of Silence" and "Scarborough Fair". Album #4 Bookends (Apr. 3, 1968) features the hit tracks Bookends, America, A Hazy Shade of Winter, At the Zoo, and Fakin' It. Album #5 Bridge Over Troubled Water (Jan. 26, 1970), named for their frequent fights was their last and best album, selling 25M copies worldwide, which features the tracks Bridge Over Troubled Water, The Boxer, El Condor Pasa (If I Could), and Cecilia. Their breakup was almost as big as the Beatles', punctuating the folk side of the 1960s.
On Nov. 25, 1965 (Thur.) (Thanksgiving) folk singer Arlo Davy Guthrie (1947-) (son of folk singer Woody Guthrie) and his friend Richard Robbins (1946-) are arrested in Stockbridge, Mass. for dumping some trash on a holiday by officer William J. "Obie" Obanhein (1924-94) after a Thanksgiving feast at a restaurant run by Alice M. Brock, after which on Nov. 27 they plead guilty before blind judge James E. Hannon after seeing the "27 8-by-10 color glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what each one was to be used as evidence against us", and are fined $50 and told to pick up the garbage; later turned into the hit 1967 song "Alice's Restaurant (Massacree)".
1965 was the last year to see a rash of mixed greaser-sosh groups hit the top of the charts, incl. The Knickerbockers from Bergenfield, N.J., incl. Buddy Randell (William Crandall) (vocals), Beau Charles (guitar), John Charles (bass), and Jimmy Walker (drums), who released their 1-hit wonder, the first U.S. Beatles clone hit Lies (#20 in the U.S.). Longer-lasting were Herman's Hermits from Manchester, England, incl. Peter Blair Denis Bernard Noone (1947-) (lead vocals), Keith Hopwood (1946-) (guitar, vocals), Alan Wrigley (bass, vocals), Steve Titterington (drums), Derek "Lek" Leckenby (1943-94) (guitar, vocals), and Jan Barry "Bean" Whitwam (1946-) (drums), who had their first hit in late 1964 with I'm Into Something Good (#13 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.). Their Feb. 1965 debut album Introducing Herman's Hermits produced by Mickie Most features the tracks Mrs. Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter (#1 in the U.S.), I'm Henry VIII, I Am, and Wonderful World (#4 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.) ("Don't know much about history/ Don't know much about biology/ Don't know much about the French I took./ But I do know that I love you/ And I know that if you loved me too/ What a wonderful world this would be.") In Feb. 1967 they released the hit track There's A Kind of Hush (#4 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.). Another big star was Glasgow-born Scottish singer Donovan (Donovan Philips Leitch) (1946-), who hit the charts in 1965 with Catch the Wind and Colours, followed in 1966 with Sunshine Superman. In mid-1966 after being explosed on the TV documentary "A Boy Called Donovan", he became the first high-profile British pop star to get arrested for marijuana possession, which didn't stop his career, as in Mar. 1967 he released Mellow Yellow, in July 1967 he released There Is a Mountain, and in May 1968 he released Hurdy Gurdy Man. In early 1968 he went with the Beatles, Mike Love, Mia and Prudence Farrow et al. to India to visit Transcendental Meditation (TM) guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (1914-2008), turning them all onto Eastern mysticism, powered by LSD, hashish, etc., life was great for the rich and famous back before the War on Drugs. In Nov. 1968 Donovan released his #7 U.S. hit Atlantis. Another top group was The Byrds from LA, pioneers along with Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne, James Taylor, Carly Simon, Fleetwood Mac, and the Eagles of the Laurel Canyon Sound, who started out on Apr. 12, 1965 with Mr. Tambourine Man, then on Oct. 1 released Turn! Turn! Turn! (based on the Bible book of Ecclesiastes), followed on Mar. 14, 1966 with Eight Miles High, and on Sept. 6, 1966 with Mr. Spaceman. Another rock duo who made it big in 1965 was Sonny and Cher, who had a #1 U.S. hit with I Got You Babe (May 4) and Baby Don't Go. Another top star was Wilson Pickett (1941-2006), who in 1965 released his first million-selling hit In the Midnight Hour (#21 in the U.S.); it was composed by Pickett and Steve Cropper in the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, where Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered in Apr. 1968. In 1966 Pickett released the million-seller Mustang Sally (#23 in the U.S.), along with the #1 R&B hit Land of One Thousand Dances (by Chris Kenner) (#6 in the U.S.), followed in 1967 by yet another, Funky Broadway (#8 in the U.S.). Another top group was Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs, fronted by Domingo "Sam" Samudio (1937-), who in 1965 released their first hit Wooly Bully (#2 in the U.S.), followed in 1966 by Li'l Red Riding Hood (#2 in the U.S.). In 1965 the Young Rascals (later The Rascals) from Garfield, N.J., incl. Edward "Eddie" Brigati Jr. 1945-) (vocals), Felix Cavaliere (1944-) (keyboard), Gene Cornish (1944-) (guitar) (all three formerly of Joey Dee and the Starliters), and Dino Danelli (1944-) (drums) released their debut single I Ain't Gonna Eat Out My Heart Anymore, followed on Mar. 28, 1966 by their debut album The Young Rascals (#15 in the U.S.), which features the #1 U.S. hit Good Lovin'. After releasing singles You Better Run (1966), and Come On Up (1966), album #2 Collections (Jan. 9, 1967) (#15 in the U.S.) features the tracks (I've Been) Lonely Too Long (#16 in the U.S.), and Love Is a Beautiful Thing (#20 in the U.S.). Album #3 Groovin' (July 31, 1967) (#5 in the U.S.) features the tracks Groovin', A Girl Like You, and How Can I Be Sure. Album #4 Once Upon A Dream (Feb. 19, 1968) (#9 in the U.S.) features the tracks It's Wonderful, and Once Upon A Dream. In 1968 they also released the single Beautiful Morning. Album #5 (double album) Freedom Suite (Mar. 17, 1969) features People Got to Be Free. In Aug. 1965 The Lovin' Spoonful, fronted by John Benson Sebastian Jr. (1944-), godson of "I Love Lucy" actress Vivian Vance, scored with Do You Believe in Magic (#9 in the U.S.), followed in 1966 by Summer in the City (#1 in the U.S.), and Daydream (#2 in the U.S. and U.K.). Also in 1965 Gary Lewis and the Playboys, fronted by Gary Lewis (Gary Harold Lee Levitch) (1946-), son of comedian Jerry Lewis released their #1 U.S. debut single This Diamond Ring, followed by Everybody Loves a Clown. In Jan. 1967 after becoming the only 1960s artist to have his first seven releases reach the Billboard top-10, Lewis is drafted into the U.S. Army, ending his music career after 8 gold singles, 17 top 40 hits, 4 gold albums, and 45M records sold. Also in 1965 The Five Americans, (formerly the Mutineers) from Durant, Okla., incl. Mike Rabon, John Durrill, Norm Ezell, Jim Grant, and Jimmy Wright released their debut single Show Me. Album #2 Western Union (1967) features the hit track Western Union (#5 in the U.S.). Album #3 Progressions (1967) features Sound of Love, and Zip Code. Also in 1965 The Strangeloves (a New York group that pretended to be from Australia) released their 1-hit wonder I Want Candy (#11 in the US.), followed by Cara-Lin (#30), and Night Time (#30). Also in 1965 Valdosta, Ga.-born singer Billy Joe Royal (1942-) released his 1-hit wonder album #2 Down in the Boondocks (#96 in the U.S.), which features the tracks Down in the Boondocks (#9 in the U.S.), I Knew You When (#14 in the U.S.) (both written by Joe South), and I've Got to Be Somebody (#38 in the U.S.). In 1965 the vocal group The Vogues, originally the Val-Airs, from Turtle Creek, Penn., incl. Bill Burkette (lead baritone), Don Miller (baritone), Hugh Geyer (first tenor), and Chuck Blasko (tenor) released their debut album Meet the Vogues, which features the track You're the One (#4 in the U.S.). Album #2 Five O'Clock World (1966) features Five O'Clock World (#4 in the U.S.). Album #3 Turn Around, Look at Me (1968) features their last hits Turn Around, Look at Me (by Glen Campbell) (#7 in the U.S.), and My Special Angel (by Bobby Helms) (#7 in the U.S.). In 1965 Milwaukee, Wisc.-born former lead singer with The Limeliters (1959-63) Glenn Yarbrough (Arnold Roshan Slimer) (1930-) released his 1-hit wonder Baby, the Rain Must Fall (#12 in the U.S.), from the film of the same name. Also in 1965 the 1-hit wonder Mexican-American band Cannibal and the Headhunters, from East Los Angeles, incl. Frankie "Cannibal" Garcia (-1996), Joe "Yo Yo" Jaramillo (-2000), Robert "Bobby" "Rabbit" Jaramillo, and Richard "Scar" Lopez (-2010) released Land of One Thousand Dances (by Chris Kenner) (#30 in the U.S.). Meanwhile in Oct. 1965 English mod rock band The Action (favorite of Phil Collins), from Kentish Town, North West London, incl. Reginald "Reg" King (1945-2010) (vocals), Alan "Bam" King (1945-) (guitar), Mike "Ace" Evans (1944-2010) (bass), Roger Powell (1945-) (drums) released their debut single Land of One Thousand Dances, which was a hit with critics but got no sales action, causing them to be dropped from Parlophone in 1967, after which King went on to form 1-hit wonder Ace. Also in 1965 Dino, Desi and Billy, Dean Paul "Dino "Martin (1951-87) (son of Dean Martin), Desiderio Alberto "Desi" Arnaz Jr. (1953-) (son of Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball), William "Billy" Hinsche (1951-) (brother of Carl Wilson's wife Annie Hinsche) released the singles I'm a Fool (#17 in the U.S.), and Not the Lovin' Kind (by Lee Hazelwood) (#25 in the U.S.). Signed to Reprised Records, they got special treatment despite lack of talent, incl. session musicians, all to produce two lame charters. Also in Oct. 1965 West Philly-born singer Len Barry (Leonard Borisoff) (1942-) released his 1-hit wonder 1-2-3 (#2 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.).
Also in 1965 the improvisational San Francisco band The Grateful Dead (originally the Warlocks) (named picked out of the Funk & Wagnalls Folklore Dictionary at random), fronted by Jerome John "Jerry" Garcia (1942-95), and incl. Phillip Chapman "Phil" Lesh (1940-) (bass), Robert Hall "Bob" Weir (1947-) (rhythm guitar), Ronald C. "Ron" "Pigpen" McKernan (1945-73) (keyboards), Bill Kreutzmann (1946-) (drums), Mickey Hart (1943-) (drums), Tom "TC" Constanten (1944-) (keyboards) began playing gigs to LSD-drenched Deadheads in a street party form that became all their own. Their biggest commercial hit was album #12 In the Dark (July 6, 1987) (their only album to reach the Billboard 200 top-10), which features their biggest hit single Touch of Grey, known for the refrain "I will get by/ I will survive". Also in 1965 The Blues Project of Greenwich Village, consisting of Danny Kalb (1942-) (guitar, vocals), Al Kooper (Alan Petr Kuperschmidt) (1944-) (keyboards, vocals), Steve Katz (1945-) (guitar, vocals), Andy Kulburg (1944-2002) (bass), and Roy Blumenfeld (drums) was formed as another improvisational band that was meant to be New York City's answer to the Grateful Dead. After releasing two albums in 1966, Live at the Cafe Au Go Go, which features Catch the Wind, and Back Door Man, followed by Projections, which features Two Trains Running, they split up in 1967, after which Kooper and Katz formed Blood, Sweat & Tears.
Another rock band formed in 1965 in New York City was The Velvet Underground, whose members included Lewis Allen "Lou" Reed (Lewis Allen Rabinowitz) (1942-) and Welsh-born John Davies Cale (1942-), and who never made it big commercially because they explored the dark side, although they became one of the most influential groups of the 1960s under the management of "15 Minutes of Fame" publicity genius and pop artist Andy Warhol (Andrew Warhola) (1928-87). Their Mar. 12, 1967 debut album The Velvet Underground & Nico (#171 in the U.S.) (most influential album that nobody bought?) features German singer Nico (Christa Paffgen) (Päffgen) (1938-88), who hooked up with Lou Reed, Jim Morrison, Jackson Browne, Brian Jones, Tim Buckley, Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, and Philippe Garrel. Other members were Holmes Sterling Morrison Jr. (1942-95), and Angus MacLise (1938-79)/ Maureen Ann "Moe" Tucker (1944-) (drums). Actually it might have been the most influential album of the 20th cent., founding glam rock, punk rock, post punk rock, Goth rock, shoegazing et al. It was named after the 1963 Michael Leigh orgy-wife-swapping-S&M book The Velvet Underground, and features a cover by Andy Warhol showing a bright yellow banana with "Peel slowly and see" on a tab, under which is a pink peeled banana. Tracks included All Tomorrow's Parties, I'm Waiting for the Man (who sells heroin), Sunday Morning, European Son (dedicated to Lou Reed's friend Delmore Schwartz), Venus in Furs (BDSM) ("Whiplash girl child in the dark/ Clubs and bells, your servant, don't forsake him/ Strike, dear mistress, and cure his heart"), and Heroin ("I have made the big decision/ I'm gonna try to nullify my life"). After the 1960s ended they broke up, and bi Lou Reed went on to score the 1971 gay hit Walk on the Wild Side.
In 1965 Welsh singer Tom Jones (Thomas John Woodward) (1940-), born in the same Welsh village of Pontyprydd as actor Richard Burton (originally Tommy Scott the Twisting Vocalist, then renamed after the 1963 film Tom Jones starring Albert Finney) released his debut album Along Came Jones (#11 in the U.K.), which features the track It's Not Unusual (#54 in the U.S.), written by Les Reed, which became his theme song. Album #3 What's New Pussycat (1965) features his hit What's New Pussycat?, from the Woody Allen movie (his first as actor and screenwriter). Album #6 Green, Green Grass of Home (1966) (#65 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.) features Green Green Grass of Home.
In 1965 Canadian singer Morna Anne Murray (1945-) released her debut album What About Me, which features the tracks What About Me, and The Last Thing on My Mind. Album #2 This Way Is My Way (Oct. 1969) features the hit track Snowbird, She went on to sell 54M albums.
1966 was the big Millennial Fever year, with associations to St. John's Revelation and the Number of the Beast 666, causing Hollywood to exploit it with the flick Rosemary's Baby (which was released on June 12, 1968 - 6+6+6), and good actor Anton Szandor LaVey (1930-97) to come out of the woodwork with the Church of Satan. The Apr. 8, 1966 issue of Time mag. had the cover title Is God Dead? In Apr. 1966 rock promoter Chester Leo "Chet" Helms (1942-2005) of the Family Dog began holding concerts at the Avalon Ballroom at 1268 Sutter St. in San Francisco, Calif., competing with Bill Graham (Wolodia Grajonca) (1931-91), who staged concerts at the Fillmore Auditorium at Fillmore St. and Geary Blvd., then in 1968 moved to Fillmore West at Market St. and South Van Ness Ave. On May 13, 1966 the Rolling Stones released album #4 (#6 in the U.S.) Aftermath, containing the 666-ish hit singles Paint It Black ("No colors anymore, I want them to turn black... I wanna see the Sun blotted out from the sky"), Under My Thumb ("Under my thumb, the girl who once had me down"), Mother's Little Helper ("What a drag it is getting old"), Out Time, and Lady Jane. Speaking of gods dying, on Mar. 4, 1966 comments by Beatle John Lennon in an interview with his friend-lover journalist Maureen Cleave (1941-) (inspiration for the Beatles song "Norwegian Wood") were pub. in the London Evening Standard, in which he uttered the soundbyte: "Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn't argue with that; I'm right and I will be proved right. We're more popular than Jesus now; I don't know which will go first, rock and roll or Christianity. Jesus was all right but his disciples were thick and ordinary. It's them twisting it that ruins it for me." After it was ignored in Britain, U.S. teen mag Datebook reprinted the quote out of context on July 29 on its front cover, pissing off Christian extremists in the U.S, who soon got into mass record burning and burning in effigy, causing the Beatles to have to fend off endless reporters' questions with lame semi-apologies; on Aug. 11, 1966 the beleaguered Beatles held a press conference in Chicago, Ill., and John Lennon backtracked on his "more popular than Jesus" remarks, saying "I didn't mean it as a lousy anti-religious thing"; Beatlesmania developed a dark anti-Christian side, and by the end of the decade the Beatles had dumped Christanity forever? On Aug. 16, 1966 the Beatles performed at Shea Stadium in N.Y., the first show on their U.S. summer tour, taking in $304K from 55.6K fans, the largest show business gross to date, earning $160K for 30 min. On Aug. 29, 1966 (Mon.) the Beatles concluded their Fourth U.S. Tour (which opened on Aug. 12 in Chicago, Ill.) with their last public concert at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, Calif. "San Francisco is 49 square miles surrounded by reality" (Paul Kantner of the Jefferson Airplane). On Nov. 9, 1966 John Lennon first met Yoko Ono at a preview of her exhibition at Indica Gallery in Mason's Yard, Mayfair, London, featuring a panel on the ceiling with the word "yes" on it, climbing a ladder and viewing it through an attached microscope, after which she passed him a card reading "Breathe", then wouldn't let him hammer a nail into a white board that has a sign inviting visitors to do it because he didn't pay for admission, after which the gallery owner told her who he is (she allegedly didn't know), causing her to relent and offer to let him do it for five shillings, to which he replied "I'll give you an imaginary five shillings if you let me hammer an imaginary nail" - it was a long night, even layered and in a sleeping bag? On Nov. 24, 1966 the Beatles decided to reinvent themselves, and locked themselves up in a studio to begin recording their paradigm-shifting album #8 Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band ("the world's first 41-min. single"), which went on to become the #1 rock album of all time, launching the era of the studio album, selling 32M copies.
In Jan. 1966 Bronx, N.Y.-born singer-songwriter Laura Nyro (Nigro) (1947-97) (pr. NEE-ro) (who sold "And When I Die" to Peter, Paul and Mary for $5K) released her debut album More Than a New Discovery, which features the tracks And When I Die, Wedding Bell Blues, Blowin' Away, and Stoney End. In 1967 she appeared at the Monterey Pop Festival. Album #2 Eli and the Thirteenth Confession (Mar. 3, 1968) features Stoned Soul Picnic, Eli's Comin', Emmie (first pop lesbian love song?), and Timer. Album #3 New York Tendaberry (Sept. 24, 1969) (#32 in the U.S.) features New York Tendaberry, Time and Love, and Save the Country. Album #4 Christmas and the Beads of Sweat (Nov. 25, 1970) (#51 in the U.S.) features Beads of Sweat, and Up on the Roof (by Gerry Goffin and Carole King) (#92 in the U.S.). Album #6 Smile (Feb. 1976) (#60 in the U.S.) features Money, I Am the Blues, Stormy Love, and The Cat Song. While she became mildly popular, several groups become super popular releasing covers of her songs. She died on Apr. 8, 1997 of ovarian cancer, like her mother Gilda.
In Jan. 1966 Am. rock critic ("Godfather of Modern Rock Journalism") (fan of Philip K. Dick) Paul S. Williams (1948-2013) founds Crawdaddy!, the first serious rock mag., which champions The Velvet Underground, The Grateful Dead et al.; he leaves the mag. in 1968-93; he is in attendance at the Lennon-Ono Bed-In in Montreal.
In Feb. 1966 Nancy Sandra Sinatra (1940-), daughter of Frank Sinatra (who was married to Mia Farrow from 1966-8, who was the star of "Rosemary's Baby", making this a perfect time for a 666-powered hit?) released her 1-hit wonder These Boots Are Made For Walkin' (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.). In 2005 Jessica Simpson covered it in the film "The Dukes of Hazzard" (#14 in the U.S.). Not quite 1-hit wonder when pairing up with others, in 1967 she and her daddy Frank Sinatra (1915-98) released the hit Somethin' Stupid (#1 in the U.S.), written by Clarence Carson Parks II (1936-2005). In 1968 she and Lee Hazlewood (1929-2007) released the album Nancy & Lee, which features the hit track Some Velvet Morning; "About Phaedra, how she gave me life". In 1967 she sung the theme for the James Bond 007 film You Only Live Twice.
In Mar. 1966 the New York anti-war rock band The Fugs (euphemism for Fucks) (founded 1964), consisting of poets Ed Sanders (1939-) and Naphtali "Tuli" Kupferberg (1923-2011) (who once jumped off the Manhattan Bridge and survived, ending up in Allen Ginsberg's "Howl"), and Ken Weaver (drums) released album #2 The Fugs (#95 in the U.S.), the first underground rock album, which features the tracks Kill for Peace, Frenzy, Group Grope, I Want to Know, and Skin Flowers. Their 1968 album It Crawled Into My Hand, Honest features the tracks Crystal Liaison, Johnny Piss Off, and Wide Wide River.
On Apr. 16, 1966 Ala.-born R&B/soul singer Percy Sledge (1941-) released his big debut hit single When a Man Loves a Woman (#1 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), followed by Warm and Tender Love (1966), It Tears Me Up (1966), Baby, Help Me (1967), Out of Left Field (1967), Love Me Tender (1967), Just Out of Reach (Of My Two Empty Arms) (1967), Cover Me (1967), Take Time to Know Her (1968), Sudden Stop (1968), You're All Around Me (1968), and Any Day Now (1969).
On May 21, 1966 New York City-born Neil Leslie Diamond (1941-) released his first of 37 top-40 hit singles Solitary Man (#55 in the U.S.), followed on Aug. 20 by Cherry, Cherry (#6 in the U.S.), both released by Bang Records. He followed this in 1967 with Girl, You'll Be a Woman Soon (Apr. 8) (#10 in the U.S.), Thank the Lord for the Night Time (July 15) (#13 in the U.S.), and Kentucky Woman (Oct. 14) (#22 in the U.S.). In 1969 he released Shilo (Sept.) (#24 in the U.S.), Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show (Feb. 22) (#22 in the U.S.), Sweet Caroline (June 28) (#4 in the U.S.) (inspired by JFK's 11-y.-o. daughter Caroline Kennedy) (audiences begin singing "So good so good so good" during perf.), Holly Holy (Nov. 1) (#6 in the U.S.). In 1970 he released Cracklin' Rosie (Aug. 22) (#1 in the U.S.), and He Ain't Heavy... He's My Brother (Nov. 7) (#20 in the U.S.). In 1971 he released I Am I Said (Mar. 27) (#4 in the U.S.), and I'm a Believer (June 26) (#51 in the U.S.). In 1972 he released Song Sung Blue (May 6) (#1 in the U.S.), and Play Me (Aug. 12) (#11 in the U.S.). In 1974 he released Longfellow Serenade (Nov. 5) (#5 in the U.S.). In 1978 he released You Don't Bring Me Flowers (w/Barbra Streisand) (Oct. 28) (#1 in the U.S.). In 1979 he released Forever in Blue Jeans (Jan. 27) (#20 in the U.S.). He went on to sell 115M records incl. 75M albums.
On June 20, 1966 the Beatles released album #6 Yesterday... and Today (#1 in the U.S.), with the "butcher cover" showing them dressed in white smocks covered with pieces of raw meat and decapitated dolls, pissing off Christian fans, who were already pissed off by John Lennon's statement that the Beatles are bigger than Jesus; it features Baby You Can Drive My Car, I'm Only Sleeping, Nowhere Man, Doctor Robert, Yesterday, Act Naturally, And Your Bird Can Sing, If I Needed Someone, We Can Work It Out, What Goes On, and Day Tripper. On Aug. 5, 1966 they released album #7 Revolver (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), which popularized Backward Masking (Backmasking); it features Taxman, Eleanor Rigby (four violins, two cellos and two violas, with score by George Martin) ("Eleanor Rigby died in the church and was buried along with her name/ Nobody came/ Father MacKenzie wiping the dirt from his hands as he walks from the grave/ No one was saved"), I'm Only Sleeping, Here, There and Everywhere, Yellow Submarine, She Said She Said, Good Day Sunshine, And Your Bird Can Sing, For No One, Doctor Robert, I Want to Tell You, Got to Get You into My Life, and Tomorrow Never Knows, based on their LSD adventures before Yoko arrives; "Listen to the color of your dreams".
On Sept. 12, 1966 after a year of black protests, the town of Grenada, Miss. became a scene of racial strife as white mobs attacked black children trying to integrate white schools while the police did nothing; folk singer Joan Baez and other activists tried to protect the children, only to be harassed by the police; on Sept. 16 a judge issued an injunction, causing state troopers to be called out; on Sept. 18 the FBI arrested 13 whites on conspiracy charges, causing the mobs to disappear; on Sept. 19 MLK Jr. addressed a rally of 650; too bad, the fight went to another level as the children were harassed in the schools, causing walkouts, strikes and boycotts the rest of the year.
On Sept. 12, 1966 the anti-Millennial Fever NBC-TV series The Monkees debuted (until Mar. 25, 1968), starring the new studio-recruited Americanized Beatles clone group The Monkees, composed of English-born vocalist David Thomas "Davy" Jones (1945-), drummer George Michael "Micky" Dolenz (1945-), and guitarists Robert Michael Nesmith (1942-) (known for wearing a knit cap, presumably to cover a bald spot), and dorky Peter Tork (1942-). Their debut album The Monkees (Oct. 10, 1966) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) sold 5M copies, and features the tracks Theme from The Monkees, Saturday's Child, and Last Train to Clarksville (#1 in the U.S.) (a secret anti-Vietnam War song). Album #2 More of the Monkees (Jan. 9, 1967) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) sold 5M copies) (#3 album of the 1960s), and features I'm a Believer (written by Neil Diamond) (#1 in the U.S.) (over 1M pre-orders; biggest single of 1967), (I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone, Mary, Mary, She, and Your Auntie Grizelda. Album #3 Headquarters (May 22, 1967) (#1 in the U.S.) sold 2M copies, and was the first where they write their own songs and play their own instruments; it features Shades of Gray, For Pete's Sake, and Randy Scouse Git. Album #4 Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd. (Nov. 6, 196) (#1 in the U.S.) features Mickey Dolenz on one of the first 20 Moog synthesizers sold; it features Pleasant Valley Sunday, Daily Nightly, and Star Collector. Album #5 The Birds, the Bees & the Monkees (Apr. 22, 1968) (#3 in the U.S.) sold 1M copies, and features Valleri, Head Soundtrack (Dec. 1, 1968), last with all four Monkees until 1996 has a cover surfaced with aluminized PET film; it features Porpoise Song (Head Theme), and Circle Sky. Too bad, greedy Michael Nesmith sold out the others by making secret deals for the B-sides of singles and royalties, alienating them later when all they got was their lousy $500 a week from the studio. In 1970 he released the solo single Joanne.
On Dec. 9, 1966 the English supergroup Cream, consisting of Eric Patrick Clapton (1945-) (guitarist) (from the Yardbirds), John Symon Asher "Jack" Bruce (1943-) (bass) (from John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers), and Peter Edward "Ginger" Baker (1939-) (drums) released their debut album Fresh Cream, containing the hit I Feel Free. Album #2 Disraeli Gears (Nov. 1967) (garbled word for derailleur gears) contained the hits Strange Brew, and Sunshine of Your Love. Album #3 Wheels of Fire (Aug. 1968) (#1 in the U.S.) (#3 in the U.K.) was the world's first platinum double album, featuring the hits White Room, Sitting on Top of the World, and Born Under a Bad Sign. In just two years they sold 35M albums.
In 1966 the LA-based rock band (with the potential of becoming the American Beatles?) Buffalo Springfield was formed, consisting of Neil Percival Young (1945-), Stephen Arthur Stills (1945-), Paul Richard "Ritchie" Furay (1944-), James Melvin "Jim" Messina (1947-), Dewey Martin (1940-2009) (drums), and Bruce Palmer (1946-2004) (bass), and named after the Buffalo-Springfield [Steam] Roller Co. After performing at the Whisky-a-Go-Go in Los Angeles from May 2-June 18, 1966, they got a deal with Ahmet Ertegun of Atlantic Records, and released the hit For What It's Worth (#7 in the U.S.) (written and sung by Stills), a protest against a police action against protesters of the closing of Pandora's Box nightclub on Sunset Strip. Too bad, they disbanded on May 5, 1968 after 25 mo., after which all went their own ways: Furay and Messina formed the country rock band Poco, known for the hit Kind Woman, then disbanded after the Eagles' 1972 hit "Take It Easy" borrowed their style; Messina went on to form the pop rock duo Loggins and Messina; Young and Stills formed Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young; Martin formed the New Buffalo Springfield; Palmer suffered numerous drug arrests and was kicked out of the band, then resurfaced in summer 1969 to play for Crosby, Stills, and Nash for 2 weeks; after his Souther-Hillman-Furay Band (1974) disbanded, Furay moved to Sugarloaf Mt. W of Boulder, Colo. and formed the Ritchie Furay Band (1976), then in 1983 Furay became pastor of Cavalry Chapel in Broomfield, Colo. Another 1-hit wonder from 1966 is The Standells from LA, who released Dirty Water, about the Charles River in Boston, Mass.: "Down by the river, down by the banks of the river Charles, that's where you'll find me, along with lovers, fuckers and thieves... oh Boston, you're my home." Another group that hit it big in 1966 was the English (Andover) rock band The Troggs (formerly the Troglodytes), with Wild Thing and With A Girl Like You, followed in May 13, 1967 with the release of Love Is All Around. Also in 1966 Tommy James (1947-) and the Shondells of Niles, Mich. had their first hit Hanky Panky (#1 in the U.S.), which was released in 1963 under the Snap Records label, which had no nat. distribution, then finally became a hit after a Pittsburgh, Penn. disc jockey gave it regular airplay, making Tommy James star and causing him to reform the band, and release a string of hits, incl. I Think We're Alone Now (1967), Mirage (1967) (#10 in the U.S.), Mony Mony (1968) (#3 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), Crimson and Clover (1968) (#1 in the U.S.), Sweet Cherry Wine (1969) (#7 in the U.S.), and Crystal Blue Persuasion (1969) (#2 in the U.S.). In July 1966 the racially-mixed LA group Love (originally The Grass Roots until they found out the name was taken) released their debut album, becoming Jim Morrison's favorite group. Members included Arthur Lee (1945-2006) (vocals) (black), Johnny Echols (1947-) (guitar) (black), Bryan Maclean (1946-98) (guitar, vocals), Kenneth Raymond "Ken" Forssi (1943-88) (bass), Alan "Snoopy" Pfisterer (1946-) (drums). Their first and only hit was My Little Red Book by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, about Mao's you know what . Also in six six 1966 the Royal Guardsmen from Ocala, Fla. scored a big hit with the million-selling Snoopy vs. the Red Baron (#2 in the U.S.). Another group forever linked with 1966 is Question Mark (?) and the Mysterians of Bay City, Mich. (named after the 1957 Japanese sci-fi film "The Mysterians"), fronted by ? (Rudy Martinez), who had a #1 million-seller with the 2-chord garage band song 96 Tears, the first mainstream Latino rock group U.S. pop hit; the band also incl. Frank Rodriguez (Vox organ), Bobby Balderrama (guitar), Frank Lugo (bass), and Eddie Serrato (drums); named after the 1957 Japanese sci-fi film "The Mysterians"; lead singer Rudy Martinez only appears in public with sunglasses, and claims to be a Martian. Another 1-hit wonder garage band that made it in 1966 was The Music Machine from LA (formerly the Ragamuffins), who scored with Talk Talk; they liked to wear all-black clothing and black moptop hardos, and incl. Thomas Harvey "Sean" Bonniwell (1940-2011) (who wears a single black glove), Mark Landon (guitar), Keith Olsen (bass), Doug Rhodes (1945-) (Farfisa organ), and Ron Edgar (drums); too bad, they broke up after one album, which also features the tracks Cherry Cherry, Double Yellow Line, Hey Joe, Taxman, and The People in Me. Another 1-hit wonder was Napoleon XIV (Jerry Samuels) (1938-), who scored with the zany They're Coming to Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa! (#3 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), released in July 1966, rocketing to the top-5 before mental illness advocacy groups started complaining, causing radio stations to quit playing it, ha-haaa. Another 1-hit wonder was Janis Ian (Janis Eddy Fink) (1951-), who in 1966 released Society's Child (#14 in the U.S.), about a white (Jewish) girl dating a black guy and getting hell for it, which she performed on The Smother's Brothers Comedy Hour, that's national activism right in your living room. Another 1-hit wonder group was The Count Five of San Jose, Calif., consisting of John "Mouse" Michalski (1948-), Kenn Ellner (1948-), Roy Chaney (1948-) (bass), John "Sean" Byrne (1947-), and Craig "Butch" Atkinson (1947-) (drums), who wore Count Dracula capes when performing, and in 1966 released their hit Psychotic Reaction. Also in 1966 the beach music group The Swingin' Medallions from Greenwood, S.C., incl. John McElrath (keyboards), Jim Doares (guitar), Carroll Bledsoe (trumpet), Charles Webber (trumpet), Brent Forston (sax), Steven Caldwell (sax), James Perkins (bass), and Joe Morris (drums) released their 1-hit wonder Double Shot (of My Baby's Love) (#17 in the U.S.). Also in 1966 the U.S. GI Band (in Germany) The Monks, formerly the 5 Torquays, incl. Gary Burger (vocals), Eddie Shaw (bass), Larry Clark (Lawrence Spangler) (organ), Dave Day (David Havlicek) (-2008) (guitar), and Roger Johnston (-2004) (drums), known for shaving their heads monk-style released their album Black Monk Time, which features the tracks Monk Chant, Monk Time, I Can't Get Over You, and Cuckoo. Also in 1966 the Easton, Penn.-based rock band The Cyrkle (named by atty. Nathan Weiss and spelled by John Lennon), incl. Don Dannemann (vocals, buitar), Tom Dawes (vocals, bass), Earl Pickens (keyboards), and Marty Fried (drums) released two classic hits, Red Rubber Ball (#2 in the U.S.), and Turn Down Day (#16 in the U.S.). Too bad, they disbanded in 1967.
In 1966 the English (London) band The New Vaudeville Band, formed by songwriter Geoffrey "Geoff" Stephens (1934-) released their debut album Winchester Cathedral, which features the megahit (1967 best contemporary song Grammy) Winchester Cathedral (#1 in the U.S.) (3M copies). Album #2 On Tour (1967) features the tracks Peek-A-Boo (#7 in the U.K.), Finchley Central (#11 in the U.K.), and Green Street Green (#37 in the U.K.).
Also in 1966 Chicago-born soul-jazz-blue singer Louis Allen "Lou" Rawls (d. 2006) (high school classmates with Sam Cooke) released his debut single Love is a Hurtin' Thing, followed by Dead End Street (1967), Your Good Thing (Is About to End) (1969), Natural Man (1970), You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine (1976) (#2 in the U.S.) (his breakthrough hit), and Lady Love (1978), becoming a pioneer of "pre-rap". He sold 40M records.
On Jan. 4, 1967 the apocalyptic LA group The Doors (named after a line from William Blake's "Marriage of Heaven and Hell": "If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is, infinite"), fronted by short-lived Messianic singer James Douglas "Jim" Morrison (1943-71), and incl. Robert Alan "Robby" Krieger (1946-) (guitar), John Paul Densmore (1944-) (drums), and Raymond Daniel "Ray" Manzarek Jr. (1939-2013) (keyboards) (Vox Continental organ) released their debut album The Doors, which features their first #1 single Light My Fire, plus the 12-min. track The End, which fit in nicely with the 666 year 1966 and the ever-growing death list from the Vietnam War, and apocalypticized the Summer of Love. On Sept. 25, 1967 they released album #2 Strange Days, which features People Are Strange. On July 11, 1968 they released album #3 Waiting for the Sun, which features their 2nd #1 single Hello, I Love You. Album #5 Morrison Hotel (Hard Rock Cafe) (Feb. 1970) features Roadhouse Blues. Album #6 L.A. Woman (Apr. 1971) was the last with Jim Morrison, who moved to Paris and died on July 3; it features L.A. Woman, Love Her Madly, and Riders on the Storm.
1967 was a great year for psychedelic hippie rock, it's easy, anybody can do it. On Jan. 30, 1967 the Stone Poneys released their debut album The Stone Poneys, featuring singer Linda Ronstadt (1946-). Album #2 Evergreen, Volume 2 (June 1967) features the hit Different Drum (by Michael Nesmith). After going solo in 1969, she proved she wasn't a one-trick pony, becoming known as the Queen of Rock.
In Jan. 1967 the English (Birmingham) rock band The Move (formed in Dec. 1966), composed of Carl Wayne (vocals); Roy Adrian Wood (1946-), Beverley "Bev" Bevan (1944-) (drums), Christopher John "Chris" "Ace" Kefford (1946-) (bass), and Trevor Burton (Ireson) (1944-) (guitar) release their first hit single Night of Fear #2 in the U.K.), followed in Apr. by I Can Hear the Grass Grow (#5 in the U.K.), and in Aug. by Flowers in the Rain (#2 in the U.K.). On Sept. 30, 1967 BBC Radio 1 began broadcasting, and the first single played was "Flowers in the Rain" by The Move; the 2nd was "Massachusetts" by the Bee Gees; in 2007 the compilation cover album Radio 1 Established 1967 was pub.. After their fearless mgr. (formerly mgr. of The Moody Blues) Anthony Michael "Tony" Secunda (1940-95) made them dress up in Blues Brothers Chicago gangsters suits and adopt an "auto destruction" stage act in order to rival the Who, then went too far and pub. a promotional poster showing married British PM Harold Wilson in bed with his private secy. (since 1956) Marcia Matilda Williams (later Baroness Falkender) (1932-) (who got promoted in 1964 to er, head of his political office), Wilson successfully sued for libel and got all royalties from the song assigned to a charity of his choosing, causing the group to fire Secunda, who formed the supergroup Balls in 1969 with Trevor Burton of The Move and Denny Laine of The Moody Blues, then when that flopped, became the mgr. of T.Rex with Marc Bolan in 1971; meanwhile The Move chickened out about releasing Vote for Me for fear of another lawsuit, and it wasn't pub. until 1997; in 1972 they reformed as the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO).
On Feb. 5, 1967 The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour debuted on CBS-TV (until Sept. 15, 1969), combining great comedy and music with boundary-pushing political criticism of the LBJ regime and the Vietnam War, going on to beat "Bonanza" for the top audience ratings and host top rock acts incl. The Beatles until LBJ pulled strings with his personal friend and CBS head William S. Paley and got the show summarily cancelled, using a comic sermon by Canadian Jewish comedian David Steinberg (1942-) as an excuse, when he said "The Old Testament scholars say that Jonah was swallowed by a whale. The Gentiles, the New Testament scholars say, 'Hold it, Jews, no'. They literally grabbed the Jews by the Old Testament."
On Feb. 14, 1967 the 1-hit wonder The Turtles released their hit Happy Together. On Feb. 25, 1967 the 1-hit wonder The Seeds released Pushing Too Hard. Speaking of The Seeds, they were part of the Paisley Underground LA alternative rock scene, which later produced The Bangles. In Feb. 1967 the 2-hit wonder The Left Banke released their two "Bach Rock" hits Walk Away Renee, and Pretty Ballerina. In Feb. 1967 The Buckinghams, from Chicago, Ill., incl. Dennis Tufano (vocals), Nick Fortuna (bass), Carl Giammarese (guitar), Jon Poulos (drums), and Dennis Miccolis (keyboards) released their debut single Kind of a Drag (Feb.) (#1 in the U.S.) (1M copies) (written by Jim Holvay), followed by Don't You Care (#6), Mercy, Mercy, Mercy (#5), and Hey Baby, They're Playing Our Song (#12). In 1968 they released Susan (#11), and Back in Love Again (#57), then broke up in 1970.
In Apr. 1967 San Francisco, Calif.-based Country Joe and the Fish released their debut album Electric Music for the Mind and Body (#39 in the U.S.); the group was named after the popular name for Joseph Stalin, and for Mao's statement that the true Commie revolutionary "moves through the peasantry as the fish does through water", and incl. Joseph Allen "Country Joe" McDonald (1942-) (vocals), Barry "the Fish" Melton (guitar), David Cohen (keyboards), Bruce Barthol (bass), and Gary "Chicken" Hirsh (drums); an early example of psychedelic rock, it featured Flying High, Section 43, Bass Strings, Happiness is a Porpoise Mouth, Janis, Grace, and Not So Sweet Martha Lorraine. In Nov. 1967 they released album #2 I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-to-Die (#67 in the U.S.), which featured The Fish Cheer/I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-to-Die-Rag (The Vietnam Song); "And it's one, two, three, what are we fighting for?/ Don't ask me I don't give a damn/ Next stop is Vietnam"; Kid Ory's daughter Babette Ory unsuccessfully sues for copyright infringement in 2001 for infringing her daddy's "Muskrat Ramble" (1926). In 1968 they released album #3 Together (#23 in the U.S.), which featured Susan, and Mojo Navigator.
In Apr. 1967 The Electric Prunes, formerly The Sanctions, and Jim and the Lords, from San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles, Calif., incl. James Lowe (vocals), Ken Williams (guitar), James "Weasel" Spagnola, Mike Gannon, Michael Weakley, Mark Tulin (bass), Joe Dooley/Preston Ritter (drums) (Kenny Loggins was a member briefly) released their debut album The Electric Prunes, which features their signature song I Had Too Much to Dream (Last Night) (by Annette Tucker and Nancie Mantz) (#11 in the U.S., #49 in the U.K.), and Get Me to the World on Time. "Here they are ladies and gentlemen, the former Plums, the future Pits of America, here they are, the Electric Prunes" (Tommy Smothers). Album #2 Underground (Aug. 1967) features The Great Banana Hoax. Album #3 Mass in F Minor (Jan. 1968) was a psychedelic Latin Mass that was too difficult for them, causing them to break up and The Collectors to be hired by producer David Axelrod to finish; it features Kyrie Eleison, which was features in the 1969 film "Easy Rider".
While American whites in 1967 were looking for love, American blacks were still looking for a little respect? In Apr. 1967 black singer Aretha Louise Franklin (1942-) released the hit single Respect, becoming the first of 20 #1 U.S. R&B singles; in 1987 she released her 2nd #1 U.S. hit I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me) with George Michael. In 1967 she also released I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You), (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman, and Do Right Woman, Do Right Man ("Take me to heart and I'll always love you"). The preacher's daughter went on to win the best female R&B performer Grammy every year from 1967 until 1974, causing her to be nicknamed "Lady Soul" and "the Queen of Soul".
On May 12, 1967 the English (Richmond, London) band Procol Harum (named after a friend's Burmese cat) released their 1-hit wonder single A Whiter Shade of Pale. In June 1967 the San Francisco rock group Moby Grape, led by Canadian-born Alexander Lee "Skip" Spence (1946-99) released their debut album Moby Grape (#24 in the U.S.), which features the Skip Spence song Omaha. Too bad, they suffered from a perfect storm of the Summer of Love, San Francisco origin, and greed by Columbia Records in over-hyping them, resulting in their demise by the early 1970s, starting after they released their double album Wow/Grape Jam on Apr. 3, 1968, which features the track Never, after which Skip Spence went crazy on LSD and ended up in Bellevue Hospital in New York City, then after release headed for Nashville on a motorcycle dressed in pajamas to record the solo album "Oar" (1969), quitting Moby Grape.
On May 13, 1967 Jacksonville, Fla.-born Scott McKenzie (Philip Blondheim) (1939-) released his 1-hit wonder single San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair) (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) (written by John Phillips of the Mamas & the Papas to promote the Monterey Pop Festival). It sold 7M copies worldwide, becoming the theme song for young hippies, attracting thousands to San Fran. "If you're going to San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair... You're going to meet some gentle people there." On May 20, 1967 the 1-hit wonder The Yellow Balloon released Yellow Balloon; drummer Don Grady of Mousketeer and "My Three Sons" fame wore a disguise and called himself Luke R. Yoo.
In May 1967 the LA sunshine R&B-soul-pop vocal group The 5th Dimension, originally The Versatiles, from Los Angeles, Calif., incl. Billy Davis Jr. (1938-), Marilyn McCoo (1943-), Florence LaRue (1943-), Lamonte McLemore, and Ronald "Ron" Townson (1933-2001) released their debut album Up, Up and Away, which features the tracks Up, Up and Away (#7 in the U.S.), and Another Day, Another Heartache. Album #2 The Magic Garden (Dec. 1967) features The Magic Garden, Paper Cup, The Worst That Could Happen, and Ticket to Ride (by John Lennon and Paul McCartney). Album #3 Stoned Soul Picnic (Aug. 1968) (#21 in the U.S.) features Stoned Soul Picnic (#3 in the U.S.), California Soul (#25 in the U.S.), and Sweet Blindness (#13 in the U.S.). Album #4 The Age of Aquarius (May 1969) (#2 in the U.S.) features Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In (#1 in the U.S.), Workin' on a Groovy Thing (#20 in the U.S.), Wedding Bell Blues (#1 in the U.S.), and Blowing Away (#21 in the U.S.). Album #5 Portrait (Apr. 1970) features One Less Bell to Answer (#2 in the U.S.) (by Burt Bacharach and Hal David).
On June 1, 1967 the Beatles topped everybody in the Summer of Love by releasing album #8 Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, finally coming out and leading the drug culture openly. It was produced by George Martin. Tracks included: With a Little Help from My Friends (working title "Bad Flyer Boogie") (Ringo and Billy Shears), Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, When I'm Sixty-Four, Lovely Rita (Meter Maid), Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite! (Henry the waltzing horse), A Day in the Life, about Guinness heir Tara Browne (1945-1966), who "blew his mind out in a car" (ends with a 45-sec. chord), and incl. the soundbyte "In the end the love you take is equal to the love you make", also something about the town of Blackburn announcing it's filling all 10K holes in its streets?; three stacked pianos and the last 30 sec.; the handwritten ms. by John Lennon sold for $1.2M on June 18, 2010. On Nov. 27, 1967 they did it again with album #9 Magical Mystery Tour, which included the tracks: Magical Mystery Tour, The Fool on the Hill, I Am the Walrus ("I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together/ See how they run like pigs from a gun, see how they fly/ I'm crying") (the weird lyrics are in response to John Lennon learning that a teacher at his alma mater Quarry Bank Grammar School was requiring Beatles songs to be analyzed?) (Jim Carrey later bests the Beatles with his comic version?), Hello Goodbye, ("You say yes, I say no, you say stop, and I say go, go, go"; "Hela, hey-ba hello-a"); Strawberry Fields Forever, Penny Lane, Baby You're a Rich Man, All You Need is Love. In May 1967 Strawberry Alarm Clock (named after Strawberry Fields Forever) scored a #1 hit with Incense and Peppermints.
On June 16-18, 1967 the Summer of Love was capped by the Monterey Pop Festival at the Monterey County Fairgrounds in Monterey, Calif., which was attended by 55K-90K, and features the first major U.S. appearances of James Marshall (Johnny Allen) "Jimi" Hendrix (1942-70) and Janis Lyn Joplin (1943-70). Hendrix and Joplin ended up dying of drug overdoses on Sept. 18, 1970 and Oct. 4, 1970, respectively. It was also the first major U.S. appearance of the English (London) band The Who (from England), (formed in 1964), composed of Roger Harry Daltrey (1944-), Peter Dennis Blandford "Pete" Townshend (1945-), John Alec Entwistle (1944-2002), and Keith John Moon (1946-78) (drums), who performed Summertime Blues at Woodstock. They had hits in 1967 with Happy Jack and I Can See for Miles, followed on May 23, 1969 by the album #4 Tommy (20M copies sold), the first of two rock operas about "deaf, dumb, and blind boy" Tommy, who becomes a new Messiah, dedicated to Meher Baba. Tracks incl. Pinball Wizard, See Me, Feel Me, Go to the Mirror, Tommy, Can You Hear Me?, I'm Free, and Christmas. Pete Townshend, Kit Lambert, Andy "Thunderclap" Newman et al. formed the band Thunderclap Newman, which released the 1969 1-hit wonder Something in the Air (#1 in the U.K.). On Aug. 14, 1971 The Who released album #5 Who's Next, about the failed rock opera "Lifehouse", which features My Wife, Bargain (ode to Meher Baba), The Song Is Over, Behind Blue Eyes, Won't Get Fooled Again, and Baba O'Reily, often mistakenly caused Teenage Wasteland because of the chorus. On Oct. 19, 1973 they released double album #6 Quadrophenia, their 2nd rock opera, about Jimmy, who participates in the circa 1964 Mod lifestyle in England; "The story is set on a rock" (Pete Townshend); tracks incl. Quadrophenia, Love, Reign o'er Me. Hendrix's debut album Are You Experienced (May 12, 1967) included the super hits Purple Haze, Hey Joe, and Fire. His 3rd and last album Electric Ladyland (Oct. 25, 1968) contained the hits Crosstown Traffic and All Along the Watchtower. The album cover was a photo of a group of naked ladies, Hendrix had a summer of love while recording it. After the Summer of Love ended, on Oct. 21, 1967 the March on the Pentagon saw 50K-70K anti-Vietnam War protesters march in Washington, D.C., you had me at hell no I won't go. After the big surprise Tet Offensive on Jan. 31, 1968, the protests ramped up bigger and bigger, infecting a whole segment of U.S. youth with anti-govt. and anti-establishment attitudes, which was picked up by the musicians, who churned out a ton of Anti-Vietnam War Songs. One of the first and most popular was the 18 min. 34 sec. Alice's Restaurant Massacree (1967), by Woody Guthrie's son Arlo Davy Guthrie (1947-). Another rock star who released her debut album in Aug. 1967 was Janis Lyn Joplin (1943-70), whose 2nd album Cheap Thrills (Aug. 12, 1968) contained the hit Piece of My Heart. Too bad, she died of a heroin overdose on Oct. 4, 1970, leaving the posthumous album Pearl (Jan. 11, 1971), which features the hit Me and Bobby McGee by her fellow Texan lover Kristoffer "Kris" Kristofferson (1936-). The 1967 Monterey Pop Festival was the first of a long neverending line of Rock Festivals around the world.
The leadoff band at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival was The Association, a sickeningly (to foreigners) all-American sunshine pop band from Calif., who had 1966 hits with Along Comes Mary and Cherish (#1 in the U.S.), followed in 1967 with Windy (#1 in the U.S.) (never charted in the U.K.) and Never My Love (#1 in the U.S.). Meanwhile on May 26, 1967 sickeningly anti-American (not really) Frank Zappa (1940-93) and The Mothers of Invention came on the scene with their album Absolutely Free, which included the tracks Brown Shoes Don't Make It, Plastic People, and America Drinks and Goes Home. Zappa went on to mother a number of musical inventions, and to father Moon Unit Zappa (1967-), who voiced Valspeak on his hit 1982 single Valley Girl.
In June 1967 Chicasaw County, Miss.-born singer-songwriter Bobbie Gentry (Roberta Lee Streeter) (1944-) released her debut album Ode to Billy Joe, which features her internat. hit Ode to Billy Joe (#1 in the U.S.), which knocked the Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" off the #1 Billboard 200 slot; "Got some news this morning from Choctaw Ridge, that Billie Joe McAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge". It was hated by Bob Dylan, who parodied it in "Clothesline Saga". Album #8 Fancy (1970) features the track Fancy.
On July 1, 1967 the 1-hit wonder The Fifth Estate released Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead.
In July 1967 the blue eyed soul-rock group The Box Tops, originally The Devilles, from Memphis, Tenn., incl. William Alexander "Alex" Chilton (1950-2010), John Evans, Thomas Boggs, and Rick Allen released their debut single The Letter (July) (#1 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) followed by Neon Rainbow (Oct. 1967) (#24 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), Cry Like a Baby (Feb. 1968) (#2 in the U.S., #15 in the U.K.), and Soul Deep (June 1969) (#13 in the U.S., #22 in the U.K.). They broke up in 1970, and Alex Chilton went on to front the powerpop band Big Star in 1971-4, then went solo.
On Aug. 4, 1967 the East London mod rock group The Small Faces, fronted by big-voice-in-small-package Steven Peter "Steve" Marriott (1947-91), along with Ronald Frederick "Ronnie" "Plonk" Lane (1946-97), Kenneth Thomas "Kenney" Jones (1948-) (drums), Jimmy Winston (James Edward Winston Langwith) (1945-) (keyboards), and Ian Patrick McLaglan (1945-) released their hit single Itchycoo Park (#16 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), the first British single with the underwater "flanging" effect; it was rereleased on Dec. 13, 1975. Album #4 Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake (May 24, 1968) (#1 in the U.K.) (named after Ogdens' Nut-Brown Flake tobacco from Liverpool) features the tracks Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake, Afterglow (Of Your Love), and Lazy Sunday. Album #5 The Autumn Stone (double album) (Nov. 1969) features the tracks Here Come the Nice, I Can't Make It, The Universal, Tin Soldier, and My Mind's Eye, after which they disbanded then reformed as Faces, with Ronald Davis "Ronnie" Wood (1947-) and Roderick David "Rod" Stewart (1945-).
On Aug. 15, 1967 the English (London) rock band Pink Floyd, led by George Roger Wates (1943-) released their debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, setting the bar for psychedlic rock, incl. tracks Astronomy Domine, Lucifer Sam, and Interstellar Overdrive.
In Aug. 1967 Delight, Ark.-born former The Champs and Beach Boys member Glen Travis Campbell (1936-) released album #6 Gentle On My Mind (#5 in the U.S.), which features the hit track Gentle On My Mind. He followed it with album #7 By the Time I Get to Phoenix (Nov. 1967) (#15 in the U.S.), which features the track By the Time I Get to Phoenix, followed by album #12 Wichita Lineman (Nov. 1968) (#1 in the U.S.), which features Wichita Lineman, followed by album #13 Galveston (Mar. 1969) (#2 in the U.S.), which features Galveston. In 1968 the studio group Sagittarius, led by Gary Usher (1938-90) and incl. Glen Campbell released their debut album Present Tense, which features the track My World Fell Down (#70 in the U.S.). He went on to release 70+ albums and sell 45M records.
In Aug. 1967 Gary Puckett (1942-) and the Union Gap (from San Diego, Calif.) released their debut single Woman Woman (#4 in the U.S.), followed on Mar. 4, 1968 with Young Girl (about pedo, er, underage love) (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), Lady Willpower (#2 in the U.S.), and in 1969 with This Girl Is a Woman Now, Gary Fuckit jokes here.
In Sept. 1967 Glendale, Calif.-born 5-octave-range singer-songwriter Captain Beefheart (Don Van Vliet) (1941-2010) (friend of Frank Zappa) and The Magic Band, incl. Alex St. Clair (guitar), Jeff Cotton (guitar), Jerry Handley (bass), and John French (drums) (Beefheart had no musical training or talent, and was just the genius with the idea which his band turned into music) released their debut album Safe As Milk on Buddah Records, which features Ry Cooder playing guitar; it features the tracks Zig Zag Wanderer, Dropout Boogie, Electricity, and Yellow Brick Road. Album #2 Strictly Personal (Oct. 1968) features Ah Feel Like Ahcid, Son of Mirror Man - Mere Man, Beatle Bones 'n' Smokin' Stones, and Gimme Dat Harp Boy. Landmark double album #3 Trout Mask Replica (June 1969) was released on Straight Records, formed in 1969 by Frank Zappa and Herb Cohen, which signed Alice Cooper, The Persuasions, Lord Buckley, The GTOs, and Judy Hensky and Jerry Yester. It features The Dust Blows Forward 'n the Dust Blows Back, Dachau Blues, Hair Pie: Bake 1, Sweet Sweet Bulbs, China Pig, Hobo Chang Ba, Ella Guru, My Human Gets Me Blues, Moonlight On Vermont, Pena, Veteran's Day Poppy, Sugar 'n Spikes, Hair Pie: Bake 2, and She's Too Much for My Mirror. Album #4 Lick My Decals Off, Baby (Dec. 1970) (#20 in the U.K.) features Lick My Decals Off, Baby, Dr. Dark, Japan Is A Dishpan, Petrified Forest, and I Love You, You Big Dummy. Album #5 Mirror Man (Apr. 1971) (#49 in the U.K.) features Tarotplane, and Kandy Korn. Album #6 The Spotlight Kid (Jan. 1972) (#131 in the U.S., #44 in the U.K.) (highest-charting U.S. album) features White Jam, Blabber 'n Smoke, Alice in Blunderland, and There Ain't No Santa Claus on the Evenin' Stage. Album #7 Clear Spot (Oct. 1972) (#191 in the U.S.) features Big Eyed Beans from Venus, Her Eyes Are A Blue Million Miles, and Nowadays A Woman's Gotta Hit A Man. Album #8 Unconditionally Guaranteed (Apr. 1974) (#192 in the U.S.) was yet another bomb that caused the Magic Band to get tired of living on food stamps and fire him, after which he disavowed the album and its successor (#9) Bluejeans & Moonbeams (Nov. 1974). On Oct. 2, 1975 Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa released the live album Bongo Fury, which features Sam With the Showing Scalp Flat Top, and Man With the Woman Head. Album #10 Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller) (Sept. 1978), his comeback album features Bat Chain Puller, Harry Irene, and Owed t'Alex. Album #11 Doc at the Radar Station (Aug. 1980) features Hot Head, Ashtray Heart, A Carrot Is As Close As A Rabbit Gets to A Diamond. Album #12 (last) Ice Cream for Crow (Sept. 1982) (#90 in the U.K.) features Ice Cream for Crow, Semi-Multicoloured Caucasian, and '81 Poop Hatch. After that Beefheart retired to become a painter.
On Oct. 16-21, 1967 Stop the Draft Week saw 10K riot in downtown Oakland, Calif. in an attempt to shut down the Oakland Induction Center, battling police while attempting to block buses carrying draftees to military bases, resulting in 125 arrests, incl. Joan Baez, who got 45 days for disturbing the peace; on Oct. 16 draft card turn-ins were held across the U.S., while others pasted eight draft cards to the door of the U.S. embassy in London; on Oct. 16 others occupied the U. of Chicago admin. bldg. for three days; on Oct. 17 Roman Catholic priest (1955-73) Philip Francis Berrigan (1923-2002) and three others splattered Selective Service records at the Baltimore Customs House in Md. with red liquid partly made of their own blood; on Oct. 21 50K-150K students marched to the steps of the Pentagon "to confront the warmakers", causing 647 arrests by 2.5K federal troops and marshals.
On Oct. 27, 1967 the English (Nottingham) blues-rock band Ten Years After, the recycled Jaybirds, incl. Ivan Jay, Alvin Lee, Leo Lyons, Ric Lee, and Chick Churchill, first rock band to sign with a major label (Deram) without a hit single released their debut album, which features the track Spoonful (by Willie Dixon). Album #2 Undead (Aug. 10, 1968) features I'm Going Home, which was a big hit at Woodstock. Album #3 Stonedhenge (Feb. 22, 1969) features Hear Me Calling. On Apr. 8, 1969 they performed their first U.S. concert at the Fillmore East in New York City, were so bad that Roger Chapman threw a microphone stand through the air in the direction of impresario Bill Graham, giving them a bad rep. Album #4 Ssssh (Aug. 1969) (#20 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) features Good Morning Little Schoolgirl. On Aug. 26-30, 1970 the Third Isle of Wight Festival (last) was attended by 600K (more than Woodstock), and features 50 acts incl. Joan Baez, Jimi Hendrix, Procol Harum, The Doors, The Who, Jethro Tull, Chicago, Miles Davis, John Sebastian, Joni Mitchell, 10 years After, and Emerson, Lake and Palmer. Album #5 Cricklewood Green (Apr. 17, 1970), named after a friend who lived in Cricklewood, London and grew a psychedelic plant was 45 rpm on one side and 33 rpm on the other; it features Love Like a Man. Album #7 A Space in Time (Aug. 1971) features their biggest hit I'd Love to Change the World. Album #9 (last) Positive Vibrations (Apr. 1974) (#81 in the U.S.) features Positive Vibrations.
On Oct. 28, 1967 the fictional American rock band Max Frost and The Troopers released their 1-hit wonder Shape of Things to Come (#22 in the U.S.), written by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil. The band was created for the film Wild in the Streets (released May 29, 1968), which stars James Dean lookalike Christopher (William Frank "Billy") Jones (1941-) as Max Frost (Max Jacob Flatow Jr.), who fights for a Constitutional amendment to reduce the voting age and age reqts. for holding nat. political office to 14, and helps the Baby Boomers take over the world and lock up everybody over 35, mwuhahaha.
In Oct. 1967 the rock musical Hair: The Americani Tribal Love-Rock Musical debuted in New York City, and ran for 1,750 perf., plus another 1,997 in London. Hit songs incl. Hair, Good Morning Starshine (covered by the Strawberry Alarm Clock), Let the Sunshine In (The Flesh Failures), Aquarius (covered by the 5th Dimension), and Three-Five-Zero-Zero (sung in a military camp).
In Oct. 1967 the bubblegum music group Ohio Express, a group of studio musicians in New York City incl. Joey Levine (who went on to write TV commercial jingles, incl. "Something you feel like a nut" for Almond Joy candy bars, and "This Bud's for you" for Anheuser-Busch) released its first hit single Beg, Borrow and Steal (#29 in the U.S.), followed in May 1968 by Yummy Yummy Yummy (#4 in the U.S.), and in Oct. 1968 by Chewy Chewy (#15 in the U.S.).
In Oct. 1967 the English (Leicester) rock band Family, formed from The Roaring Twenties and The Farinas, incl. Richard John "Charlie" Whitney (1944-) , Tim Kirchin/Richard Roman "Ric" Grech (1946-90), Harry Ovenall/Rob Townsend (1947-) (drums), Jim King (Alec Woodburn) (1942-), and Roger Maxwell "Chappo" Chapman (1942-) released their debut single Scene Through the Eye of a Lens, followed in July 1968 by their debut album Music in a Doll's House, which features the tracks Me My Friend, Mellowing Grey, Never Like This, and Winter. Originally wearing mafia-like double-breasted suits in concerts, they soon went hippie. Album #2 Family Entertainment (1969) features The Weaver's Answer. In 1969 Jenny Fabian and Johnny Byrne (1935-2008) pub. the novel Groupie (Superstar), based on the underground rock and roll lifestyle of a London group they call "Relation", really them. Album #3 A Song for Me (June 13, 1970) features A Song for Me. Album #6 Fearless (Oct. 1971) features Between Blue and Me, and Larf and Sing. Album #7 Bandstand (Sept. 1972) was the last to feature John Kenneth Wetton (1949-) (who went to King Crimson in 1972-4, then became the frontman for Asia in 1982), and the last to chart in the U.S.; it features Burlesque, and My Friend the Sun. Album #8 It's Only a Movie (Sept. 1973) features It's Only a Movie. After developing a small devoted following in the U.K. but not in the U.S., they disbanded in Oct. 1973.
On Nov. 9, 1967 Rolling Stone mag., founded in San Francisco, Calif. by U. of Calif. at Berkeley Free Speech Movement activist Jann Simon Wenner (1946-) with $7.5K began publication with a press run of 6K copies, growing to 400K by 1975; the debut cover features John Lennon wearing a netted helmet and glasses; the Jan. 22, 1981 cover features nude John Lennon dry humping clothed Yoko Ono.
On Nov. 11, 1967 the English (Birmingham) rock band The Moody Blues, incl. Denny Laine (Brian Frederick Arthur Hines) (1944-)/ David Justin Hayward (1946-) (guitar), Clint Warwick (Albert Clinton Eccles) (1940-)/ John Lodge (1945-) (bass), Michael Thomas "Mike" Pinder (1941-) (keyboards), Ray Thomas (1941-) (flute), and Graeme Charles Edge (1941-) (drums) released album #2 Days of Future Passed, the first-ever concept album, with the London Festival Orchestra, which features the hits The Day Begins: Morning Glory, Nights in White Satin, and Forever Afternoon (Tuesday?). Album #3 In Search of the Lost Chord (July 26, 1968) features Legend of A Mind (about Timothy Leary), Departure, Ride My See-Saw (#42 in the U.K.), Voices in the Sky (#27 in the U.S.), and Dr. Livingstone, I Presume. Album #4 On the Threshold of a Dream (Apr. 25, 1969), their first #1 U.K. album and first U.S. top-20 album) features Never Comes the Day. Album #5 To Our Children's Children's Children (Nov. 21, 1969) (#2 in the U.K.) features Watching and Waiting. Album #6 A Question of Balance (Aug. 7, 1970) features Question (about the Vietnam War). Album #7 Every Good Boy Deserves Favour (July 23, 1971) (#1 in the U.K., #2 in the U.S.) features The Story in Your Eyes, Procession, and Emily's Song. Album #8 Seventh Sojourn (Nov. 17, 1972) (#5 in the U.K., #1 in the U.S.) features Isn't Life Strange, and I'm Just a Singer (in a Rock and Roll Band). They went on to sell 70M albums worldwide.
On Dec. 27, 1967 low-voiced Jewish Canadian singer-songwriter (Leonard Nimoy lookalike?) Leonard Norman Cohen (1934-) released his debut album Songs of Leonard Cohen (#83 in the U.S., #13 in the U.K.), which features the tracks Suzanne (about a 1-nighter with Suzanne Verdal, who was married to Montreal sculptor Armand Vaillancourt) ("And she shows you where to look/ Among the garbage and the flowers/ There are heroes in the seaweed/ There are children in the morning"), So Long, Marianne, Sisters of Mercy, and Hey, That's No Way to Say Goodbye. Album #2 Songs from a Room (Apr., 1969) (#63 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.) features Bird on a Wire, and The Partisan. Album #3 Songs of Love and Hate (Mar. 1971) (#145 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) features Famous Blue Raincoat, Avalanche, First We Take Manhattan, and Joan of Arc. Album #5 Death of a Ladies' Man (Nov., 1977), produced by Phil Spector shocked fans by drowning Cohen's voice in his Wall of Sound; it features Death of a Ladies' Man, Memories, and Iodine. Album #7 Various Positions (Dec. 1984), a collaboration with Jennifer Warnes (whose tribute album revived his career) features Dance Me to the End of Love, and Hallelujah. Album #8 I'm Your Man (Feb. 1988) features I'm Your Man. Some of his songs were covered by Judy Collins and other admirers.
In Dec. 1967 after Neil Bogart (Neil E. Bogatz) (1943-82) founded Buddah Records (later changed to Buddha Records), signing The Ohio Express, 1910 Fruitgum Company, Melanie, Captain Beefheart, Gladys Knight and The Pips, and The Lemon Pipers, the Oxford, Ohio-based psychedelic pop band The Lemon Pipers, formerly Ivan and the Sabres, and Tony and the Bandits, incl. Dale "Ivan" Brown (1947-) (vocals), William "Bill" Bartlett (1946-) (guitar), Ron Simkins (1948-) (guitar), Ron "Dude" Dudek/Steve Walmsley (1949-) (bass), Robert G. "Reg" Nave (1945-) (keyboards), and William E. Albaugh (1948-99) released their 1-hit wonder Green Tambourine (#1 in the U.S.), the first #1 hit for the Buddah label and the first bubblegum pop U.S. #1. They later had minor hits with Rice Is Nice (#46 in the U.S.), and Jelly Jungle (Of Orange Marmalade) (#51 in the U.S.), I'm just really allergic to truffles.
In Dec. 1967 the English (London) progressive rock band The Nice, named after Steve Marriot's slang term for being high, incl. Keith Anthony Joseph "Lee" Jackson (1943-) (bass/vocals), David "Davy" O'List (1948-) (guitar), Keith Noel Emerson (1944-) (keyboards) (formerly of The VIPs, precursor of Spooky Tooth) (known for holding down organ keys with a knife), and Ian Hague/Brian "Blinky" Davison (1942-2008) (drums), which started out as the backing group for U.S.-born English soul singer P.P. Arnold (Patricia Ann Cole) (1946-), known for the 1967 cover of the Cat Stevens song The First Cut Is the Deepest released their debut album The Thoughts of Emerlist Davjack (first progressive rock album), with the title taken from the last names of the group members; it features the tracks Thoughts of Emerlist Davjack, Brandenburger (Concerto), and America (Second Amendment) (by Leonard Bernstein, from "West Side Story"), the first instrumental protest song, incorporating parts of Dvorak's "New World Symphony", and ending with P.P. Arnold's 3-y.-o. son saying "America is pregnant with promises and anticipation, but is murdered by the hand of the inevitable." Speaking of America, on June 26, 1968 Keith Emerson burned a U.S. flag onstage at Royal Albert Hall in London during a performance of "America", getting the group banned for life. Album #2 Ars Longa Vita Brevis (Nov. 1968) was the first rock album to use an orchestra; David O'List was fired during the recording; it features Diary of an Empty Day, and Country Pie. Album #3 Nice/Everything as Nice as Mother Makes It (Sept., 1969) (#3 in the U.K.) features Hang On to a Dream, and For Example. Album #4 Five Bridges (June, 1970) (#2 in the U.S.), commissioned by the Newcastle Arts Festival, and named after the five bridges spanning the Tyne River saw them go over the bridge and compose and perform classical music, incl. The Five Bridges Suite. In 1970 Keith Emerson left to form Emerson, Lake and Palmer, and the band broke up, releasing their final album Elegy (Apr. 1971) (#5 in the U.K.).
In Dec. 1967 the English (West Midlands) jazz rock band Traffic, consisting of Stephen Lawrence "Steve" Winwood (1948-), Nicola James "Jim" Capaldi (1944-2005), Christopher Gordon Blanford "Chris" Wood (1944-83), and David Thomas "Dave" Mason (1944-) released their debut album Mr. Fantasy (#88 in the U.S., #16 in the U.K.), which features the psychedelic rock jazz tracks Dear Mr. Fantasy, Paper Sun, Hole In My Shoe, and Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush. Album #2 Traffic Oct. 1938) (#17 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.) features the tracks Feelin' Alright, (Roamin' Thru the Gloamin' with) 40,000 Headmen. After breaking up in 1968 and reuniting in 1970, album #4 John Barleycorn Must Die (July 1970) (#5 in the U.S.) was released, featuring the tracks Glad, and John Barleycorn. Album #6 The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys (Nov. 1971) features The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys. They disbanded in 1974. Steve Winwood went solo, releasing album #2 Arc of a Diver (Dec. 31, 1980) (#3 in the U.S.), which features the hit While You See a Chance (#7 in the U.S.). Album #4 Back in the High LIfe (July 1986) (#3 in the U.S.) sold 5M copies, and features the hits Back in the High Life Again (w/James Taylor) (#13 in the U.S.), Higher Love (w/Chaka Khan) (#1 in the U.S.), The Finer Things (#8 in the U.S.), and Freedom Overspill (#20 in the U.S.). Album #5 Roll With It (June 1988) sold 5M copies, and features Roll With It (#1 in the U.S.), and Don't You Know What the Night Can Do? (#6 in the U.S.).
Also in 1967 the rock brass band Chicago (originally Chicago Transit Authority until the real one complained) was formed in Chicago, Ill., after hearing the Beatles' "Got to Get You Into My Life" made them want to put more horns into pop-rock, going on to sell 38M albums, incl. five #1 albums. Hits incl. Beginnings (Oct. 1969), 25 or 6 to 4 (June 1970), Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? (Oct. 1970), and Saturday in the Park (July 1972). Member (1967-85) Peter Paul Cetera (1944-) went on to a great solo career, incl. #1 singles, Glory of Love (1986), and The Next Time I Fall (1986), with Amy Grant.
Also in 1967 the New York City rock band The Youngbloods, incl. Jesse Colin Young (1941-) (vocals, bass), Jerry Corbitt (guitar), Joe Bauer (drums), and Lowell "Banana" Levinger III (piano) released their 1-hit wonder Get Together (#5 in the U.S.) (1M copies), which became the love-peace-hippie anthem, but not until 1969, after the Nat. Council of Christians and Jews used it in commercials, causing sales to surge. Also in 1967 the Grass Roots rock band came on the scene, fronted by Robert Frank "Rob" Grill (1943-), and setting a record of 307 straight weeks on the Billboard charts, selling over 20M records, incl. top-10 hits Let's Live for Today (1967), Midnight Confessions (1968), Temptation Eyes (1970), Sooner or Later (1971), and Two Divided by Love (1971). Their highest chart position was #5 for "Midnight Confessions", which is why everybody remembers their hits but can't remember the group. After turning into a nasty old fart, one of the members, Creed Bratton (1943-) later got a role on NBC-TV's "The Office".
In 1967 in Brazil singer-songwriters Caetano Veloso (1942-) and Gilberto Gil (1942-) et al. founded the Tropicalista (Tropicalia) (Tropicalismo) movement, encompassing music, poetry and theater, which included the Brazilian rock band Os Mutantes (The Mutants), (originally the Six-Sided Rockers), incl. Rita Lee (1947-) (vocals), Arnaldo Baptista (1948-), and Sergio Dias Baptista (1951-), who in 1968 released their debut album Os Mutantes, which features the track A Minha Menina (My Girl).
In 1967 English folk singer Roy Harper (1941-), known for his unique finger style on the guitar and complex compositions released his debut album Sophisticated Beggar, followed in 1968 by album #2 Come Out Fighting Ghengis Smith, and in 1969 by album #3 Folkjokeopus, which features McGoohan's Blues, about the BBC TV series "The Prisoner", starring Patrick McGoohan. Album #4 Flat Baroque and Beserk (Jan. 1970) (#20 in the U.K.) features I Hate the White Man, Another Day, and Tom Tiddler's Ground. Album #5 Stormcock features The Same Old Rock with Jimmy Page AKA S. Flavius Mercurius. Album #9 Bullinamingvase (One of Those Days in England) (1977) features One of Those Days in England. He went on to influence Led Zeppelin, The Who, Jethro Tull, Pink Floyd et al. Let's not forget album #16 Once (1990), which features Black Cloud of Islam (w/Nick Harper).
We're still not done with 1967 psychedelic groups. In 1967 Vanilla Fudge, from Long Island, N.Y., incl. Mark Stein (1947-) (vocals), John Voorhis "Tim" Bogert III (1944-) (bass), Vince Martell (1945-) (guitar), and Carmine Appice (1946-) (drums) released the hit single You Keep Me Hangin' On (by the Supremes) (#6 in the U.S.), followed by Season of the Witch. They broke up in 1970. Also in 1967 The Marmalade from Scotland, consisting of Dean Ford (Thomas McAleese) (1945-) (vocals), William "Junior" Campbell (1947-), John Graham Knight (1943-) (bass), Patrick "Pat" Fairley (1943-) (bass), and Alan Whitehead (1945-) (drums) released their U.K. cult hit I See the Rain, which made a fan of Jimi Hendrix. Lovin' Things (by Keith Mansfield) (#6 in the U.K.) was released in summer 1968, and was covered by the Grass Roots in 1969. In Jan. 1969 their cover of the Beatles' Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da reached #1 in the U.K. (first Scottish group to reach #1 in the U.K.), selling 1M copies worldwide. In 1969 their single Baby Make It Soon (by Tony Macaulay) reached #9 in the U.K. In late 1969 they released their biggest hit Reflections of My Life (#10 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), which sold 2M copies worldwide, after which they slowly broke up and reflected about their lives. Also in 1967 the English (London) group The Foundations, incl. Clem Curtis (1940-) (vocals), Colin Young (1944-) (vocals), Arthur Brown (1942-) (vocals), Alan Warner (1941-) (guitar), Peter Macbeth (1943-) (bass), and Tim Harris (1948-) (drums), the first British band with an authentic Motown soul sound (being multracial doesn't hurt?) released their debut album From the Foundations, whch features their hit single Baby Now That I've Found You (#11 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) (first #1 U.K. hit by a multiracial group), written by Tom Macaulay (1941-). In 1968 they released album #2 Rocking the Foundations, which features the hit single Build Me Up Buttercup (#2 in the U.K., #3 in the U.S.), written by Tom Macaulay. Album #4 Digging the Foundations (1969) features In the Bad Bad Old Days (Before You Loved Me) (#8 in the U.S.), and Born to Live, Born to Die (#46 in the U.K.). Also in 1967 the English (London) blues group (last gasp of blues in Britain?) Savoy Brown, incl. Kim Simmonds, John O'Leary, Bryce Portius, Trevor Jeavons/Bob Hall, (piano), and Leo Manning/Ray Chappell (drums) released their debut album Shake Down, which features Black Night. Album #2 Getting to the Point (1968) was the first with vocalist Chris Youlden; it features Stay With Me Baby. Album #3 Blue Matter (1969) features Train to Nowhere. Album #4 A Step Further features I'm Tired. Album #6 Looking In (1970) features Money Can't Save Your Soul. Album #8 Hellbound Train (Feb. 1972) features Hellbound Train. Also in 1967 the Mansfield, Ohio-based garage band The Music Explosion, incl. James "Jamie" Lyons (vocals), Donald Atkins (guitar), Richard Nesta (guitar), Burton Stahl (bass), and Robert Avery (drums) released their 1-hit wonder Little Bit O'Soul (#2 in the U.S.). Also in 1967 Amen Corner ("the Real Magnificent Seven"), incl. Andrew "Andy" Fairweather Low (1948-) (vocals), Neill Jones (1949-) (guitar), Allan Jones (1947-) (sax), Derek John "Blue" Weaver (1947-) (keyboards), Mike Smith (1947-) (sax), Clive Taylor (1948-) (bass), and Dennis Ronald Bryon (1949-) (drums) released their debut single Gin House Blues (#12 in the U.K.), followed by The World of Broken Hearts (1967) (#24 in the U.K.), Bend Me, Shape Me (1968) (#3 in the U.K.), High in the Sky (1968) (#6 in the U.K.), If Paradise Is Half As Nice (1969) (#1 in the U.K.), Hello Susie (#4 in the U.K.), and Get Back (by the Beatles) (1969).
In 1967 Patti LaBelle (1944-) and the Bluebells released Somewhere Over the Rainbow, which became her signature song. In Oct. 1974 they became the first African-Am. contemporary act to perform at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City.
In 1967 the songwriting team of Kenneth "Kenny" Gamble (1943-) and Leon A. Huff (1942-) launched Motown rival Philadelphia (Philly) Soul, which features a glockenspiel in the background and laid the groundwork for disco, going on to write and produce over 170 gold and platinum records for artists incl. the all-white The Soul Survivors, whose 1967 hit single Expressway to Your Heart (#5 in the U.S.) was their first hit. They also signed Archie Bell (1944-) and The Drells, from Houston, Tex., who on Mar. 30, 1968 released their 1-hit wonder debut single Tighten Up (#1 in the U.S.); "We dance just as good as we walk." They also signed The Sweet Inspirations, fronted by Emily "Cissy" Drinkard Houston (1933-), mother of Whitney Houston and aunt of Dionne Warwick and Dee Dee Warwick, a backup singing group for Van Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, and Elvis Presley. They also signed Delia Mae "Dee Dee" Warwick (1945-2008), whose biggest hit was I Want to Be With You (1966) (#41 in the U.S.). They also signed Dusty Springfield, Wilson Pickett, and Jerry Butler. In 1971 they founded Philadelphia International Records, which signed Lou Rawls, Billy Paul, Harold Melvin and The Blue Notes, The O'Jays, and Teddy Pendergrass. In the 1970s Gamble converted to Sunni Islam under the name Luqman Abdul Haqq, and nurtured connections with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan and Jamil Al-Amin (AKA H. Rap Brown).
On Jan. 22, 1968 Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In debuted on NBC-TV for 140 episodes (until May 14, 1973), hosted by stand-up comedians Dan Rowan (1922-87) and Dick Martin (1922-2008), who began the standing joke format (later adopted by the Smothers Brothers) of pretending not to be too obvious about being against the Vietnam War as well as totally politically and socially liberal, despite the jokes ridiculing the KKK, NRA, Pentagon et al. The anti-establishment show made a star of ditzy blonde Goldie Hawn (1945-), along with Artie Johnson (1929-), Ruth Buzzi (1936-), Judy Carne (1939-), JoAnne Worley (1937-), and Mary Jean "Lily" Tomlin (1939-), introducing "Look that up in your Funk and Wagnalls", "Sock it to me", "Ve-e-e-ry interesting", "You bet your bippy", and "Heah come de judge" to the American lexicon. What uncanny luck premiering eight days before the Tet Offensive?
1968 was a great year for rock. In Jan. 1968 the San Francisco, Calif. heavy metal pioneer band Blue Cheer (named after a street brand of LSD), incl. Richard Allan "Dickie" Peterson (1946-2009) (vocals, bass), Leigh Stephens (guitar), and Paul Whaley (drums) released their debut album Vincebus Eruptum (#11 in the U.S.), which features their 1-hit wonder Summertime Blues (written in 1958 by Eddie Cochran) (#14 in the U.S.).
In Jan. 1968 The Status Quo from London, England, who started as the Spectres in 1962 released their only U.S. hit Pictures of Matchstick Men, after which they charted 60+ times in the U.K., most of any group, while dropping off the U.S. charts like burned-out matchsticks.
In early 1968 the rock band The First Edition, fronted by Houston, Tex.-born Kenneth Ray "Kenny" Rogers (1938-) released their first hit Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In). In 1969 they released another top-10 hit Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town. After that the band went country, and in 1975 Rogers went solo, becoming one of the top country and pop artists ever, releasing The Gambler in 1978.
In Feb. 1968 Abilene, Tex.-born Mason Douglas Williams (1938-), head writer for "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour" released the album The Mason Williams Phonograph Record, which features his 1-hit wonder Classical Gas. Of course he performed it on the show.
In Feb. 1968 Robert Clarke "Bob" Seger (1945-) from Detroit, Mich. and his group the Bob Seger System released the single Ramblin' Gamblin' Man, which sounded kind of er, black, complete with lyrics that sounded like "You can have your fuckin' world", it was really funky. On Oct. 22, 1976 after going back to his blue collar white roots and forming the Silver Bullet Band in 1974, Seger released album #9 Night Moves, containing the hit track Night Moves.
In Mar. 1968 Sony Corp. joins with CBS to found Sony/CBS Records, with $720M capitalization, becoming the first U.S.-Japan joint venture after Japanese capital deregulation; notice which name comes first?
On Apr. 24, 1968 the weird but unique boogie rock band Canned Heat (formed in LA in 1965, and named after Tommy's Johnson's 1928 "Canned Heat Blues") released On the Road Again (#16 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.), followed in Sept. by Going Up the Country (#11 in the U.S., #19 in the U.K.).
In Apr. 1968 the Detroit, Mich.-based band Amboy Dukes released the hit single Journey to the Center of the Mind, and launched the career of Theodore Anthony "Ted" Nugent (1948-), who in 1977 released the hit Cat Scratch Fever.
In May 1968 the San Francisco psychedelic rock band Quicksilver Messenger Service, formed in 1965 by Gary Duncan (Gary Ray Grubb) (1946-), John Cipollina (1943-89) et al. released their debut album Quicksilver Messenger Service, which features the tracks Gold and Silver, and Fool.
In June 1968 the LA hard rock group Steppenwolf, fronted by German-born Canadian vocalist John Kay (Joachim Fritz Krauledat) (1944-) released the first-ever heavy metal song Born to Be Wild, which even coins the term in its lyrics "heavy metal thunder". In Sept. 1968 they followed it with Magic Carpet Ride.
In June 1968 zany English rocker Arthur Wilton Brown (1942-) released his 1-hit wonder Fire (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), where he plays Satan and invites listeners to join the BBQ, starting a genre later filled by Alice Cooper, Kiss, Marilyn Manson et al.
In June 1968 the English rock band Spooky Tooth, formerly Art, incl. Michael "Mike" Harrison (1942-) (keyboards, vocals), Gary Malcolm Wright (1943-) (organ), Luther "Luke" Grosvenor (1946-) (guitar, vocals), Alfred Gregory "Greg" Ridley (1942-2003), Andy Leigh (bass, vocals), and Mike Kellie (1947-) (drums) released their debut album It's All About, which features the track Tobacco Road (by J.D. Loudermilk). Album #2 Spooky Two (Mar. 1969) (best?) features Waitin' for the Wind, Better By You, Better Than Me, Feelin' Bad, I've Got Enough Heartaches, and Lost in My Dream. Album #3 The Last Puff (July 1970) features I Am the Walrus by John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Luther Grosvenor then left to go to Mott The Hoople under the alias Ariel Bender, and was replaced by Mick Jones, who later co-founded Foreigner. Album #7 The Mirror (Oct. 1974) was released 1 mo. after the group disbanded, and features The Mirror.
On July 1, 1968 the Canadian (Toronto) rock band The Band (AKA Levon and the Hawks) released their debut album Music from Big Pink, which features the single The Weight, giving rock and roll a funky backwoods dimension.
On July 5, 1968 the swamp rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival (CCR), fronted by Louisiana, er, Berkeley, Calif.-born singer-songwriter John Cameron Fogerty (1945-) released their debut album Creedence Clearwater Revival, containing their first hit Suzie Q. Album #2 Bayou Country (Jan. 1969) contained the hits Born on the Bayou, Good Golly Miss Molly, and Proud Mary. Album #3 Green River (Aug. 1969) contained the hits Green River, and Bad Moon Rising, popular with vampire lovers everywhere. Album #4 Willy and the Poor Boys (Nov. 1969) contains the hits Down on the Corner, Midnight Special, and the Vietnam War protest song Fortunate Son. Album #5 Cosmo's Factory (June 25, 1970) contained the hits Looking Out My Back Door, Run Through the Jungle, Up Around the Bend, Travelin' Band, and Who'll Stop the Rain. Album #6 Pendulum (Dec. 7, 1970) contained the hit Have You Ever Seen the Rain?. Too bad, mgr. John Fogerty put all the members' money in the tax dodge scam of his producer Saul Zaentz (1921-), losing it to the Castle Bank of Nassau, and after releasing album #8 Mardi Gras on Apr. 11, 1972, they broke up on Oct. 16, 1972, after which John Fogerty got in a court battle with Zaentz, which Fogerty won, later putting the line "Zanz can't dance but he'll steal your money" in his song "Zanz Kant Danz", which caused another court battle that Fogert won.
On July 5, 1968 the English (London) glam rock band T.Rex (full name Tyrannosaurus Rex), fronted by Marc Bolan (Feld) (1947-77) and Steve Peregrin Took (1949-80) released their debut album My People Were Fair and Had Sky in Their Hair... But Now They're Content to Wear Stars on Their Brows (album) (debut) (July 5) (#15 in the U.K.), featuring the tracks Hot Rod Mama. Child Star, and Scenescof. Album #2 Prophets, Seers & Sages: The Angels of the Ages (Oct. 14, 1968) features Aznageel the Mage, The Friends, and Wind Quartets. Album #3 Unicorn (May 16, 1969) (#16 in the U.K.) features The Seal of Seasons, She Was Born To Be My Unicorn, Stones for Avalon, and Iscariot. Album #4 A Beard of Stars (Mar. 13, 1970) was the first with Mickey Finn (drums), and their first use of electric instruments; it features the tracks By the Light of a Magical Moon, Fist Heart Mighty Dawn Dart, Pavillions of Sun, and Ride a White Swan. Album #5 T.Rex (Dec. 18, 1970) was their first use of the abbreviated name for Tyrannosaurus Rex. Album #6 Electric Warrior (Sept. 24, 1971) (#32 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) was their breakthrough album, featuring the tracks Jeepster, and Bang A Gong (Get It On) (#10 in the U.S.), launching glitter-dabbing glam rock? Album #7 The Slider (July 21, 1972) (#17 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) features Telegram Sam, and Metal Guru. Album #8 Tanx (Mar. 16, 1973) (#102 in the U.S.) dumped glam rock for dark proto-punk, and features Shock Rock. In 1973 they released the hit single 20th Century Boy. Album #9 Zinc Alloy and the Hidden Riders of Tomorrow - A Creamed Cage in August (Feb. 1, 1974) caused his attempt to pander to the U.S. market split his fans; it features Teenage Dream (#13 in the U.K.). Album #10 Bolan's Zip Gun (Feb. 16, 1975) features Light of Love (#22 in the U.K.), and Zip Gun Boogie. Album #11 Futuristic Dragon (Jan. 30, 1976) (#50 in the U.K.) features Futuristic Dragon (#50 in the U.K.), and Dreamy Lady (#30 in the U.K.). Album #12 (last) Dandy in the Underworld (Mar. 11, 1976) (#26 in the U.K.) features Dandy in the Underworld, I Love to Boogie, and The Soul of My Suit. Too bad, Marc Bolan died in a car crash in London on Sept. 16, 1977 when his purple Mini was driven by his babe Gloria Jones into a sycamore tree (she survived); the site was turned into a shrine; the last guest on his Granada music show "Marc" was David Bowie.
On July 28, 1968 while in the midst of founding Apple Records (the logo is a green Granny Smith apple), the Beatles had their Mad Day Out, going randomly around London while being photographed by Paul McCartney's Am. photographer girlfriend Francie "Franny" Schwartz (1944-), who Paul's upper-middle class actress fiance (since Dec. 25, 1967) Jane Asher (1946-) (sister of Peter Asher of Peter and Gordon) found him in bed with on July 20, ending their engagement; the Beatles' last official photoshoot, taken by society photographer Tom Murray and not released until 2010, it has an eerie Photo of John Lennon Playing Dead. On Nov. 22, 1968 they released The White Album, their album #9 (double album), first release from the Apple label, which became their best-selling album, selling 2M copies the first week. It had a plain white cover designed by English Pop artist Richard Hamilton (1922-), and features a serial number. Their first album after the death of mgr. Brian Epstein. Original title was "A Doll's House", after the Henrik Ibsen play. Tracks include: Back in the USSR, Dear Prudence (about Mia Farrow's sister Prudence Farrow), Glass Onion ("Here's another clue for you all, the walrus is Paul"), Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da, Wild Honey Pie; The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill, While My Guitar Gently Weeps (written by George), Happiness is a Warm Gun; Martha My Dear, I'm So Tired, Blackbird, Piggies (George), Rocky Raccoon, Don't Pass Me By (Ringo), Why Don't We Do It in the Road?, I Will, Julia (quotes Khalil Gibran's 1923 work "The Prophet"), Birthday, Yer Blues, Mother Nature's Son, Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey, Sexy Sadie; Helter Skelter (4:29) (Charles Manson claims it sends him Satanic messages), Long, Long, Long (George), Revolution 1, Honey Pie, Savoy Truffle (George), Cry Baby Cry, Revolution 9 (try it backwards and hear the Satanic messages, starting with "Number Nine" turning into "Turn me on dead man"?); Good Night. After that supernova of LSD-soaked musical creativity, they were probably all burned out and looking for excuses to say good night and break up? Talking about White Album, guess who countered with a Black Album?
In July 1968 the English (Hertford) rock band Deep Purple (AKA Roundabout), incl. Rod Evans (1947-) (vocals), Jon Lord (1941-) (organ), Hugh Richard "Ritchie" Blackmore (1945-) (guitar), Nicholas "Nick" Simper (1945-) (bass), and Ian Paice (1948-) (drums) released their debut album Shades of Deep Purple, which features the track Hush (#4 in the U.S.), followed by album #2 The Book of Taliesyn (Dec. 11, 1968), which features River Deep, Mountain High (#53 in the U.S.). Album #4 Deep Purple in Rock (June 1970) (#4 in the U.K.) features Speed King, Into the Fire, Child in Time, and Black Night. Album #5 Fireball (July 1971) (#1 in the U.K.) features Fireball (#15 in the U.K.), Strange Kind of Woman (#8 in the U.K.), and Anyone's Daughter. Album #6 Machine Head (Mar. 1972) (#7 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), recorded at the Grand Hotel Montreux, Switzerland on Dec. 6-21, 1971 after a fire during a performance by Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention burned down a nearby casino features Smoke on the Water (#4 in the U.S., #21 in the U.K.); "We all came out to Montreux, on the Lake Geneva shoreline/ To make records with a mobile, we didn't have much time." Too bad their distributor was Tetragrammaton Records, founded by Roy Silver, Marvin Deane, Bruce Post Campbell, and Bill Cosby, which also distributed John Lennon's and Yoko Ono's 1968 "Two Virgins" album, but went bankrupt in 1971, leaving Deep Purple's deep pockets empty and broke. After pioneering hard rock and heavy metal, and being listed by the Guinness Book of World Records as "loudest pop group", they went on to sell 100M albums worldwide.
In Sept. 1968 the Steve Miller Band released their debut album Children of the Future, featuring Steppin' Stone, Key to the Highway. Album #2 Sailor (Oct. 1968) contained the hits Living in the USA, and Gangster of Love. Album #3 Brave New World (Sept. 1969) contained the hit track Space Cowboy. Album #8 The Joker (Oct. 1973) (#2 in the U.S.) contained the hit The Joker.
On Oct. 2-10, 1968 the Detroit Tigers (AL) defeated the St. Louis Cardinals (NL) 4-3 (4-1 in Game 7) to win the 65th World Series, helping unite the city after the 1967 Detroit Race Riot; on Oct. 2 Bob Gibson struck out 17 Tigers players to win Game 1; Gibson also won Game 4 and won the Cy Young and MVP awards with a 1.12 ERA during the season; Denny McLain won Game 6, while teammate pitcher Micky Lolich went 3-0, and won World Series MVP; too bad, talented blind Puerto Rican immigrant crossover artist Jose Feliciano (1945-) sang The Star-Spangled Banner slow, jazzy Latin-style, changing the arrangement, starting a (racist?) backlash among veterans and causing radio stations to quit playing his music for several years, even though the single reached #50 on the Billboard Hot 100, and 10 mo. later Jimi Hendrix did his here's-what-it-looks-like-here's-what-it-feels-like electric guitar rendition at Woodstock sans backlash. Meanwhile in 1968 he released his hit album Feliciano!, featuring the hit track Light My Fire (by the Doors). In Nov. 1970 he released the album Feliz Navidad, which features Feliz Navidad, which became one of the most popular Xmas songs ever, the racists still couldn't co-opt that, no wonder Puerto Rico won't opt for statehood.
On Oct. 25, 1968 the English (Blackpool and Luton) rock band Jethro Tull, named after the English agriculturalist Jethro Tull (1674-1741) who perfected the horse-drawn seed drill in 1701, I guess it resembles a flute if you use your imagination, featuring Scottish floutist Ian Scott Anderson (1947-) released their debut album This Was (#62 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.), which features Cat's Squirrel. Album #2 Stand Up (Aug. 1, 1969) (#1 in the U.K.) features A New Day Yesterday, and Jeffrey Goes to Leicester Square. Album #3 Benefit (Apr. 20, 1970) (#3 in the U.K.), last with John Evan and Glenn Cornick features With You There to Help Me, and Play in Time. Album #4 Aqualung (Mar. 19, 1971) sold 7M copies, and features Aqualung, Cross-Eyed Mary, Mother Goose, and Locomotive Breath. Album #7 War Child (Oct. 14, 1974) features Bungle in the Jungle, Only Solitaire, and Skating Away on the Thin Ice of a New Day. They went on to sell 60M albums.
In Oct. 1968 the all-cover LA-based rock band Three Dog Night (named after an Australian night so cold that the aborigines need three dogs to keep them cold), comprised of Daniel Anthony "Danny" Hutton (1942-) (vocals), Charles "Chuck" Negron (1942-) (vocals), Cory Wells (Emil Lewandowski) (1942-) (vocals), Michael Rand "Mike" Allsup (1947-) (guitar), Jimmy Greenspoon (1948-) (keyboards), Joe Schermie (1946-2002) (bass), and Floyd Sneed (1942-) (drums) released their debut album Three Dog Night, containing the tracks Nobody, Try a Little Tenderness, and One (by Harry Nilsson) (#5 in the U.S.). Album #2 Suitable for Framing (June 1969) contained the hit singles Easy To Be Hard (from "Hair"), Eli's Comin' (by Laura Nyro), and Celebrate (featuring Chicago). Album #4 It Ain't Easy (Apr. 1970) contained the hits It Ain't Easy, and Mama Told Me (Not To Come). Album #5 Naturally (Nov. 1970) contained the hits Joy to the World (#1 in the U.S.) ("Jeremiah was a bullfrog, was a good friend of mine,/ I never understood a single a word he said, but I helped him drink his wine"), Liar (#7 in the U.S.), and One Man Band. Album #7 Harmony (Sept. 1971) contained the hits An Old Fashioned Love Song (by Paul Williams) (#4 in the U.S.), and Never Been to Spain (by Hoyt Axton) (#5 in the U.S.).
In Nov. 1968 the Austin, Tex.-based rock band Bubble Puppy, named after the Centrifugal Bumble-Puppy game in Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World", incl. Rod Prince (guitar), Todd Potter (guitar), Roy Cox (bass), and David "Fuzzy" Fore (drums) released their 1-hit wonder Hot Smoke and Sassafras (#14 in the U.S.), named after a mangled line from "The Beverly Hillbillies".
In Nov. 1968 the San Francisco multiracial rock-funk-soul group Sly and the Family Stone, incl. Sylvester Stewart "Sly" Stone (1943-) (vocals), Frederick Stewart "Freddie" Stone (1946-) (guitar), Rosemary "Rose" Stone (1945-) (keyboards) (known for performing while wearing a platinum-colored wig), Larry Graham (1946-) (bass), Cynthia Robinson (1946-) (trumpet), Jerry Martini (1943-) (sax), and Greg Errico (1948-) (drums), with background by Little Sister featuring Vaetta "Vet" Stone (1950-) released their first #1 U.S. hit single Everyday People. Album #2 Dance to the Music (Apr. 27, 1968) features the track Dance to the Music. Album #4 Stand! (May 3, 1969) was their breakthrough, selling 1M copies by Nov. 26, and 3M total; it features the tracks Stand!, Sing a Simple Song, I Want to Take You Higher, and Hot Fun in the Summertime; bassist Larry Graham invented the "slap bass technique" which became a staple of funk, along with "slapping and popping". Album #5 There's a Riot Goin' On (original title "Africa Talks to You") (Nov. 20, 1971) (#1 in the U.S.), sold 1M copies, and features Family Affair (#1 in the U.S.). They broke up in Jan. 1975.
In Nov. 1968 the English (London) group Free, composed of Paul Bernard Rodgers (1949-) (vocals), Paul Francis Kossoff (1950-76) (guitar), Andrew McLan "Andy" Fraser (1952-) (bass), John Douglas "Rabbit" Bundrick (keyboards), and Simon Frederick St. George Kirke (1949-) (drums) released their debut album Tons of Sobs, featuring Goin' Down Slow. Album #3 Fire and Water (June 1970) (#13 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.) features the hit All Right Now (#4 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.).
On Dec. 3, 1968 still-slim Elvis Presley "the King" makes his Elvis Live Performance Comeback in an NBC-TV special.
On Dec. 6, 1968 after releasing the hit single Jumpin' Jack Flash in May 1968, the Rolling Stones released album #7 (#9 in the U.S.) Beggars Banquet, featuring the tracks Dear Doctor, Parachute Woman, Street Fighting Man, Stray Cat Blues, Salt of the Earth ("Let's take a drink to the salt of the Earth"), Factory Girl, and their late-but-killer 666 entry Sympathy for the Devil (original title: "The Devil Is My Name"). On Dec. 11, 1968 the BBC aired The Rolling Stones' Rock and Roll Circus, starring Taj Mahal, The Who (lead guitar Pete Townshend), John Lennon and Yoko Ono's horrible band Dirty Mac (playing "Gitless", with Yoko Ono squawking like a monkey), and finishing with the Stone's "Sympathy for the Devil" in what amounts to a Satanic rite with everybody celebrating. Mick Jagger's words "Who killed the Kennedys, after all it was you and me" stunned viewers so close to the assassination of RFK. This was the last appearance of Rolling Stones founder Brian Jones (who was found dead at the bottom of his swimming pool on July 3, 1969) with the Stones. The show was never reaired except once on VH1, then finally released to PBS in 2007.
In 1968 San Diego, Calif.-based psychedelic rock band Iron Butterfly released the mega-hit In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida (In the Garden of Eden) in the album of the same title, which sold 25M copies.
In 1968 English singer David Clayton-Thomas (1941-) released the hit single Spinning Wheel (#2 in the U.S.), then joined the New York City jazz fusion band Blood, Sweat and Tears, which in 1969 released You've Made Me So Very Happy (#2 in the U.S.).
In 1968 cute Welsh singer Mary Hopkin (1950-) released her #1 U.K. single Those Were the Days on the Apple label. In 1968 the LA psychedelic electronic rock band The United States of America, consisting of Joseph "Joe" Byrd (1937-), Dorothy Moskowitz, Gordon Marron, Craig Woodson, Ed Bogas, and Rand Forbes released their first and last album The United States of America, the ultimate underground hippie album, featuring the tracks The American Metaphysical Circus, Coming Down, The Garden of Earthly Delights, Hard Coming Love, Cloud Song, No Love to Give, Where Is Yesterday, and I Won't Leave My Wooden Wife ("But I've got to consider my mortality, and I won't leave my wooden wife for you, sugar/ I've got a split-level house with a wonderful view, sugar, three kids and Yorkshire terrier too, sugar, and I just couldn't stand it when you come home late from school"). In 1969 Joe Byrd (1937-) and the Field Hippies, incl. Tom Scott, Ted Greene, Meyer Hirsch, Victoria Bond, and Ernie Anderson released their first and last album The American Metaphysical Circus, which became a classic that stayed in print for almost 20 years; it features the tracks The Elephant at the Door, and Invisible Man (slams LBJ). In 1968 1-hit wonder Zager and Evans from Lincoln, Neb., consisting of of Denny Zager (1943-) and Rick Evans (1943-) released the single In the Year 2525, which didn't go anywhere until 1969, when it went #1 for 6 weeks starting on July 12, during the Apollo 11 Moon Mission; "In the year 2525, if man is still alive, if woman can survive, they may find... In the year 7010, if God's a comin', he ought to make it by then... In the year 9595, I'm kinda wondering if man is gonna be alive. He's taken everything this old Earth can give, and he ain't put back nothing in... Now it's been 10,000 years. Man has cried a billion tears. For what, he never knew. Now man's reign is through. But through eternal night, the twinkling of starlight, so very far away, maybe it's only yesterday." In 1968 the Chambers Brothers released their 11-min. hit Time Has Come Today, favorite of Historyscopers neverwhere.
1968 saw the launch of singers Joni Mitchell (Roberta Joan Anderson) (1943-) of Canada, George Ivan "Van" Morrison (1945-) of Northern Ireland, Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Harry Edward Nilsson III (1941-94), and James Vernon Taylor (1948-) of N.C. In Mar. 1968 Joni Mitchell released her debut album Song to a Seagull, which didn't go anywhere, but album #2 Clouds (May 1969) was a hit, with hit tracks Chelsea Morning, and Both Sides, Now. Album #3 Ladies of the Canyon (Mar. 1970) contained the hits Big Yellow Taxi ("They paved paradise and put up a parking lot"), Woodstock, and The Circle Game. In 1967 Van Morrison, who scored a hit in 1964 with his Belfast band Them with the garage band staple Gloria went solo and released the hit single Brown Eyed Girl. In 1968 he released his solo debut album Astral Weeks, which didn't go anywhere, but his 3rd solo album Moondance (Feb. 28, 1970) was a hit, containing the hit tracks Moondance, Come Running, and Crazy Love. In 1968 Harry Nilsson released album #3 Aerial Ballet, which included Everybody's Talkin', which became a hit when it was used as the theme of the 1969 Oscar winning film "The Midnight Cowboy". It also contained One, which was made into a #1 U.S. hit by Three Dog Night ("One is the loneliest number"). In 1969 he recorded I Guess the Lord Must Be in New York City (#34 in the U.S.) for "Midnight Cowboy", which was not used in a film until "You've Got Mail" (1998). Nilsson's album #6 The Point! (Feb. 1971), about a a boy named Oblio, the only round-headed person in the Pointed Village features Me and My Arrow. Album #7 Nilsson Schmilsson (Nov. 1971) (#3 in the U.S.) features Without You (#1 in the U.S.), Coconut (#8 in the U.S.) ("She put the lime in the coconut, she drank 'em both up"), and Jump Into the Fire (#27 in the U.S.). Album #7 Son of Schmilsson (album #8) (July 1972) (#12 in the U.S.) features Spaceman (#23 In the U.S.), Daybreak (#39 in the U.S.), and You're Breakin' My Heart (AKA The Fuck You Song) ("You're breaking my heart/ You're tearing it apart/ So fuck you"). In Dec. 1968 James Taylor released his debut album James Taylor, which was the first recording by a non-British artist to be released by Apple Records, and his only release on that label. In Feb. 1970 he released album #2 Sweet Baby James, containing the hit Fire and Rain (#3 in the U.S.). In 1971 his duet with Carole King You've Got a Friend (#1 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) was released.
In 1968 Manhattan, N.Y. born Jewish leftist feminist journalist Ellen Jane Willis (1941-2011) became the first pop-rock music critic for The New Yorker (until 1975), with the column "Rock, etc.", becoming the first with a nat. audience - took long enough, huh?
1969 was the end of the magic Sixties Decade, and also the end of the magic Beatles. On Jan. 3, 1969 30K copies of the Nov. 29, 1968 John Lennon-Yoko Ono debut album Two Virgins were confiscated by police in Newark, N.J., claiming that the nude cover photo violates their obscenity laws - not because they're naked, but because they're so ugly? On Jan. 30, 1969 after releasing their Yellow Submarine soundtrack album (#10) on Jan. 17, which features the new tracks All Together Now, and Hey Bulldog, the Beatles gave their last public performance on the roof of Apple Records in London, stopping traffic on the street while they make a great video of Get Back (the first single release in true stereo in the U.S.) (a response to Enoch Powell's Apr. 20, 1968 Rivers of Blood Speech, with an early version having the line "Don't dig no Pakistanis taking all the people's jobs"); black Houston, Tex.-born Afro-wearing "5th Beatle" organist William Evertt "Billy" Preston (1946-2006) (hired on Jan. 22) accompanied them; the London bobbies shut them down in the middle of "Let It Be"; on Sept. 26, 1969 Preston released album #4 That's the Way God Planned It on the Apple label, featuring the track That's the Way God Planned It, followed on Jan. 7, 1970 by album #5 Encouraging Words, featuring friend George Harrison's My Sweet Lord, followed on June 25, 1971 by album #6 I Wrote a Simple Song, featuring the hit Outa-Space, followed on Oct. 8, 1972 by album #7 Music Is My Life, featuring his #1 U.S. hit Will It Go Round in Circles, followed in Sept. 1974 by album #9 The Kids & Me, featuring You Are So Beautiful, and Nothing from Nothing. On Feb. 4, 1969 after growing dissatisfied with super-smart American Beatles atty. Allen Klein (1931-) (son of Hungarian Jewish immigrants) (motto: "Though I walk in the shadow of the valley of evil, I have no fear, as I am the biggest bastard in the valley"), Paul McCarthy hired the firm of Eastman and Eastman, run by Lee Eastman (Leopold Vail Epstein) (1910-91), which went on to successfully sue the Beatles to dissolve their partnership; on Feb. 8 George Harrison had his tonsils removed at Univ. College Hospital in London after he neglected an infected molar. On Mar. 11, 1969 Levi Strauss & Co. began to sell bell-bottomed jeans, causing cattle-like U.S. consumers to go moo and stampede to buy these silly pants to go with their Beatle ankle boots. On Mar. 12, 1969 Beatle Paul McCartney married New York photographer Linda Louise Eastman (1941-98) (son of his atty. Lee Eastman) in London; meanwhile George Harrison and his wife Pattie were arrested in England for hashish possession. On Mar. 20, 1969 John Lennon married zany Japanese artist Yoko Ono (1933-) in Gibraltar, after which they drove from Paris to Amsterdam on their honeymoon, then on Mar. 25-31 spent a week in bed in Room 902 (Honeymoon Suite) of the Amsterdam Hilton, making a point of acting "like angels" (no sex, despite their recent nude "Two Virgins" album cover), with signs over the bed reading "Hair Peace" and "Bed Peace"; they then fly to Vienna, where they held their Bagism Conference, claiming that by living inside bags people would no longer judge each other by their appearance; in Apr. Yoko sent acorns to world heads of state as a symbol of peace, which were univerally ignored; on May 24 after John was refused entry to the U.S. because of his 1968 marijuana conviction, they held their Second Bed-In at the Sheraton Oceanus Hotel in the Bahamas, then leave because of the heat, and on May 26 they moved to Rooms 1738 and 1742 of the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal, Canada, holding a Bed-In for Peace on May 25-June 2; on June 2 after inviting Timothy Leary, Dick Gregory, Tommy Smothers, and Al Capp, they recorded Give Peace a Chance under the name Plastic Ono Band, becoming the first single solo by a Beatle; in Dec. they rounded out their decade-ending Messianic message with a billboard campaign in 11 cities, reading "War is Over! If You Want It - Happy Christmas from John and Yoko". On Sept. 13, 1969 John Lennon and Yoko Ono presented the Plastic Ono Band in concert for the first time at the Toronto Peace Festival in Canada, becoming Lennon's first public rock performance without the Beatles since meeting Paul McCartney in 1957; they were backed by Eric Clapton, Klaus Voormann, and Alan White; the festival also featured Chuck Berry, Chicago, Bo Diddley, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Little Richard. On Sept. 26, 1969 the Beatles released their ultra-cool (best?) 12th and last album Abbey Road in the U.K. (Oct. 1 in the U.S.). Recorded at Abbey Road Studios, it sold 20M copies, coming in #2 behind "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" (30M copies) as the two best-selling albums of the decade. The album cover shows the Beatles walking across Abbey Road, with John in front dressed like a minister, followed by Ringo dressed in a funeral-going suit, then Paul barefoot like a cadaver, with George bringing up the rear dressed in work clothes like a gravedigger, fueling the Paul Is Dead Hoax, begun by amateur sleuths finding clues in album covers and backwards-played records, and launched in the U.S. on Oct. 21, 1969 when Detroit, Mich. DJ Russell "Uncle Russ" Gibb (1931-) of WKNR-FM announced it, after which it spread worldwide, fed by studio tricks engineered into this and prior releases, esp. the 1967 song I Am the Walrus, which cause mysterious suggestive words to be heard when played backwards, along with Strawberry Fields Forever, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Revolution 9, Yesterday, et al., building into a story that Paul McCartney died in an auto accident and was replaced by lookalike William Stuart Campbell, who has a scar on his upper lip; after taking his new wife Linda and two children on holiday in Scotland, Paul uttered the alternate universe soundbyte "If I were dead, I'd be the last to know", which doesn't help, but the hoax started to dissipate after McCartney appeared alive on the Nov. 7 cover of Life mag., although the rumors persisted - a brilliant publicity stunt to save a dying franchise that backfires, or the truth of why they had to break up?
At the time, the end of the 1960s didn't seem like an end to any rock era. On Jan. 12, 1969 Led Zeppelin was released by English (London) group Led Zeppelin, with hit tracks Good Times Bad Times, Babe I'm Gonna Love You, and Dazed and Confused. The group was fronted by effiminate (wears his shirt open to prove he doesn't have boobs?) singer Robert Anthony Plant (1948-), and features super guitarist James Patrick "Jimmy" Page (1944-) (formerly of the Yardbirds), bassist John Paul Jones (John Baldwin) (1946-), and drummer John Henry Bonham (1948-80). The four yearly albums turned them into rock legends, selling 200M+ albums (112M in the U.S.). Jimmy Page used a rosewood 1959 Fender Telecaster electric guitar given him in 1966 by Jeff Beck after quitting the Yardbirds; in May 1970 fellow rocker Joe Walsh gave him a 1958 Sunburst Gibson Les Paul, which he used in "Stairway to Heaven". Album #2 Led Zeppelin II (Oct. 22, 1969) features the tracks Whole Lotta Love, Heartbreaker, and Living Loving Maid (She's Just a Woman). Album #3 Led Zeppelin III (Oct. 5, 1970) features the tracks Friends, Celebration Day, Since I've Been Loving You, and Tangerine. Album #4 Led Zeppelin IV (Nov. 8, 1971) (no title on the cover) features the tracks Black Dog, and Rock and Roll.
On Feb. 21-23, 1969 KHJ-FM 93 Los Angeles aired the 48-hour series The History of Rock and Roll, which billed itself as "modern music's first rockumentary", and went into syndication. Meanwhile on Feb. 9, 1969 its rival The Pop Chronicles began airing on KRLA-AM Los Angeles. So the 1960s weren't even over and already rock was considered history material for old farts.
In Feb. 1969 the American country rock band Flying Burrito Brothers, fronted by Gram Parsons (1946-73) and Christopher "Chris" Hillman (1944-) released their debut album The Gilded Palace of Sin, featuring the tracks Do Right Woman, and Dark End of the Street. Album #2 Burrito Deluxe (album #2) (Apr. 1970) features Wild Horses by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. In Jan. 1973 Parsons went solo with the debut album GP, combining rock and country, and featuring the track Streets of Baltimore. After another failed album he died of an OD on Sept. 19, 1973 in a hotel room in Joshua Tree, Calif., after which his friend and road mgr. Phil Kaufman honored a prior pact and stole his body from the airport and brought it back to Joshua Tree Nat. Park and cremated it with 5 gal. of gasoline, getting fined $700 for stealing a coffin, which became the subject of the 2003 film Grand Theft Parsons, starring Gabriel Macht as Parsons and Johnny Knoxville as Kaufman.
On Mar. 1, 1969 a jury in New Orleans, La. found businessman Clay Laverne Shaw (1913-74) not guilty of conspiracy to assassinate Pres. John F. Kennedy after being charged by DA Earling Carothers "Jim" Garrison (1921-92); the next person charged is ?
On Mar. 29, 1969 The James Gang, from Cleveland, Ohio, incl. Joseph Fidler "Joe" Walsh (1947-) (vocals), Tom Kriss (bass), Jim Fox (1947-) (drums), Ronnie Silverman/Bob Webb (guitar), Greg Grandillo/Dennis Chandler (guitar), and Phil Giallombardo (keyboards) released their debut album Y'er Album; it features the legend "Turn me over" on side one, and "Play me again" on side two, which has grooves spaced to fool a record player into playing it over and over; it features the track Funk #48. Album #2 The James Gang Rides Again (July 1970) was the first with Dale Peters (bass), and features the hit track Funk #49. Album #3 Thirds (Apr. 1971) was the last with Joe Walsh, who is credited with "guitar, vocals, and train wreck"; it features the track Walk Away. Album #4 Passin' Thru (July 31, 1972) was the first with Roy Kenner in place of Joe Walsh; it features Had Enough. Album #5 Straight Shooter (Oct. 19, 1972) was the last with Domenic Troiano, who was replaced by Tommy Bolin; it features Kick Back Man. Album #6 Bang (Sept. 1, 1973) features Standing in the Rain, and Ride the Wind. Album #7 Miami (Dec. 14, 1974) was the last with Tommy Bolin, who joined Deep Purple. Album #9 Jesse Come Home (Feb. 7, 1976) had Bob Webb on lead guitar and Phil Giallombardo on keyboards; it features Love Hurts.
In Apr. 1969 Elvis Presley released the single In the Ghetto (The Vicious Cycle) (written by Mac Davis), which became his first top-10 U.S. hit in four years (#3), and his first U.K. top-10 hit in three years. On Aug. 26, 1969 Elvis released the single Suspicious Minds (written by Mark James), which restored his flagging career and became his 17th and last #1 U.S. single, and his first since 1962, neatly bracketing the 1960s as not his kind of decade.
On May 14, 1969 Canadian rocker Neil Percival Young (1945-) (formerly of Buffalo Springfield) and his backing band Crazy Horse released album #2 Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, featuring the tracks Cinnamon Girl, Down by the River ("She could take me over the rainbow"), and Cowgirl in the Sand (written when he had a 103 F fever). On May 29, 1969 the "supergroup" Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, consisting of David Van Cortlandt Crosby (1941-) (formerly of the Byrds), Stephen Arthur Stills (1945-) (formerly of Buffalo Springfield), Graham William Nash (1942-) (formerly of The Hollies), and later occasional member Neil Young released debut album Crosby, Stills & Nash, with hit tracks Marrakesh Express, and Suite: Judy Blue Eyes. On Mar. 11, 1970 they released album #2 Deja Vu (Déjà Vu) (#1 in the U.S.), featuring the tracks Our House. Teach Your Children, Woodstock (written by Joni Mitchell); Ohio (June); about the Kent State Massacre of May 4, 1970; the lyrics were quickly adopted by the anti-Nixon student movement; "Tin soldiers and Nixon coming/We're finally on our own/ This summer I hear the drumming/ Four dead in Ohio/ Gonna get down to it/ Soldiers are cutting us down/ Should have been done long ago/ What if you knew her and/ Found her dead on the ground?/ How can you run when you know?"; too bad, after Still's part-Cherokee singer babe Rita Coolidge (1945-) left him for Nash, the band broke up after their summer tour. On Sept. 19, 1987 Neil Young released album #3 After the Gold Rush, which included the tracks Only Love Can Break Your Heart, and When You Dance I Can Really Love. On Feb. 14, 1971 Neil Young released album #4 Harvest, containing the hit tracks Old Man (#31 in the U.S.), and Heart of Gold (#1 in the U.S.). Album #5 On the Beach (July 16, 1974), "One of the most despairing albums of the decade" (Rolling Stone), which features Walk On, and On the Beach. Album #8 Tonight's the Night (June 20, 1975) features Tonight's the Night. Album #10 American Stars 'n Bars (June 13, 1977) features Like a Hurricane.
In May 1969 husband-wife band Delaney & Bonnie and Friends, fronted by Delaney Bramlett (1939-2008) and Bonnie Bramlett (Bonnie Lynn O'Farrell) (1944-) released their debut album Home, featuring It's Been a Long Time Coming, and Hard to Say Goodbye. They followed it the same year with album #2 Accept No Substitute, featuring Ghetto, which turned George Harrison on so much he offered them a deal with Apple Records, after which Eric Clapton took them on the road to open for Blind Faith. Album #3 On Tour with Eric Clapton (Mar. 1970) (#29 in the U.S., #39 in the U.K.) features Things Get Better, Only You and I Know, and I Don't Want to Discuss It. Album #4 To Bonnie from Delaney (Sept. 1970) (#58 in the U.S.) features Soul Shake, Living on the Open Road. Album #5 Motel Shot (Mar. 1971) (#65 in the U.S.) features Never Ending Song of Love (#13 in the U.S.). Album #6 (last) D&B Together (Mar. 1972) features Comin' Home, and Groupie (Superstar), after which they divorced.
On June 8, 1969 Brian Jones left the Rolling Stones over drug abuse, and was replaced by Michael Kevin "Mick" Taylor (1949-) of John Mayall's Bluesbreakers (since 1966), who left in Dec. 1974. On July 3, 1969 Lewis Brian Hopkins Jones (b. 1942) was found dead in his swimming pool, and the death was officially ruled "accidental drowning under the influence of drugs and alcohol"; was he really murdered by bldg. contractor Frank Thorogood, who allegedly confessed on his deathbed in 1993? On July 5, 1969 the Rolling Stones played a free Concert in Hyde Park, London before 300K-650K, making it a tribute to deceased member Brian Jones, and introducing new guitarist Mick Taylor. New London rock band King Crimson also played, and became an instant hit. On Oct. 10, 1969 they released their debut album In the Court of the Crimson King (#5 in the U.K.), launching progressive rock, blending rock and roll with classical. Members incl. Robert Fripp (1946-) (guitar), Robert Steven "Adrian" Belew (1949-), Michael Rex Giles (1942-) (drums), Ian MacDonald (1946-) (sax), Gregorgy Stuart "Greg" Lake (1947-) (bass), and Peter John Sinfield (1943-) (synthesizer, lyrics). Tracks incl. The Court of the Crimson King, 21st Century Schizoid Man, Epitaph, I Talk to the Wind, and Moonchild. The album stripped away the blues-based foundations of rock and added jazz and Classical, becoming the most influential progressive rock album ever released?
On July 4, 1969 the First Atlanta International Pop Festival in Ga. features all the usual suspects, incl. Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Joe Cocker, Blood, Sweat & Tears, Canned Heat, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Led Zeppelin et al., and made instant stars of the new band Grand Funk Railroad from Flint, Mich. (located on the Grand Trunk Railroad), composed of Mark Farmer (vocals), Mel Schacher (bass) (formerly of ? and the Mysterians), and Don Brewer (drums). In Aug. 1969 they released their million-selling debut album On Time, featuring Time Machine, featuring the bass guitar being mixed louder than the others. Album #2 Grand Funk (Red Album) (Dec. 1969) features a cover of Inside Looking Out by The Animals. Album #3 Closer to Home (July 1970) became their 3rd straight gold record, making them the best selling band in the U.S. in 1970. It features the hit track I'm Your Captain (Closer to Home), about Sir Frances Drake between Apr. 1579 when he left the Pacific Coast of Mexico to Nov. 1579 when he arrived in the East Indies? ("Everybody, listen to me/ And return me my ship/ I'm your captain, I'm your captain/ Although I'm feeling mighty sick/ I've been lost now, days uncounted/ And it's months since I've seen home,/ Can you hear me, can you hear me/ Or am I all alone.") A block-long $100K billboard ad for the album was placed in Times Square in New York City. In 1971 they sold out Shea Stadium in 72 hours, breaking the Beatles' record. Album #7 We're An American Band (July 1973) features We're An American Band (#1 in the U.S.). Album #9 All the Girls in the World Beware!!! (Dec. 1974) features the bodies of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Franco Columbu on the cover with the band members' faces pasted on, and included hit tracks Some Kind of Wonderful (#3 in the U.S.), and Bad Time (#4 in the U.S.).
On July 14, 1969 Dennis Hopper's film Easy Rider debuted, celebrating while ironically presaging the end of the hippie culture, starring Hopper as hippie Billy (dressed in buckskin with a bushman hat), and Peter Fonda as hippie Captain America (dressed in U.S. flag-draped leather) (based on David Crosby and Roger McGuinn of The Byrds), who smuggle coke from Mexico to LA, sell it to the Rolls-Royce-riding Connection (Phil Spector), then stuff the money in the fuel tank of their Harley and head east for the New Orleans Mardi Gras, meeting up with alcoholic lawyer Jack Nicholson, who turns down marijuana because "It leads to harder stuff" and "I don't want to get hooked", then changes his mind, and is later killed by crackers with a machete. After reaching New Orleans, they shack up with hos Karen (Karen Black) and Mary (Toni Basil), and have a bad LSD trip in a cemetery before getting bushwacked by two rednecks in a pickup truck, who kill them with a shotgun before they can reach their long-awaited retirement in Fla.
On July 25, 1969 the English (London) rock band Yes, incl. "the Architect of Progressive Music" Peter Banks (Peter William Brockbanks) (1947-2013) (guitar), John Roy "Jon" Anderson (1944-) (vocals), Christopher Russell Edward "Chris" Squire (1948-) (bass), Tony Kaye (1942-) (organ), and William Scott "Bill" Bruford (1949-) (drums) launched progressive rock with their debut album Yes. Album #3 The Yes Album (Feb. 19) (#40 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) was their breakthrough, introducing guitarist Stephen James "Steve" Howe (1947-), and featuring the hit track I've Seen All Good People. Album #4 Fragile (Nov. 26, 1971) (#4 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.); features the hit Roundabout. Album #5 Close to the Edge (Sept. 13, 1973) (#3 in the U.S.) features And You and I. Album #7 Relayer (album #7) (Dec. 13, 1974) (#5 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) features The Gates of Delirium. They went on to sell 30M albums.
On Nov. 4, 1969 androgynous bi Australian rocker (not really - born in London) David Bowie (David Robert Jones) (1947-), whose childhood music hero wasn't Muddy Waters but Little Richard, whose right eye is blue and left eye hazel and dilated because of a punch taken as a schoolboy, who renamed himself after seeing Richard Widmark in "The Alamo", and was chosen to play in bands because of his weird blonde beauty got his start with album #2 David Bowie: Man of Words, Man of Music (Space Oddity), which incl. Space Oddity (July 11), about Major Tom, who takes a spacewalk and gets lost in space (the world of drugs?); used by the BBC during its Apollo 11 and Apollo 13 coverage. On May 12, 2013 Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield (1959-) records a cover of it on the Internat. Space Station, altered so that Major Tom lands safely, becoming the first music video shot in space. He then turned into Ziggy Stardust on June 6, 1972 with the album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, featuring the hit single Starman. Album #6 Aladdin Sane (Apr. 13, 1973) (#17 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) features The Jean Genie (#71 in the U.S., #2 in the U.S.). Diamond Dogs (album) (Apr. 24) (#5 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) features Rebel Rebel (#5 in the U.K.). Album #9 Young Americans (Mar. 7, 1975) (#9 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.) features Young Americans (#28 in the U.S., #18 in the U.K.), and Fame (#1 in the U.S., #17 in the U.K.), co-written by John Lennon (who does backing vocals, along with Luther Vandross), and Carlos Alomar. After dissing Philly soul by calling it "plastic soul", he got an invite to "Soul Train". On Dec. 5, 1975 he made a cocaine-soaked appearance on "The Dick Cavett Show". The album Let's Dance (Apr. 14, 1983) (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) was his biggest hit, featuring Let's Dance (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) (featuring guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, rocketing his career), China Girl (#2 in the U.K.), and Modern Love (#2 in the U.K.), by which time he "turned into a rock-and-roll version of Prince Charles", sporting an "old-fashioned haircut like a lemon meringue on his head" (Charles Shaar Murray). In 1992 he married Somalian model Iman Mohamed Abdulmajid (1955-). His album Earthling (Feb. 3, 1997) features Telling Lies, the first downloadable single by a major artist. After releasing his last studio album in 2003, he had emergency angioplasty for a blocked artery in 2004.
In July 1969 the English supergroup Humble Pie, consisting of Stephen Peter "Steve" Marriott (1947-91) of Small Faces (vocals), Peter Frampton (1958-) of The Herd (guitar), Alfred Gregory "Greg Ridley (1942-2003) of Spooky Tooth (bass), and 17-y.-o. Jerry Shirley (1952-) (drums) released their debut single Natural Born Bugie (#4 in the U.K.), followed in Aug. by their debut album As Safe As Yesterday Is (#16 in the U.K.), which Rolling Stone described as "heavy metal" in 1970. Album #2 Town and Country (Nov. 1969) features the track The Sad Bag of Shaky Jake. Album #3 Humble Pie (July, 1979) was their first with A&M Records; the cover features a drawing of a woman exposing her breasts and you know what; it features Only a Roach, and I'm Ready. Album #4 Rock On (Mar. 1971) was the last with Peter Frampton; it features Shine On. In Nov. 1971 they released the double album Performance: Rockin' the Fillmore (#21 in the U.S.), which features I Don't Need No Doctor (#73 in the U.S.). Album #5 Smokin' (Mar. 1972) (#6 in the U.S, #30 in the U.K.) was the first without Peter Frampton, with David "Clem" Clempson (1949-) replacing him to make it their best-selling album; it features Hot 'n' Nasty, C'mon Everybody, and 30 Days in the Hole. Album #8 Thunderbox (Feb. 1974), named after the 17th cent. slang word for toilet has a cover showing a peephole through which a woman's humble pie can be seen on a toilet; it features I Can't Stand the Rain (by Ann Peebles) ("the perfect single" - John Lennon), and Anna (Go to Him) (by Arthur Alexander). Album #9 (last) Street Rats (Feb., 1975) (#100 in the U.S.) features Street Rat.
On Aug. 5, 1969 the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based rock band The Stooges, fronted by Iggy Pop (James Newell "Jim" Osterberg Jr.) (1947-) released their debut album The Stooges (#106 in the U.S.), launching punk rock, featuring the tracks 1969 ("Another year with nothing to do"), and I Wanna Be Your Dog ("I'm so messed up, I want you here"), which didn't sell well but made waves.
On Aug. 8-10, 1969 the Tate-La Bianca Murders in Los Angeles, Calif. by a Satanic cult led by Charles Milles "Charlie" Manson (1934-) bummered-out the 1960s, but gave the Dark Side rock bands a boost. In Aug. 1969 Alice Cooper (Vincent Damon Furnier) (1948-) released his debut album Pretties for You, which was a flop, as was album #2 Easy Action (Mar. 1970). Album #3 Love It to Death (Jan. 12, 1971) broke him into the mainstream with the hit track I'm Eighteen. Album #4 Killer (Nov. 1971) (#21 in the U.S.), "greatest rock album of all time" (Johnny Rotten) features Under My Wheels (#59 in the U.S.), and Be My Lover (#49 in the U.S.). Album #5 School's Out (June 1972) (#2 in the U.S.) features School's Out (#7 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) (hit first hit single) (""We got no class / And we got no principles / And we got no innocence / We can't even think of a word that rhymes"), and Gutter Cat vs. the Jets. On Nov. 24, 1972 ABC-TV debuted In Concert, a late Fri. night rock music special featuring live bands, starting with Alice Cooper's act, which was so lewd it caused the network's Cincinnati affiliate to pull the plug in mid-performance. Album #6 Billion Dollar Babies (Feb. 25, 1973) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) features the tracks Billion Dollar Babies (#57 in the U.S.), No More Mr. Nice Guy (#25 in the U.S.), Hello Hooray (#35 in the U.S.), I Love the Dead, and Elected (#26 in the U.S.) (video features a fake Nixon). Album #7 Muscle of Love (Nov. 20, 1973) (#10 in the U.S.) was the last by the original Alice Cooper band, and came in a cover made of corrugated cardboard with a printed stain along the bottom; tracks included Muscle of Love, Teenage Lament '74 (#48 in the U.S.), and Man With the Golden Gun, which was rejected for the 1974 James Bond 007 movie. In 1973 Spanish surrealist artist Salvador Dali (1904-89) created Portrait of Alice Cooper's Brain (First Cylindric Chrono-Hologram), that makes him immortal. His solo debut album Welcome to My Nightmare (Feb. 1975) features Welcome to My Nightmare (he performed it on "The Muppet Show"), Only Women (Bleed), and Department of Youth. Album #18 Trash (July 25, 1989) features Poison (#7 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), Bed of Nails, House of Fire, and Only My Heart Talkin'. On Sept. 13, 2011 Alice Cooper released the album Welcome 2 My Nightmare (#22 in the U.S.), a sequel to "Welcome to My Nightmare" (1975); it features I Am Made of You, I'll Bite Your Face Off, and What Baby Wants (w/Ke$ha). On Dec. 9, 1969 the English heavy metal group Black Sabbath, fronted by "The Prince of Darkness", "Godfather of Heavy Metal" John Michael "Ozzy" Osbourne (1948-) (an LA neighbor of Pat Boone) released their first single Evil Woman, followed by their debut album Black Sabbath on Feb. 13 (Fri.), 1970, if you guys have any questions just let me know. Other members included Frank Anthony "Tony" Iommi (1948-) (guitar), Terence "Geezer" Butler (1949-) (bass), and William Thomas "Bill" Ward (1948-) (drums); Iommi downtuned his Gibson from E to C-sharp for that "heavy" sound. Tracks incl. Black Sabbath, The Wizard, N.I.B., and Evil Woman. Album #2 Paranoid (Sept. 18, 1970) features the tracks Paranoid, War Pigs, Iron Man, Electric Funeral, Rat Salad, and Fairies Wear Boots. In the late 1960s Vertigo Records was founded in the U.K. by Universal Music UK, owned by Philips Records, and signed Black Sabbath, followed later by Jade Warrior and Nirvana. On Jan. 20, 1982 after leaving the band in 1979 and going solo, Ozzy took to throwing meat at the audience on his Diary of A Madman Tour, causing fans to start throwing stuff back, leading to the famous incident where he bit the head off a bat in Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Des Moines, Iowa, later claiming he thought it was fake, then getting rabies shots; the fan who threw it on stage later claimed it was already dead. In Mar. 1982 guitarist Randy Rhoads died while flying a stolen airplane over the tour bus, after which he was replaced by Bernie Torme then Brad Gillis. In 1982 Ozzy got banned from San Antonio, Tex. for a decade for urinating on the Alamo while wearing future wife-mgr. Sharon's dress, and in 1989 he tried to strangle her after getting too drunk, the girl with no secrets, what was she doing with him, next on Cold Case. Ozzy's solo album #3 Bark at the Moon (Dec. 10, 1983) sold 3M copies, and features Bark at the Moon, and Rock 'n' Roll Rebel. Ozzy went on to sell 50M albums worldwide. Speaking of Prince of Darkness, in 1969 the Chicago group Coven, consisting of Jinx Dawson (1950-) (vocals), Oz Osborne (bass) (not to be confused with Ozzy Osbourne), Chris Neilsen (guitar), Rick Durrett/John Hobbs (keyboards), and Steve Ross (drums) released their debut album Witchcraft Destroys Minds and Reaps Souls. The pure Satanic music caused a controversy after the Aug. 1969 Tate-La Bianca Murders, and was removed from the market, influencing Black Sabbath, Goth et al., incl. introducing the Sign of the Horns to rock & roll. The album features the track Satanic Mass.
On Aug. 15-18, 1969 the Rock and Roll Decade ended more appropriately far away from kooky California with the Woodstock Music and Art Fair: An Aquarian Exposition: Three Days of Peace and Music, which was held on the muddy 600-acre farm of dairy farmer Max B. Yasgur (1919-73) (who dies of a heart attack in Fla. in 1973) in the Catskill Mts. near Bethel in upstate New York; "What we have in mind is breakfast in bed for four hundred thousand"; Hatha Yogiraj Sri Swami Satchidananda Saraswati (C.K. Ramaswamy Gounder) (1914-2002) opens the festival with prayer; in 1980 he opens the Satchidananda Ashram AKA Yogaville in Buckingham, Va., founding his own brand of the Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo, and making celeb disciples incl. Alice Coltrane, Rivers Cuomo, Carole King, Allen Ginsberg, Jeff Goldblum, Laura Nyro, and Liev Schrieber; 300K-500K drugged-and-sexed-out mainly Baby Boomer gen. people (biggest live entertainment audience in history?) endured 20-mi. traffic jams and cruddy weather to hear rock acts, take drugs, and go naked; future "Meet the Press" TV show host Timothy John "Tim" Russert (1950-2008) attended wearing a Buffalo Bills jersey carrying a case of beer; Woodstock rock acts included Joan Baez (1941-), The Grateful Dead, Richard P. "Richie" Havens (1941-), James Marshall (Johnny Allen) "Jimi" Hendrix (1942-70), Jefferson Airplane, Santana, The Who, Sha Na Na et al., while showing off and doing things with each other such as nudity, drugs and group sex, and groping for their own utopian society, only to discover VD, ODs, unwanted pregnancies, how much money they've blown, and how the rock acts don't work for free and want to sell them merchandise (advance sales were $1.2M); on Aug. 15 (Fri.) Richie Havens started things out, scoring a hit with his own version of Motherless Child with an added verse containing the repeated word "freedom", after which 11 performers followed, ending with 3-octave trilling Joan Baez (1941-), who scored with Sweet Sir Galahad (the first song she ever composed), and the "organizing song" Joe Hill; Country Joe McDonald sung Feel-Like-I'm-Fixing-to-Die Rag (The Vietnam Song) using a stage guitar with a rope strap, changing the Fish Cheer to the Fuck Cheer; on Aug. 16 (Sat.) the 11 performers started with Quill, and incl. Santana, Canned Heat, and Janis Joplin; on Aug. 16 Pete Townshend of The Who knocked Abbie Hoffman from the stage as he tried to disrupt the show with a speech about poor John Sinclair, who got a 10-year sentence for possession of one marijuana cig; on Aug. 17 at 8 a.m. #11 Jefferson Airplane capped off the all-day-all-night marathon with eight songs; on Aug. 17 (Sun.) English singer John Robert "Joe" Cocker (1944-) (known for covers of Beatles songs performed with a gritty voice and weird arm movements) began the official day's events 9 hours late at 2 p.m., singing the Beatles hit With a Little Help from My Friends, and it went all night without finishing; on Aug. 18 at 9 a.m., after most people had left (80K remaining), Jimi Hendrix, the 10th and last performer for Sun. ended the show by giving a 2-hour 17-song performance, ending with a psychedelic rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner on his overamped electric guitar; at frequent intervals an announcer told the crowd "If you think you've taken poison, you haven't", referring to "bad acid"; a total of three people died at the event, one from a heroin OD, one from falling off a scaffold, and one from being run over by a tractor - let's see, that's EADGB, Every American Dog Goes Bad? After Melanie Safka (1947-) performed her song Beautiful People at Woodstock, she released the album Candles in the Rain in 1970, featuring Lay Down (Candles in the Rain) #6 in the U.S.), about the crowd reaction; in 1970 she also released the hit Look What They've Done to My Song, Ma; in 1973 she had a #1 U.S. hit with the song Brand New Key (The Roller Skate Song). Talking about ending the decade appropriately. On Sept. 12, 1969 after Brian Jones' death, the Rolling Stones released the compilation album Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2), which features the tracks Honky Tonk Women, and We Love You. On Dec. 5, 1969 they released album #8 (#10 in the U.S.) Let It Bleed. The cover features a cake baked by English cook Delia Smith (1941-). Tracks included: Love in Vain, Let It Bleed, Midnight Rambler, Monkey Man, You Can't Always Get What You Want, You Got the Silver, and Gimme Shelter ("War, children, it's just a shot away... Love, sister, it's just a kiss away").
On Aug. 30-31, 1969 the Second Isle of Wight Festival features Bob Dylan, The Band, The Who, The Moody Blues, Joe Cocker, and Richie Havens, and is attended by 150K.
In Aug. 1969 the English blues-rock supergroup Blind Faith, composed of Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker of Cream, Steve Winwood of Traffic, and Ric Grech of Family released their #1 debut album Blind Faith, featuring Can't Find My Way Home, In the Presence of the Lord, and Sea of Joy. Billed as "Super Cream", they gave a free concert at Hyde Park, London on June 7, then debuted at Madison Square Garden on July 12, where an on-stage riot got Baker clubbed on the head by a police officer; the album sold 500K copies the first mo.; too bad, the cover by Bob Seidemann features a topless pubescent girl holding a phallic silver spaceship, which backfired when rumors spread she's the group's slave groupie or Baker's illegitimate daughter, and they broke up in Oct., after which Clapton formed the group Derek and the Dominos, whose debut album Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs (Nov. 1970) features the hit Layla, inspired by his unrequired love for George Harrison's wife (since 1966) Patricia Anne "Pattie" Boyd (1944-) (a former model known for rabbit-like front teeth), along with swinging 60s Scottish-born London bohemian Ian Dallas (1930-), who gave him a copy of the ancient Persian Sufi parable"Layla" by Nezami Ganjavi (1141-1209), about a man who went crazy when a beautiful woman wouldn't marry him; Clapton finally married her in 1979, and divorced her in 1989. Meanwhile having converted to Sufi Islam in 1967 and changed his name to Abdalqadir as-Sufi, in the 1980s Dallas founded the Rabbit, er, Murabitun Worldwide Movement, with 10K followers by 2010, which preaches that the Islamic world will conquer the "Jewish dominated West", and also preaches against Capitalism.
In Aug. 1969 Latino rock group Santana, led by Carlos Augusto Selva Santana (1947-) released its debut album Santana, featuring the single Evil Ways. In Sept. 1970 album #2 Abraxas was released, containing Black Magic Woman and Oye Como Va.
On Sept. 14, 1969, as a fitting touche to the anti-materialistic Woodstock crowd, The Archie Show debuted on CBS-TV for 17 episodes (until Aug. 30, 1969), featuring the fictional rock band The Archies, who went on to have a string of hits that launched the Bubblegum Music craze (ends 1972). Their biggest hit was Sugar, Sugar, sung by Ron Dante (Carmine Granito) (1945-), released on July 26, 1969, which became the #1 single of 1969 in the U.S. and U.K. After the show folded in one season, it spawned Sat. morning spinoff shows until 1978. In 1969 Dante also had a hit with Tracy under the name The Cuff Links.
On Oct. 2, 1969 the Dutch group Shocking Blue, incl. Mariska Veres (vocals), Robbie van Leeuwen (guitar), Klaasje van der Wal (bass), and Cor van der Beek (drums) released album #2 At Home, which features their 1-hit wonder Venus (#1 in the U.S.). After selling 13.5M records, they disbanded in 1974.
On Nov. 4, 1969 The Allman Brothers Band, from Jacksonville, Fla., fronted by vocalist Gregory Lenoir "Gregg" Allman (1947-), and his slide-guitar playing brother Howard Duane Allman (1946-71), who were signed to the Atlanta Pop Festival by a phony promoter but got over it began pioneering Southern rock with their debut album The Allman Brothers Band, containing the tracks Whipping Post, and Dreams, followed by album #2 Idlewild South (Sept. 23, 1970), containing the track Midnight Rider, and Revival, followed in July 1971 by the live double album #3 At Fillmore East, which Rolling Stone mag. ranked as the 49th greatest album of all time, and features In Memory of Elizabeth Reed. Too bad, on Nov. 29, 1971 Duane Allman was killed in a motorcycle accident on State Highway 19 in Macon, Ga.; fellow rocker Berry Oakley died 13 mo. later three blocks away. Album #5 Brothers and Sisters (Aug. 1973) (#1 in the U.S.) (first without bassist Berry Oakley and with pianist Chuck Leavell) included the tracks Ramblin' Man (#2 in the U.S.), Jessica, and Southbound.
On Nov. 7, 1969 the Rolling Stones opened their U.S. tour in Ft. Collins, Colo. On Nov. 8, 1969 Simon (child-molester moustache?) and Garfunkel (Bride of Frankenstein hair?) gave a concert at Southern Ill. U. in Carbondale, Ill., which was not released until 1999; on Nov. 11 they gave a concert at Miami U. in Oxford, Ohio, followed by another at Iowa State U. in Ames, Iowa; on Nov. 30 their TV special Songs of America aired, featuring anti-Vietnam War and anti-poverty songs. In Nov. 1969 Canned Heat appeared on an episode of Playboy After Dark, where 20-y.-o. actress Lindsay Wagner sat on the lap of singer Bob Hite and gave him the nickname Bear, while Hite told Hugh Hefner that he owns over 15K 78rpm records.
The 1960s hippie free love and peace movement ends in California? On Dec. 6, 1969 the Rolling Stones appeared at a free rock concert at the Altamont Speedway in Livermore (near San Francisco), Calif. before 300K fans, hiring the Hells Angels for security (big mistake); too bad, after "Woodstock West" got out of control, the Angels struck back with pool cues, and four die, incl. Meredith Hunter (b. 1951), a black teen in a turquoise suit who was kicked and stabbed to death by Hell's Angels as he tried to reach the stage allegedly holding a handgun.
On Dec. 17, 1969, speaking of the end of the decade, after "I can't believe he's not gay" Tiny Tim (Herbert Khaury) (1932-96) had a 1-hit wonder in 1968 with a ukelele falsetto version of the #1 1929 Nick Lucas U.S. hit Tiptoe Through the Tulips, netting him several major network TV appearances, he married Miss Vicki (Victoria May Budinger) (1952-) on The Johnny Carson Tonight Show in front of 40M viewers, and sung his big hit in his patented camp falsetto while playing his ukelele, with Lucas present; too bad, they filed for divorce in 1972 (granted 1977).
In the apocalyptic late 1960s the Jesus Freaks mass movement began in the U.S., thumping copies of the 1966 Bible translation "Good News for Modern Man" (which sold 30M copies by 1971), and holding open air meetings where they grooved on Jesus' love with outstretched arms, don't miss it. One 1-hit wonder who made hay while the Jesus Freak sun shone was Mass.-born Norman Greenbaum (1942-), who in 1969 released the 2M-selling hit Spirit in the Sky (#1 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), which was huge with hippies and square Christians and half-and-half Jesus Freaks, along with everybody, even though few realized that he was Jewish and claimed to be a practicing Zombie, and was parodying TV evangelists, I just want to hide in a corner. Actually, he had some more charting hits, but none came close to equalling this classic, which was covered by Bauhaus, Doctor and the Medics, Elton John, Chipmunks United, DC Talk, and Nina Hagen. Actually, the Jesus Rock Movement peaked in 1971, but nevermind. In 1970 1-hit wonder Ocean, from London, Ont., Canada, consisting of Jance Brown (guitar, vocals), Greg Brown (keyboard, vocals), Jeff Jones (bass, vocals), Dave Tamblyn (guitar), and Chuck Slater (drums) released the #2 Jesus Freak anthem Put Your Hand in the Hand (#2 in the U.S.), written by Gene MacLellan, and first performed by Anne Murray. On the other side of the spiritual spectrum, in Apr. 1969 the Hindu progressive rock band Quintessence was formed in Notting Hill, London, fronted by Australian-born Raja Ram (Ronald Rothfield) (1941-), becoming known for improvisational perf., and for performing at the Sept. 18, 1971 Concert for Bangladesh at the Oval in Kensington, London, along with The Who, Matt the Hoople, America, Rod Stewart and the Faces et al. Their tracks incl. Body, Only Love, In the Forest, Midnight Mode, Vishnu Narayan, and Wonders of the Universe.
Also in 1969 the English vocal group The Family Dogg (formed in 1966), incl. Mike Hazlewood (1941-2001), Kristine Sparkle (Christine Holmes), Stephen "Steve" Rowland (1932-), and Albert Hammond (1944-) released their 1-hit wonder A Way of Life (#6 in the U.K.).
In 1969 Isaac Lee Hayes Jr. (1942-2008) released album #2 Hot Buttered Soul, which became a landmark in soul music. His July 1971 album Shaft Soundtrack features Shaft Theme, Soulville, and Do Your Thing. The album Black Moses (Nov. 1971) features the Jackson 5 cover Never Can Say Goodbye (#22 in the U.S.).
Also in 1969 the Fremont, N.H.-based so-bad-they're-good sister group The Shaggs, consisting of Dorothy "Dot" (vocals/guitar), Betty (vocals/guitar), Rachel (bass), and Helen Wiggin (drums) released their only studio album Philosophy of the World, which Rolling Stone said sounded like "lobotomized Trapp Family singers", but influenced Kurt Cobain, and Frank Zappa, who called them "better than the Beatles"; album tracks incl. Who Are Parents?, My Cutie, It's Halloween, and My Pal Foot Foot.
Also in 1969 the Philly-based psychedelic rock trio Thunder and Roses, Chris Bond (vocals, guitar), Tom Schaffer (vocals, bass), and George Emme (drums) released their first and last album King of the Black Sunrise, which features the tracks White Lace and Strange (later covered by Nirvana), Country Life, and Dear Dream Maker.
Also in 1969 La.-born white black-sounding singer Tony Joe White (1943-) released his 1-hit wonder Polk Salad Annie (#8 in the U.S.), about a salad made from poisonous pokeweed, which must be boiled at least three times and the water changed each time to be edible. He also wrote Rainy Night in Georgia, which was a 1-hit wonder in 1970 by black singer Brook Benton (1931-88) (#4 in the U.S.).
In 1969 the Boulder, Colo.-based band Zephyr, incl. super guitarist Tommy Bolin (1951-76), John Faris (keyboards), David Givens (bass), Robbie Chamberlain (drums), and Janis Joplin-like singer Candy Givens released their debut album Zephyr, featuring Sail On, and St. James Infirmary. Album #2 Going Back to Colorado (1971) features Going Back to Colorado, After Bolin left and was replaced with Jock Bartley, album #3 (last) Sunset Ride (1972) became a classic, and Zephyr fans became a loyal minority group until ?.
Never fear, as the 1960s were dying, a new generation of rock and roll was being born like a butterfly from a chrysalis or pupa. In 1969 Chrysalis Records was founded in England by Chris Wright and Terry Ellis, going on to sign Jethro Tull, Cat Stevens (Steven Demetre Georgiou) (1948-), Procol Harum and its spinoff solo artist Robin Leonard Trower (1945-), followed in the 1980s by British New Romantic movement bands Ultravox and Spandau Ballet, along with American acts Blondie, Pat Benatar (Patricia Mae Andrzejewski) (1953-), and Huey Lewis and The News, and English rock star Billy Idol (William Michael Albert Broad) (1955-). Speaking of Robin Trower, in 1973 he released his solo debut album Twice Removed from Yesterday, which features the track Daydream. Album #2 Bridge of Sighs (1974) (#7 in the U.S.) features Bridge of Sighs, Too Rolling Stoned, Day of the Eagle, and Little Bit of Sympathy. Album #3 For Earth Below (Feb. 1975) sports a cover that is used in the abortion scene in the film "The Omen"; it features the track Shame the Devil. Album #4 Long Misty Days (1976) features Long Misty Days. Album #5 In City Dreams (1977) features Sweet Wine of Love. Album #6 Caravan to Midnight (1978) features Caravan to Midnight. Album #7 Victims of the Fury (1979) features Victims of the Fury.
In 1969 Sound City Studios in Van Nuys, Calif. was founded, becoming the studio of choice for Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Neil Young, REO Speedwagon, Johnny Cash, Nirvana, Rage Against the Machine, et al.
The 1970s were not only the decade when horrible ugly junky American cars finally allowed the Japanese to take over the industry, but were also a giant bleep in the history of rock and roll, as if it was dead in the water and was foundering, or went on a hike and got lost in the woods. A typical monstrosity hiding behind the name of rock was the ABC-TV sitcom The Partridge Family (Sept. 25, 1970 - Aug. 31, 1974). Another one was the animated Sat. morning TV series Josie and the Pussycats, which debuted on Sept. 12, 1970 on CBS-TV for 16 episodes (until Jan. 2, 1971), based on the Archie Comics series about an all-girl pop-rock music band that tours the world and gets into adventures; the opening theme shows them as three whites and one black.; on Dec. 5, 1970 the album Josie and the Pussycats was released, featuring Cathy Douglas, Patrice Holloway, and Cherie Jean Stoppelmoor, later known as Cheryl Ladd. Another less lame Sat. morning cartoon TV series on ABC-TV was The Jackon 5ive (Sept. 11, 1971 - Oct. 14, 1972), which features two Jackson 5 songs in each of the 23 episodes. On Sept. 19, 1971 the Jackson 5's first TV special Goin' Back to Indiana aired, with guests Diana Ross, Bill Cosby, Tommy Smothers, and Bobby Darin. Maybe it was the pre-Baby Boomers who really owned rock and roll, and the real Baby Boomers stunk it up when they got the chance. Call me prejudiced, but if the 1970s had happened before the 1960s, it would have made more sense. Just kidding, what happened was that the market grew and diversified, opening up niches for more genres, while it became increasingly hard for garage bands to get anywhere in the flood of has-been 1960s groups that kept trying to tour.
On Jan. 4, 1970 (Sun.) the Beatles held their last recording session at EMI Studios. On Jan. 25, 1970 John Lennon and Yoko Ono shaved their heads and declared 1970 "Year One", donating their hair to the interracial Black House community center in North London for auction. On Apr. 7, 1970 (Tue.) after cryptic messages, the Beatles Breakup was announced by John Eastman, Paul McCartney's brother-in-law, and confirmed by Paul three days later on Apr. 10. They released a total of 10 hours 28 min. of music in their career. The breakup was caused by a combo of Yoko Ono, John Lennon wanting to step off the merry-go-round of stardom and "watch the wheels", and/or because John and George couldn't stand the arrogance of Paul McCartney anymore, with John using Yoko to drive the final wedge; "The dream is over" (Lennon). All four went on to separate musical careers, causing the 1970s to be filled with loose Beatles, like an insect infestation. On Apr. 17, 1970 Paul Mcartney's debut solo album McCartney was released in Britain, featuring the hit Maybe I'm Amazed, after which he formed the group Wings with his wife Linda McCartney and Denny Laine in 1971, which went on to release 14 top-10 singles in the U.S., incl. six #1s; all 23 of their singles made the U.S. top 40, Britain's answer to Elvis sounds like he swallowed Mickey Mouse. His hit singles incl. Love Is Strange (1971), Give Ireland Back to the Irish (1972), Mary Had a Little Lamb (1972), Hi, Hi, Hi (1972), My Love (1972), Live and Let Die (1972), Helen Wheels (1973), Jet (1973), Band on the Run (1973), My Love (1973), Junior's Farm (1974), Listen to What the Man Said (1975), Silly Love Songs (1976), Let 'Em In (1976), Mull of Kintyre (1977), With a Little Luck (1977), Goodnight Tonight (1978), and Coming Up (1980). Wings dissolved in Apr. 1981, after which on Apr. 26, 1982 McCartney released solo album #4 Tug of War (#1 in the U.S.), which features Tug of War, Take It Away (w/Ringo and George Martin), and Ebony & Ivory (w/Stevie Wonder) (Mar. 29) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.). Album #5 Pipes of Peace (Oct. 31, 1983) (#15 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) features Say Say Say (w/ Michael Jackson), Pipes of Peace, and So Bad. The 1985 single Spies Like Us (movie title track) reached #7 in the U.S., becoming his last U.S. top-10 until ?. Album #7 Back in the USSR (The Russian Album) (Oct. 31, 1988) makes him the first Western artist to release an album exclusively in the Soviet Union. Album #8 Flowers in the Dirt (June 5, 1989) (#21 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) features My Brave Face, Put It There, Figure of Eight, and This One. In 1989-90 the Paul McCartney World Tour (1989-90) was a big hit, after which he released the live album Tripping the Live Fantastic (Oct. 29, 1990) (#26 in the U.S., #16 in the U.K.). Album #9 Off the Ground (Feb. 1, 1993) (#17 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) features Off the Ground, Hope of Deliverance, and Biker Like an Icon, and was followed by the live album Paul Is Live (Nov. 8, 1993) (#78 in the U.S., #34 in the U.K.) from his New World Tour (1993), with a cover parodying the "Paul Is Dead" hoax with a new Abbey Road-crossing photo. Album #10 Flaming Pie (May 5, 1997) features The World Tonight, Young Boy, and Calico Skies.
In 1970 John Lennon (while undergoing primal therapy with Dr. Arthur Janov?) posed with Yoko in front of a poster showing a U.S. flag with the stars replaced by skulls and crossbones, and the stripes replaced by a political message: "U.S.A. surpasses all the genocide records", noting that Kublai Khan massacred 10% of the pop. of the Near East, Spain 10% of the American Indians, Stalin 5% of the Russians, the Nazis 5% of occupied Europeans and 75% of European Jews, and the U.S. wins with 6.5% of South Vietnamese and 75% of American Indians; later in the year John Lennon hired Chinese-Am. personal asst. May Fung Yee (Chin. "Phoenix Bird") Pang (1950-), and in 1973 he left Yoko Ono and spent an 18-mo. "Lost Weekend" with her until 1975. On Sept. 9, 1971 John Lennon released solo album #2 Imagine, featuring the #1 U.S-U.K. hit Imagine ("Imagine there's no Heaven/ It's easy if you try/ No Hell below us/ Above us only sky/ Imagine all the people living for today/ Imagine there's no countries/ It isn't hard to do/ Nothing to kill or die for/ And no religion too/ Imagine all the people/ Living life in peace/ You may say that I'm a dreamer/ But I'm not the only one/ I hope someday you'll join us/ And the world will be as one.") Album #3 Some Time in New York City (June 12, 1972) features Woman is the Nigger of the World; "Think about it, do something about it". Album #4 Mind Games (Nov. 2, 1973) (#9 in the U.S., #13 in the U.K.) features Mind Games, which marked the start of his 18-mo. Lost Weekend separation from Yoko Ono. Album #5 Walls and Bridges (Oct. 4, 1974) (#1 in the U.S.), recorded and released during his Lost Weekend features his only #1 solo hit Whatever Gets You Thru the Night, and #9 Dream. Album #6 (all covers) Rock 'n' Roll (Feb. 21, 1975) saw producer Phil Spector pull a loaded gun on Lennon during the song "You Can't Catch Me" at the Record Plant recording studio in Los Angeles, and the gun went off, causing Lennon to tell him "If you're going to shoot me, shoot me, but don't mess with me ears; I need them to listen with"; he didn't find that he was shooting real bullets until the next day, shaking him up. Album #7 Shaved Fish (album #7) (Oct. 24, 1975) (#12 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) was a compilation of his non-Beatles singles. Album #8 (his last) Double Fantasy (Nov. 17, 1980) (#1 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.) was selling slow until you know what, then took off; it features the tracks Watching the Wheels, (Just Like) Starting Over, Beautiful Boy (written for their only son Sean Tara Ono Lennon, b. 1975), Walking on Thin Ice, Central Park Stroll, and Kiss Kiss Kiss (featuring Yoko reaching orgasm, presumably with John).
On Nov. 23, 1970 George Harrison's My Sweet Lord became the first #1 single by an ex-Beatle. On Nov. 27, 1970 he released the first-ever triple album by a solo artist All Things Must Pass, first triple album by a solo artist; the 3rd disk was called "Apple Jam". Tracks included: All Things Must Pass, My Sweet Lord, What Is Life, Isn't It a Pity, and If Not for You (by Bob Dylan). On Aug. 1, 1971 George staged the Concert for Bangladesh at Madison Square Garden in New York City; on Dec. 20, 1971 the album The Concert for Bangladesh was released, featuring George Harrison, Ringo Starr, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Leon Russell, Billy Preston et al. On May 30, 1973 after developing a Jesus look, George Harrison released the album Living in the Material World, featuring Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth). On Dec. 9, 1974 George released his album Dark Horse, featuring the track Dark Horse. Too bad, he ruined his well-attended North Am. Dark Horse Tour by performing with a sore voice, and gave up touring forever. On Sept. 22, 1975 Harrison released the album Extra Texture (Read All About It) (last studio album released by Apple) (#8 in the U.S., #16 in the U.K.), featuring the tracks You, and This Guitar (Can't Keep from Crying). On June 5, 1981 Harrison released the album Somewhere in England (#11 in the U.S., #13 in the U.K.), featuring All Those Years Ago, a tribute to the late John Lennon, w/Ringo Starr, Paul and Linda McCartney, and Denny Laine. After taking a 5-year break, he released his last album Cloud Nine on Nov. 2, 1987, which reestablished his rep, going #8 in the U.S. and #10 in the U.K.), featuring Got My Mind Set on You. In 1988 and 1990 Roy Orbison, Tom Petty, Bob Dylan, and Jeff Lynne released two albums under the name Traveling Wilburys, as in "We'll bury the recording errors in the mix."
On Mar. 27, 1970 Ringo Starr released his solo debut album Sentimental Journey, which reached #22 in the U.S. and #7 in the U.K. although it was all covers. Album #2 Beaucoups of Blues (Sept. 25, 1970) (#65 in the U.S.) features the hits It Don't Come Easy, Back Off Boogaloo. Album #3 Ringo (Nov. 2, 1973) (#2 in the U.S.) features You're Sixteen (by Robert B. Sherman and Richard M. Sherman) (#1 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) (features a kazoo solo by Paul McCartney) (video features Carrie Fisher), Photograph (#1 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.), I'm the Greatest (written by John Lennon, featuring Lennon on piano, George Harrison on guitar, Billy Preston on organ, and Klaus Voormann on bass), Oh My My (#5 in the U.S.). Album #4 Goodnight Vienna (Nov. 15, 1974) (#30 in the U.K.) features Goodnight Vienna (#8 in the U.S.), Only You (And You Alone) (by the Platters), No No Song (#3 in the U.S.). Carl Gottlieb's Caveman (Apr. 17, 1981) stars Ringo Starr as Atouk, who fights Lar (Dennis Quaid) for Lana, played by Barbara Bach (Goldbach) (1947-), whom Ringo married on Apr. 27, 1981. After a string of flops and the death of John You Know Who, album #8 Stop and Smell the Roses (Nov. 2, 1981) (#98 in the U.S.) included his last U.S. top-40 hit Wrack My Brain (#38 in the U.S.).
Besides Norman Greenbaum, the 1970s had their share of 1960s-overflow 1-hit wonders. In Jan. 1970 the English studio group Edison Lighthouse, fronted by Anthony "Tony" Burrows (1942-) (formerly of the Flower Pot Men) had a million-selling hit with Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Grows) (#5 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.). On Mar. 7, 1970 the Long Island, N.Y. hard rock band Mountain, incl. Leslie West (Weinstein) (1945-) (vocals), Felix A. Pappalardi Jr. (1939-83) (bass, piano), and Laurence Gordon "Corky" Laing (1948-) (drums) released their debut album (Mountain) Climbing! (album) (debut) (Mar. 7) (#17 in the U.S.), featuring the hit track Mississippi Queen (#21 in the U.S.), after which their name alone was so awesome they kept going for 40+ years on a dream but no hits. In Apr. 1970 the American rock band Blues Image released album #2 (next to last) Open, containing their hit single Ride Captain Ride (#4 in the U.S.). "73 men sailed up from the San Francisco Bay/ Rolled off of their ship/ And here's what they had to say/ We're calling everyone to ride along/ To another shore/ We can laugh our lives away and be free once more/ But no one heard them callin'/ No one came at all/ Cause they were too busy watchin'/ Those old raindrops fall/ As a storm was blowin'/ Out on the peaceful sea/ 73 men sailed off to history/ Ride, captain ride/ Upon your mystery ship/ Be amazed at the friends/ You have here on your trip/ Ride captain ride/ Upon your mystery ship/ On your way to a world/ That others might have missed." Refers to Sir Francis Drake on his first voyage to America in 1572 in the Golden Hind? In May 1970 the English group Mungo Jerry, fronted by Raymond Edward "Ray" Dorset (1946-) and named after a poem in T.S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats" released their first single In the Summertime, which became a phenomenon, selling 30M copies worldwide and making #1 in 26 countries, sparking Mungomania. The lyrics "If her daddy's rich, take her out for a meal/ If her daddy's poor, just do what you feel/ Speed along the lane", is widely misunderstood as "Screw her on the lake". In Mar. 1971 their 2nd single Baby Jump went #1 in the U.K., and they followed it in 1971 with the hit Lady Rose (#5 in the U.K.), in 1973 with Alright Alright Alright (#3 in the U.K.), and in 1974 with Long Legged Woman Dressed in Black (#13 in the U.K.). Another 1970 1-hit wonder was Robert "Bobby" Bloom (1945-74), with Montego Bay (#8 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), co-written by Jeff Barry; it's in Jamaica. Another is Alive N Kickin' of Brooklyn, N.Y., incl. Bruce Charles Sudano (1948-) (who married Donna Summer in 1980), Woody Wilson (bass), John Parisio (guitar), and Ron Pell/Vito Albano (drums), who had the 1970 #7 hit Tighter, Tighter. In 1970 the Detroit group Frijid Pink, incl. Tom Beaudry (Kelly Green) (vocals), Gary Ray Thompson (guitar), Tom Harris (bass), Larry Zelanka (keyboards), and Richard Stevers (drums) had their one big hit with House of the Rising Sun (#7 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), which was released in 1969. Another 1970 1-hit wonder was the progressive rock band Gypsy, from Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn., fronted by Enrico Rosenbaum (1944-79) (vocals), along with James Walsh (keyboards), and Bill Lordan (drums), whose debut double album Gypsy features the tracks Gypsy Queen Part 1, Gypsy Queen Part 2, Dead and Gone, and The Vision. On Mar. 9-15, 1970 the Atomic Sunrise Festival in London features Gypsy along with Black Sabbath, David Bowie, Arthur Brown et al. The last 1970 1-hit wonder was The Pipkins, from England, the duo of Anthony "Tony" Burrows (1942-) and Roger John Reginald Greenaway (1938-), who scored with Gimme Dat Ding by Albert Hammond and Mike Hazlewood (#9 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.).
In Feb. 1970 English singer Roderick David "Rod" Stewart (1945-), formerly of the Jeff Beck Group and the Faces released his solo debut album An Old Raincoat Won't Ever Let You Down, which didn't go anywhere. Album #3 Every Picture Tells a Story (May 1971) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) was his big breakthrough, featuring the hits Maggie May, and Every Picture Tells a Story. Album #7 A Night on the Town (June, 1976) (#2 in the U.S.) features Tonight's the Night (Gonna Be Alright) (#1 in the U.S.), and The First Cut is the Deepest (#21 in the U.S.). Album #8 Foot Loose & Fancy Free (Nov. 4, 1977) (#3 in the U.S.) features You're in My Heart (The Final Acclaim) (#4 in the U.S.), I Was Only Joking (#22 in the U.S.), Hot Legs (#28 in the U.S.), and You Keep Me Hangin On. Album #9 Blondes Have More Fun (Nov. 24, 1978) (#1 in the U.S.) features Da Ya Think I'm Sexy? (#1 in the U.S.), and Ain't Love a Bitch (#22 in the U.S.). His Oct. 19, 2004 album Stardust: The Great American Songbook 3 (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), dedicated to the Tartan Army (fans of the Scottish nat. soccer team) was his first #1 album in the U.S. since "Blondes Have More Fun" (1978). He went on to sell 100M records worldwide, incl. 16 top-10 U.S. singles (4 #1s).
In Feb. 1970 the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, formed in 1966 in Long Beach, Calif. released their album Uncle Charlie & His Dog Teddy, featuring the single Mr. Bojangles (by Jerry Jeff Walker) (#9 in the U.S.). In Jan. 1972 former member Clyde Jackson Browne (1948-) released his debut album Jackson Browne (#53 in the U.S.), which contained the hit track Doctor My Eyes (#8 in the U.S.). Album #3 Late for the Sky (Sept. 1974) features the track Late for the Sky. Album #5 Running on Empty (Dec. 6, 1977) (#3 in the U.S.) features the hits Running on Empty, and The Load-Out/Stay. Album #6 Hold Out (album #6) (June 24, 1980) (#1 in the U.S.) included the hit That Girl Could Sing. Album #7 Lawyers in Love (Aug. 2, 1983) (#8 in the U.S.) features the tracks Lawyers in Love, Tender Is the Night, and For a Rocker. Album #8 Lives in the Balance (album #8) (Feb. 18, 1986) features the tracks For America, and In the Shape of a Heart.
On Apr. 10, 1970 English singer Elton John (Reginald Kenneth Dwight) (1947-), released album #2 Elton John, which produced his first top-10 hit Your Song. He went on to release hits incl. Levon (Nov. 29, 1971), Rocket Man (Apr. 17, 1972), Crocodile Rock (Oct. 27, 1972), Daniel (Mar. 26, 1973), Goodbye Yellow Brick Road (Oct. 15, 1973), Bennie and the Jets (Feb. 4, 1974), and Candle in the Wind (1974) - all while trying to come out as gay in stages.
In Apr. 1970 the multiracial Long Beach, Calif. funk rock group War, formerly The Creators and Nightshift, from Long Beach, Calif., incl. Howard E. Scott, Harold Brown, Charles Miller, Morris "B.B." Dickerson, Lonnie Jordan, Lee Oskar, Papa Dee Allen, and Deacon Jones, along with Eric Burdon, formerly of The Animals released their debut album Eric Burdon Declares War, which features the tracks Spill the Wine, and Tobacco Road. After Burdon left, album #4 All Day Music (Nov. 1971) features the track Slippin' Into Darkness, which sold 1M copies as a single. Album #5 The World Is a Ghetto (Nov. 1972) features The World Is a Ghetto, and The Cisco Kid (#1 in the U.S.). Album #6 Deliver the Word (Aug. 1973) features Gypsy Man (#8 in the U.S.), and Me and Baby Brother (#15 in the U.S.). Album #7 Why Can't We Be Friends (June 1975) features Why Can't We Be Friends? (#8 in the U.S.), and Low Rider. Their 1976 Greatest Hits album features the new track Summer (#7 in the U.S.). They went on to sell 50M records.
On May 18, 1970 (Mon. after Pentecost) the first Pinkpop Festival (Dutch "Pinksteren" = Pentecost) was held in Geleen, Netherlands, featuring Golden Earring; later festivals are held from Sat.-Mon. on Pentecost weekend in Landgraaf; festival-goers like to wear pink hats.
In June 1970 the English (London) heavy metal band Uriah Heep, formerly Spice and The Stalkers, incl. Michael Frederick "Mick" Box (1947-) (guitar), David Byron (Garrick) (1947-85) (vocals), Kenneth William David "Ken" Hensley (1945-), Paul Newton (bass), and Alex Napier/Ian Clarke (1946-) (drums) released its debut album Very 'eavy... Very 'umble, which features lead singer David Byron drenched in cobwebs on the cover; it features the tracks Gypsy, Dreammare, Real Turned On, and Bird of Prey. Melissa Mills of Rolling Stone panned them, with the soundbyte "If this group makes it I'll have to commit suicide. From the first note you know you don't want to hear any more." Album #2 Salisbury (Jan. 1971) features Salisbury (backed by a 24-piece orchestra), and Lady in Black, which became a #1 hit in Germany. Album #3 Look at Yourself (Sept., 1971) had a reflective distorting foil mirror on the cover, and features July Morning, which inspired the Bulgarian Hippie tradition. Album #4 (best?) Demons and Wizards (May 19, 1972) caused Rolling Stone to turn around, with the soundbyte by Mike Saunders: "These guys are good. The first side of Demons and Wizards is simply odds-on the finest high energy workout of the year, tying nose and nose with the Blue Oyster Cult"; it features the tracks Easy Livin' (#39 in the U.S.), and The Wizard. Album #5 The Magician's Birthday (Nov. 1972) features The Magician's Birthday, Blind Eye (#97 in the U.S.), Sweet Lorraine (#91), and Spider Woman (#13 in Germany). Album #6 Sweet Freedom (Sept. 1973) features Sweet Freedom (#33 in the U.S., #18 in the U.K.), and Stealin'. Album #8 Return to Fantasy (May 1975) (#7 in the U.K.), the first with bassist John Wetton, who replaced Gary Thain (d. 1975) features Return to Fantasy, and Prima Donna. Album #9 High and Mighty (June 1976) features Weep in Silence, after which Byron was kicked out of the band for erratic behavior, and died on Feb. 28, 1985 of alcoholism. They went on to sell 30M albums worldwide.
In June 1970 the German electronic music group Tangerine Dream, founded in 1967 by Edgar Wilmar Froese (1944-) released their debut album Electronic Meditation, which features the track Journey Through A Burning Brain. Album #2 Alpha Centauri (Mar. 1971) features Ultima Thule. Double album #3 Zeit (Aug. 1972) features Nebulous Dawn. Album #4 Atem (Mar. 1973) features Atem. Album #5 Phaedra (Feb. 20, 1974) (#15 in the U.K.) features Phaedra. Too bad, on Dec. 13 Tangerine Dream and Nico held a concert at Reims Cathedral in France, but it was overbooked, and fans urinated in the hall, pissing off the Roman Catholic Church, which banned future perf.. Album #6 Rubycon (Mar. 21, 1975) (#12 in the U.S.) features Rubycon, Pt. 1. Album #8 Stratosfear (1976) (#39 in the U.K.) features Stratosfear. Album #9 Sorcerer Soundtrack (1977) (#25 in the U.K.) features Sorcerer. Album #11 Cyclone (1978) (#37 in the U.K.) is their first with vocals and lyrics, and features Bent Cold Sidewalk. Album #12 Force Majeure (Feb. 1979) (#26 in the U.K.) features Force Majeure. Legend Soundtrack (1986) features Is Your Love Strong Enough? (w/Bryan Ferry), Opening, Unicorn, Loved by the Sun (w/Jon Anderson), Blue Room, The Dance, Darkness, and The Kitchen (Unicorn Theme Reprise). They went on to release over 100 albums.
On Aug. 19, 1970 after their first album Ticket to Ride (Oct. 9, 1969) flopped, the LA duo The Carpenters, consisting of siblings Karen Anne Carpenter (1950-83) (drums and vocals) and Richard Lynn Carpenter (1946-) released album #2 Close to You (#2 in the U.S., #23 in the U.K.), featuring the hit tracks (They Long to Be) Close to You, and We've Only Just Begun (written by Paul Williams and Roger Nichols for a Crocker Nat. Bank TV commercial). They went on to become the #1 best-selling act in the U.S. in the 1970s. Album #3 Carpenters (Tan Album) (May 14, 1971) (#2 in the U.S., #12 in the U.K.) (first album with the Carpenters emblem) features the hit tracks For All We Know, Rainy Days and Mondays, and Superstar. Album #4 A Song for You (June 13, 1971) (#26 in the U.K.) features Bless the Beasts and Children, Top of the World, Hurting Each Other, It's Going to Take Some Time, Goodbye to Love, I Won't Last a Day Without You. Album #6 Horizon (June 6, 1975) (#13 in the U.S.) sold 1M copies, and features Please Mr. Postman (#1 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.), Only Yesterday (#4 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.), and Solitaire (#15 in the U.S.). Album #7 A Kind of Hush (May, 1976) features There's a Kind of Hush (All Over the World), and I Need to Be In Love. Album #8 Passage (Oct. 1977) features All You Get from Love is a Love Song, Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft (which became the anthem of World Contact Day), and Sweet Sweet Smile. Too bad, after marrying divorced real estate developer Thomas James Burris on Aug. 31, 1980 and filing for divorce in Nov. 1981, which was to be finalized that day, Karen died on Feb. 4, 1983 of anorexia nervosa.
In Sept.-Oct., 1970 the Second Day (really First Month) the Music Died started on Sept. 3, 1970, when Canned Heat rock star Alan Christie "Blind Owl" Wilson (b. 1943) died of an OD in Los Angeles, Calif., followed on Sept. 18 by rock star James Marshall (Johnny Allen) "Jimi" Hendrix (b. 1942), who died of an OD in London, followed on Oct. 4 by rock star Janis Lyn Joplin (b. 1943), who died of an OD in Los Angeles All died at the same fabled age of 27, joining the fabled 27 Club, call me today.
On Nov. 23, 1970 London-born Cat Stevens (Steven Demetre Georgio) (1948-), who in Jan. 1967 released his debut album Matthew and Son, featuring the track I Love My Dog released the album Tea for the Tillerman, containing the tracks Where Do the Children Play?, Wild World, Hard-Headed Woman, and Father and Son. On Oct. 1, 1971 he released the album Teaser and Firecat, containing the hit tracks Morning Has Broken, Moonshadow, and Peace Train. On Mar. 19, 1974 his album Buddha and the Chocolate Box was released, containing the hit Oh Very Young and, er, Jesus. Too bad, he converted to Islam in Dec. 1977, and changed his name to Yusuf Islam, leaving the wild infidel rock world, he had a beard anyway so it was no sweat.
In Nov. 1970 the German (Dusseldorf) pioneer electronic Krautrock band Kraftwerk (German for power plant), fronted by Ralf Hutter (Hütter) (1946-) and Florian Schneider-Esleben (1947-) released their debut album Kraftwerk, which features the tracks Ruckzuck, and Stratovarius. Album #3 Ralf and Florian (Oct. 1973) features Kristallo, and Tongebirge. Album #4 Autobahn (Nov. 1974) features their only U.S. hit Autobahn (#25 in the U.S., #11 in the U.K.), along with Comet Melody 1, and Comet Melody 2. Album #5 Radio-Activity (Oct. 1975) features Radioactivity. Album #6 Trans-Europe Express (Mar. 1977) features Trans-Europe Express. Album #7 The Man-Machine (Die Mensch-Maschine) (May 1978) features The Model (#1 in the U.K.), The Robots, and Neon Lights. Album #8 Computer World (May 1981) features Computer World, and Computer Love. Album #9 Electric Cafe (Techno Pop) (Oct. 16, 1986) features Techno Pop, and The Telephone Call. Album #10 Tour de France Soundtracks (Aug. 4, 2003) features Tour de France.
In Nov. 1970 well-named albino multi-instrumentalist rock-blues-jazz singer Edgar Holland Winter (1946-) released his debut album Entrance, which features Entrance, and Fire and Ice, then formed the group White Trash. In Nov. 1972 after forming the Edgar Winter Group, incl. Rick Derringer (1947-) (guitar, vocals), and Chuck Ruff (drums) he released their debut album They Only Come Out At Night, featuring the hit tracks Frankenstein (#1 in the U.S.) (named after all the cutting and splicing done during editing), and Free Ride (#14 in the U.S.) ("The mountain is high, the valley is low, and you're confused on which way to go,/ So I've come here to give you a hand, and lead you into the promised land"). Album #2 Shock Treatment (May 1974) (#13 in the U.S.) features River's Risin' (#33 in the U.S.), and Easy Street (#83 in the U.S.). In 1969 Edgar's albino brother John Dawson "Johnny" Winter III (1944-) performed the classic Mean Town Blues at Woodstock.
In 1970 Brewer and Shipley, released their 1-hit wonder (created in a moment of boredom, about smoking marijuana) One Toke Over the Line, which pissed off Pres. Richard Nixon and Vice-Pres. Spiro Agnew, but was mistakenly performed on "The Lawrence Welk Show" and palmed off as a spiritual.
In 1970 Canadian singer-songwriter Gordon Meredith Lightfoot Jr. (1938-) released his first hit If You Could Read My Mind (#5 in the U.S.), followed by Sundown (1974) (#1 in the U.S.), Carefree Highway (1974) (#1 in the U.S.), Rainy Day People (1975) (#1 in the U.S.), and The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald (1976) (#2 in the U.S.).
In 1970 the Detroit black funk band Funkadelic, fronted by George Clinton (1941-) released their debut album Funkadelic. Album #2 Free Your Mind... and Your Ass Will Follow (July 1970) (#92 in the U.S.) features the track Free Your Mind... and Your Ass Will Follow. Album #3 Maggot Brain (July 1971) features the track Maggot Brain. Album #6 Standing on the Verge of Getting It On (July 1974) features Standing on the Verge of Getting It On ("Hey lady won't you be my dog, I'll be your tree, and you can pee on me"). Album #7 Let's Take It to the Stage (Apr. 1975) features the track Let's Take It to the Stage. Album #10 One Nation Under a Groove (Sept. 1978) (greatest funk album of all time?) features the track One Nation Under a Groove, and Groovallegiance. Album #12 (last) The Electric Spanking of War Babies (Apr. 1981) features the track The Electric Spanking of War Babies.
In 1970 the Chicago soul group The Five Stairsteps, consisting of five of Betty and Clarence Burke Sr.'s six children, Alohe Jean, Clarence Jr., James, Dennis, Kenneth "Keni", and Cubie, who had a string of low-charting Billboard 200 singles in the 1960s released their 1-hit wonder O-oh-h Child (#8 in the U.S.), earning them the title "The First Family of Soul" until the Jackson family superseded them.
In 1970 Chicago-born African-American jazz-soul poet-musician Gilbert "Gil" Scott-Heron (1949-2011) released his debut album A New Black Poet: Small Talk at 125th and Lenox, which was full of social critique, causing him to become known as the Black Bob Dylan and the Godfather of Rap, influencing the development of hip hop; it features the track The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. Album #2 Pieces of a Man (1971) features Home Is Where the Hatred Is.
In Feb. 1971 Carly Elisabeth Simon (1945-), daughter of Simon & Schuster co-founder Richard L. Simon (1899-1960) and Jewish African-Am.-German civil rights activist-singer Andrea Heinemann Simon (1909-94) released her debut album Carly Simon (#30 in the U.S.), featuring the hit track That's the Way I've Always Heard It Should Be (#10 in the U.S.). Album #2 Anticipation (Nov. 1971) (#30 in the U.S.) features Anticipation (#13 in the U.S.) (about a date with Cat Stevens), and Legend in Your Own Time (#50 in the U.S.) (about beau James Taylor). Album #3 No Secrets (Nov. 1973) (#1 in the U.S.) was her breakthrough, featuring You're So Vain (#1 in the U.S.), The Right Thing to Do (#17 in the U.S.), and When You Close Your Eyes. Album #4 Hotcakes (Jan., 1974) (#3 in the U.S.) features Mockingbird (with husband James Taylor) (#10 in the U.S.), and Haven't Got Time for the Pain (#14 in the U.S.). Her song Nobody Does It Better became the theme for the 1977 James Bond 007 flick The Spy Who Loved Me. Album #7 Boys in the Trees (Apr. 1978) (#10 in the U.S.) features You Belong to Me (#6 in the U.S.), Devoted to You (w/James Taylor) (#36 in the U.S.) (by the Everly Brothers).
In Feb. 1971 the Chicago-based R&B-funk band Earth, Wind and Fire, founded by Maurice White (1941-), and named after his astrological sign Sagittarius, also incl. Wade Flemons (1940-), Don Whitehead, Sherry Scott, Phillard Williams (drums), Verdine White (1951-) (bass), Michael Beale (guitar), Chester Washington (reeds), Leslie Drayton (trumpet), and Alex Thomas (trombone) released their debut album Earth, Wind and Fire, featuring the track Love is Life. Album #2 The Need of Love (Nov. 1971) features Energy. Album #4 Head to the Sky (May 1973) (#27 in the U.S.) was their breakthrough, selling 1M copies; it features Evil (#50 in the U.S.), and Keep Your Head to the Sky (#52 in the U.S.). Album #5 Open Our Eyes (Mar. 25, 1974) (#15 in the U.S.); incl. Mighty Mighty (#29 in the U.S.), Devotion (#33 in the U.S.), and Kalimba Story (#55 in the U.S.). Album #6 That's the Way of the World Soundtrack (Mar. 15, 1975) features That's the Way of the World (#12 in the U.S.), Shining Star (#1 in the U.S.). Their live double album Gratitude (Nov. 11, 1975) (#1 in the U.S.) features Can't Hide Love, and Reasons. Album #7 Spirit (Sept. 1976) (#2 in the U.S.) features Getaway, Saturday Nite, and On Your Face. Album #8 All 'N All (Nov. 21, 1977) (#3 in the U.S.) sold 3M copies, and features I'll Write A Song for You, Serpentine Fire, Love's Holiday, and the pop hit Fantasy. Album #9 I Am (July 16, 1979) (#3 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) features Boogie Wonderland (w/The Emotions) (#6 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), After the Love Has Gone (#2 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.). Double album #10 Faces (Oct. 14, 1980) (#10 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.) was the last with Al McKay; it features Let Me Talk (#44 in the U.S.), You (#48 in the U.S.), And Love Goes On (#59 in the U.S.), and Sparkle. Album #11 Raise! (Nov. 14, 1981) (#5 in the U.S., #11 in the U.K.) features Let's Groove (#3 in the U.S.), and Wanna Be With You (#51 in the U.S.).
On Apr. 23, 1971 the Rolling Stones released album #11/#9 Sticky Fingers, which contained the hits Brown Sugar, Wild Horses, Sister Morphine, and Can't You Hear Me Knocking. The cover features the crotch of Joe Dalesandro in tight blue jeans, with a working zipper that opens to reveal a man in cotton briefs, conceived by Andy Warhol, designed by John Pasche, and photographed by Billy Name; first use of the "Tongue and Lip Design" of Pasche. Album #11/#13 Goats Head Soup (Aug. 31, 1973) contained the hit Angie and Heartbreaker (Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo). Album #12/#14 It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (Oct. 16, 1974) contained the hits It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (But I Like It), Ain't Too Proud to Beg, Till the Next Goodbye, and Time Waits for No One. Album #14/#16 Some Girls (June 9, 1978) rebutted critics that claimed they were dinos in the age of punk rock, becoming their biggest selling album in the U.S. (6M copies), with hits Miss You, When the Whip Comes Down, Just My Imagination (Running Way with Me), Beast of Burden, Shattered, and Respectable.
On Apr. 30, 1971 the Irish (Dublin) hard rock band Thin Lizzy (founded 1969), fronted by black Irishman Philip Paris "Phil" Lynott (1949-86) (vocals, bass) (the Irish Jimi Hendrix?), and white Irishman Brian Michael Downey (1951-) (drums), incl. guitarists Eric Bell (1969-73), Brian Robertson (1974-8), and Gary Moore (1974, 1977, 1978-9) released their debut album Thin Lizzy, featuring the track Honesty Is No Excuse. Album #2 Shades of a Blue Orphanage (Mar. 10, 1972) features Buffalo Gal. Album #3 Vagabonds of the Western World (Sept. 21, 1973) features Vagabonds of the Western World, and The Rocker. Album #4 Nightlife (Nov. 8, 1974) features Still in Love With You, and She Knows. Album #5 Fighting (Sept. 12, 1975) debuted the twin guitars of Brian Robertson and Scott Gorham, and features Fighting My Way Back, and Freedom Song. Album #6 Jailbreak (Mar. 26, 1976), their U.S. breakthrough album features Jailbreak, The Boys Are Back in Town (#6 in the U.S.), and Angel from the Coast. Album #7 Johnny the Fox (Oct. 16, 1976) features Johnny the Fox Meets Jimmy the Weed, and Don't Believe a Word. Album #8 Bad Reputation (Sept. 2, 1977) (#4 in the U.K.) features Bad Reputation, Dancing in the Moonlight (It's Caught Me in the Spotlight) (#14 in the U.S.). Album #9 Black Rose: A Rock Legend (Apr. 13, 1979) (#2 in the U.K.) features Waiting for An Alibi, Do Anything You Want To, Sarah. Album #11 Renegade (Nov. 15, 1981) the 2nd and last with guitarist Terence Charles "Snowy" White (1948-) (backup player for Pink Floyd) features Angel of Death. Album #12 (last) Thunder and Lightning (Mar. 4, 1983) features The Sun Goes Down, and Cold Sweat; In 1983 Snowy White had a solo hit in the U.K. with Bird of Paradise (#6 in the U.K.).
Also in Apr. 1971 after years of playing in biker and hippie bars in N and C Calif., The Doobie Brothers from San Jose, Calif. (named after their fondness for doobies or marijuana cigs), incl. Charles Thomas "Tom" Johnston (1948-), Patrick "Pat" Simmons (1948-) (guitar), John Hartman (1950-) (drums), and Dave Shogren (bass) released their debut album The Doobie Brothers, featuring the track Nobody, which didn't go anywhere, after which they released 10 straight platinum and/or gold albums through 1980, starting with album #2 Toulouse Street (June 1972) (#21 in the U.S.), which features the hits Listen to the Music, and Jesus Is Just Alright. Album #3 The Captain and Me (Mar. 2, 1973) (#7 in the U.S.) features Long Train Runnin' (#8 in the U.S.), China Grove (#15 in the U.S.), and Without You. Album #4 What Were Once Vices Are Now Habits (Feb. 1, 1974) (#4 in the U.S.) features Black Water (#1 in the U.S.). Album #5 Stampede (Apr. 25, 1974) (#4 in the U.S.) (last with Tom Johnson) features Take Me in Your Arms (Rock Me a Little While) (#11 in the U.S.). Album #6 Takin' It to the Streets (Mar. 19, 1976) (#8 in the U.S.) was the first with white-haired (later) blue-eyed soul singer Michael McDonald (1952-) on lead vocals, and features Takin' It to the Streets (#13 in the U.S.). Album #8 Minute by Minute (Dec. 1, 1978) (#1 in the U.S.) contained their biggest hit What a Fool Believes (#1 in the U.S.). Album #9 One Step Closer (Sept. 17, 1980) (#3 in the U.S.) contained their last hit Real Love (#5 in the U.S.).
In May 1971 Slab Fork, W. Va.-born singer-songwriter William Harrison "Bill" Withers (1938-) released his debut album Just As I Am, which features the tracks Ain't No Sunshine (#3 in the U.S.), and Grandma's Hands (#42 in the U.S.). Album #2 Still Bill (May 1972) features the #1 U.S. hit Lean on Me, and the #2 U.S. hit Use Me. Album #6 Menagerie (1977) (#39 in the U.S., #27 in the U.K.) features Lovely Day (#30 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.).
In Aug. 1971 Australian singer Helen Reddy (1941-) released her hit I Am Woman, which was rereleased in May 1972, going #1, selling 1M+ copies. In 1973 she released Leave Me Alone (Ruby Red Dress) (#1 in the U.S.), and Delta Dawn (#1 in the U.S.). In 1974 she released Keep on Singing (#15 in the U.S.), You and Me Against the World, (#9 in the U.S.), and Angie Baby (#1 in the U.S.). In 1975 she released Ain't No Way to Treat a Lady (#8 in the U.S.).
In Aug. 1971 the San Francisco, Calif.-based country rock band New Riders of the Purple Sage, formed mainly of members of The Grateful Dead, incl. Jerry Garcia, David Nelson, John Dawson, Spencer Dryden, Dave Torbert, and Buddy Cage released their debut album New Riders of the Purple Sage (#39 in the U.S.), which features the tracks Dirty Business, and Last Lonely Eagle. Album #2 Powerglide (Mar. 1972) (#33 in the U.S.) features I Don't Need No Doctor, Rainbow, Sweet Lovin' One, and Hello Mary Lou (by Gene Pitney). Album #3 Gypsy Cowboy (Dec. 1972) features Gypsy Cowboy, Death and Destruction, Whiskey, Groupie, and Superman. Album #4 The Adventures of Panama Red (Oct. 1973) (#55 in the U.S.) features Panama Red, Lonesome L.A. Cowboy, and Kick in the Head.
On Oct. 2, 1971 the syndicated U.S. African-American musical variety show Soul Train debuted for 1,117 episodes (until Mar. 25, 2006), created and hosted by Chicago-born Donald Cortez "Don" Cornelius (1936-), giving black performers their day in the sun.
In Oct. 1971 Donald "Don" McLean (1945-) released his 2-hit-wonder album American Pie, dedicated to Buddy Holly, containing the tracks American Pie (8.5 min.) (about the Day the Music Died), and Vincent (Starry Starry Night) (about earless artist Vincent Van Gogh). The cryptic lyrics in American Pie referencing rock and movie stars turn fans on, causing it to go #1 for 4 weeks; Satan refers to Mick Jagger.
Also in Oct. 1971 REO Speedwagon (from Champaign, Ill.) released its debut album REO Speedwagon, which got them off to a speedy start with 157 Riverside Avenue. In 1972 they hired lead singer Kevin Cronin (1951-), whose voice sounded like a Southern Calif. beach boy, perfect for the U.S. market. Album #7 You Can Tune a Piano but You Can't Tuna Fish (Mar. 16, 1978) sold 2M copies in the U.S., and features the track Time for Me to Fly. Album #8 Hi Infidelity (Nov. 21, 1980) was the best selling rock album of 1981 (10M copies), and included the hits Keep On Loving You (#1 in the U.S.) and Take It On the Run (#5 in the U.S.). Album #11 Wheels Are Turnin' (Nov. 1984) features the #1 hit Can't Fight This Feeling.
On Nov. 12, 1971 the British group Genesis (who started out in 1967 as students of Charterhouse School) released album #3 Nursery Cryme, which features their new drummer Philip David Charles "Phil" Collins (1951-), who had a closeup as a screaming teenie in the Beatles' film "A Hard Day's Night". Member Peter Gabriel departed in 1975 to go solo, which turned out well as it gave Collins the chance to become the lead vocalist. Album #9 ...And Then There Were Three... (Apr. 7, 1978) features the track Follow You Follow Me. Album #10 Duke (album #10) (Mar. 28, 1980) included the hit tracks Turn It On Again (#10 in the U.K.), and Misunderstanding (#20 in the U.S.). Album #11 Abacab (Sept. 14, 1981) (#1 in the U.K.) features the tracks Abacab, and No Reply at All. Their EP 3X3 (May 21, 1982) features Paperlate (#32 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.). Album #12 Genesis (Gold Shapes) (Oct. 3, 1983) (#9 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) sold 4M copies in the U.S., and features Mama (#4 in the U.K.), and That's All (#10 in the U.S.). In 1984-5 Phil Collins went solo for awhile, with the theme for the 1984 film Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now), followed by the hit track Separate Lives, used in the 1985 film "White Nights". The solo album No Jacket Required (Jan. 25, 1985) sold 30M copies. It was named for an incident at the Pump Room in Chicago, Ill. with maitre d' George Montgomery (-1992), which they later made up for by sending him a sport coat. Hit tracks incl. Sussudio, One More Night, Don't Lose My Number, and Take Me Home. Album #13 Invisible Touch (June 9, 1986) (#3 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) sold 15M copies, and features Invisible Touch (#1 in the U.S., #15 in the U.K.), Throwing It All Away (#4 in the U.S., #22 in the U.K.), Land of Confusion (#4 in the U.S., #14 in the U.K.), Tonight, Tonight, Tonight (#3 in the U.S., #18 in the U.K.), and Domino. Album #14 We Can't Dance (Oct. 28, 1991) (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), last with Phil Collins sold 4M copies in the U.S., and features I Can't Dance (#7 in the U.S. and U.K.), No Son of Mine (#12 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), Hold on My Heart (#16 in the U.K.), and Jesus He Knows Me (#23 in the U.S., #20 in the U.K.). They sold 150M albums, everything from Genesis to Revelation.
In Nov. 1971 the rock-pop duo Loggins and Messina, Kenneth Clark "Kenny" Loggins (1948-) and James Melvin "Jim" Messina (1947-) released their debut album Sittin' In, featuring the tracks Danny's Song, and House at Pooh Corner. Album #2 Loggins and Messina (Oct. 1972) (#16 in the U.S.) features Your Mama Don't Dance (#4 in the U.S.) Album #3 Full Sail (Oct. 1973) (#10 in the U.S.) features My Music (#16 in the U.S.). They broke up in 1976. In 1974 Kenny's cousin Dave Loggins (1947-) had a hit with Please Come to Boston.
On Nov. 28, 1971 John Lennon makes his last concert appearance at an Elton John concert at New York's Madison Square Garden, joining him to sing "Whatever Gets You Through the Night", "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds", and "I Saw Her Standing There"; backstage, Lennon has a brief reunion with Yoko Ono (1933-), from whom he'd been separated for over a year - suck what? On Dec. 10, 1971 John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Stevie Wonder, Bob Seger, Phil Ochs, Allen Ginsberg, Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Bobby Seale et al. made a public appearance at a benefit concert for anti-racist White Panther Party leader (since 1968) John Sinclair (1941-), who was sentenced to 10 years in priz in 1969 for giving two joints of marijuana to an undercover narc; three days later Sinclair was released after the Mich. Supreme Court ruled the state's marijuana statutes unconstitutional, after which the Hash Bash rally has been held annually in Ann Arbor, Mich. to work for permanent decriminalization.
In Dec. 1971 the string-heavy English (Birmingham) rock band Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), successor to The Move released its debut album The Electric Light Orchestra (No Answer), featuring 10538 Overture and Mr. Radio. Album #4 Eldorado (Sept. 1974) contained the track Can't Get It Out Of My Head. Album #5 Face the Music (Sept. 1975) contained the tracks Evil Woman, Strange Magic, and Fire on High. Album #6 A New World Record (Sept. 11, 1976) contained the hits Telephone Line, Livin' Thing, Do Ya, Tightrope, and Rockaria! Album #7 Out of the Blue was the first double album to have four top-20 singles in the U.K. Hit tracks included Turn to Stone, Sweet Talkin' Woman, Mr. Blue Sky, Standin' in the Rain, Big Wheels, and Summer and Lightning. Their Aug. 1980 Xanadu Soundtrack, done in conjuction with Olivia Newton-John, Cliff Richard, Gene Kelly, and The Tubes included the hits Xanadu, Magic, Suddenly, I'm Alive, Don't Walk Away, and All Over the World. The film effort seems to have maxed them out, after which they released an album in 1986 and took a 15-year breather.
Speaking of Olivia Newton-John. In 1971 English-born Australian singer Olivia Newton-John (1948-), daughter or Irene Born, eldest child of atomic physicist Max Born (connecting her somehow with super physicist Isaac Newton too?) released her debut album If Not for You (#158 in the U.S.), featuring If Not for You, and If You Could Read My Mind. Album #2 Let Me Be There (Dec., 1973) (#54 in the U.S.) features Let Me Be There. Album #3 If You Love Me, Let Me Know (May 1974) (#1 in the U.S.) features If You Love Me (Let Me Know). Album #4 Have You Never Been Mellow (Feb. 1975) (#1 in the U.S.) features Have You Never Been Mellow. Album #10 Physical (Oct. 1981) (#6 in the U.S.) features Physical. In Dec. 1984 Olivia married Portland, Ore.-born "Xanadu" dancer Matt Lattanzi (1959-); they divorced in 1995. In 2011 Olivia's daughter Chloe Rose Lattanzi (1986-) freaked her mother out by releasing the disturbing shock rock video Play With Me.
Also in 1971 yodeling 1-of-a-kind Roswell, N.M.-born singer John Denver (Henry John Deutschendorf Jr.) (1943-97) began creating his own pop rock genre, starting with the hit single Take Me Home, Country Roads, followed by Rocky Mountain High (1972), Sunshine On My Shoulders (1973) (#1), Annie's Song (1974) (#1), Thank God I'm a Country Boy (1975) (#1), and I'm Sorry (1975) (#1). After adopting Colorado and setting up shop regularly at Red Rocks Amphitheater, each year his Rocky Mountain Christmas was ABC-TV's highest-rated show. He went on to become the Beatles of the 1970s, if you can wrap your mind around that.
1971 had its share of 1-hit wonders, starting with Tom Clay (Thomas Clague) (1929-95), and his What the World Needs Now (Abraham, Martin and John) (#8 in the U.S.) (1M copies), a tear-jerker composed of news reports and speeches with music in the background. Also Lee Michaels (Michael Olsen) (1945-) and his 1-hit wonder Do You Know What I Mean? (#6 in the U.S.). Also Daddy Dewdrop (Richard "Dick" Monda) (1940-) and his 1-hit wonder Chick-A-Boom (Don't Ya Jes' Love It) (#9 in the U.S.), based on the tune "John Jacob Jingleheimerschmitt". Also 13 Questions (#49 in the U.S.), from album #2 Seatrain (1970) by Seatrain, an American roots fusion band based in Marblehead, Mass., formed from the remnants of The Blues Project in 1969, which disbanded in 1973 after George Martin produced albums #2 and #3 for them, the first after the Beatles. In 1971 Brownsville Mockingbird released the 1-hit wonder Joy of Cooking. In Nov. 1971 the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based country rock band (founded 1967) Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen released their debut album Lost in the Ozone (#82 in the U.S.), which features their 1-hit wonder Hot Rod Lincoln (#9 in the U.S.), a cover of the 1955 original Hot Rod Lincoln by Charlie Ryan and W.S. Stevenson, and the 1960 cover Hot Rod Lincoln by Johnny Bond. Another 1971 1-hit wonder was the Dutch band Focus, incl. Thijs van Leer (keyboards), Jan Akkerman (guitar), Martin Dresden (bass), and Hans Cleuver (drums), who in Oct. 1971 released album #2 Focus II (Moving Waves), which features Hocus Pocus (#9 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.). Album #3 Focus 3 (1972) (#6 in the U.K.) features Sylvia (#89 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.). In 1971 the Chicago-based smooth vocal quartet The Chi-Lites had a hit with Have You Seen Her (#3 in the U.S, #3 in the U.K.), followed in 1972 by Oh Girl (#1 in the U.S., #14 in the U.K.).
Also in 1971 Asylum Records was founded by David Geffen (1943-) to attract Jackson Browne, going on to sign Tom Waits, Linda Ronstadt, Joni Mitchell, and even Bob Dylan; in 1972 it was taken over by Warner and merged with Elektra Records.
Also in 1971 Vivienne Westwood (Vivienne Isabel Swire) (1941-), lover of Sex Pistols founder (Sept. 1975) Malcolm Robert Andrew McLaren (1946-2010) opened the Sex fashion shop in London, which became known for its outrageous punk designs (a favorite of The Sex Pistols), featuring BDSM, safety pins, razor blades, chains, spiked dog collars, etc., based on the fashion style of New York punk musician Richard Hell (Richard Lester Meyers) (1949-), who in Sept. 1977 with his group The Voidoids released their debut album Blank Generation, which features the seminal punk rock track Blank Generation, followed in 1982 by their second and last album Destiny Street, which features the track Going, Going, Gone.
In 1971 the Scottish bubblegum pop group Middle of the Road, incl. Sally Carr (1945-) (vocals), Ian McCredie (1947-) (guitar), Eric McCredie (1945-) (bass), and Ken Andrew (1942-) (drums) released their debut album Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep, which became a giant hit in the U.K., featuring the tracks Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep (by Lally Stott) (#1 in the U.K.) (10M copies), Tweedle Dee, Tweedle Dum (#2 in the U.K.), and Soley Soley (#5 in the U.K.). By 1972 they were already dropping out of sight counting their money.
Speaking of Scotland. In 1971 the Scottish Beatles-clone pop-rock band The Bay City Rollers ("the tartan teen sensations from Edinburgh), incl. Gordon Fraser "Nobby" Clark (1950) (vocals), Eric Faulkner (1953-) (guitar), Stuart John "Woody" Wood (1957-) (guitar), Alan Longmuir (1948-) (bass), and Derek Longmuir (1951-) (drums) released their first hit single Keep on Dancing (by The Gentrys) (#9 in the U.S.). In 1974 after Leslie Richard "Les" McKeown (1955-) replaced Nobby Clark as lead vocalist in 1973, they finally released their breakthrough single Remember (Sha La La La) (#6 in the U.K.), followed by Shang-a-Lang (1974) (#2 in the U.K.), Summerlove Sensation (1974) (#3 in the U.K.), and All of Me Loves All of You (1974) (#4 in the U.K.), sparking Rollermania during their 1975 U.K. tour, and leading to a 20-week BBC-TV series "Shang-a-Lang". In 1975 they released Bye, Bye, Baby (1975) (#1 in the U.K.) (1M copies), Give a Little Love (1975) (#1 in the U.K.). Rollermaniacs wore ankle-length tartan trousers and tartan scarves, and chanted "Eric, Derek, Woody too/ Alan, Leslie, we love you,/ With an R-O-double-L, E-R-S,/ Bay City Rollers are the best." In 1975 they staged a new British Invasion with the single Saturday Night (#1 in the U.S.), followed by Money Honey (1975) (#9 in the U.S.), I Only Want to Be With You (by Dusty Springfield) (1976) (#12 in the U.S.), Yesterday's Hero (1976) (#54 in the U.S.), and Dedication (1976) (#60 in the U.S.). Duh, maybe the U.S. fans thought they were from Bay City, Mich. and liked Roller Derby, until they caught a glance at them tartans and smelled a rat. Too bad, personnel changes helped cause them to trainspot, er, tank, and they exited stage left with It's a Game (by String Driven Thing) (1977) (#20 in the U.K.), and You Made Me Believe in Magic (1977) (#34 in the U.K., #10 in the U.S., #4 in Germany).
1972 was a very good year for rock and roll. On Jan. 31, 1972 the English-American (London) folk rock band America, discovered and produced by Ian "Sammy" Samwell (1937-2003), incl. Dewey Bunnell (1951-), Gerald Linford "Gerry" Beckley (1952-), and Dan Peek (1950-2011) released their million-selling debut album America (#1 in the U.S.), containing the hits A Horse With No Name (#1 in the U.S.), I Need You (#9 in the U.S.), Sandman (about the VQ-2 air squadron based in Rota, Spain?), and Three Roses. Album #2 Homecoming (Nov. 15, 1972) features Ventura Highway (#8 in the U.S.) ("alligator lizards in the air"). Album #4 Holiday (June 1974) features Tin Man (#4 in the U.S.) and Lonely People (#5 in the U.S.). Album #5 Hearts (Mar. 19, 1975) features Sister Golden Hair (#1 in the U.S.). All in all, America became Warner Brothers' biggest-selling act of the 1970s, but sorry, they're no Beatles.
Also in Jan. 1972 the Long Island, N.Y.-based group Blue Oyster (Öyster) Cult (formerly Soft White Underbelly, Oaxaca, Stalk-Forrest Group, and Santos Sisters), comprised of Les Braunstein/Eric Bloom (1944-) (vocals), and Andrew Winters (bass) released their debut album Blue Öyster Cult, which sold well and was liked by critics, getting them on the tour circuit with the Byrds, Alice Cooper, and Mahavishnu Orchestra; it features Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll. Album #3 Secret Treaties (Apr. 1974) (#53 in the U.S.) contained the tracks Astronomy, and Born to Be Wild (by Steppenwolf). Their breakthrough album #4 Agents of Fortune (May 1976) (#29 in the U.S.) features the hit track (Don't Fear) The Reaper (#12 in the U.S.), and (This Ain't) The Summer of Love. Album #5 Spectres (Oct. 1977) contained the hit Godzilla. The live album Some Enchanted Evening (Sept. 1978) became their biggest seller (2M copies). Album #9 Fire of Unknown Origin (June 1981) contained the hit Burnin' for You (#40 in the U.S.), along with Joan Crawford, and Veteran of the Psychic Wars. Album #10 The Revolution (Revölution) by Night (Oct. 1983) contained the MTV hit Shooting Shark. They went on to sell 24M albums worldwide, incl. 7M in the U.S.
In Feb. 1972 Todd Harry Rundgren (1948-) released his album #3 (double album) Something/Anything?, which made him a star with the tracks Hello It's Me (#5 in the U.S.) and I Saw the Light (#16 in the U.S., #36 in the U.K.). Album #10 The Ever Popular Tortured Artist Effect (Jan. 1983) (#66 in the U.S.) features the hit Bang the Drum All Day (#63 in the U.S.), which the Green Bay Packers began playing after every TD starting in 1995, followed by the Los Angeles Dodgers. On Mar. 11, 1972 Harry Forster Chapin (1942-81) released his debut album Heads & Tales, containing the 7-min. hit song Taxi. Album #4 Verities & Balderdash contained the hit Cat's in the Cradle (about his son Josh). In May 1972 the 1-hit wonder Jersey Shore band Looking Glass released the #1 U.S. hit Brandy (You're a Fine Girl). Also in May 1972 Philly singer James Joseph "Jim" Croce (1943-73) released album #3 You Don't Mess Around with Jim, featuring the hits You Don't Mess Around with Jim ("You don't tug on Superman's cape, you don't spit into the wind, you don't pull the mask off the ol' Lone Ranger, and you don't mess around with Jim"), Time In A Bottle (about his pregnant wife Ingrid and newborn son A.J.), and Operator (That's Not the Way It Feels). Album #4 Life and Times (Jan. 1973) contained the hit Bad, Bad Leroy Brown. Album #5 I Got a Name (Dec. 1, 1973) contained the hit I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song (#9 in the U.S.). Too bad, Croce died in a plane crash on Sept. 20, 1973. In June 1972 1-hit wonder Leon Russell (Claude Russell Bridges) (1942-), whose debut album "Rhapsodies for Young Loves" came out in 1966 released album #3 Carney (#2 on the U.S.), containing the hit single Tight Rope (#11 in the U.S.). In July 1972 English rock band Argent, founded by Zombies keyboardist Rodney Terence "Rod" Argent (1945-) released album #3 All Together Now, featuring their 1-hit wonder Hold Your Head Up (#5 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) (1M copies). Also in 1972 English glam rocker Gary Glitter (Paul Francis Gadd) (1944-) released the caveman-sounding Rock and Roll Part 2 (Hey Song), which became a stadium anthem. Speaking of caveman, Glitter later got into child porno and in 2006 was convicted of child molestation in Vietnam. Also in 1972 Irish singer-songwriter Gilbert (Raymond Edward) O'Sullivan (1946-) released Alone Again (Naturally), which spent 6 weeks at #1 in the U.S., but only made it to #3 in the U.K. He also charted Clair the same year, and went on to rack up 16 top-40 hits incl. 6 #1s. Also in 1972 the 1-hit wonder Scottish group Stealers Wheel released its debut album Stealers Wheel, containing the million-selling hit Stuck in the Middle With You (#6 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.). The 1992 Quentin Tarantino flick Reservoir Dogs forever gave it a horror dimension by using it to serenade a cop being burned alive with gasoline by a cop-hating hood.
Speaking of Stevie Wonder, on Mar. 3, 1972 he showed he was back by releasing album #14 Music of My Mind (#21 in the U.S.), his first using synthesizers. Tracks features Superwoman (Where Were You When I Needed You), Happier Than the Morning Sun, and I Love Every Little Thing About You. Album #15 Talking Book (Oct. 28, 1972) was a giant R&B-to-rock crossover hit, featuring the tracks Superstition, You Are the Sunshine of My Life, and You and I (We Can Conquer the World). Album #16 Innervisions (Aug. 3, 1973) (#4 in the U.S.) features the tracks Higher Ground (#4 in the U.S.), Living for the City (#8 in the U.S.), and Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing (#16 in the U.S.). Album #17 Fulfillingness' First Finale (July 22, 1974) (#1 in the U.S.) features You Haven't Done Nothin' (with the Jackson 5) (#1 in the U.S.), and Boogie On Reggae Woman (#3 in the U.S.). Album #18 Songs in the Key of Life (Sept. 28, 1976) (#1 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.); 3rd best album of the year Grammy in 4 years features the tracks Isn't She Lovely? (about his daughter Aisha taking a bath) (#23 in the U.S.), I Wish (#23 in the U.S.), Sir Duke (#3 in the U.S.), and As (#36 in the U.S.). Album #19 Hotter Than July (Sept. 29, 1989) (#3 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.) features Master Blaster (Jammin) (#5 in the U.S.), I Ain't Gonna Stand for It (#11 in the U.S.), Lately (#64 in the U.S.), and Happy Birthday (#2 in the U.K.).
In Mar. 1972 the Columbus, Ohio-based country rock band Pure Prairie League, incl. Craig Fuller (guitar, vocals), George Powell (guitar, vocals), Jim Lanham (bass, vocals), John David Call (steel guitar), and Jim Caughlan (drums) released their debut album Pure Prairie League, which features the tracks Tears, and Woman. Album #2 Bustin' Out (Aug. 1972) (#34 in the U.S.) features their 2nd biggest hit Amie (#27 in the U.S.). Album #3 Two Lane Highway (Apr. 1975) (#24 in the U.S.) features Kansas City Southern, and Just Can't Believe It (with Emmylou Haris). Album #4 If the Shoe Fits (Jan. 1976) (#33 in the U.S.) features Sun Shone Lightly. Album #9 Firin' Up (1980) (#37 in the U.S.) features their biggest hit Let Me Love You Tonight (#10 in the U.S.). Album #10 Something in the Night (1981) (#72 in the U.S.) features their 3rd biggest hit Still Right Here in My Heart (#28 in the U.S.), after which they fell off the charts.
In Apr. 1972 the Memphis, Tenn.-based Beatles Invasion clone powerpop band Big Star, incl. William Alexander "Alex" Chilton (1950-2010) (guitar, vocals) (formerly of The Box Tops), Christopher Branford "Chris" Bell (1951-78) (guitar, vocals), Andy Hummel (bass), and Jody Stephens (drums) released their debut album #1 Record, which was a hit with the critics but didn't sell well because Stax Records underpromoted it, causing Bell to leave the group; it features the tracks Thirteen, When My Baby's Beside Me, and Don't Lie to Me. Album #2 Radio City (Feb. 1974) saw Ardent Records underpromote it, causing poor sales despite raves from critics; it features September Gurls, and Back of a Car. They broke up in 1974, becoming influential in alternative rock. Album #3 Third (Sister Lovers), recorded in 1974 before their breakup features Femme Fatale (by the Velvet Underground), Kangaroo, and Holocaust. After reuiniting, on Sept. 27, 2005 they released album #4 In Space, featuring Turn My Back on the Sun, Best Chance, and Dony.
On May 12, 1972 the Rolling Stones released double album #10/#12 Exile on Main Street (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) (their masterpiece?), recorded in summer 1971 in a mansion in the S of France rented by guitarist Keith Richards; it features the tracks Plundered My Soul (#2 in the U.S.), Tumbling Dice (#7 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.), Happy (#22 in the U.S.), Shine a Light, Rocks Off, Torn and Frayed, and Sweet Black Angel.
On June 15, 1972 the English (London) art rock band Roxy Music, fronted by Bryan Ferry (1945-), released their debut album Roxy Music (#10 in the U.K.), featuring the track Re-Make/Re-Model. Album #4 Country Life (#37 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.) contained the tracks All I Want Is You, The Thrill of It All. Album #5 Siren (Oct. 24, 1975), features Ferry's babe Jerry Hall on the cover, and contains their biggest hit Love Is the Drug, and Both Ends Burning.
On June 17, 1972 the debut album Eagles from the LA band Eagles was released. Members included Glenn Lewis Frey (1948-) and Donald Hugh "Don" Henley (1947-. They eventually sold 120M albums worldwide. Key tracks from the debut album included: Take It Easy (#12 in the U.S.), Peaceful Easy Feeling (#22 in the U.S.), and Witchy Woman (#9 in the U.S.). Album #2 Desperado (Apr. 17, 1972) contained the hit Tequila Sunrise. Album #3 On the Border (Mar. 22, 1974) contained the hits James Dean, and Best Of My Love (#1 in the U.S.). Album #4 One of These Nights (June 10, 1975) contained the hits One of These Nights (#1 in the U.S.), Lyin' Eyes (#2 in the U.S.), and Take It To the Limit (#4 in the U.S.). In Dec. 1975 Bernie Leadon left after his dating of Ronald Reagan's daughter Patti Davis caused tensions and he poured a beer over Glenn Frey's head; he was replaced by Joe Walsh, causing the James Gang to break up. On May 28, 1982 Glenn Frey released his debut solo album No Fun Aloud, which features The One You Love. Album #2 The Allnighter (June 19, 1984) features Sexy Girl, and Smuggler's Blues (from "Miami Vice"). In 1985 he had a hit with The Heat Is On (#2 in the U.S., #12 in the U.K.), from the 1984 film Beverly Hills Cop, and another with You Belong to the City (#2 in the U.S.), composed for the TV show "Miami Vice", whose Oct. 26, 1985 soundtrack album Miami Vice Soundtrack (#1 in the U.S.) was the best-selling album of 1985, and most successful TV soundtrack in history (until ?).
Also in June 1972 the English (London) rock band Foghat, fronted by David "Lonesome Dave" Peverett (1943-2000) released its debut album Foghat, with hit track I Just Want to Make Love to You (by Willie Dixon). Album #5 Fool for the City (Sept. 1975) contained their biggest hit Slow Ride (#20 in the U.S.).
On Aug. 4, 1972 Chicago, Ill.-born African-American soul-funk singer Curtis Lee Mayfield (1942-99), known for his social conscience released album #3 Super Fly Soundtrack, featuring the tracks Super Fly (title song), and Freddie's Dead (#2 in the U.S.), about the death of Fat Freddie, who is run over by a car.
On Aug. 20, 1972 110K attended Wattstax, a day-long "Black Woodstock" held in Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum by Stax Records, featuring perf. by Isaac Hayes, Albert King, the Staple Singers, Rufus & Carla Thomas et al. In 1972 The Staple Singers, founded 1948 in Chicago, Ill. by patriarch Roebuck "Pops" Staples (1914-2000) and his daughters Cleothis Staples (1934-), Pervis Staples (1935-), Yvonne Staples (1936-), and Mavis Staples (1939-) released their first hit pop album Be Altitude: Respect Yourself (album) (#19 in the U.S.), featuring the hits Respect Yourself (#12 in the U.S.), and I'll Take You There (#1 in the U.S.). In 1975 they released the album Let's Do It Again Soundtrack (album), with songs by Curtis Mayfield, featuring Let's Do It Again (#1 in the U.S.).
In Aug. 1972 the English blues rock band Elf (formed in 1967 as The Electric Elves, becoming the opening act for Deep Purple), fronted by Ronnie James Dio (Ronald James Padavona) (1942-2010) (vocals), along with Doug Thaler (keyboards), Nick Pantas (-1968) (guitar), David Feinstein (guitar) (Dio's cousin), and Gary Driscoll (drums) released their debut album Elf, which features the tracks Never More, and First Avenue. Album #2 Carolina County Ball (Apr. 1974) features Carolina County Ball. Album #3 (last) Face the Music (Sept. 1975) features Wonderworld.
Speaking of Joe Walsh. On Sept. 30, 1972 Joseph Fidler "Joe" Walsh (1947-), formerly of the James Gang released his debut solo album Barnstorm. Album #2 The Smoker You Drink, The Player You Get (June 18, 1973) features Rocky Mountain Way. Album #3 So What (Dec. 14, 1974) features Welcome to the Club. Album #4 But Seriously, Folks... (May 16, 1978) (#12 in the U.S.) features the hit track Life's Been Good (from the 1978 film "FM"); "My Maserati does 185/ I lost my license, now I don't drive."
In Oct. 1972 the English (Stockport) art rock band 10cc, named after a particularly large cum spurt, incl. Graham Keith Gouldman (1946-), Eric Michael Stewart (1945-), Kevin Michael Godley (1945-), and Lol Creme (1947), who already had a #2 U.K. in July 1970 with Neanderthal Man under the name Hotlegs released their debut single Donna (#2 in the U.K.), followed by their debut album 10cc (July 1973), which features the tracks Rubber Bullets (#1 in the U.K.), The Dean and I (#10 in the U.K.), and Johnny Don't Do It. Album #2 Sheet Music (May 1974) (#81 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.) (their best album?); incl. The Wall Street Shuffle, and Silly Love. Album #3 The Original Soundtrack (Mar. 1975) (#15 in the U.S., #3 in the .K.), the first release by Mercury Records, who signed them for $1M features I'm Not in Love (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), and Une Nuit A Paris (One Night in Paris). Album #4 How Dare You! (Jan. 1976), last with Godley and Creme features I'm Mandy Fly Me, and Art for Art's Sake, after which the band limped along as a duo.
In Oct. 1972 Steely Dan (named after a dildo in the novel "Naked Lunch" by William S. Burroughs), comprised of Bard College (N.Y.) chums Donald Jay Fagen (1948-) and Walter Carl Becker (1950-) released their debut album Can't Buy a Thrill (#17 in the U.S.), which contained their big hit Reelin' in the Years, and Do It Again. Album #2 Countdown to Ecstasy (July 1973) contained the tracks Show Biz Kids, and My Old School. Album #3 Pretzel Logic (Mar. 1974) contained the biggest hit Rikki Don't Lose That Number (#4 in the U.S.). Album #4 Katy Died (pun on katydid) (Mar. 1975) (#13 in the U.S.) contained the track Black Friday (about the 1929 Stock Market Crash). Album #6 Aja (Sept. 1977) (#3 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) (named after Fagen's friend's brother's Korean wife) was their best selling album, 5M copies, and contained the tracks Deacon Blues, Peg, and Home at Last. Album #7 Gaucho (Nov. 21) contained the hit Hey Nineteen, after which the duo split.
On Nov. 7, 1972 after singing in the gay Continental Baths in New York City to piano accompanist Barry Manilow, Bette Midler (1945-) released her debut album The Divine Miss M (#9 in the U.S.), featuring the singles Do You Want to Dance, Friends, and Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy (#8 in the U.S.). On Nov. 2, 1988 she released the album Beaches Soundtrack (#2 in the U.S., #21 in the U.K.), which sold 3M copies, and features her #1 U.S. hit Wind Beneath My Wings.
In 1972 the Swedish group ABBA (named after the member's first names, Agnetha, Bjorn, Benny, and Anni-Frid) was formed, going on to sell 375M records worldwide, with hits incl. Ring Ring (1973), Waterloo (1974), Honey, Honey (1974), SOS (1975), Mamma Mia (1975), and Dancing Queen (1976). Album #8 (their last) The Visitors (Nov. 30, 1981) was the first album manufactured in CD.
In 1972 Asheville, N.C.-born Roberta Flack (1937-) scored with the single The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face, written by Ewan MacColl (1915-89), Communist dad of Kirsty MacColl for his lover Peggy Seeger. In 1973 she scored again with Killing Me Softly (With His Song), written by Charles Fox and Norman Gimbel; based on her reaction to Don McLean's 8.5 min. "American Pie"?
In 1972 Philadelphia, Penn.-born soul singer Billy Paul (Paul Williams) (1934-) released his 1-hit wonder Me and Mrs. Jones (#1 in the U.S.) ("Me and Mrs. Jones, we got a thing goin' on/ We both know that it's wrong, but it's much too strong to let it go now").
We're not done with 1972 yet. In 1972 the South Chicago-based progressive rock band Styx (originally the Tradewinds and Tw4), comprised of Tommy Roland Shaw (1953-) (vocals), twins Charles Salvatore "Chuck" Panozzo (1948-) and John Panozzo (1948-) (drums), Dennis DeYoung (1947-) (keyboards), John "J.C." Curulewski (1950-88), and James "J.Y." Young (1949-) released their debut album Styx, featuring Best Thing, and Fanfare (Movement) for the Common Man. Album #2 Styx II (July 1973) (#20 in the U.S.) made them stars, with the hit track Lady (#6 in the U.S.). Album #3 The Serpent Is Rising (Feb. 1974) peaked at #192, and DeYoung called it "one of the worst recorded and produced in the history of music". Album #5 Equinox (Dec. 1, 1975) features the hit single Lorelei (#27 in the U.S.), and Suite Madam Blue (about the 1976 U.S. Bicentennial). Album #7 The Grand Illusion (July 7, 1977) (#6 in the U.S.) features the hits Come Sail Away (#8 in the U.S.), and Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man) (#29 in the U.S.). Album #8 Pieces of Eight (Sept. 1, 1978) (#2 in the U.S.) features the tracks Renegade (#16 in the U.S.), Blue Collar Man (Long Nights) (#21), and Sing for the Day (#41). Album #9 Cornerstone (Oct. 19, 1979) (#2 in the U.S.) features the #1 U.S. hit Babe (#6 in the U.K.). Album #10 Paradise Theater (Jan. 19, 1981) (#1 in the U.S.) features the hit tracks The Best of Times (#3 in the U.S.), Too Much Time on My Hands (#9 in the U.S.), and Rockin' the Paradise; the track Snowblind, against drug addiction was accused of having backward Satanic messages, which didn't help it sell. Album #11 Kilroy Was Here (Feb. 28, 1983) (#3 in the U.S.) features the hit tracks Mr. Roboto (#3 in the U.S.), and Don't Let It End (#6 in the U.S.). Album #12 Edge of the Century (Oct. 9, 1990) features the hit single Show Me the Way (#3 in the U.S.), which was adopted by the Gulf War troops as their anthem.
In 1973 the Disco Era began, starting with the classy Love's Theme (#1 in the U.S., #24 in the U.K.) (1973), the first disco record to go #1 in the U.S., by Galveston, Tex.-born Barry Eugene White (Carter) (1944-2003) and his female vocal trio backed by the 40-piece Love Unlimited Orchestra, folllowed by rich bass-voiced White's solo 1974 hits Can't Get Enough of Your Love, Babe (#1 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.), and You're the First, the Last, My Everything (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.). Too bad, the airwaves were soon filling with such bottom scrapers as the Oct. 1976 novelty Disco Duck before being rescued by the Australian falsetto trio The Bee Gees, Barry Gibb (1946-), Robin Gibb (1949-), and Maurice Gibb (1949-2003), whose soundtrack for the Dec. 14, 1977 John Travolta movie Saturday Night Fever was a super hit. Hit tracks included: Stayin' Alive, How Deep Is Your Love, Jive Talkin', and More Than A Woman. Album #11 Main Course (May 1975) was their first to feature disco music, and features Nights on Broadway, and Jive Talkin'. Album #12 Children of the World (Sept. 1976) sold 2.5M copies, and features Children of the World, You Should Be Dancing, Love So Right, and Love Me. Album #13 Spirits Having Flown (Jan. 1979) sold 16M copies, and features Too Much Heaven, Tragedy, and Love You Inside Out. Too bad, after 6 #1 singles in 18 mo., the disco craze ended, and they tanked. Meanwhile in Sept. 1977 their youngest brother Andy Gibb (1958-88) released his debut album Flowing Rivers, which sold 1M copies, making him the first male solo artist in the U.S. to chart three consecutive #1 singles on the Billboard Hot 100, incl. I Just Want To Be Your Everything, and (Love Is) Thicker Than Water, which replaced his brothers' "Staying Alive" as #1 in the U.S., only to be replaced by "Night Fever". Album #2 Shadow Dancing (Apr. 1978) sold 1M copies, and features Shadow Dancing (#1 in the U.S.), An Everlasting Love (#5 in the U.S.), and (Our Love) Don't Throw It All Away (#9 in the U.S.). The Disco Era faded out about the same time as MTV got going in 1981.
Disco or no disco, real rock thrived. In Jan. 1973 the hard rock band Aerosmith released their debut album Aerosmith, featuring the single Dream On. AKA The Bad Boys from Boston and America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band, members incl. singer ("the Demon of Screamin') Steven Tyler (Steven Victor Tallarico) (1948-), guitarist Anthony Joseph "Joe" Perry (1950-), guitarist Bradford Ernest "Brad" Whitford (1952-), bassist Thomas William "Tom" Hamilton (1951-), and drummer Joseph Michael "Joey" Kramer (1950-). On Mar. 1, 1974 they released album #2 Get Your Wings, featuring the tracks Same Old Song and Dance, and Train Kept A Rollin'. In Apr. 1975 they released album #3 Toys in the Attic, featuring Sweet Emotion and their signature song Walk This Way. On May 3, 1976 they released album #4 Rocks, featuring Back in the Saddle and Last Child. Too bad, drug use dragged the band down until album #10 Pump, released on Sept. 12, 1989, which features What It Takes, Janie's Got a Gun and Love in an Elevator ("Oh, good morning, Mister Tyler, going dooooown?"). In Apr. 1993 they followed with album #11 Get a Grip, which sold 20M copies (7M in the U.S.), and features Livin' on the Edge, Cryin', Amazing, and Crazy. Album #12 Nine Lives (Mar. 18, 1997) (#1 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.) features Nine Lives, Falling in Love (Is Hard on the Knees), Pink, Hole in My Soul, Full Circle, and Taste of India. The single I Don't Want to Miss A Thing from the 1998 film "Armageddon" went #1 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K. Album #13 Just Push Play (Mar. 9, 2001) (#2 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.) features Just Push Play, Jaded, and Fly Away from Here.
On Jan. 14, 1973 Elvis Presley's Aloha From Hawaii Concert from Honolulu becomes the first worldwide telecast by an entertainer, and is watched by more people than the 1969 Apollo 11 Moon landing.
On Mar. 10, 1973 Pink Floyd's album #8 The Dark Side of the Moon (recorded at Abbey Road Studios) was released, and became a mega-hit, charting for 741 straight weeks until 1988 and selling 45M copies - I know, they benefited from people bored with you know what starts with Duck. Hit tracks incl. Money, and Us and Them. It generated the Dark Side of the Rainbow running rumor that it's really an alternative soundtrack to the 1939 MGM film "The Wizard of Oz". Album #11 (double album) The Wall (Nov. 30, 1979) sold 23M copies, and features the hits Hey You, Is There Anybody Out There?, Comfortably Numb, and Another Brick in the Wall Part 2 ("We don't need no education, we don't need no thought control"). It was adapted into the 1982 film Pink Floyd: The Wall, about Pink, who lost his father in WWII, was abused by his schoolteachers, and led a dysfunctional life.
In Mar. 1973 The Pointer Sisters, Ruth Pointer (1946-), Anita Pointer (1948-), Patricia Eva "Bonnie" Porter (1950-), and June Antoinette Pointer (1953-2006), from Oakland, Calif. released their debut album The Pointer Sisters (#13 in the U.S.), which features the tracks Wang Dang Doodle, and Yes We Can Can. In Aug. 1974 they released the live album Live at the Opera House after they became the first modern pop group to perform at the Opera House in San Francisco. Album #5 Energy (1978) (#13 in the U.S.) was the first sans Bonnie, leaving Anith, Ruth, and June; it features Fire (by Bruce Springsteen) (#2 in the U.S.), and Happiness (#40 in the U.S.). Album #7 Special Things (1980) (#34 in the U.S.) features He's So Shy. Album #8 Black & White (1981) (#13 in the U.S.) features Slow Hand (#2 in the U.S.), and Should I Do It (#13 in the U.S.). Album #9 So Excited! (July 1983) (#59 in the U.S.) features So Excited! (#9 in the U.S.), American Music, and I Feel for You (by Prince). Album #10 Break Out (Nov. 6, 1983) (#8 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.) sold 3M copies, becoming their breakthrough, making them big MTV stars; it features the hit tracks Jump (For My Love), Automatic, and Neutron Dance. Too bad, they started tanking. Album #11 Contact (July 1985) (#25 in the U.S., #34 in the U.K.) features Dare Me (#15 in the U.S.), Freedom, and Twist My Arm. Album #13 Serious Slammin' (1988) (#152) was the last with longtime producer Richard Perry, and their last album to make the Billboard 200; it features He Turned Me Out.
On May 25, 1973 English musician-composer Michael Gordon "Mike" Oldfield (1953-) released the album Tubular Bells, which helped launch Virgin Records, founded in 1972 by English entrepreneur Richard Charles Nicholas Branson (1950-) et al. It features the cool hit instrumental track Tubular Bells, which was used as the theme of the scary 1973 film The Exorcist.
In May 1973 Leland, N.C.-born fiddler-singer Charles Edward "Charlie" Daniels (1936-) and his band released the album Honey in the Rock, which features the hit track Uneasy Rider (#9 in the U.S.). On Apr. 29, 1979 they released the album Million Mile Reflections (#5 in the U.S., #74 in the U.K.), dedicated to Ronnie Van Zant, which features their big hit The Devil Went Down to Georgia (#3 in the U.S.).
In June 1973 Pascagoula, Miss.-born singer-songwriter James William "Jimmy" Buffett (1946-) released album #3 A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean, which features the tracks He Went to Paris, Grapefruit - Juicy Fruit, and Why Don't We Get Drunk (and Screw). Album #2 Living and Dying in 3/4 Time (Feb. 1974) features Come Monday (first top-40 single). Album #5 A1A (Dec. 1974), named for Fla. State Road A1A on the Atlantic coast features A Pirate Looks at Forty. Album #8 Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Altitudes (Jan. 20, 1977) was his biggest hit, and features Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes, and Margaritaville, after which his Parrothead fans carried him on to a life career with concerts and restaurant chains.
In July 1973 the Chicago-based funk band Rufus, fronted by "Queen of Funk" Chaka Khan (Yvette Marie Stevens) (1953-) released their debut album Rufus (#175 in the U.S.), which features the tracks Feel Good, and Whoever's Thrilling You (Is Killing Me). Album #2 Rags to Rufus (May 1974) sold 1M copies, and features Tell Me Something Good (#3 in the U.S.) (by Stevie Wonder), and You Got the Love (#11 in the U.S.). Album #3 Rufusized (Dec. 1974) (#7 in the U.S.) sold 1M copies, and features One You Get Started, and Please Pardon Me. Album #4 Rufus featuring Chaka Khan (Nov. 1975) (#12 in the U.S.) sold 1M copies, and features Sweet Thing (#5 in the U.S.), Dance Wit Me (#39 in the U.S.), and Jive Talkin' (by the Bee Gees). Album #5 Ask Rufus (Jan. 1977) (#14 in the U.S.) features At Midnight (My Love Will Lift You Up) (#30 in the U.S.), Hollywood (#32 in the U.S.), and Everlasting Love. Album #6 Street Player (Jan. 1978) (#14 in the U.S.) features Stay (#48 in the U.S.), and Blue Love. Chaka Khan's debut solo album Chaka (Oct. 12, 1978) features I'm Every Woman, which became her anthem. Album #7 Numbers (Jan. 1979) didn't feature Chaka Khan. Album #8 Masterjam (Nov. 1979) (#14 in the U.S.) features Do You Love What You Feel. Her solo album #5 I Feel for You (Oct. 1, 1984) features I Feel for You (by Prince) (#3 in the U.S.), and Through the Fire (#60 in the U.S.).
On Aug. 7, 1973 the Norman Jewison film Jesus Christ Superstar debuted, shot on location in Israel starring Ted Neeley as Jesus, and Carl Anderson as Judas. Hit songs incl. Superstar, and I Don't Know How to Love Him (Everything's Alright).
On Aug. 11, 1973 the George Lucas film American Graffiti debuted (one of three films to gross $100M at the box office, along with "The Exorcist" and "The Sting"), a coming-of-age flick set in pre-JFK assassination 1962 Modesto, Calif. and centered around graduation, Mel's Drive-In, a sock hop, and a drag race, rocketing Lucas, Ron Howard (as Steve Bolander), Richard Dreyfuss (as Curt Henderson), Harrison Ford (as Bob Falfa), Suzanne Somers (blonde in white T-Bird), Cindy Williams (as Laurie Henderson), Candy Clark (as Old Harper and '58 Impala-loving Debbie "Deb" Dunham), Paul LeMat (as John Milner), and even nerdy Charles Martin Smith (as Terry "the Toad" Fields) to stardom to the cool voice of Wolfman Jack; it features a sock hop with the band Flash Cadillace and the Continental Kids from the U. of Colo. at Boulder, who performed At the Hop, She's So Fine, and er, Louie Louie.
On Aug. 13, 1973 the Southern American rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, named after gym teacher Leonard Skinner (1933-2010) for sending them to the principal's office of Robert E. Lee H.S. in Jacksonville, Fla. for having too long hair, and consisting of Steven Earl Gaines (1949-77), Ronald Wayne "Ronnie" Van Zant (1948-77), Larkin Allen Collins Jr. (1952-90), Garry Robert Rossington (1951-), Larry Junstrom (1949-) (bass), and Bob Burns (1950-)/Thomas Delmer "Artimus" Pyle (1948-) (drums) released their debut album Lynyrd Skynyrd (pronounced leh-nerd skin-nerd), containing the rock anthem Free Bird and the hit Tuesday's Gone. Album #2 Second Helping (Apr. 15, 1974) (#12 in the U.S.) contained the hit Sweet Home Alabama, featuring their trademark triple guitar attack. Album #3 Nuthin' Fancy (Mar. 24, 1975) (#9 in the U.S.) contained the track Saturday Night Special. Too bad, on Oct. 20, 1977, three days after releasing album #5 Street Survivors, their chartered airplane crashed en route to Baton Rouge, La., killing bandmembers Ronald Wayne "Ronnie" Van Zant (1948-77) and Steven Earl "Steve" Gaines (1949-77)
On Sept. 27, 1973 the syndicated TV show Don Kirshner's Rock Concert debuts (until 1981), hosted by "The Man With the Golden Ear" Donald "Don" Kirshner (1934-2011) (classmate of Bobby Darin, who helped him launch his career with his songwriting talents, then managed The Monkees and The Archies), featuring a performance by The Rolling Stones; the show shuns lip-synching and lets them perform live.
In Oct. 1973 Detroit, Mich.-born singer Susan Kay "Suzi" Quatro (1950-) released her debut single Can the Can (#56 in the U.S.), which became a hit in Europe and Australia, with the chorus "Make a stand for your man, honey, try to can the can/ "Put your man in the can, honey, get him while you can"/ "Can the can, can the can, if you can, well can the can." She followed the same year with the singles 48 Crash (#3 in the U.K.), and Daytona Demon. Album #2 Quatro (1974) sold 1M copies, and features Devil Gate Drive. In 1978 she and Chris Norman (1950-) released the hit duet Stumblin' In (#4 in the U.S.). She went on to sell 50M records.
In Oct. 1973 the Jersey City, N.J. funk disco band Kool and the Gang, incl. Robert Earl "Kool" Bell (1950-) (bass), Ronald Nathan Bell (1951-) (tenor sax), James Warren "J.T." Taylor (1953-) (vocals), Dennis Thomas (alto sax), Robert Mickens (trumpet), Claydes Charles Smith (1948-2006) (guitar), Rick Westfield (keyboards), and George Brown (drums) released album #6 Wild and Peaceful, featuring their first hit Jungle Boogie (#4 in the U.S.), along with Hollywood Swinging (#6 in the U.S.). Album #13 Ladies' Night (Sept. 6, 1979) (#13 in the U.S.) features the tracks Ladies' Night (#8 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), and Too Hot (#5 in the U.S., #23 in the U.K.). Album #14 Celebrate! (album #14) (Sept. 29) (#10 in the U.S.) features Celebration (#1 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.). Album #15 Something Special (Sept. 24, 1981) (#10 in the U.K.) features Take My Heart (#17 in the U.S.), Get Down On It (#10 in the U.S.), and Steppin' Out (#89 in the U.S.). Album #16 As One (Sept. 7, 1982) features Let's Go Dancin' (#6 in the U.K.). After switching from disco to pop, album #17 In the Heart (Nov. 21, 1983) features Joanna (#2 in the U.S. and U.K.). Album #18 Emergency (Nov. 15, 1984) features Emergency (#20 in the U.S.), Cherish (#2 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), Fresh (#9 in the U.S.), and Misled (#10 in the U.S.). Album #19 Forever (Nov. 3, 1986) features Victory (#10 in the U.S.), and Stone Love (#10 in the U.S.). They went on to sell 70M albums worldwide.
On Nov. 2, 1973 late-blooming superstar William Martin "Billy" Joel (1949-), released his first hit Piano Man, after which he went on to sell 150M albums after his breakthrough album #5 The Stranger (Sept. 29, 1977) spent six weeks at #2 in the U.S. charts, featuring the tracks The Stranger, Just the Way You Are, Scenes from an Italian Restaurant, Vienna, Only the Good Die Young ("Catholic girls start much too late"), and She's Always a Woman. Album #6 52nd Street (Oct. 13, 1978), his 1st #1 U.S. album sold 7M copies, and was first album to be released in CD in Japan in 1982). It features the tracks My Life (#3 in the U.S.), Big Shot (#14), and Honesty (#24). Album #7 Glass Houses (Mar. 12, 1980) (#1 in the U.S.) sold 7M copies in the U.S., and features his first #1 single It's Still Rock and Roll to Me. Album #8 The Nylon Curtain (Sept. 23, 1982) (#7 in the U.S.) (2M copies sold in the U.S.) features big hit Allentown (six weeks at #17 in the U.S.), and Pressure. Album #9 An Innocent Man (Aug. 8, 1983) (#6 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.) features the tracks Uptown Girl (#3 in the U.S.), Tell Her About It (#1 in the U.S.), and An Innocent Man (#10 in the U.S.), about his new model babe Christie Brinkley (1954-), whom he married from 1985-94. Album #11 Storm Front (Oct. 30, 1989) features the #1 U.S. hit We Didn't Start the Fire (#1 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.) (lyrics are headline events from his birth year of 1949 to 1989), and Leningrad, about the end of the Cold War, after which he began his sold-out Storm Front tour to pay off $9M in debts after years of bad money management caused by signing in 1971 with a producer who kept collecting royalties long after working with him, a wife (Elizabeth) who was also his business mgr. and took him to the cleaners at the divorce court in 1983, and her successor, her brother Frank Weber, against whom Joel had a $90M lawsuit pending; meanwhile his supermodel wife Christie Brinkley and posh home in East Hampton, N.Y. were a consolation, after which her real estate holdings gave her a net worth of $80M by 2010.
In Dec. 1973 the Canadian rock band Bachman-Turner Overdrive cranked it up with the of their 2nd album Bachman-Turner Overdrive II, containing the hit Takin' Care of Business, followed in Aug. 1974 by their 3rd album Not Fragile, containing the hits You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet and Roll On Down the Highway.
In 1973 the rock scene began to pump up in Iran, with guitar legend Kourosh Yaghmaei, known for the track Gole Yakh, and female pop star Googoosh (Faegheh Atashin) (1950-), known for the track Baaghe Bi Bargi. Too bad, the fundamentalist Islamic 1979 Iranian Rev. shut them up permanently. Bahman Ghobadi's film No One Knows About Persian Cats (May 14, 2009) is about Iranian rockers Hamed Behdad and Ashkan Kooshanejad, who have to go underground to form a rock band.
In 1973 the Dutch (The Hague) rock band Golden Earring (named after Jan Vermeer's painting "The Girl with the Golden Earring"), led by George Kooymans (1948-) and Rinus Gerritsen (1945-) brought up the ear with hit song Radar Love, followed by Twilight Zone in 1982, and When the Lady Smiles in 1984.
On Jan. 3, 1974 Bob Dylan (b. 1941) begins his Before the Flood Tour, his first concert tour since 1966 when he was involved in a near-fatal motorcycle accident, giving 40 perf. in 25 cities, beginning in Chicago.
On Feb. 18, 1974 after starting their first tour in Edmonton, Canada on Feb. 5, the New York City rock band Kiss, composed of Paul "Starchild" Stanley (Stanley Eisen) (1952-) (vocals), Paul Daniel "Ace" Frehley (1951-) (vocals), Gene Simmons (1949-) (bass), Tommy Thayer (1960-), and Peter "Catman" Criss (George Peter John Criscuola) (1945-)/Eric Singer (Eric Doyle Mensinger) (1958-) (drums) released its debut album Kiss, turning on the under-14 crowd with Japanese Kabuki makeup, tongue flicking, and stage pyrotechnics. Album #3 Dressed to Kill (Mar. 19, 1975) (#32 in the U.S.) incl. their first singles C'mon and Love Me, and Rock and Roll All Nite (#12 in the U.S.). Album #4 Destroyer (Mar. 15, 1976) (#11 in the U.S., #22 in the U.K.) features the tracks Beth (#7 in the U.S.), and Shout It Out Loud (#31 in the U.S.). Album #5 Rock and Roll Over (Nov. 11, 1976) (#11 in the U.S.) features Hard Luck Woman (#15 in the U.S.), and Calling Dr. Love (#16 in the U.S.). Album #7 Dynasty (May 23, 1979) (#9 in the U.S.) features I Was Made for Lovin' You (#11 in the U.S.); Sure Know Something (#47 in the U.S.). Kiss went on to sell 100M albums. In 1973 Casablanca Records was founded by Humphrey, er, Neil Bogart (Neil E. Bogatz) (1943-82) of bubblegum label Buddah Records, and Kiss was the first to sign; too bad, after helping launch Disco by signing Donna Summer, Village People et al., then going New Wave with Boardwalk Records and signing Joan Jett, he died of cancer at age 39.
On Mar. 1, 1974 the Canadian (Toronto) rock band Rush, incl. Geddy Lee (Gary Lee Weinrib) (1953-) (vocals, bass, keyboards), Alex Lifeson (Aleksandar Zivojinovic) (1953-) (guitar), and Neil Ellwood Peart (1952-) (drums) released their debut album Rush, which features the tracks Finding My Way, In the Mood, and Working Man. Album #2 Fly by Night (Feb. 15, 1975) (#113 in the U.S.) features Fly by Night. Album #3 Caress of Steel (Sept. 15, 1975) (#148 in the U.S.) sold 500K copies, and features Bastille Day, I Think I'm Going Bald, The Necromancer, and The Fountain of Lamneth. They finally hit it big with album #4 2112 (Twenty-One Twelve) (Apr. 1, 1976) (#61 in the U.S.), inspired by Ayn Rand, which sold 3M copies, and features 2112, A Passage to Bangkok, and The Twilight Zone. Album #5 A Farewell to Kings (Sept. 1, 1977) (#33 in the U.S.), their first U.S. gold album features Closer to the Heart, and Xanadu. Album #6 Hemispheres (Oct. 29, 1978) (#47 in the U.S.) features Circumstances, The Trees, and La Villa Strangiato (An Exercise in Self-Indulgence). They then went totally into freaky progressive rock, check back with me later when I come back from the 12th dimension.
On Mar. 30, 1974 the punk rock group The Ramones, from Forest Hills, Queens, N.Y., incl. Dee Dee Ramone (Douglas Glen Colvin) (1952-), Joey Ramone, Johnny Ramone, Tommy Ramone, Marky Ramone, Richie Ramone, C.J. Ramone, and Elvis Ramone gave their first public performance, followed by 2,262 more over the next 22 years. Too bad, their albums didn't do well, starting with their debut album Ramones (Apr. 23, 1976) (#111 in the U.S.), featuring their biggest hit Blitzkrieg Bop ("They're forming in a straight line/ They're going through a tight wind/ The kids are losing their minds/ The Blitzkrieg Bop"), along with Beat on the Brat ("Beat on the brat/ Beat on the brat/ Beat on the brat with a baseball bat/ Oh yeah, oh yeah, uh-oh"), Judy is a Punk ("Jackie is a punk/ Judy is a runt/ They both went down to Berlin/ Joined the ice capades/ And oh, I don't know why/ Oh, I don't know why/ Perhaps they'll die"), and Chainsaw.
In Mar. 1974 the Topeka, Kan. progressive rock band Kansas, consisting of Lynn Meredith (vocals), Kerry Allen Livgren (1949-) (guitar), Dave Hope (1949-) (bass), Don Montre/Dan Wright (keyboards), Larry Baker (sax), and Phillip W. "Phil" Ehart (1950-) (drums) released their debut album Kansas, which features an illustration of John Brown on the cover. Album #4 Leftoverture (Oct. 1976) features their first hit single Carry On Wayward Son. Album #5 Point of Know Return (Oct. 11, 1977) features their biggest hit Dust in the Wind. Album #6 Monolith (May 1979) features People of the South Wind. After several members went Christian, they split in 1983, then reformed in 1986 and released album #10 Power (Nov., 1986), featuring All I Wanted.
Speaking of disco. In May 1974 Fla. soul singer George McCrae (1944-) released the internat. hit Rock Your Baby (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), which sold 11M copies and became the first mega disco hit. The song was written by Richard Raymond Finch (1954-) and Harry Wayne "KC" Casey (1952-) of the multiracial KC and the Sunshine Band (founded 1973 in Miami, Fla.), who couldn't reach the high notes. Other band members included Jerome Smith (guitar), Robert Johnson/Oliver Brown/Fermin Goytisolo (drums), Ken Faulk/Vinnie Tanno (trumpet), and Mike Lewis (tenor sax). The band's 1974 debut album Do It Good didn't do too well, but album #2 KC and the Sunshine Band (July 1975) features the hit tracks That's the Way (I Like It), Get Down Tonight, and Boogie Shoes. Album #4 Part 3 (Oct. 1976) features I'm Your Boogie Man, and (Shake, Shake, Shake) Shake Your Booty. Their last fling was album #9 All in a Night's Work (Aug. 1982), featuring the U.K. hit Give It Up.
On June 26, 1974 the English rock supergroup Bad Company, consisting of Paul Bernard Rodgers (1949-) (vocals) (from Free), Michael Geoffrey "Mick" Ralphs (1944-) (guitar) (from Mott the Hoople), Raymond "Boz" Burrell (1946-2006) (bass) (from King Crimson), and Simon Frederick St. George Kirke (1949-) (drums) (from Free) released their debut album Bad Company (#1 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.), featuring the hits Bad Company, Can't Get Enough (#5 in the U.S.), Movin' On (#19 in the U.S.), Rock Steady, and Ready for Love. Album #2 Straight Shooter (Apr. 1975) (#3 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.) features the hits Feel Like Makin' Love (#10 in the U.S.), and Good Lovin' Gone Bad (#36 in the U.S.). Album #3 Run With the Pack (Feb. 21, 1976) (#5 in the U.S.) sold 3M copies in the U.S., and features the tracks Young Blood (by the Coasters) (#20 in the U.S.), Honey Child (#47 in the U.S.). Silver, Blue and Gold, Live for the Music. Album 4 Burnin' Sky (Mar. 3, 1977) (#15 in the U.S.) features the track Burnin' Sky (#78 in the U.S.). Album #5 Desolation Angels (Mar. 17, 1979) (#3 in the U.S.) (title taken from the Jack Kerouac novel) features Rock 'n' Roll Fantasy (#13 in the U.S.), and Gone, Gone, Gone (#44 in the U.S.). Album #6 Rough Diamonds (Aug., 1982) (#26 in the U.S.) was the last by the original lineup, and included Electricland (#10 in the U.S.), and Painted Face. For decades these classics were played by Oldies radio stations, giving the impression of being from the 1960s when they were from the 1970s.
On Sept. 6, 1974 the English (Birmingham) heavy metal band (Black Sabbath competitor) Judas Priest (formed in 1969), incl. Robert John Arthur "Rob" Halford (1951-) (vocals), Kenneth "K.K." Downing Jr. (1951-) (guitar), Ian Frank Hill (1951-) (bass), and Glenn Raymond Tipton (1947-) (guitar) released their debut album Rocka Rolla, which suffered from poor production quality from Gull Records, maybe they had a Judas in it. Album #2 Sad Wings of Destiny (Mar. 23, 1976), another flop, causing them to sign with Columbia Records. Tracks included Tyrant, Genocide, The Ripper, and Victim of Changes. Album #3 Sin After Sin (album #3) (Apr. 23, 1977) features Sinner, and Diamonds and Rust (by Joan Baez). Album #4 Stained Class (Feb. 10, 1978) (#104 in the U.S.) features Beyond the Realms of Death, and Better By You, Better Than Me; on Dec. 23, 1985 James Vance and Ray Belknap entered a suicide pact while listening to it, and Belknap succeeded while Vance was disfigured, causing a 1990 lawsuit, which was dismissed. Album #5 Hell Bent for Leather (Killing Machine) (album #5) (Oct. 9, 1978) (#128 in the U.S.) features a cover displaying their new macho biker S&M spandex "leather and studs" look, and included the tracks Hell Bent for Leather, Rock Forever, and The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown). Album #6 British Steel (album #6) (Apr. 14, 1980) (#34 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.), recorded at John Lennon's home at Tittenhurst Park features Breaking the Law, Living After Midnight, United. Album #7 Point of Entry (Feb. 26, 1981) features Don't Go, Hot Rockin', Heading Out to the Highway. Album #8 Screaming for Vengeance (July 17, 1982) (#17 in the U.S., #11 in the U.K.) features You've Got Another Thing Coming, Electric Eye, (Take These) Chains. Their creative slide began after this album. They went on to sell 30M albums.
In Sept. 1974 the English progressive rock band Supertramp, which was formed in 1969 with the help of a Dutch millionaire, and signed up as one of A&M Records's first British groups, only to flop miserably, causing them to regroup and switch their lineup to Richard Davies (1944-) (vocals), Charles Roger Pomfret Hodgson (1950-) (vocals), John Anthony Helliwell (1945-) (sax), Douglas Campbell "Dougie" Thompson (1951-) (bass), and Bob C. Bengerg (Robert Layne "Bob" Siebengerg) (1949-) (drums) released album #3 Crime of the Century, featuring the hit songs Dreamer (#9 in the U.S.), and Bloody Well Right (#35 in the U.S.). Album #5 Even in the Quietest Moments... (Apr., 1977) (#16 in the U.S.), recorded at Caribou Ranch Studios in Colo. features the tracks Give a Little Bit (#15 in the U.S.), Fool's Overture. Album #6 Breakfast in America (Mar. 29, 1979) was their biggest hit, going #1 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K. and selling 18M copies. Hit tracks incl. The Logical Song (#6 in the U.S.), Take the Long Way Home (#10 in the U.S.), and Goodbye Stranger (#15 in the U.S.). After righting with lead singer Davies, lead singer Hodgson left in 1982. They went on to sell 18M albums.
On Nov. 1, 1974 the English (London) rock group Queen (formed in 1971), fronted by openly gay queen 4-octave range vocalist-songwriter Freddie Mercury (Farrokh Bulsara) (1946-91) (Tom Cruise lookalike, causing rumors that Cruise is gay?) (who er, treated his fans to a slow wasting death from AIDS) released album #3 Sheer Heart Attack, (#12 in the U.S.) which rocketed them to fame, with tracks Killer Queen (#12 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.). Album #4 A Night at the Opera (Nov. 21, 1975) (named after a 1935 Marx Brothers film), most expensive recorded to that time (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K. contained the big hit Bohemian Rhapsody (best rock song of all time?), which contains the lyric "Bismillah" = in the name of Allah. Album #6 News of the World (Oct. 28, 1977) contained big hits We Will Rock You, and We Are the Champions. Album #8 The Game (June 30, 1980) (#1 in the U.S.) (4M copies sold) features the #1 U.S. hits Another One Bites the Dust, and Crazy Little Thing Called Love. Album #9 Hot Space (May 21, 1982) features Under Pressure with David Bowie (#29 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.). Album #13 (well-named?) Innuendo (Feb. 5, 1991) (#1 in the U.K.) features Innuendo. Album #14 Made in Heaven (Nov. 6, 1995) (#1 in the U.K.) sold 20M copies, and features the sad Let Me Live, after which Mercury died on Nov. 24, 1991.
On Nov. 28, 1974 John Lennon made his last concert appearance at an Elton John concert at New York's Madison Square Garden, joining him to sing "Whatever Gets You Through the Night", "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds", and "I Saw Her Standing There"; backstage, Lennon had a brief reunion with Yoko Ono (1933-), from whom he'd been separated for over a year - suck what? On Dec. 9, 1974 John Lennon appeared on Monday Night Football during a game between the Washington Redskins and the Los Angeles Rams, and was interviewed by Howard Cosell, uttering the soundbyte that football games "make rock concerts look like tea parties"; the Redskins won by 23-17.
In 1974 1-hit wonder English rock band band Ace (originally Ace Flash and the Dynamos), fronted by Paul Carrack (1951-) released How Long? (#3 in the U.S., #20 in the U.K.). Also in 1974 Jamaican-born singer Carl Douglas (1942-) released his 1-hit wonder Kung Fu Fighting (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), which became the best-selling single of 1974, helped by the untimely death of Kung Fu martial arts movie star Bruce Lee (1940-73). Also in 1974 Greenwich Village, N.Y.-born singer Maria Muldaur (Maria Grazia Rosa Domenica D'Amato) (1943-) released her 1-hit wonder Midnight at the Oasis (#6 in the U.S.), written by David Nichtern. In June 1974 Chicago-born 5-1/2 octave range singer Minnie Julia Riperton (1947-79), mother of actress Maya Rudolph released album #2 Perfect Angel, which features her 1-hit wonder Lovin' You (#1 in the U.S.). Also in 1974 the Scottish (Edinburgh) band Pilot, incl. former Bay City Rollers members David Paton and Billy Lyall released their 1-hit wonder Magic (#5 in the U.S., #11 in the U.K.); in 1975 they followed it with the #1 U.K. single January.
In 1974 African-American singer Rick James (James Ambrose Johnson Jr.) (1948-2004), known for his wild lifestyle released his debut album Come Get It!, featuring the tracks You and I, and Mary Jane. Album #5 Street Songs (1981) features the tracks Super Freak, Ghetto Life, and Give It To Me Baby.
In 1974 Boston, Mass.-born African-American disco singer Donna Summer (LaDonna Adrian Gaines) (1948-) released her debut album Lady of the Night in Europe on Groovy Records, featuring the tracks Lady of the Night, and The Hostage. Despite the slow start, she went on to score three consecutive U.S. #1 double albums, along with four #1 U.S. singles, all within a 13-mo. period, let's see how. Album #2 Love to Love You Baby (Aug. 27, 1975) features Love to Love You Baby (#2 in the U.S.), which became her first U.S. hit after Time mag. reported that it contained 22 simulated orgasms, causing her to be called the First Lady of Love. Album #3 A Love Trilogy (Mar. 18, 1976) features Try Me, I Know We Can Make It, and Could It Be Magic. Album #4 Four Seasons of Love (Oct. 11, 1976) features Spring Affair, and Winter Melody. In 1977 she released a duet with Paul Jabara (1948-92) titled Shut Out, followed in 1978 by Something's Missing (in My Life), and in 1979 by Never Lose Your Sense of Humor. Album #5 I Remember Yesterday (May 13, 1977) features I Remember Yesterday, Love's Unkind, and Back in Love Again. Album #6 Once Upon a Time (double album) (Oct. 31, 1977), about a Cinderella rags-to-riches story features Once Upon a Time, I Love You, and Rumour Has It. Album #7 Live and More (double album) (Aug. 31, 1978) (#1 in the U.S.) features MacArthur Park, a cover of the 1968 Richard Harris hit by Jimmy Webb. In 1979 she released a duet with Barbra Streisand titled No More Tears (Enough Is Enough). Album #8 Bad Girls (double album) (Apr. 25, 1979) (#1 in the U.S.) features Bad Girls, Hot Stuff, and Walk Away. Album #9 The Wanderer (Oct. 20, 1980) features The Wanderer.
In Jan. 1975 San Benito, Tex.-born Tejano-country-rock singer Freddy Fender (Baldemar Garza Huerta) (1937-2006) released his hit single Before the Next Teardrop Falls (#1 in the U.S.), followed in June 1975 by Wasted Days and Wasted Nights (#8 in the U.S.), which he originally recorded in 1959 but was spoiled by an arrest and conviction for marijuana possession.
On Feb. 17, 1975 the Australian rock group (heavy metal pioneers) AC/DC (formed in 1973), consisting of Scottish-born Angus McKinnon Young (1955-) and Malcolm Young (1953-) (guitars), Bon Scott (1946-80) (vocals), Mark Evans/Cliff Williams (bass), and Phillip Hugh Norman "Phil" Rudd (1954-) (drums) released their debut album High Voltage. Album #3 Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap (Sept. 1976) (#3 in the U.S.) sold 6M copies, and features the hits Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap (#4 in the U.S.), and Big Balls (#26 in the U.S.). Album #6 Highway to Hell (Aug. 3, 1979) (#17 in the U.S.) was the last album with lead singer Bon Scott, who died on Feb. 19, 1980 from alcoholism (last words on the album are "Shazbot, Nanu-Nanu" on the track "Night Prowler"), and was replaced by Brian Johnson (1947-), who likes to wear a Tyneside or baseball cap; it sold 8M copies, and features the tracks Highway to Hell, Girls Got Rhythm, Touch Too Much, and Night Prowler, which was the favorite of serial murderer Ricardo "Richard" Munoz Ramirez (1960-), AKA "the Night Stalker". Album #7 Back in Black (July 25, 1980) (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) (with a black mourning cover) sold 49M copies (most after Michael Jackson's "Thriller"), and features the hits Back in Black (#37 in the U.S.), Rock and Roll Ain't Noise Pollution (#15 in the U.K.), Hells Bells (#52 in the U.S.), Shoot to Thrill (#60 in the U.S.), and You Shook Me All Night Long (#35 in the U.S.), which in 2011 was found to attract great white sharks. Album #8 For Those About to Rock (We Salute You) (Nov. 23, 1981) sold 4M copies in the U.S., featuring For Those About to Rock (We Salute You). They went on to sell 200M albums worldwide.
On Apr. 1, 1975 the San Francisco, Calif. rock band Journey, formed in 1973 by former members of Santana, incl. Neal Joseph Schon (1954-) (guitar), Gregg Alan Rolie (1947-) (keyboards, vocals), Ross Lamont Valory (1949-) (bass), George Tickner (1946-) (guitar), and Prairie Prince (1950-)/Aynsley Thomas Dunbar (1946-) released their debut album Journey, which features the tracks Of a Lifetime, Kohoutek, Mystery Mountain, and Topaz. In 1977-87 and 1995-98 they gained lead vocalist Stephen Ray "Steve" Perry (1949-). Album #5 Evolution (Apr. 5, 1979) sold 3M copies, and features Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'. Album #6 Departure (Mar. 23, 1980) features Any Way You Want It; Album #7 Escape (E5C4P3) (July 31, 1981) features the tracks Open Arms (#2 in the U.S.), Who's Crying Now (#4 in the U.S.), Don't Stop Believin' (#9 in the U.S.), and Still They Ride (#19 in the U.S.). Album #8 Frontiers (Feb. 22, 1983) sold 6M copies, and features Faithfully, Separate Ways, After the Fall, Send Her My Love, and Chain Reaction. Album #9 Raised on Radio (May 27, 1986) saw Randall Darius "Randy" Jackson (1956-) (bass) and Larrie Londin (1943-) (drums) fill in for fired players Ross Valory and Steve Smith, who got pissed off at changing the album title from "Freedom"; it sold 2M copies, and features the tracks Girl Can't Help It, Be Good to Yourself, I'll Be Alright Without You, and Suzanne.
On June 11, 1975 the film Nashville debuted, featuring Keith Ian Carradine (1949-) singing his 1-hit wonder I'm Easy (#10 in the U.S.). Speaking of 1975 1-hit wonders, Pensacola, Fla.-born R&B singer Gwen McCrae (1943-) (wife of George McCrae) released her 1-hit wonder Rocking' Chair (#11 in the U.S.). Also in 1975 Brazilian singer-songwriter Morris Albert (Mauricio Alberto Kaisermann) (1951-) released his 1-hit wonder Feelings (#6 in the U.S., #4 in the U.K.); too bad, he was successfully sued in 1988 by French songwriter Louis "Loulou" Gaste (Gasté) (1908-95), who won 88% of royalties after proving it's a ripoff of his 1956 song "Pour Toi" (For You). Also in 1975 the English (Coventry and Rugby) group Jigsaw, fronted by Clive Scott and Des Dyer released their 1-hit wonder Sky High (#3 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), from the 1975 George Lazenby film "The Man from Hong Kong", which became a huge hit in Japan after Mexican wrestler Mil Mascaras adopted it as his theme song. Also in 1975 Washington, D.C.-born singer-songwriter Van Allen Clinton McCoy (1940-79) released album #4 LP Disco Baby, which features his 1-hit wonder The Hustle; at his untimely death he left 700 song copyrights. Also in 1975 Dallas, Tex.-born singer-songwriter Michael Martin Murphey (1945-) released album #4 Blue Sky, Night Thunder, which features the track Carolina in the Pines, and his 1-hit wonder Wildfire. Also in 1975 Shirley and Company, fronted by Shirley Goodman (1936-2005) released their 1-hit wonder Shame Shame Shame (#12 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.). Also in 1975 English (Birmingham) singer Polly Brown (Browne) (1947-), formerly of Pickettywitch and Sweet Dreams released her 1-hit wonder solo debut single Up In A Puff of Smoke (#16 in the U.S., #43 in the U.K.).
On July 11, 1975 the English (London) rock band Fleetwood Mac, who released their debut album Fleetwood Mac back in Feb. 1968, and struggled through years of mediocre (300K+) sales, causing it to change its lineup, adding guitarist Lindsey Buckingham and his girlfriend vocalist Stevie Nicks, released breakthrough album #10 Fleetwood Mac (White Album), which set a record for most weeks on the Billboard 200 before reaching #1 (later broken by Paula Abdul), selling 5M copies, making them superstars and helping all their marriages to break up. It features the hit tracks Say You Love Me (#11 in the U.S.), Rhiannon (#11 in the U.S.), Over My Head (#20 in the U.S.), and Landslide. They were named by 1967 founder Peter Green (Peter Allen Greenbaum) (1946-) after drummer Michael John Kells "Mick" Fleetwood (1947-) and bassist John Graham McVie (1945-). Members incl. Daniel David "Danny" Kirwan (1950-), Robert Lawrence "Bob" Welch Jr. (1945-), Robert Joseph "Bob" Weston (1947-), Stephanie Lynn "Stevie" Nicks (1948-), Lindsey Adams Buckingham (1949-), and Christine McVie (1943-). On May 20, 1970 Green, who had contracted schizophrenia (from LSD?) quit the band after they failed to agree to give all their money to charity, and Christine McVie joined in his place; in Feb. 1971 member Jeremy Spencer quit to join the Children of God, causing Green to be invited back, bringing conga-playing friend Nigel Watson; on Jan. 26, 1977 Green was committed to a mental hospital in England after firing a pistol at a delivery boy. Album #11 Rumours (Feb. 4, 1977) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) sold 40M copies (#1 album for 1977), featuring the tracks Go Your Own Way (#10 in the U.S.), Dreams (their only #1 U.S. hit), Don't Stop (#3 in the U.S.), You Make Loving Fun (#9 in the U.S.), Second Hand News, Gold Dust Woman, and The Chain. Double album #12 Tusk (Oct. 19, 1979) (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) only sold 2M copies in the U.S. after the RKO radio chain let listeners tape it; it sold 4M copies worldwide. Hit tracks incl. Tusk (#8 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.) (features the USC Marching Band), Think About Me (#20 in the U.S.), and Sara (7 min.) (#7 in the U.S., #37 in the U.K.). They went on to sell 100M+ albums. In 2011 Stevie Nicks gave an interview to Mike Doherty in which she lamented the state of the music industry, with the soundbyte: "The music business is in terrible shape right now because artists don't sell ten million albums anymore. [Labels are] not making all that money, so they can't have a whole slew of bands that they're helping and developing."
In July 1975 the English hard rock band Rainbow, incl. Richard Hugh "Ritchie" Blackmore (1945-) of Deep Purple, Ronnie James Dio (Ronald James Padanova) (1942-) of Elf, Mickey Lee Soule (1946-) (keyboards), Craig Gruber (bass), and Gary Driscoll (1946-87) (drums) released their debut album Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow, which features Black Sheep of the Family, Sixteenth Century Greensleeves, Man on the Silver Mountain, and Catch the Rainbow. Album #2 (Rainbow) Rising (May 17, 1976) (#48 in the U.S., #6 in the U.S.) features the new lineup of Ritchie Blackmore, Ronnie James Dio, James Stewart "Jimmy" Bain (1947-) (bass), Antony Laurence "Tony" Carey (1953-) (keyboards), and Cozy Powell (Colin Flooks) (1947-98) (drums), and features Stargazer (w/the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra). Album #3 Long Live Rock 'n' Roll (Apr. 9, 1978), last with Ronnie James Dio features Long Live Rock 'n' Roll, Kill the King, and Gates of Babylon. Album #4 Down To Earth (July 28, 1979), first/only with vocalist Graham Bonnet (Bradley) (1947-) features Since You Been Gone, and Bad Girl. Album #5 Difficult to Cure (Feb. 3, 1981), marking their "Foreigner Junior" period (Ronnie James Dio) was the first with vocalist Joe Lynn Turner (Joseph Arthur Mark Linquito) (1951-) of Fandango; it features Jealous Lover (#3 in the U.K.). Album #6 Straight Between the Eyes (June 10, 1982) features Stone Cold. Album #7 (last) Bent Out of Shape (Aug. 24, 1983) features Street of Dreams, Can't Let You Go, and Snowman.
On Aug. 14, 1975 the film The Rocky Horror Picture Show was released, based on the 1973 London musical about gays and transgenders, starring Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, and Barry Bostwick, creating a cult following as a midnight movie where the audience dress in drag and participate. Curry sings the hit Sweet Transvestite.
On Aug. 25, 1975 American rock and roll began to come back from its bleeping blip, starting with "The Boss", N.J.-born (not punk, but definitely blue-collar redneck) Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen (1949-), and The E-Street Band, who released game-changing album #3 Born to Run (#3 in the U.S.), which sold 6M copies in the U.S. and made him an instant superstar, and features the tracks Born to Run ("I wanna die with you Wendy in the streets tonight in an everlasting kiss"), Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out, Thunder Road, and Jungleland. Previously album #1 Greetings from Ashbury Park, N.J. (Jan. 5, 1973), which sold only 25K copies the first year features Blinded by the Light, and Spirit in the Night, and album #2 The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle (Sept. 11, 1973) features 4th of July, Asbury Park, and Rosalita (Come Out Tonight). On Aug. 27, 1976 the English rock band Manfred Mann's Earth Band (founded 1971 by "Doo Wah Diddy Diddy" Manfred Mann), released their album The Roaring Silence, which features a cover of Blinded by the Light by Bruce Springsteen, and hit #1 in the U.S. After a 3-year legal battle with former mgr. Mike Appel (1942-), whose "incredible talking" got Springsteen's foot in the door, and was replaced by Jon Landau (1947-), founding writer of Rolling Stone, who wrote the 1974 soundbyte "I saw rock and roll's future and its name is Bruce Springsteen", album #4 Darkness on the Edge of Town (June 2, 1978) (#16 in the U.S.) features Prove It All Night, and Badlands. Album #5 (double album) The River (Oct. 7, 1980) features The River, Hungry Heart (#5 in the U.S.), The Ties That Bind, Independence Day, and Out in the Street. Album #6 Nebraska (Sept. 30, 1982) (#3 in the U.S.) features Atlantic City (#10 in the U.S.), Open All Night (#22 in the U.S.), and Johnny 99. Album #7 Born in the U.S.A. (June 4, 1984) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) sold 10M copies, and had 7 top-10 hits; despite 5 more top-10 hits, he never has a #1; it features the hit singles Dancing in the Dark (#2 in the U.S.) (whose video made a star of Courteney Cox), Born in the U.S.A. (#9 in the U.S.) (in 1986 he turned down a $12M offer from Lee Iacocca to use it in an ad), Glory Days (#5 in the U.S.), I'm on Fire (#6 in the U.S.), Cover Me (#7 in the U.S.), I'm Goin' Down (#9 in the U.S.), My Hometown (#6 in the U.S.), and also the tracks No Surrender, and Bobby Jean. The album stayed #2 against Prince's "Purple" Rain for a record 18 consecutive weeks. Album #8 Tunnel of Love (Oct. 9, 1987) (#1 in the U.S.) features Tunnel of Love (#9 in the U.S.), Brilliant Disguise (#5 in the U.S.), One Step Up (#11 in the U.S.), Tougher Than the Rest, and Spare Parts. Album #9 Human Touch (Mar. 31, 1992) (#2 in the U.S.) features Human Touch (#16 in the U.S.). Yes, the 1970s-1990s were America's glory days, when they seemed to rule the world, glad I lived through it. Springsteen went on to sell 120M albums worldwide.
In Nov. 1975 the Australian (Melbourne) rock group Little River Band, incl. Glenn Barrie Shorrock (1944-) (vocals), Graeham George Goble (1947-) (guitar), Beeb Birtles (Gerard Bertelkamp) (1948-) (guitar), Wayne Nelson (1950-), David John Briggs (1951-) (guitar), Riccardo "Ric" Formosa (1954-) (guitar), Roger McLachlan (bass), and Derek Allan Pellici (1953-) (drums) released their debut album Little River Band (#80 in the U.S.), which features the tracks Curiosity (Killed the Cat), Emma, Everyday of My Life, It's A Long Way There (#30 in the U.S.), and I'll Always Call Your Name. Album #3 Diamantina Cocktail (1976) (#49 in the U.S.), named after a Queensland cocktail of Bundaberg Rum, condensed milk, and an emu egg features Help Is On Its Way (#14 in the U.S.), and Happy Anniversary (#16 in the U.S.). Album #4 Sleeper Catcher (1978) (#16 in the U.S.) features Reminiscing (#3 in the U.S.), and Lady (#10 in the U.S.). Album #5 First Under the Wire (July 1979) (#10 in the U.S.) features Lonesome Loser (#6 in the U.S.), and Cool Change (#10 in the U.S.). They went on to sell 25M records incl. 13 U.S top-40 hits.
In Dec. 1975 the understandable putrid reaction to the Shag carpet ugly brown Anglo-Yankee Disco scene produced the London band The Sex Pistols, composed of John Joseph "Johnny Rotten" Lydon (1956-) (vocals) (known for orange hair and loudly blowing his nose in a big hanky), John Simon "Sid Vicious" Ritchie (1957-79), Steve Jones (1955-) (guitar), Paul Cook (1957-) (drums), and Glen Matlock (1956-) (bass) (songwriter), who produced rotten music just to show how pissed-off they were at the world, launching the Punk Rock genre, really a subculture, which branched off into the subgenre of New Wave, both of which were launched in the U.S. at the CBGB (Country, Bluegrass, and Blues) club at 315 Bowery at Bleecker St. in Manhattan (founded in 1973 by Hilly Krystal) (the one with the white awning), where the Ramones (from Forest Hills, Queens, N.Y.) (the first punk rock group?), Blondie, Talking Heads, The Cramps et al. played for small crowds paying a $1 cover charge; Max's Kansas City at 213 Park Ave. South in Manhattan also contributed; by the late 1970s Blondie dominated the pop music landscape; Max's closed in Nov. 1981, and CBGB closed in Oct. 2005. On Feb. 2, 1979 Sid Vicious died of a heroin OD in his New York City apt. after a party to celebrate his Feb. 1 release on $50K bail pending his trial for knifing and murdering his former girlfriend Nancy Spungen. The total output of the Sex Pistols by the time they disbanded in 1980 was four singles and one studio album, Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols (Oct. 27, 1977) (released on Virgin Records after EMI sacked them on Jan. 27, followed by A&M Records), featuring God Save the Queen (May 27) (#2 in the U.K.), released for Elizabeth II's Silver Jubilee, but banned by the British media; calls the monarchy a "fascist regime", sneers at "England's dreaming", and says that England has "no future"; Pretty Vacant (July 1), and Holidays in the Sun (Oct. 14). In 1977 Beggars Banquet Records, founded in England in 1973 as a chain of record stores by Martin Mills and Nick Austin went into the punk rock record biz, and signed acts incl. The Lurkers, Tubeway Army, Gary Numan (1958-), Bauhaus, Biffy Clyro, Buffalo Tom, The Charlatans UK, The Cult, The Go-Betweens, The National, and Tindersticks. In July 1979 The Cramps, from Sacramento, Calif., fronted by Lux Interior (Erick Lee Purkhiser) (1946-2009) and Poison Ivy (Kristy Marlana Wallace) (1953-) released their debut album Gravest Hits, which features the track Human Fly, followed by a string of albums well into the 2000s. In 1978 Geoff Travis founded Rough Trade Records in London, which signed post-punk and alternative rock bands incl. The Smiths, Agitpop, The Raincoats, The Slits, Young Marble Giants, and Scritti Politti. In June 1977 the English punk band The Vibrators, incl. Ian "Knox" Carnochan, Pat Collier (bass), John Ellis (guitar), and John "Eddie" Edwards (drums) released their debut album Pure Mania (#49 in the U.K.), which features the tracks Baby Baby, and Stiff Little Fingers. Album #2 V2 (Apr. 1978) (#33 in the U.K.) features their 1-hit wonder Automatic Lover (#33 in the U.K.), after which they vibrated, er, broke up in 1980. In Oct. 1977 the English punk/New Wave band Radio Stars, incl. Andy Ellison (vocals), Ian Macleod (guitar), Martin Gordon (bass), and Steve Parry/ Paul Simon (drums) released their 1-hit wonder single Nervous Wreck (#39 in the U.K.). Earlier they released the singles Dirty Pictures (Apr. 1977), and No Russians in Russia (Aug. 1977). In May 1979 the Derry, Northern Ireland-based punk rock band The Undertones, fronted by Sean Feargal Sharkey (1967-), and guitarists John O'Neill and Damian O'Neill released their debut album The Undertones, which features the tracks Teenage Kicks, and Here Comes the Summer, followed by album #2 Hypnotised (1980) (#6 in the U.K.), which features My Perfect Cousin (#9 in the U.K.), and Wednesday Week (#11 in the U.K.), followed by album #3 Positive Touch (May 1981) (#17 in the U.K.), which features It's Going to Happen (#18 in the U.K.), and Julie Ocean (#41 in the U.K.), followed by album #4 (last) The Sin of Pride (Mar. 1983) (#43 in the U.K.), which features Got to Have You Back, Chain of Love, and The Love Parade, before disbanding in July 1983, after which they reunited in 2003, releasing album #5 Get What You Need (Sept. 30, 2003), with new lead singer Paul McLoone (1967-).
In 1975 the Philly singing group Sister Sledge, AKA Mrs. Williams' Grandchildren (all granddaughters of opera singer Viola Williams), Debbie Sledge (1954-), Joni Sledge (1957-), Kim Sledge (1958-), and Kathy Sledge (1959-) released their debut album Circle of Love. Album #3 Sister Sledge, We Are Family (Apr. 30, 1979) (#3 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.) features the tracks We Are Family (#2 in the U.S.) (adopted by the Pittsburgh Pirates as their anthem), He's the Greatest Dancer (#9 in the U.S.), Lost in Music, and Thinking of You. In 1985 they released the hit single Frankie (#1 in the U.K.).
In 1975 the San Francisco, Calif. rock band The Tubes, incl. William "Bill" "Sputnik" Spooner (1949-) (vocals), Fee Waybill (vocals), Roger Steen (guitar), Charles L'Empereur "Prairie" Prince (drums), Michael Cotten (synthesizer), Vince Welnick (piano), and Rick Anderson (bass) released their debut album The Tubes, which features the track White Punks on Dope. Too bad, they were a decade too early for MTV, and ended up as white punks on dope.
Also in 1975 the British fake Beatles clone band The Rutles (AKA The Prefab Four), created by Eric Idle debuted on BBC; members incl. David "Stig" Battley (Paul McCartney), Eric "Dirk" Idle (George Harrison), Neil "Nasty" Innes (Ringo Starr), and John "Barry Halsey (John). On Mar. 22, 1978 the NBC-TV movie All You Need Is Cash gained them internat. fame.
In 1976 the British Music Second Wave in the U.S. began (until 1978), with groups incl. Elvis Costello and the Attractions, The Police, The Clash, The Cure, The Sex Pistols, and U2. On July 4, 1976 (U.S. Bicentennial) the Sex Pistols played in London, with The Clash opening for them in their debut, and punk rock was officially in with the Brits, George Washington is rolling over in his monument. On Dec. 1, 1976 the Sex Pistols staged a notorious profanity-laced interview with Bill Grundy on the Today programme of the BBC, rocketing generation-busting punk rock over the top.
On Jan. 6, 1976 English rocker Peter Kenneth Frampton (1950-), formerly of Humble Pie and The Herd attained instant international stardom when he released his double live album Frampton Comes Alive! which stayed at #1 in the U..S. for 10 weeks and sold over 6M copies, featuring tracks Show Me the Way, Baby, I Love Your Way, and Do You Feel Like We Do. Album #5 I'm in You (May 28, 1977) contained the #2 U.S. hit I'm in You.
On Feb. 14, 1976 (guess why?) the Seattle-Vancouver rock band Heart, featuring rock sisters Ann Dustin Wilson (1950-) (dark hair, who later got pudgy) and Nancy Lamoureux Wilson (1954-) (blonde hair) released its debut album Dreamboat Annie, containing the hit singles Dreamboat Annie (#42 in the U.S.), Crazy on You (#35 in the U.S.), and Magic Man (#9 in the U.S.). Album #2 Little Queen (May 14, 1977) (#9 in the U.S.) features the tracks Little Queen, and Barracuda (#11 in the U.S.) (written after their Mushroom Records label staged a stunt suggesting that they're lovers, causing Ann to get as mad as a you know what). Album #4 Dog & Butterfly (Oct. 7, 1978) (#17 in the U.S.) (one side is rock, the other is ballads) features Dog & Butterfly, and Straight On. Album #5 Bebe le Strange (Feb. 14, 1980) (#5 in the U.S.) features Bebe le Strange, Even It Up. Album #6 Private Audition (June 5, 1982) (#25 in the U.S.) features This Man Is Mine. Album #8 Passionworks (Aug. 20, 1983) (#39 in the U.S.) features How Can I Refuse? Album #9 Heart (July 6, 1985) (#1 in the U.S.) features These Dreams (#1 in the U.S.), If Looks Could Kill, What About Love?, Never, and Nothing' at All. Album #10 Bad Animals (June 6, 1987) (#2 in the U.S.) sold 5M copies), and features Alone (#1 in the U.S.), Who Will You Run To? (#7 in the U.S.), There's the Girl (#12 in the U.S.), I Want You So Bad (#47 in the U.S.). Album #11 Brigade (Mar. 26, 1990) (#3 in the U.S.) features All I Wanna Do is Make Love To You (#2 in the U.S.). Album #14 Red Velvet Car (Aug. 31, 2010) (#10 in the U.S.) features WTF, and Hey You.
On Mar. 20, 1976 the funk rock band Wild Cherry, from Mingo Junction, Ohio, incl. Louie Osso (vocals, guitar), Rob Parissi (vocals, guitar), Larry Brown (bass), Larry Mader (keyboards), and Ben Difabbio (drums) released their debut album Wild Cherry, featuring their 1-hit wonder Play That Funky Music (#1 in the U.S.), which sold 2M copies as a single.
In Mar. 1976 Canton, Ohio-born singer William Royce "Boz" Scaggs (1944-), formerly of the Steve Miller Band released solo album #7 Silk Degrees (#2 in the U.S.), featuring the hit tracks Lowdown (#3 in the U.S.), Lido Shuffle (#11 in the U.S.), and We're All Alone. Album #9 Middle Man (Apr. 1980) (#8 in the U.S.) features Breakdown Dead Ahead (#15 in the U.S.), and Jojo (#17 in the U.S.). His session musicians later formed Toto.
In Apr. 1976 The Starland Vocal Band, (originally Fat City) from Washington, D.C., fronted by husband-wife team William "Bill" Danoff (1946-) (songwriter of several John Denver Hits incl. "Take Me Home, Country Roads) and Taffy Nivert released their 1-hit wonder single Afternoon Delight, which was #1 in the U.S. on July 4, 1976, Stars and Stripes, Starland, get it? The single spawned a half-hour summer CBS-TV series that replaced Rhonda.
In July 1976 Boston, Mass. rock band Boston, fronted by Bradley E. "Brad" Delp (1951-2007), and run by MIT-educated engineer, musician and brain man Donald Thomas "Tom" Scholz (1947-) released their debut album Boston (July 1976) (#3 in the U.S.), which sold 17M copies, becoming the #2 best-selling debut album in the U.S. after "Appetite for Destruction" by Guns N' Roses, and features the tracks More Than a Feeling, Peace of Mind, Rock and Roll Band, and Smokin. Album #2 Don't Look Back (album #2) (Aug. 1978) (#4 in the U.S.) sold 7M copies, incl. 4M in the first month, and features the tracks Don't Look Back, and Feelin' Satisfied. Too bad, a contract dispute with Epic Records kept them from releasing a new album until 1986, but they made up for it with album #3 Third Stage (Sept. 23, 1986) (#1 in the U.S.), the first CD album to go gold, and first to go gold in both CD and LP formats, featuring the #1 hit Amanda, and the #9 hit We're Ready. Album #4 was released in 1994, and included the forgettable I Need Your Love. They sold 31M albums in the U.S. alone. In 1982 MIT grad Scholz invented the Rockman headphone guitar amplifier to give anybody the "Boston" sound.
In July 1976 Scottish singer Alastair Ian "Al" Stewart (1945-) released album #7 Year of the Cat, with his big hit single Year of the Cat, about a mysterious woman, also On the Border, how many Stewarts are we up to?
In Aug. 1976 the Boston, Mass.-based proto-punk rock band The Modern Lovers, fronted by wide-eyed Jonathan Michael Richman (1951-) ("the Godfather of Punk"), and incl. David Robinson (1953-) (drums), Jeremiah Griffin "Jerry" Harrison (1949-), and Ernie Brooks released their debut album (recorded in 1971-2) The Modern Lovers, which features the tracks Roadrunner (first punk rock song?), and Pablo Picasso. Their example influenced a slew of alternative and punk rock bands, incl. The Sex Pistols, Joan Jett, Violent Femmes, and Weezer.
On Sept. 18, 1976 after four years of trying, the blue-eyed soul duo Hall and Oates, Daryl Hall (Daryl Franklin Hohl) (1946-) and John William Oates (1949-) released album #5 Bigger Than Both of Us, containing their first #1 single Rich Girl. They went on to release five more #1 singles, incl. Private Eyes (1981), Kiss on My List (1981), I Can't Go for That (No Can Do) (1981), Maneater (1982), and Out of Touch (1984). In 1980 they released their #5 hit You Make My Dreams (Come True).
On Nov. 9, 1976 Gainesville, Fla.-born Thomas Earl "Tom" Petty (1950-) and The Heartbreakers released their debut album Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, which reached #24 in the U.K. and #55 in the U.S., and features the hit tracks Anything That's Rock 'n' Roll, Breakdown, and American Girl. Album #2 You're Gonna Get It! (May 20, 1978) (#23 in the U.S.) features I Need to Know, and Listen to Her Heart. Album #3 Damn the Torpedoes (Oct. 19, 1979) was their breakthrough album, reaching #2 in the U.S. for seven weeks behind Pink Floyd's "The Wall", selling 2M copies, and featuring tracks Don't Do Me Like That (#10 in the U.S.), Here Comes My Girl, and Refugee (#15 in the U.S.). Album #4 Hard Promises (May 5, 1981) was recorded at a studio where John Lennon was scheduled, but was murdered before he could show up, causing "WE LOVE YOU JL" to be inscribed on every vinyl copy of the album; it features The Waiting, and Insider (w/Stevie Nicks). Album #5 Long After Dark (album #5) (Nov. 2, 1982) (#9 in the U.S.), the first with Howard Norman "Howie" Epstein (1955-2003) (bass) features You Got Lucky, Change of Heart, and One Story Town. Album #6 Southern Accents (Mar. 26, 1985) (#13 in the U.S.) came with a music video filled with Alice in Wonderland imagery, and features the hit Don't Come Around Here No More (#13 in the U.S., #50 in the U.K.). Petty's debut solo album Full Moon Fever (Apr. 24, 1989) (#3 in the U.S.) features the tracks I Won't Back Down (#12 in the U.S.), Runnin' Down A Dream (#23 in the U.S.), Free Fallin' (#7 in the U.S.), A Face in the Crowd, and I'll Feel A Whole Lot Better, an old Byrds song written by Gene Clark, who used the royalties to drink himself to death? Album #8 Into the Great Wide Open (July 2, 1991) (#13 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.) features Into the Great Wide Open (music video stars Johnny Depp as Eddie, who finished h.s., went to Hollywood and got a tattoo), Out in the Cold, and Learning to Fly. Petty's solo album #2 Wildflowers (Nov. 1, 1994) sold 3M copies, and features Wildflowers, and You Don't Know How It Feels (#13 in the U.S.).
In 1976 Trinidad-born English R&B singer Billy Ocean (Leslie Sebastian Charles) (1950-) released his debut album Billy Ocean, which features the track Love Really Hurts Without You (#22 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.). On Sept. 12, 1984 he released his breakthrough album #5 Suddenly (#9 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.) featuring the hit track Caribbean Queen (No More Love On the Run) (#1 in the U.S.). Album #6 Love Zone (1986) features Love Zone, There'll Be Sad Songs (To Make You Cry), and When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Going from the 1985 film "The Jewel of the Nile". Album #7 Tear Down These Walls (Jan. 1988) features Get Outta My Dreams, Get Into My Car.
Disco Year 1976 had its 1-hit wonders, starting with the LA-based R&B group Rose Royce, whose debut album Car Wash Soundtrack (#14 in the U.S., #59 in the U.K.) features Car Wash (#1 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.), and I Wanna Get Next to You (#10 in the U.S., #14 in the U.K.). Also in 1976 St. Paul, Minn.-born singer Mary MacGregor (1948-) released her 1-hit wonder Torn Between Two Lovers (#1 in the U.S, #5 in the U.K.). Also in 1976 Leland, Miss.-born Thelma Houston (1946-) released her 1-hit wonder Don't Leave Me This Way (#1 in the U.S., #13 in the U.K.). Also in 1976 Doc Severinsen's arranger for the Tonight Show band Walter Anthony Murphy Jr. (1952-) released his 1-hit wonder instrumental A Fifth of Beethoven (#1 in the U.S.). Also in 1976 Starbuck, from Atlanta, Ga., incl. Bruce Blackman (vocals, keyboards), Bo Wagner (marimba), and Tommy Strain (guitar) released their 1-hit wonder Moonlight Feels Right (#3 in the U.S.); in 1977 they released the charter Everybody Be Dancin' (#38 in the U.S.). Also in 1976 New York City porno star Andrea True (1943-) and her True Connection released her debut album More, More, More (#47 in the U.S.), which features her 1-hit wonder More, More, More (#4 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.). Album #2 White Witch (1977) features N.Y., You Got Me Dancing (#27 in the U.S.), and What's Your Name, What's Your Number (#4 in the U.K.). After album #3 (1980) bombed, she returned to porno, found out she was too old, then had to have an operation on her vocal chords that ended the singing career too, don't ask. Also in 1976 Harlem, N.Y.-born singer-actress Vicki Sue Robinson (1954-2000) (black father, white mother) released her 1-hit wonder Turn the Beat Around (#3 in the U.S.); in 1996 Gloria Estafan's cover Turn the Beat Around reached #6 in the U.S.
In Feb. 1977 the rock band Cheap Trick from Rockford, Ill., consisting of Robin Zander (1953-) (vocals), Rick Nielsen (1948-) (guitar), Tom Petersson (1950-) (bass), and Bun E. Carlos (1951-) (glasses/mustache) (drums) released their debut album Cheap Trick, featuring the tracks Hot Love, and ELO Kiddies. Album #2 In Color (Sept. 1977) made them stars with the very American track I Want You to Want Me. According to the Los Angeles Times, "Cheap Trick gained fame by twisting the Beatlesque into something shinier, harder, more American." Album #3 Heaven Tonight (May 1978) features the tracks Surrender, Auf Widersehen, and California Man (by The Move). In Feb. 1979 they released the live album Cheap Trick at Budokan (#4 in the U.S.), which was recorded Apr. 28, 1978 at the Nippon Budokan in Japan, where they become known as the "American Beatles"; it sold 4M copies, featuring the tracks Lookout, and Need Your Love. Album #4 Dream Police (Sept. 21, 1979) (#6 in the U.S.) included Dream Police (#26 in the U.S.), and Voices (#32 in the U.S.).
On Mar. 8, 1977 New York City-based British-American rock band Foreigner, composed of Lou Gramm (Louis Andrew Grammatico) (1950-) (vocals), Michael Leslie "Mick" Jones (1944-) (guitar), and Ian McDonald (1946-) released their debut album Foreigner, featuring the hit tracks Cold As Ice, Feels Like the First Time, and Long, Long Way from Home. Album #2 Double Vision (June 20, 1978) features Double Vision (#2 in the U.S.), Hot Blooded (#3 in the U.S.), and Blue Morning, Blue Day. Album #3 Head Games (Sept. 11, 1979) (#5 in the U.S.) sold 5M copies in the U.S., and features the hits Head Games (#14 in the U.S.), and Dirty White Boy (#12 in the U.S.). Album #4 4 (July 2, 1981) (#1 in the U.S.) features the hits Urgent, Waiting for a Girl Like You, and Juke Box Hero. Album #5 Agent Provocateur (Dec. 7, 1984) (#5 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) features their biggest hit I Want to Know What Love Is (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.), and That Was Yesterday (#12 in the U.S.). They went on to sell 70M albums.
On Apr. 8, 1977 the English (London) punk rock band The Clash (formed in 1976), incl. Joe Strummer (John Graham Mellor) (1952-2002) (vocals), Michael Geofffrey "Mick" Jones (1955-) (guitar), Paul Gustave Simonon (1955-) (bass), and Terry Chimes (1955-)/Nicholas Bowen "Nicky" "Topper" Headon (1955-) (drums) released their debut album The Clash, which wasn't released in the U.S. until 1979, featuring the tracks White Riot, and Remote Control. Album #3 London Calling (Dec. 14, 1979) (#27 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.) sold 5M copies, and became the #1 punk rock album of all time. The cover uses the same B/W with pink and green titles of Elvis Presley's debut album. Tracks incl. London Calling, Lost in the Supermarket, The Man in Me (by Bob Dylan), The Guns of Brixton (eerily predicting the coming Brixton Race Riots), Remote Control, and Train in Vain (hidden track) (used in the 1986 film "Stand By Me"). Album #4 Sandanista! (triple album) (Dec. 12, 1980) (#24 in the U.S., #19 in the U.K.) features The Call Up (#40 in the U.K.), Hitsville UK (#56 in the U.K.), and The Magnificent Seven (#34 in the U.K.). Album #5 Combat Rock (May 14, 1982) (#7 in the U.S., #2 in the U.K.) (2M copies); original title "Rat Patrol from Fort Bragg"; it features Rock the Casbah (disssing the Iranian ban on Western music, with the lines "Drop your bombs between the minarets", and "Sharia don't like it"), Should I Stay or Should I Go?, Know Your Rights, and Straight to Hell. The band now began to fall apart, starting with Mick Jones and Topper Headon being fired, and disbanded in 1983.
On Apr. 29, 1977 the English (Woking, Surrey) New Wave band (garage Beatles wannabees?) The Jam, incl. Paul Weller (vocals, guitar), Bruce Foxton (bass), Steve Brookes (guitar), and Rick Buckler (drums), known for channeling The Who complete with suits and Rickenbacker guitars, call them 1960s British Invasion throwbacks released their debut single In the City, followed on May 20, 1977 by their debut album In the City, which features a cover of the Batman Theme, and another cover of Slow Down (by Larry Williams). Album #2 This Is the Modern World (Nov. 18, 1977) features The Modern World. Album #3 All Mod Cons (Nov. 3, 1978) features Down in the Tube Station at Midnight (#15 in the U.K.), and David Watts. Album #4 Setting Sons (Nov. 11, 1979) features The Eton Rifles (#3 in the U.K.), Smithers-Jones, and Heat Wave. Album #5 Sound Affects (Nov. 28, 1980) features Start! (#1 in the U.K.), and Pretty Green. Album #6 (last) The Gift (Mar. 12, 1982) (#1 in the U.K.) features Town Called Malice, and Just Who Is the 5 O'Clock Hero? After they broke up, Peter Weller, his wife Dee C. Lee (vocals), Mike Talbot (keyboards), and Steve White (drums), formed The Style Council.
On July 2, 1977 one English rocker who got into punk/New Wave and liked to wear oversized glasses a la 1950s Buddy Holly, Elvis Costello (Declan Patrick MacManus) (1954-), released his debut album My Aim Is True, which features the track Less Than Zero. Too bad, in Mar. 1979 he got into a drunken argument in a Holiday Inn bar in Columbus, Ohio with Stephen Stills and Bonnie Bramlett, using the N-word, which was latched onto by the press, but he patched things up and went on to produce a string of music known more for the "pop encyclopedia" lyrics. The U.S. reaction to them was more artistic and commercial music with an undercurrent of punk, led by the New York City band Blondie, fronted by bleached blonde singer Deborah Ann "Debbie" Harry (1945-) (formerly of The Wind in the Willows), which released their debut album Blondie in Dec. 1976. Album #3 Parallel Lines, released in Sept. 1978 contained the breakthrough hit Heart of Glass. Album #4 Eat to the Beat (Oct. 1979) was the first-ever "music video album", released on home video and in audio form by Chrysalis Records; it features the tracks Dreaming, Union City Blue, Atomic, and The Hardest Part. Album #5 Autoamerican, released in Nov. 1980 contained the singles The Tide Is High, and Rapture, which became the first rap song to reach #1 in the U.S.
On July 11, 1977 the gay-friendly Greenwich Village, N.Y. disco group Village People, created by gay French composer Jacques Morali (1947-91), incl. Victor Edward Willis (1951-) (policeman) (only non-gay), Felipe Ortiz Rose (1954-) (Amerindian chief), Randy Jones (1952-) (cowboy), David "Scar" Hodo (1947-) (construction worker), Glenn M. Hughes (1950-2001) (biker in leather), and Alexander "Alex" Briley (1951-) (military man) released their debut album Village People, featuring the track San Francisco (You've Got Me). Album #2 Macho Man (Feb. 27, 1978) features Macho Man. Album #3 Cruisin' (Sept. 25, 1978) features their classic hit YMCA (#2 in the U.S.), which comes complete with its own arm dance. Album #4 Go West (Mar. 26, 1979) features the hit tracks In the Navy (#2 in the U.S.), and Go West; the U.S. Navy provided San Diego Naval base for them to film the video, causing a public outcry, boosting the song's popularity. Too bad, Victor Willis left the group, after which it sunk, er, tanked, selling over 100M albums.
On July 24, 1977 Led Zeppelin played their last U.S. concert at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in Calif.; to bad, fighting erupts between the crew and the staff of promoter Bill Graham, resulting in criminal assault charges for drummer John Bonham et al.
Did I mention that on Aug. 16, 1977 the King of Rock and Roll Elvis Aaron Presley (1935-77) was found dead on his bathroom floor in Memphis after getting addicted to Demerol and ballooning up into Fat Elvis? Pres. Jimmy Carter issued a statement saying that Elvis had "permanently changed the face of American popular culture." Like any Messiah, he isn't really dead, and there are many Elvis sightings to prove it? The King is Dead, long live the King.
Speaking of fat, on Aug. 29, 1977 thin, sinewy Muskegon, Mich.-born (Australian-looking?) Iggy Pop (James Newell "Jim" Osterberg Jr. (1947-), formerly of The Stooges released solo album #2 (in collaboration with David Bowie) Lust for Life, containing his big hit Lust for Life, later features in the 1996 film "Trainspotting".
In Aug. 1977 the Lodi, N.J.-based pioneer horror punk band The Misfits, fronted by Glenn Danzig (Glenn Allen Anzalone) (1955-) (vocals), along with Jerry Only (Gerald Caiafa) (1959-) (bass) (inventor of the devilock a la Eddie Munster), whose logo is the Crimson Ghost (from the 1946 Republic Pictures serial) released their debut single Cough/Cool, followed by Bullet (June 1978), Horror Business (June 26, 1979), Night of the Living Dead (Oct. 31, 1979), Halloween (Oct. 31, 1981), and Die, Die My Darling (May 1984). They broke up in 1983, then reformed in 1997 and released the album American Psycho (May 13, 1997), which features the track Dig Up Her Bones, and the album Static Age (July 15, 1997), consisting of original recordings from 1978.
On Sept. 16, 1977 the New York City New Wave band Talking Heads, fronted by Scottish-born David Byrne (1952-), and composed of Charlton Christopher "Chris" Frantz (1951-) (drums), Martina Michele "Tina" Weymouth (1950-) (bass), and Jeremiah Griffin "Jerry" Harrison (1949-) (keyboards) released their debut album Talking Heads: 77, featuring the track Psycho Killer (#92 in the U.S.); in 1979 The Fools released the parody Psycho Chicken, which became a hit in their hometown of Boston, Mass. before going nationwide. Album #2 More Songs About Buildings and Food (July 21, 1978) (#29 in the U.S., #21 in the U.K.), the first of three co-produced by Brian Eno features the track Take Me to the River (by Al Green) (#26 in the U.S.). Too bad, despite being praised by critics, it was a slow seller. Album #4 Remain In Light (Oct. 8, 1980) (#19 in the U.S., #21 in the U.K.) features the hit Once in a Lifetime (#14 in the U.K.), which strangely didn't do well in the U.S. although it was praised by critics. On May 31, 1983 they released their breakthrough album #5 Speaking in Tongues (#15 in the U.S., #21 in the U.K.), featuring their first and only top-10 U.S. hit Burning Down the House (#9 in the U.S.). Album #6 Little Creatures (July 15, 1985) (#20 in the U.S., #10 in the U.K.) features The Lady Don't Mind, And She Was, and Road to Nowhere (#6 in the U.K.). After releasing album #8 in 1988, they officially broke up in 1991.
On Sept. 24, 1977 the English (London) heavy metal power trio Motorhead (Motörhead), fronted by Ian Fraser "Lemmy" Kilmister (bass, vocals) released their debut album Motörhead, featuring the tracks Motörhead, Lost Johnny, White Line Fever, and Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers (by ZZ Top). Album #2 Overkill (Mar. 24, 1979) (#24 in the U.K.) (Mar. 24) features Overkill, and No Class. Album #3 Bomber (Oct. 27, 1979) (#12 in the U.K.) features Bomber, Dead Men Tell No Tales (anti-heroin), and Stone Dead Forever. Album #4 Ace of Spades (Nov. 8, 1980) (#4 in the U.K) features Ace of Spades (#15 in the U.K.). Album #5 Iron Fist (Apr. 17, 1982) (#6 in the U.K.), last with Eddie Clarke and Phil Taylor features Iron Fist (#29 in the U.K.). Album #6 Another Perfect Day (June 4, 1983) (#20 in the U.K.), with 1-album guitarist Brian "Robbo" Robertson features Shine, Dancing On Your Grave, I Got Mine. Album #7 Orgasmatron (Aug. 9, 1986) (#21 in the U.K.) (original title "Ridin' with the Driver") features Orgasmatron, Deaf Forever, and Claw. Album #8 Rock 'N' Roll (Sept. 15, 1987) (#34 in the U.K.) features Eat the Rich, from the 1987 Peter Richardson film. Album #9 1916 (Feb. 26, 1991) features 1916. Album #15 We Are Motörhead (May 16, 2000) features a cover of the Sex Pistols' God Save the Queen. Album #16 Hammered (Apr. 9, 2002) features The Game, written by Jim Johnson as the entrance theme for WWE wrestler Triple H. Album #19 Motörizer (Aug. 26, 2008) features Rock Out. Album #20 The Wörld Is Yours (Dec. 14, 2010) features Get Back in Line.
On Oct. 21, 1977, talk about good timing for new fat rock stars, Dallas, Texas-born Meat Loaf (Michael/Marvin Lee Aday) (1947-) (Eddie in The Rocky Horror Picture Show) (got his name after stepping on his high school football coach's foot) released album #2 Bat Out of Hell, which became a phenomenon, selling over 40M copies worldwide. The lyrics were by Jim Steinman (1947-), and the guitar by Todd Rundgren. Tracks incl. Bat Out of Hell. I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That), You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night), Two Out of Three Ain't Bad, and Paradise by the Dashboard Light (with Ellen Foley). He went on to turn it into a trilogy.
On Nov. 22, 1977 the African-American disco-R&B band Chic, fronted by Nile Rodgers (1952-) and Bernard Edwards (1952-1996) released their debut album Chic, which sold 500K copies, and features the tracks Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah), and Everybody Dance. Album #2 C'est Chic (Aug. 11, 1978) (#4 in the U.S.) features Le Freak (sold 6M copies), and We Are Family. Album #3 Risque (July 30, 1979) (#5 in the U.S.) features Good Times, My Forbidden Lover, and My Feet Keep Dancing.
In 1977 Jamaican-born singer-model Grace Jones (Mendoza) (1948-) released her debut album Portfolio, featuring I Need a Man, Sorry, and That's the Trouble. Album #5 Nightclubbing (1982) features Pull Up to the Bumper (her biggest hit), and I've Seen That Face Before (Libertango). Album #8 Inside Story (Nov. 14, 1986) features I'm Not Perfect (But I'm Perfect for You), Victor Should Have Been a Jazz Musician, Crush, and Party Girl.
In 1977 the LA heavy metal band Quiet Riot, incl. Kevin Mark DuBrow (1955-2007) (vocals), Randall William "Randy" Rhoads (1956-82) (guitar), Kelly Garni (1957-) (bass), and Drew Forsythe (drums) released their debut album Quiet Riot, which didn't do too well. Album #3 Mental Health (Mar. 11, 1983) was their breakthrough, knocking "Synchronicity" by the Police out of #1 in the U.S., and selling 6M copies. It features the hits Cum Feel the Noize (by Slade) (#5 in the U.S.) (first heavy metal song to make the U.S. top-5), and Mental Health (#31 in the U.S.). Album #4 Condition Critical (July 27, 1984) (#15 in the U.S., #71 in the U.K.) sold 3M copies despite the thumbs-down Rolling Stone review "Condition terminal", and features Mama Weer All Crazee Now.
In 1977 New York City-born singer-songwriter (ex-cop) Eddie Money (Edward Joseph Mahoney) (1949-) released his debut album Eddie Money (#37 in the U.S.), which features the tracks Baby Hold On (#11 in the U.S.), Two Tickets to Paradise (#22 in the U.S.), and You've Really Got a Hold On Me. Album #4 No Control (June 1983) features Think I'm In Love (#16 in the U.S.), Shakin' (#63 in the U.S.) (video features Apollonia of "Purple Rain" fame), and Take a Little Bit.
In 1977 Wilmington, Del.-born George Thorogood (1950-) and the Destroyers released their debut album George Thorogood and the Destroyers, featuring the hit cover One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer, first recorded in 1953 by Amos Milburn. Album #2 Move It On Over (Nov. 1978) features the Bo Diddley cover Who Do You Love?. Album #5 Bad to the Bone (Sept. 1982) features the sleeper hit Bad to the Bone, which was features in the Ahnuld flick "T2". They went on to sell 15M albums worldwide.
In 1977 the English (Manchester) group Throbbing Gristle, incl. Genesis P-Orridge (Neil Megson) (bass), Cosey Fanni Tutti (guitar), Peter "Sleazy" Christopherson, and Chris Carter launched industrial music with their debut album United/Zyklon B Zombie, featuring the tracks United, and Zyklon B Zombie. Too bad, their idea of industrial was Nazi concentration camps and porno.
On ?, 1977 the syndicated Sha Na Na TV show debuts (until 1981), reviving 1950s hits incl. Blue Moon, and always closing with "Goodnight Sweetheart", with members incl. Jon "Bowzer" Bauman (1947-) (bass) (replacement for Alan Cooper) (known for flexing his skinny arms), Elliot "Gino" Cahn (guitar) (later becomes mgr. of Green Day), Bruce "Bruno" Clarke (who later becomes an English prof.), Alan Cooper (bass), Dave Garrett, Frederick "Denny" Greene (who quits to attend Yale Law School), Henry Gross (1951-) (guitar), Rich Joffe, Rob Leonard, John "Jocko" Marcellino" (drums), "Dirty Dan" McBride, Scott "Capt. Courageous" Powell (AKA Tony Santini) (who becomes a surgeon), "Screamin' Scott" Simon (piano) (replaces Joe Witkin, who goes to medical school), Dave "Chico" Ryan (1948-98), Joe Witkin (piano), Donald "Donny" York; they were formed in 1969 at Columbia U., and were originally called the Kingsmen; their name comes from the 50s hit "Get a Job" by the Silhouettes.
Speaking of throbbing gristle, 1977 was the low point of the decade, which is maybe responsible for the bad taste it leaves in some people's mouths, especially as men dominated the 1-hit wonders this year, vs. women in 1976. In 1977 Hollywood, Calif.-born singer-songwriter Alan O'Day (1940-2013) released his 1-hit wonder Undercover Angel (#1 in the U.S.), that is, if you don't want to count his 1977 Australian #1 hit Skinny Girls. Also in 1977 David Soul (1943-), Det. Kenneth Hutch of "Starsky and Hutch" (1975-9) fame released his 1-hit wonder Don't Give Up On Us (#1 in the U.S.), lucky he had acting to fall back on. Also in 1977 the Detroit, Mich. R&B group The Floaters released their 1-hit wonder Float On (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.). Also in 1977 Elvis singalike Ronald Dean "Ronnie" McDowell (1950-) released his 1-hit wonder The King Is Gone (about Elvis Presley) (#4 in the U.S.). Also in 1977 the American rock band Ram Jam, originally Starstruck, incl. Myke Scavone (vocals), William "Bill" Bartlett (1946-) (guitar) (formerly of the Lemon Pipers), Pete Charles (drums), Howie Arthur Blauvelt (bass), and Jimmy Santoro (guitar) released their 1-hit wonder Black Betty (#7 in the U.S.), based on a song by Leadbelly. Also in 1977 the Sanford and Townsend Band, from Ala., incl. Ed Sanford and Johnny Townsend released their 1-hit wonder Smoke from a Distant Fire (#9 in the U.S.). Also in 1977 English singer-actor Paul Nicholas (Paul Oscar Beuselinck) (1945-) released his 1-hit wonder Heaven on the 7th Floor (#6 in the U.S., #40 in the U.K.), heaven in the 1970s wasn't on this floor, or maybe it was, there's no accounting for taste.
In 1977 Jive Records was founded in New York City by South African-born Clive Calder (1946-), and Ralph Simon (who later helped found the modern mobile entertainment industry, becoming known as "Father of the Ring Tone"), signing A Flock of Seagulls, Billy Ocean (Leslie Sebastian Charles) (1950-), Samantha Karen "Sam" Fox (1966-), whose 1986 debut single Touch Me (I Want Your Body) (#4 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.) went #1 in five countries, and Tight Fit, which made yet another cover of The Lion Sleeps Tonight, in 1982 (#1 in the U.K.), then hiring Barry Weiss (1959-) and going on in the late 1980s to sign hip hop artists DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince, R. (Robert Sylvester) Kelly (1967-), and Aaliyah (Aaliyah Dana Haughton) (1979-2001), followed in the 1990s by pop acts Backstreet Boys, 'N Sync (*NSYNC), and Britney Jean Spears (1981-).
On Jan. 18, 1978 Chicago-born rock singer-songwriter Warren William Zevon (1947-2003) released album #3 Excitable Boy, featuring his 1-hit wonder Werewolves of London, along with Excitable Boy, Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner, and Lawyers, Guns and Money. His 1976 debut album Warren Zevon was released after the troubled artist became an expatriate in Spain and landed a record deal with the help of friend Jackson Browne, and was a critical success but flopped.
On Feb. 10, 1978 hard rock band Van Halen, from Pasadena, Calif. released their debut album Van Halen (Feb. 10, 1978), which sold 10M copies in the U.S., and features the tracks Runnin' with the Devil, Jamie's Cryin', Eruption, Ain't Talking 'bout Love, I'm the One, and You Really Got Me (by Ray Davies). The band went on to sell 80M albums. Van Halen had two lead vocalists, "Diamond" David Lee Roth (1954-) in 1974-85, who didn't get along with Eddie, causing the latter in 1982 to try to join Kiss, and "Red Rocker" Sam Roy "Sammy" Hagar (1947-) in 1985-96. Other hits incl. So This Is Love? (1980), Panama (1984), Why Can't This Be Love (1984), and Amsterdam (1995). When the U.S. invaded Panama in 1989 and Gen. Manuel Noriega holed-up in the Vatican mission in Panama City on Dec. 24, U.S. troops bombarded him with hard rock music incl. "Panama" by Van Halen, "I Fought the Law" by The Clash, and "The Howard Stern Show", until he surrendered to the DEA on Jan. 3. In 1986 David Lee Roth released his solo debut album Eat 'Em and Smile, with a band incl. Steve Vai (1960-) (guitar), Billy Sheehan (bass), and Gregg Bissonette (drums), launching metal arena rock; it features Goin' Crazy, Yankee Rose, Tobacco Road.
On Jan. 20, 1978 the English (Swindon) New Wave band XTC, incl. Andy Partridge (vocals, guitar), Colin Moulding (bass), Barry Andrews (keyboards), and Terry Chambers (drums) released their debut album White Music #38 in the U.K.), which features the tracks Statue of Liberty (banned by the BBC for the line "sail beneath your skirt"), This Is Pop, and All Along the Watchtower (by Jimi Hendrix). Album #3 Drums and Wires (Aug. 17, 1979) (#176 in the U.S., #34 in the U.K.) features Making Plans for Nigel (#17 in the U.K.), and Life Begins at the Hop (#44 in the U.K.). Album #4 Black Sea (Sept. 12, 1980) (#16 in the U.K.) features Generals and Majors (#104 in the U.S., #32 in the U.K.), Tower of London (#31 in the U.K.), and Sgt. Rock (Is Going to Help Me) (#16 in the U.K.). Album #5 English Settlement (Feb. 12, 1982) (#48 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) features Senses Working Overtime (#10 in the U.K.), Ball and Chain (#58 in the U.K.), and No Thugs in Our House. Album #6 Mummer (Aug. 30, 1983) (#145 in the U.S., #51 in the U.K.) features Great Fire, Wonderland, and Love on a Farmboy's Wages (#50 in the U.K.). Album #7 The Big Express (Oct. 15, 1984) (#181 in the U.S., #38 in the U.K.) features All You Pretty Girls, and This World Over. Album #8 Skylarking (Oct. 27, 1986) (#70 in the U.S., #90 in the U.K.) features Grass, and Dear God. Album #9 Psonic Psunspot (Aug. 1987), released like album #8 under the alias The Dukes of the Stratosphear to satire 1960s bands features Vanishing Girl, You're My Drug, Pale and Precious, and You're A Good Man Albert Brown (Curse You Red Barrel). Album #10 Oranges & Lemons (Feb. 27, 1989) features The Mayor of Simpleton (#46 in the U.K.), King for A Day, and The Loving (#44 in the U.S., #28 in the U.K.). Album #11 Nonsuch (Apr. 27, 1992) features The Disappointed (#33 in the U.K.), and The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead (#71 in the U.K.).
On Feb. 17, 1978 after being discovered by David Gilmour of Pink Floyd, English (Kent) singer-songwriter Catherine "Kate" Bush (1958-) released her debut album The Kick Inside (#3 in the U.K.), featuring the tracks Wuthering Heights (first woman to have a #1 hit in the U.S. with a self-written song), James and the Cold Gun, The Saxophone Song, The Man with the Child in His Eyes, and Them Heavy People. Album #2 Lionheart (Nov. 13, 1978) (#6 in the U.K.) features Oh England, My Lionheart, Wow (#20 in the U.K.), Fullhouse (Symphony in Blue), and Hammer Horror (Coffee Homeground). In 1979 she made a concert tour, and was the most photographed woman in Britain. Album #3 Never for Ever (Sept. 8, 1980) (#1 in the U.K.) (first solo female British singer to top the U.K. album charts) features The Wedding List, Breathing, Army Dreamers, and Babooshka. Album #4 The Dreaming (Sept. 13, 1982) (#3 in the U.K.) features The Dreaming, Sat in Your Lap, There Goes a Tenner, Get Out of My House (based on the film "The Shining"), and Houdini. Album #5 Hounds of Love (Sept. 16, 1985) (#1 in the U.K.) knocked Madonna's "Like a Virgin" off the top of the U.K. charts; it features Running Up That Hill, Hounds of Love, Cloudbusting, and The Big Sky.
In Apr. 1978 the Athens, Ga.-based New Wave band The B-52's (named after the beehive hairdo), incl. Fred Schneider III (1951-), Catherine Elizabeth "Kate" Pierson (1948-), Keith Strickland (drums), Cynthia Leigh "Cindy" Wilson (1957-), and Ricky Helton Wilson (1953-85) (guitar) (who died of AIDS) released their first single Rock Lobster (#56 in the U.S.), followed on July 6, 1979 by their debut album The B-52's (#59 in the U.S.), a favorite of John Lennon, which also features the track Planet Claire. Album #2 Wild Planet (Aug. 27, 1980) (#18 in the U.S., #18 in the U.K.) features Private Idaho, used as the title of the 1991 film My Own Private Idaho. Album #5 Cosmic Thing (June 27, 1989) (#4 in the U.S., #8 in the U.K.) features Love Shack, Roam, Deadbeat Club, and Cosmic Thing.
In Apr. 1978 the Jerry Garcia Band, formed in 1975 by San Francisco-born Jerome John "Jerry" Garcia (1942-95) of The Grateful Dead released their debut album Cats Under the Stars, which features the tracks Cats Down Under the Stars, Ruben and Cherise, Palm Sunday, and Rhapsody in Red. Album #2 Jerry Garcia Band (Aug. 27, 1991) features Deal, and The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down. After his Aug. 9, 1995 death, they released How Sweet It Is (1997), featuring How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You), Don't Let Go (2001), and Shining Star (2001), featuring Shining Star. To commemorate his untimely death, Ben & Jerry's started making Cherry Garcia ice cream. As the final tribute, the term "cherry garcia" developed a dirty sexual meaning, related to "dirty sanchez".
On June 3, 1978 the English (Salford, Greater Manchester) rock band Joy Division, originally Warsaw, incl. Ian Kevin Curtis (1956-80) (vocals), Bernard Sumner (1956-) (guitar, keyboards), Peter "Hooky" Hook (1956-) (bass), and Stephen Paul David Morris (1957-) (drums) (JD is the Nazi term for concentration camp sex slaves) released their debut album An Ideal for Living, which features the track Warsaw. Their debut album Unknown Pleasures (June 14, 1979) features New Dawn Fades, She's Lost Control, Shadowplay, and Interzone (from the William S. Burroughs novel "Naked Lunch"). Album #2 (last) Closer (July 18, 1980) features Isolation, and Heart and Soul. Too bad, lead singer Ian Curtis (b. 1956) committed suicide by hanging on May 18, 1980, and the band reformed under the name New Order, incl. Bernard Sumner (Dicken) (1956-) (vocals), Peter "Hooky" Hook (1956-) (bass), Gillian Lesley Gilbert (1961-) (keyboards), and Stephen Paul David Morris (1957-) (drums), which in Nov. 1981 released its debut album Movement, which features the tracks Temptation Ceremony, Doubts Even Here, Dreams Never End, and Everything's Gone Green. Album #2 Power, Corruption & Lies (May 1983) features Age of Consent. In 1983 they released Blue Monday, which became the best-selling 12-in. single (resembling a floppy disk) of all time. In Apr. 1984 they released Thieves Like Us (named after the 1974 Robert Altman movie), followed in May 1984 by Murder. Album #3 Low-Life (May 13, 1985) (#94 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.) features The Perfect Kiss, Sub-Culture, and Elegia. Album #4 Brotherhood (Sept. 29, 1986) (#161 in the U.S., #9 in the U.K.) features Bizarre Love Triangle (used in the 1988 film "Married to the Mob"). In 1986 they also released Shellshock, which was used in the 1986 film "Pretty in Pink". Album #5 Technique (Jan. 30, 1989) (#32 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) features Fine Time (#11 in the U.K.), Round & Round, Vanishing Point, and Run. Album #6 Republic (May 3, 1993) (#11 in the U.K., #1 in the U.K.) features Regret, Ruined in a Day, World, and Spooky. Album #7 Get Ready (Aug. 27, 2001) (#41 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.) had German actress Nicolette Krebitz on the cover, and features Crystal, 60 Miles an Hour, and Someone Like You. Album #8 (last) Waiting for the Sirens' Call (Mar. 28, 2005) (#46 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) features Waiting for the Sirens' Call, Krafty, and Jetstream.
On June 6, 1978 the Boston, Mass.-based rock band The Cars, fronted by Ric Ocasek (Richard T. Otcasek) (1949-) released their debut album The Cars, which features the tracks Just What I Needed, My Best Friend's Girl, and Good Times Roll. Arriving just in time for the MTV Generation, album #4 Shake It Up (Nov. 6, 1981) features Shake It Up and Since You're Gone. Album #5 Heartbeat City (Mar. 13, 1984) features Drive, You Might Think, and Magic.
On June 16, 1978 the musical film Grease was released, starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. The Grease Soundtrack album was the #2 best-selling album of the year in the U.S. after "Saturday Night Fever", featuring the track You're the One That I Want.
On Aug. 18, 1978 British post-punk band Siouxsie and The Banshees, fronted by London-born Siouxsie Sioux (Susan Janet Ballion) (1957-) released their debut single Hong Kong Garden (#7 in the U.K.), which became a classic. Their debut album The Scream (Nov. 13, 1978) features the tracks Overground, Helter Skelter (by John Lennon and Paul McCartney), and Metal Postcard (Mittageisen). The single The Staircase (Mystery) (Mar. 23, 1979) reached #24 in the U.K. Album #2 Join Hands (Sept. 7, 1979) features Playground Twist, and The Lord's Prayer. Album #3 Kaleidoscope (Aug. 1, 1980) features Happy House, Christine, and Red Light. Album #4 Juju (June 6, 1981), first with super guitarist John Alexander McGeoch (1955-2004) ("the Jimmy Page of New Wave") (who later joined Public Image Ltd.) features Spellbound, and Arabian Knights. Album #5 A Kiss in the Dreamhouse (Nov. 5, 1982), the last with John McGeoch features Melt!, and Slowdive. Their Beatles cover single Dear Prudence (Sept. 23, 1983) reached #3 in the U.K. Album #6 Hyaena (June 8, 1984), with Robert Smith of The Cure features Dazzle, and Swimming Horses. Album #7 Tinderbox (Apr. 21, 1986), the first with guitarist John Valentine Carruthers features Cities in Dust, and Candyman. Album #8 Through the Looking Glass (Mar. 2, 1987) was all covers; it features Billie Holiday's Strange Fruit. Album #9 Peepshow (Sept. 5, 1988), the first with Martin McCarrick features Peek-a-Boo, and The Last Beat of My Heart. Album #10 Superstition (June 10, 1991) features Kiss Them for Me (#23 in the U.S.), their first U.S. hit, them Yanks are slow. A little too slow. Album #11 (last) The Rapture (Jan. 17, 1995) features O Baby, and Stargazer.
On Oct. 15, 1978 the Calif.-based rock band Toto released their debut album Toto, which features the tracks Hold the Line, I'll Supply the Love, and Georgy Porgy. Composed of session musicians, members included Robert Troy "Bobby" Kimball (1947-) (vocals), Steve "Luke" Lukather (1957-) (guitar), David Hungate (1948-) (bass), David Frank Paich (1954-) (keyboards), Jeff Porcaro (drums), Steve Porcaro (keyboards), Jeffrey Thomas "Jeff" Porcaro (1954-92) (drums), and Michael Joseph "Mike" Porcaro (1955-) (bass); Toto means "all-encompassing". Album #4 Toto IV (Apr. 8, 1982) was their breakthrough, with hit tracks Rosanna (#2 in the U.S.) (just a coincidence that member Steve Porcaro used to go out with actress Rosanna Arquette?), Africa (#1 in the U.S.), and I Won't Hold You Back. They went on to sell 35M albums.
On Oct. 24, 1978 Sidney Lumet's musical film The Wiz, a black version of "The Wizard of Oz" debuted, starring too-old Diana Ross as Harlem schoolteacher Dorothy, who is whisked away to the Land of Oz, which looks like New York City; Michael Jackson plays a good Scarecrow; too bad, the $24M production lost $11M, dooming black films for years. It features the song Ease on Down the Road.
On Nov. 2, 1978 the English (London) New Wave rock band The Police , fronted by Stink, er, Sting (Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner) (1951-), known for folding jazz, punk, and reggae into rock released their first album Outlandos d'Amour, which features Can't Stand Losing You (about suicide), and Roxanne (about prostitution). Too bad, it flopped from lack of financial backing, until 1979, when the album hit #6 in the U.K. Album #2 Regatta de Blanc (Oct. 5, 1979) features the hit Message in a Bottle. Album #3 Zenyatta Mondatta (Oct. 3, 1980) features the hits De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da and Don't Stand So Close to Me. Album #4 Ghost in the Machine (Oct. 2, 1981) features Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic, Invisible Sun, and Spirits in the Material World. Album #5 (last) Synchronicity (June 1, 1983) (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.) sold 8M copies in the U.S, and features their biggest hit Every Breath You Take. They went on to sell over 50M albums worldwide.
In Nov. 1978 the Australian rock band Midnight Oil (originally Farm), incl. Peter Robert Garrett (1953-) (vocals), Jim Moginie (1956-) (guitar), Martin Rotsey (guitar), Rob Hirst (1955-) (drums), and Andrew James/Peter Gifford/Bones Hillman (bass) released their debut album Midnight Oil (AKA Blue Meanie), which features the tracks Powderworks, Run by Night, and Nothing Lost Nothing Gained. Album #2 Head Injuries (1979) features Cold Cold Change, and Section 5 (Bus to Bondi). Album #5 10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1 (Nov. 1982) features Power and the Passion, Read About It, and Scream in Blue. Album #6 Red Sails in the Sunset (Oct. 1984) was their first #1 in Australia, and features Best of Both Worlds. Album #8 Diesel and Dust (Aug. 1987) features The Dead Heart, Put Down That Weapon, Dreamworld, and their big hit Beds Are Burning ("How can we dance when our Earth is turning?/ How do we sleep while our beds are burning?"). Album #9 Blue Sky Mining (Feb. 25, 1990) features Blue Sky Mine; Forgotten Years, King of the Mountain, Bedlam Bridge, and One Country.
In Dec. 1978 the English (London) post-punk band Public Image Ltd. (PiL), "arguably the first post-rock group" (New Musical Express), incl. John Joseph Lydon (AKA Johnny Rotten) (1956-) (vocals), Julian Keith Levene (1957-) (bass), Jah Wobble (John Joseph Wardle) (1958-) (bass), and Martin Atkins (drums) released their debut album First Issue, which features the tracks Public Image, and Fodderstompf. Album #2 Metal Box (Nov. 23, 1979) consisted of three 12" 45 rpm records in a 16mm metal film canister, and features Albatross, Swan Lake, and Memories. Album #4 This Is What You Want... This Is What You Get (July 6, 1984) features This Is Not a Love Song (#5 in the U.K.), Bad Life, and The Order of Death, which was used in "The Blair Witch Project", and the "Miami Vice" episode "Little Miss Dangerous".
In 1978 American punk rock singer (in England) Lene Lovich (Lili-Marlene Premilovich) (1949-) released her debut album Stateless, featuring her breakthrough single Lucky Number, along with Say When. Album #2 Flex (1979) features the tracks Bird Song (#29 in the U.K.), and What Will I Do Without You? (#58 in the U.K.). In 1978 German punk rock singer Nina Hagen (1955-) released her debut album The Nina Hagen Band, which features the tracks Superboy, TV-Glotzer (cover of "White Punks on Dope" by The Tubes), and Auf'm Bahnhof Zoo. Album #3 NunSexMonkRock (1982) features Smack Jack. Album #4 Angstlos (Fearless) (1984) features Zarah (#45 in the U.S.) (cover of the Zarah Leander song "Ich Weiss, es Wird Einmal ein Wunder Gescheh'n), and New York New York (cover of the Frank Sinatra hit) (#9 in the U.S.). Album #5 In Ekstasy (1985) features Universal Radio, Spirit in the Sky (cover of the Norman Greenbaum hit), and My Way (cover of the Frank Sinatra hit). Album #6 Nina Hagen (Oct. 8, 1989) features Viva Las Vegas (by Elvis Presley), and Ave Maria (by Franz Schubert). Album #15 Personal Jesus (July 16, 2010) features Personal Jesus (by Depeche Mode).
In 1978 English singer Robert Allen Palmer (1949-2003) released album #4 Double Fun (#45 in the U.S.), which features the track Every Kinda People. Album #5 Secrets (1979) (#19 in the U.S., #54 in the U.K.) features Bad Case of Loving You (Doctor, Doctor) (#14 in the U.S.). Album #9 Riptide (Nov. 1985) (#8 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.) features the #1 U.S. single Addicted to Love, with the video featuring the irresistible undulating guitar-strumming Palmer Girls, with heavy makeup, short slick black hair, long hosed legs and little black dresses with almost see-through bodices, modeled after artist Patrick Nagel; it also features I Didn't Mean to Turn You On, he probably did. Album #10 Heavy Nova (June 22, 1988) (#13 in the U.S., #17 in the U.K.) features more of the Palmer Girls, with the hit track Simply Irresistible (#1 in the U.S.).
In 1978 Welsh singer Bonnie Tyler (Gaynor Hopkins) (1951-) released album #2 Natural Force (It's a Heartache), which features her hit track It's a Heartache. Album #5 Faster Than the Speed of Light (Apr. 1983) (#4 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) features her big hit Total Eclipse of the Heart (#1 in the U.S. and U.K.). In 1984 she released the hit Holding Out for a Hero (#2 in the U.K.) on the soundtrack to the 1984 film Footloose.
In 1978 Slash Records was founded in Los Angeles by painter Bob Biggs, editor of the fanzine Slash, who signed The Germs, X, Fear, The Blasters, L7, and Los Lobos. In 1981 they spun off the subsidiary Ruby Records, which signed The Misfits, Dream Syndicate, The Gun Club, Violent Femmes, BoDeans, Robyn Hitchcock, and Burning Spear. In 1986 they were acquired by London Records, a subsidiary of PolyGram.
Disco Era year 1978 had its share of 1-hit wonders, starting with Kiss You All Over (#1 in the U.S.), by Exile, from Richmond, Ky., fronted by James Preston "J.P." Pennington (1949-). Also in 1978 English-Canadian rock singer Nicholas George "Nick" Gilder (1951-) of Sweeney Todd released his 1-hit wonder Hot Child in the City (#1 in the U.S.). Also in 1978 Glasgow, Scotland-born Australian singer John Paul "Squeak" Young (1950-) released his 1-hit wonder Love Is in the Air (#3 in the U.S.). Also in 1978 white Lawndale, N.C.-born R&B singer Alicia Bridges (1953-) released her 1-hit wonder I Love the Nightlife (Disco 'Round) (#5 in the U.S.), which even crossed over to country stations since she was did-I-say white. Also in 1978 Jamaica, N.Y.-born singer Walter Egan (1948-) released his 1-hit wonder Magnet and Steel (#8 in the U.S.), produced by Lindsey Buckingham and Richard Dashut of Fleetwood Mac. Also in 1978 Foxy, from Miami, Fla., incl. Ish "Angel" Ledesma (1952-) (vocals), Charllie Murciano (keyboards), Arnold Paseiro (1950-) (bass), Richard "Richie" Puente (1953-2004) (drums) (son of Tito Puente), and Joe Galdo (drums) released their 1-hit wonder Get Off (#9 in the U.S.). Also in 1978 Lenny LeBlanc (1951-) and Jesse Willard "Pete" Carr (1950-) released their 1-hit wonder Falling (#13 in the U.S.). Also in 1978 the New York dance band Odyssey, fronted by the Virgin Islands-born Lopez sisters Lillian Lopez (1945-), Louise Lopez (1943), and Carmen Lopez released their 1-hit wonder Native New Yorker (#21 in the U.S.). Also in 1978 Ohio-born country singer Johnny Paycheck (1938-2003) released his 1-hit wonder crossover hit Take This Job and Shove It. Speaking of crossover, in 1978 Australian singer Samantha Sang (Cheryl Lau Sang) (1951-) released her 1-hit wonder Emotion (#3 in the U.S.), written and produced by the Bee Gees, which sounded so much like the Bee Gees that I still can't believe it, cry me a river that leads to your ocean, it's just emotion that's taking me over. Actually she also reached #56 in the U.S. in 1978 with You Keep Me Dancin'. Also in 1978 Helena, Mont.-born singer Nicolette Larson (1952-97) released her debut album Nicolette (#15 in the U.S.), which features her 1-hit wonder Lotta Love (by Neil Young) (#1 in the U.S.). Also in 1978 Peaches and Herb released their 2-hit wonders Shake Your Groove Thing (#5 in the U.S.), and Reunited (#1 in the U.S.). Even Saturday Night Live star Stephen Glenn "Steve" Martin (1945-) had a 1978 1-hit wonder with the million-selling King Tut (#17 in the U.S.), backed by the Toot Uncommons, really the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band; it was helped by the King Tut craze caused by the traveling exhibit of his tomb artifacts. In 1978 Swiss-born falsetto disco singer Patrick Juvet (1950-) released the single I Love America, followed in 1979 by Lady Night, Swiss Kiss, and Laura Theme.
Also in 1978 the Blues Brothers blues and soul revivalist band was founded by Saturday Night Live comedy actors Daniel Edward "Dan" Aykroyd (1952-) and John Adam Belushi (1949-82), who cashed in big with the 1980 film The Blues Brothers, which features appearances by James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, Cab Calloway, and John Lee Hooker, along with great renditions of Rawhide, Stand By Your Man, Everybody Needs Somebody, and Jailhouse Rock.
In 1979 the $199.95 Sony Walkman was first marketed, designed in 1978 by Nobutoshi Kihara (1926-) (inventor of the home video tape recorder in 1964) as a portable pocket hi-fidelity audio cassette player with earphones, and named in tribute to Superman, although chmn. Akio Morita hated the name, causing it to also be marketed under the names Soundabout, Freestyle, and Stowaway. It went on to sell 220M units by the time it was discontinued in Apr. 2010. The first version had two earphone jacks since they assumed people wanted to share, plus a cutoff button for conversation.
In Jan. 1979 the English-American group The Pretenders, fronted by Christine Ellen "Chrissie" Hynde (1951-) released its first single, Stop Your Sobbing (by The Kinks), followed in Nov. 1979 with Brass in Pocket (#14 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.). Their debut album Pretenders (Jan. 19, 1980) was a hit. Album #3 Learning to Crawl (1983) (released after bandmembers James Honeyman-Scott and Pete Farnon died of ODs) features Back on the Chain Gang. Album #4 Get Close (Nov. 4, 1986) features their biggest hits Don't Get Me Wrong and My Baby. Album #6 Last of the Independents (May 10, 1994) contained the hit I'll Stand by You.
In Apr. 1979 English (Hammersmith, West London) New Wave musician Gary Numan (Gary Anthony James Webb) (1958-) and his Tubeway Army released album #2 Replicas (#1 in the U.K.), containing the track Are 'Friends' Electric? (#1 in the U.K.). In Sept. 1979 he released his solo debut album The Pleasure Principle (#1 in the U.K.), featuring the track Cars (#9 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.), all of which helped launch synthpop just in time for the 1980s. In 1984 he founded his own label Numa Records.
On May 9, 1979 Brooklyn, N.Y.-born country singer (the Wolfman?) Edward Thomas "Eddie" Rabbitt (1941-98), who wrote "Kentucky Rain" for Elvis Presley in 1970 decided to become a crossover star with album #5 Loveline, which features the track Suspicions (#13 in the U.S.). Album #6 Horizon (June 20, 1980) (#19 in the U.S.) features Drivin' My Life Away (#5 in the U.S.), and I Love a Rainy Night (#1 in the U.S.). Album #7 Step by Step (July 31, 1981) (#23 in the U.S.) features Someone Could Lose a Heart Tonight (#15 in the U.S.), and I Don't Know Where to Start (#35 in the U.S.). Album #8 Radio Romance (Oct. 1, 1982) (#31 in the U.S.) features You and I (w/Crystal Gale) (#7 in the U.S.), and You Can't Run from Love (#55 in the U.S.). After that he went back to country, although album #11 I Wanna Dance With You (Mar. 1, 1988) features a cover of Dion DiMucci's 1961 hit The Wanderer, by now rock is so far out that old rock is country? On May 7, 1998 he died in Nashville of lung cancer after charting 34 top-10 singles and 17 #1 hits on the Billboard country chart between 1976-90.
On May 11, 1979 the English punk rock group The Cure from Crawley, West Sussex, incl. Robert Smith (1959-) (vocals), Paul Stephen "Porl" Thompson (1961-) (sax, keyboards), Simon Jonathon Gallup (1960-) (bass), and Jason Toop Cooper (1967-)/ Boris Peter Bransby-Williams (1952-) (drums) released their debut album Three Imaginary Boys (Boys Don't Cry), which features the tracks 10:15 Saturday Night, and Foxy Lady (by Jimi Henrix). Album #2 Seventeen Seconds (album #2) (Apr. 18, 1980) (#20 in the U.K.) features Three, and A Forest. Album #3 Faith (Apr. 10, 1981) features Faith, Primary, The Holy Hour, and The Drowning Man. Album #4 Pornography (May 3, 1982) (#8 in the U.K.) starts out with "It doesn't matter if we all die." Tracks incl. Pornography, and The Hanging Garden. Album #5 The Top (Apr. 30, 1984) (#180 in the U.S.) (first album to chart in the U.S.) features The Caterpillar. Album #6 Head on the Door (Aug. 26, 1985) (#59 in the U.S., #7 in the U.K.) was the first with drummer Boris Williams, and features the tracks In Between Days, and Close to Me. Album #7 Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me (double album) (May 25, 1987) (#35 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.) features Just Like Heaven (#40 in the U.S.), Hey You!, Catch, Why Can't I Be You? (#54 in the U.S.), and Hot Hot Hot!!! Album #8 Disintegration (album #8) (May 1, 1989) (#12 in the U.S., #3 in the U.K.) saw Robert Smith turn 30, and go back to LSD to make it his best; it features Pictures of You (#71 in the U.S., #24 in the U.K.), Lovesong (The Cure Song) (#2 in the U.S., #18 in the U.K.), Lullaby (#74 in the U.S., #5 in the U.K.), and Fascination Street (#46 in the U.S.). Album #9 Wish (Apr. 21, 1991) (#2 in the U.S., #1 in the U.K.) sold 4M copies; they forgot the "The" on the cover; it features High (#42 in the U.S.), Friday I'm in Love (#17 in the U.S., #6 in the U.K.), and A Letter to Elise.
Speaking of ding-dongs. On Aug. 10, 1979 grown-up child star Michael Joseph Jackson (1958-2009) released album #5 Off the Wall, his first adult solo album, which sold 20M copies (8M in the U.S.), making him the first solo artist to have four singles from the same album in the Billboard top-10; it features the tracks Off the Wall, Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough, Rock with You, Girlfriend, and She's Out of My Life. If he had just stayed away from the plastic surgeons?
In Aug. 1979 the English (Northampton) Gothic rock group (first-ever) Bauhaus, originally Bauhaus 1919, incl. Peter John Murphy (1957-) ("the Godfather of Goth") (vocals), Daniel Gaston Ash (1957-) (guitar, vocals), David J (David J. Haskins) (1957-) (bass), and Kevin Haskins (Kevin Michael Dompe) (1960-) (drums) released their debut single Bela Lugosi's Dead, followed the same year by Dark Entries, Terror Couple Kill Colonel,