May 10


Today In Music History

1960 : The Silver Beetles (John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Stuart Sutcliffe, and Tommy Moore) auditioned for promoter Larry Parnes and singer Billy Fury for a job as Fury’s backing group. Parnes was also looking for backing groups for his lesser-known acts, and The Silver Beetles were selected as backing group for singer Johnny Gentle’s upcoming tour of Scotland. The group had changed its name from ‘The Beatals’ to ‘The Silver Beetles’ after Brian Casser (of Cass and the Cassanovas) remarked that the name ‘Beatals’ was “ridiculous”. He suggested they use the name ‘Long John and the Silver Beetles’, but John Lennon refused to be referred to as ‘Long John’.

1963 : The Rolling Stones recorded the Chuck Berry song ‘Come On’, at Olympic Studios, London. This the bands first release was issued on the 7th June 1963 by Decca Records.

1964 : Bob Dylan arrived in Britain for his first major UK tour including a show at London’s Royal Festival Hall on the 17th of this month.

1964 : Dusty Springfield makes her U.S. television debut on the Ed Sullivan Show on CBS

1965 : The Rolling Stones recorded a version of ‘(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction’ at Chess Studios in Chicago, with Brian Jones on harmonica. The group re-recorded it two days later at RCA Studios in Hollywood, with a different beat and the Gibson Maestro fuzzbox that Keith Richards had recently aquired, adding sustain to the sound of the guitar riff.

1967 : Mick Jagger and Keith Richards appeared at Chichester Crown Court, Sussex, charged with being in possession of drugs, they elect to go to trial pleading not guilty and were both granted £100 bail.

1967 : This week’s UK Top 5 singles: No.5, Lulu, ‘The Boat That I Row’, No.4, The Tremeloes, ‘Silence Is Golden’, No.3, Frank and Nancy Sinatra, ‘Somethin’ Stupid’, No.2, Mamas and the Papas, ‘Dedicated To The One I Love’, and No.1, Sandie Shaw, ‘Puppet On A Sting.’

1969 : Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd, The Move, Status Quo, Tremeloes, Marmalade, Love Sculpture, Van Der Graaf Generator all appeared at Nottingham County Football Ground, Nottingham, England. Presented by John Peel, tickets 22/6 on the gate.

1969 : Frank Sinatra’s version of ‘My Way’ made the British Top ten for the first time. Over the next three years it re-entered the Top 50 singles chart on eight different occasions. Paul Anka re-wrote the original French song for Sinatra, after he told Anka he was quitting the music business. Anka changed the melodic structure and lyrics to the song with Sinatra in mind.

1969 : The Moody Blues started a two-week run at No.1 on the UK album chart with ‘On The Threshold Of A Dream’ (their first No.1 album).

1969 : The Turtles gave a special performance at the White House as guests of Tricia Nixon. Stories circulate concerning members of the group allegedly snorted cocaine on Abraham Lincoln’s desk (wonder if that’s how they came to write “Happy Together”).

1969 : Led Zeppelin made their first appearance on the UK album chart when the band’s debut album charted at No. 6, going on to spend 71 weeks on the UK chart. It entered the US chart the following week at No. 10. Recorded in around 36 hours, the album is now considered one of the most important debuts in rock, creating an entirely new interpretation of the Rock And Roll genre, with groundbreaking musical styles and recording techniques.

1970 : David Bowie was awarded an Ivor Novello Award for Best Original Song ‘Space Oddity’, which he performed that night accompanied by the Les Reed Orchestra. The event was transmitted live via satellite to venues in America, France, Spain, Australia, Holland and Venezuela.

1974 : The Who sell out Madison Square Garden in a then-record 8 hours

1974 : Led Zeppelin launches their record label, Swan Song, with lavish parties in London and Los Angeles. Bad Company and Dave Edmunds would both record for the label, which shut down in 1983

1975 : Apple Records officially dissolves

1975 : Stevie Wonder headlines the fourth annual “Human Kindness Day” festival in Washington, DC. Belying the name of the festival, many in the estimated crowd of 125,000 turn violent, and hundreds of robberies and assaults are reported

1985 : All girl group The Go-Go’s announced they were breaking up. The members went on to enjoy solo success, (Belinda Carlisle and Jane Wiedlin) and the group reformed in the late 90’s.

1986 : Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee married TV star Heather Locklear in a courtyard in Santa Barbara California with five hundred guests. Tommy wore a white leather tuxedo.

1986 : Paul Simon plays three songs from his upcoming Graceland album on Saturday Night Live. He’s backed by South African musicians, including the vocal group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, who perform with him on “Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes.” With South Africa under a cultural boycott in an attempt to stop Apartheid, its music was sequestered. Simon’s appearance with musicians from the country and the subsequent album introduced the sound to a global audience, but also caused problems for Simon when he faced criticism for violating the boycott

1991 : Madonna’s ‘warts and all’ documentary film ‘Truth Or Dare in bed with Madonna’, premiered in Los Angeles.

1997 : Gary Barlow scored his second UK No.1 single with a song written by Madonna ‘Love Won’t Wait’, the former Take That singer’s second and last solo hit.

1999 : American singer, songwriter poet, cartoonist, screenwriter, and author of children’s books Shel Silverstein died of a heart attack aged 57. Wrote, ‘A Boy Named Sue’ for Johnny Cash (which Silverstein won a Grammy for in 1970) and many songs for Dr Hook including ‘Sylvia’s Mother’ and ‘The Cover of the Rolling Stone.’

2000 : Bobby Brown was arrested at Newark airport, New Jersey for breaking his probation order. He had been wanted in Florida since 1999 when his probation officer reported that a urine test proved positive for cocaine use.

2000 : Michael Bolton lost his appeal against a court ruling that he stole part of his 1991 hit ‘Love Is a Wonderful Thing’ from an Isley Brothers song. Bolton had asked for a retrial following a 1994 jury verdict that he had plagiarised parts of The Isley Brothers song of the same name, but, an appeals court panel upheld the ruling which awarded the group $5.4m from the profits of Bolton’s single – one of his biggest hits.

2005 : Seal married German supermodel Heidi Klum in a low-key ceremony on a beach in Mexico near the singer’s home on the luxurious Costa Careyes.

2010 : New York City’s Apollo Theatre began installing bronze plaques on the sidewalk outside the building of legends who had close ties to the theater. Among the first to be honored were James Brown, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and Ella Fitzgerald.

2010 : In tribute to the recently deceased Detroit Tigers broadcaster Ernie Harwell, Jose Feliciano performs the US National Anthem before the Tigers/Yankees game at Tiger Stadium. In 1968, Harwell had Feliciano sing the anthem before a Tigers World Series game. The 23-year-old, blind, Puerto Rican singer did the first famous non-traditional rendition of the song at that game, and he and Harwell took a lot of heat. In later years, it became common for singers to put their own spin on the song

2011 : The ornate iron gates of a children’s home which inspired John Lennon’s psychedelic Beatles anthem Strawberry Fields Forever were removed after The Salvation Army, which owned the former home, decided to put the red Victorian gates into storage. Beatles fans who passed the Liverpool site on tours would now be met with 10ft high replicas. The original gates were being taken to a secret location for storage, and would eventually be auctioned off.

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