May 14

Today In Music History

1951 : Recorded on this day, Howlin’ Wolf – “Moanin’ At Midnight”

1955 : Les Baxter’s Unchained Melody hits #1

1955 : Bill Haley and his Comets’ Rock Around The Clock enters the charts

1955 : Bo Diddley’s “Bo Diddley” enters the charts

1956 : Buddy Holly visits his optometrist’s office to correct his horrible 20/800 vision with primitive contact lenses, but Buddy hates them, and decides to keep his signature glasses.

1957 : Elvis Presley was rushed to a Los Angeles hospital after swallowing a porcelain cap from one of his front teeth, which then lodged its-self in one of his lungs.

1960 : The Silver Beats (John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Stu Sutcliffe, and Tommy Moore) performed at Lathom Hall, Seaforth, Liverpool. They played a few songs during the “interval” to audition for promoter Brian Kelly. Also appearing are Cliff Roberts & the Rockers, The Deltones, and Kingsize Taylor & the Dominoes. This is the only occasion on which the group uses the name “Silver Beats”, quickly changing it back to “Silver Beetles”.

1964 : Recorded on this day, Elvis Presley – “Roustabout”

1964 : Recorded on this day, Jan & Dean – “Little Old Lady (From Pasadena)”

1965 : Recorded on this day, Elvis Presley – “What Every Woman Lives For,” “Petunia, The Gardener’s Daughter,” “Look Out, Broadway,” “Everybody Come Aboard” from his “Frankie & Johnny” album

1966 : For the record ninth time in three years, The Kingsmen’s hit version of Louie Louie enters the Billboard singles charts

1968 : Recorded on this day, The Rascals – “People Got To Be Free”

1968 : John Lennon and Paul McCartney appeared on NBC-TV’s Tonight Show with guest-host Joe Garagiola sitting in for Johnny Carson. The conversation included some light hearted banter about meditation, the forming of Apple Corps. and song writing.

1969 : During a UK tour, Fairport Conventions van crashed on the M1 motorway on the way home from a gig in Birmingham killing the group’s 19 year-old drummer Martin Lamble and Richard Thompson’s girlfriend Jeannie Franklyn.

1973 : No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: Stevie Wonder’s “You Are The Sunshine Of My Life”

1976 : 33 year-old Keith Relf, former lead singer for The Yardbirds, was electrocuted while tuning a guitar which was not properly grounded. The accident happened in his West London home where he was found by his eight year old son, still holding the plugged-in electric guitar. The Yardbirds had the hits ‘For Your Love’, ‘Heart Full of Soul’, and ‘Shapes of Things’.

1977 : During a UK tour, Talking Heads played a gig at The Rock Garden in London where Brian Eno who was in the audience saw the band, who then went on to produce them.

1977 : Leo Sayer went to No.1 on the US singles chart with the Albert Hammond and Carole Bayer Sager song ‘When I Need You’, the singers second US No.1, also No.1 in the UK.

1981 : No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: Kim Carnes’ “Bette Davis Eyes”

1983 : Spandau Ballet scored their first and only UK No.1 album with ‘True.’ The title track from the album spent four weeks at No.1 on the UK singles charts and reached No.2 in the US. Other singles from the album included ‘Gold’ (a No.2 UK hit and a Top 30 hit in the U.S.), ‘Lifeline’, and ‘Communication’.

1985 : Ronald Reagan presents Michael Jackson with a special Presidential Humanitarian Award at the White House for his work against drunk driving. Footage of the ceremony is shown repeatedly when Jackson comes into legal trouble in the following years.

1988 : Atlantic Records’ 40th Anniversary celebration takes place at New York’s Madison Square Garden, featuring appearances from many famous artists on the label’s roster: The Bee Gees, Wilson Pickett, The Rascals, The Coasters, Emerson, Lake And Palmer, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Foreigner, Yes, Genesis, and the event’s main attraction, a rare reunion of Led Zeppelin, with John Bonham’s son Jason taking over drums for his late father.

1993 : The US tabloid Weekly World News claims that Elvis Presley has only recently died.

1993 : During an auction at Christies in London the acoustic guitar that Elvis Presley used to make his first recordings in 1954, ‘That’s All Right Mama’ and ‘Blue Moon of Kentucky’,it sold for $152,000. And four ‘Super Hero’, Costumes worn by the group Kiss sold for $35,385

1987 : Frank Sinatra, who had played South Africa in the past, suddenly condemns the apartheid regime publicly, referring to president P.W. Botha as “a bum.”

1998 : American singer and actor Frank Sinatra died at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles aged 82, after suffering a heart attack. Sinatra had his first hit in 1940, working in the Swing era with Harry James and Tommy Dorsey, won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the 1953 film ‘From Here to Eternity’. He went on to score over 25 Top 40 singles including the 1966 No.1 ‘Strangers In The Night’. His 1969 single ‘My Way’, re-entered the UK charts eight times and spent a total of 165 weeks on the UK chart.

1998 : George Michael was fined £500 after being convicted of a “lewd act” in a Los Angeles lavatory. The Los Angeles court also ordered him to undergo psychological counseling and carry out 80 hours community service.

2000 : Tom Jones was at No.1 on the UK album chart with ‘Reload’ making the singer the oldest artist to score a UK No.1 album with new material.

2002 : The musical We Will Rock You opened in the West End of London, England at the Dominion Theatre. The musical was written by British comedian and author Ben Elton in collaboration with Queen members Brian May and Roger Taylor. WWRY has since become the longest-running musical at the Dominion Theatre.

2003 : Lawyers for Britney Spears and the Skechers footwear company settled a dispute over a deal for the pop star to market a line of roller skates and accessories. Spears had filed a $1.5 million breach of agreement lawsuit against Skechers in December, claiming the company failed to pay her adequately. Skechers had responded with a $10 million lawsuit, accusing Spears of fraud and breach of the three-year licensing agreement she signed in January 2002.

2004 : Phil Spector was arrested after getting into a scuffle with his chauffeur at his California mansion. The 64 year old record producer was taken into custody and later released after a court date was set.

2005 : No. 1 Billboard Album: Bruce Springsteen, “Devils & Dust”

2006 : Red Hot Chili Peppers started a two-week run at No.1 on the UK album chart with ‘Stadium Arcadium’ the bands ninth studio album, also a US No.1.

2006 : Ashton “Family Man” Barrett, former bassist with Bob Marley’s Wailers, loses a lawsuit alleging that Island Records and Marley’s estate have failed to pay him millions in royalties.

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