Music-related trivia for the week [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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05-17-2005, 01:14 PM


May 13
1941 Ritchie Valens
1943 Mary Wells
1950 Danny Kirwan
1950 Stevie Wonder
1953 Tom Cochrane
1966 Darius Rucker

May 14
1936 Bobby Darin
1943 Jack Bruce
1952 David Byrne

May 15
1947 Graham Goble (Little River Band)
1948 Brian Eno
1953 Mike Oldfield

May 16
1919 Liberace
1946 Robert Fripp
1947 Darrell Sweet (Nazareth)

May 17
1948 Bill Bruford
1961 Enya

May 18
1911 Big Joe Turner
1942 Albert Hammond
1949 Rick Wakeman

May 19
1945 Pete Townshend
1949 Dusty Hill (ZZ Top)
1952 Grace Jones
1952 Joey Ramone

The first albums chart appeared in the U.S. in 1945. At that time, an album was the term used for a set of 78 rpm singles, which were developed in 1915. The LP (long play album) wouldn't appear until 1948, when it was introduced by Columbia Records, now Sony Music. The same year, rival RCA Records added the 45 rpm single to the market.

Wilbert Harrison hit number 1 this week in 1959 with his classic recording of Leiber and Stoller's, Kansas City. The song was originally done in 1952 as K.C. Lovin', by Little Willie Littlefield. Harrison picked up on the track and recorded it, playing guitar, drums, harmonica and piano himself. Rival versions by Hank Ballard and The Midnighters, Rocky Olson, Rockin' Ronald and The Rebels, Little Richard, as well as a re-issue of Littlefield's record all appeared in March of 1959, but Harrison eventually won out. Unfortunately, he would have to wait until 1970 for another top 40 hit, when Let's Work Together made it to number 32 in the U.S.

In 1961, The Everly Brothers started their own record label, Calliope. The idea was mostly Don's, and the first record he released was Pomp and Circumstance under the pseudonym Adrian Kimberley. Don remarked, “I started Calliope because I wanted to do things with horns and big bands and I couldn't fit it into what The Everly Brothers were doing.” The song reached number 34 on BILLBORAD. Phil's contribution included the track, Melodrama, which also had Carole King and Glen Campbell performing on it, and was issued under the name of The Keystone Family Singers.

Grace Slick crashed her Mercedes in San Francisco in 1971. Scheduled recording sessions with Jefferson Airplane had to be cancelled. They were working on the Bark album at the time, which would later climb to number 11 in the U.S.

Dire Straits saw the U.S. release of their first single, Sultans of Swing, in 1978 by Warner Brothers. Their debut album cost less than $30,000 to record. The remastered CD version sounds great! The band would return in a big way in 1985 with the release of their digitally recorded classic, Brothers in Arms.

Peter Criss left Kiss in 1980, and was replaced by drummer Eric Carr. Carr was first heard on the concept album, The Elder, later the following year. Both Ace Frehley and Criss had opposed the idea of The Elder, and when it bombed, Frehley made his exit. Criss had co-written Kiss' biggest hit, Beth, and the band had to wait until 1990 to return to the top 10 when Forever rose to number 8.

The Bachelors disbanded for good in 1984, twenty years after their biggest hit, Diane. The trio came out of Dublin in the early '60s with brothers, Declan and Conleth Cluskey, and John Stokes. Charmaine made the top ten in the U.K. in 1963, and was followed into the top 40 by Faraway Places and then Whispering. But it was their next hit, Diane, that earned them international attention. Their only other song to make the top 20 in the U.S. was Marie, from 1965, and a couple of years later, they forever dropped off the charts.

Tears for Fears finished up a U.K. tour at the Royal Albert Hall in 1985, just before heading out on an eighteen month world tour. Everybody Wants to Rule the World had just cracked the U.S. top 10, and would soon give them their first number 1 hit. It was followed to the top by Shout a couple months later.

After a 3 year absence, Queen returned to the top 10 of the U.K. singles chart with I Want it All, a song from their excellent 1989 album, The Miracle. Breakthrough, The Invisible Man, Scandal and the title track from the number 1 album would also successfully climb the British charts.

Huey Lewis and The News, The Grateful Dead, Los Lobos, Linda Ronstadt and others performed at a 1989 AIDS benefit concert in Oakland. Lewis had just finished his contract with Chrysalis Records, and would release his next album two years later. Perfect World and the title track from Small World both made the top 25, and after Couple Days Off and It Hit Me Like a Hammer from 1991, the hits stopped coming.

R.E.M. had their first number 1 album in the U.S. in 1991, with Out of Time. Two singles from the album, Losing My Religion and the embarrassing Shiny Happy People would later reach the top 10 of the singles chart. Lead singer Michael Stipe later commented on writing Losing My Religion, “I really hit the nail on the head with that one. My idea with that song was to rewrite Every Breath You Take. I guess I did a pretty good job of it.” The album dropped to number 5 the following week and then jumped back to number 1 the week after.

The first Monterey Folk Festival included Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Pete Seeger, The Weavers and Peter, Paul and Mary. It was held in Monterey, California, in 1963, several days after Dylan had declined an Ed Sullivan Show appearance. Dylan had just released The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan album.

Bob Dylan was in Manchester in 1966, performing an electric set of songs to displeased fans. They had come to hear their folk god entertain with his acoustic guitar, harmonica and lyrics of social consciousness. Instead, Dylan and members of The Band cranked up the volume in their second set and electrified the night with Like a Rolling Stone, Ballad of a Thin Man, Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues and other songs. One upset fan accused Dylan of being a “Judas” for turning his back on his folk following. The concert showed up on numerous bootlegs over the years, but was finally released officially in 1998.

R.E.M. put on a free lunchtime concert in downtown Toronto in 2001, for 25,000 fans. Instead of a full-fledged tour in support of their new Reveal album, the group from Athens, Georgia, decided to play a very few select cities and leave it at that. R.E.M. also appeared in London and Cologne, Germany, but Toronto was the lone North American stop. Guitarist, Peter Buck, commented that the city was the only one flexible enough to buy into the concept.

The Beach Boys 1966 Pet Sounds was a masterpiece. It contained Wouldn't It Be Nice, Sloop John B., God Only Knows, Here Today, Caroline No and other songs. A box set of the recording sessions of Pet Sounds was released by Capitol Records in the 1990s.

Dion was back with The Belmonts in 1967. It had been almost seven years since they split, and five years since either had a hit. Dion and The Belmonts released Together Again, featuring Dion originals like My Girl the Month of May, Come to My Side, Jump Back Baby and New York Town. A couple of singles, Movin' Man and Berimbau, were taken from the LP, but they couldn't help the album sell many copies. Five years later they would try it once again with a concert at Madison Square Garden and its follow-up live album.

Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr played together for the first time since the break-up of The Beatles, at the wedding reception of Eric Clapton and Patti Boyd. Joining them for a jam session in 1979 were Clapton, Mick Jagger and Ginger Baker.

Yes shuffled members in 1980 when Rick Wakeman and Jon Anderson were replaced by ex-Buggles, Geoff Downes and Trevor Horn. Horn has since become a well-sought after producer, working on such hit albums as the three Seal releases. The new version of Yes would record the Drama album, the only Yes release without singer Jon Anderson.

The Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl was released in 1977, two weeks after Live at the Star Club in Hamburg, Germany. Hollywood Bowl had been recorded over two nights, a year apart (August 23, 1964 and August 30, 1965). Another track from the 1965 concert, Baby's in Black, was released in 1995 as a B-side on the Real Love CD single.

Keith Relf, former lead singer for The Yardbirds, died in 1976. He was electrocuted at home while tuning his guitar. The Yardbirds recorded such classics as For Your Love, Heart Full of Soul (both written by Graham Gouldman, later of 10cc), Good Morning Little Schoolgirl, I Ain't Got You, I'm a Man and Shapes of Things. The Yardbirds are also famous for introducing the world to three of rock's greatest guitarists, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page. In 1988, Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and Jason Bonham temporarily reformed this week for the 40th Anniversary of Atlantic Records.

Sammy Davis Jr. died of throat cancer in 1990. He was 64. His voice on many of the earlier recordings is incredible. Davis was a member of The Rat Pack, and had several top 40 hits, including Something's Gotta Give, Love Me or Leave Me, That Old Black Magic, The Candy Man and his signature tune, I've Gotta Be Me.

Frank Sinatra died this week in 1998. He recorded more albums than any other artist (51), even Elvis Presley. Sinatra provided vocals for the Harry James and Tommy Dorsey bands early in his career, after which he went solo. Ol' Blue Eyes also moved into film work and by the mid-1950s he was one of America's biggest stars. Songs like Learnin' the Blues, Love and Marriage, (Love is) The Tender Trap, Hey! Jealous Lover, All the Way and Witchcraft kept him near the top of the charts, which continued in the 1960s with Strangers in the Night, Summer Wind and Somethin' Stupid, with daughter Nancy. His last hit was 1980's, Theme from New York New York while Duets II from 1994 became his final album of new recordings.


May 13
1988 Chet Baker

May 14
1976 Keith Relf
1998 Frank Sinatra

May 16
1990 Sammy Davis Jr.

May 17
1999 Bruce Fairbairn