THIS WEEK IN ROCK
July 7th to July 13th
Two versions of "Sh-Boom" hit the US Top 10. The original version by a
Black group called The Chords was at #9 and the cover version by a White
group from Canada called The Crew Cuts was at #5.
Ricky Nelson's "Poor Little Fool"
enters the US charts, where it will eventually reach number one.
David Rose, known for his movie scores and string albums, had the number
one song on the Billboard chart with "The Stripper", a number he had
written years before as a bit of comic relief for his orchestra.
Sonny And Cher perform their new single
"I Got You Babe" on US TV's Rock and Roll show,
The Monkees began a 29 date tour with
Jimi Hendrix as a support act. Hendrix
was dropped after eight shows, being told that his music was not
suitable for a young audience.
The Lovin' Spoonful's Steve Boone and
Zal Yanofsky are arrested for drug use. The pair later implicated some
of San Francisco's best-connected drug suppliers.
The Yardbirds wrapped up their final US
tour before splitting up. Guitarist Jimmy Page was determined to keep
the act going, renaming a new line-up The New Yardbirds. Keith Moon of
The Who is rumored to have said "...it'll probably go over like a led
the final name change.
ABBA members, 26 year old Bjorn Ulvaeus
and 21 year old Agnetha Faltskog (the blonde) are married in Verum,
Sweden. They would divorce in 1979.
Paul McCartney releases "Live and Let Die", the theme from the James
Bond movie of the same name. It will reach #2 in the US and #9 in the
Cher and Gregg Allman become the parents of a son they named Elijah Blue
On the twelfth anniversary of the break-up of The Yardbirds,
Led Zeppelin played their final live
concert in West Berlin. They finished the show with "Whole Lotta Love".
"Relax" by Frankie Goes To
becomes the biggest selling single of all time in Great Britain,
replacing Paul McCartney's "Mull Of Kintyre" for that honor.
Bruce Springsteen's "Born In The USA" went to #1 on the Billboard album
chart for the first of a four week stay. On the strength of seven single
releases, the LP would stay in the Top Ten for a remarkable 84 weeks. It
eventually reached a 15 Times Platinum certification on April 19, 1995
and has sold over 30 million copies worldwide.
CDs started outselling vinyl
records for the first time. The
dominance of CDs virtually wiped out the 45 RPM single
format, as nothing ended up
replacing them. The 3 1/2 inch CD single would die out after
record companies refused to
offer them at a reasonable price.
A jet carrying
Rod Stewart makes an emergency landing
after a mid-air collision with a bird. Aviation officials call the
incident "undramatic", but Stewart is visibly shaken.
Syd Barrett, a founding member and driving force behind
Pink Floyd, died from complications
arising from diabetes at the age of 60. He had dropped out of the group
in April of 1968 and by 1974 had turned his back on the music industry
completely, choosing to retreat to the cellar of his childhood home in
Cambridge where he shunned all contact with the outside world.
Ozzy Osbourne became the first artist
to be honored on a Hollywood-style Walk of Fame in Birmingham, England.
After an earlier private funeral, Michael Jackson's family and fans said
farewell to the King Of Pop at an emotional memorial service at the
Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Berry Gordy, who signed The Jackson 5 to Motown Records in 1968, closed
his eulogy by saying "Michael, thank you for the joy, thank you for the
love. You will live in my heart forever."
Paul McCartney joined Ringo Starr onstage at a concert at New York's
Radio City Music Hall to help
celebrate the former Beatle drummer's 70th birthday. With Ringo's All
Starr Band, joined by Yoko Ono, Joe Walsh, Angus Young and Steven Van
Zandt, Paul belted out "Birthday" and Ringo delivered "With A Little
Help From My Friends".
George Michael expressed his delight
after learning that English tabloid News of the World was
shutting down. As a constant target of the paper, Michael declared that
the announcement is "a fantastic day for Britain."
"Teddy Bear" became
Elvis Presley's eighth US number one
hit in the past fifteen months. It would remain at the top of the
Billboard Pop chart for seven weeks and even led the R&B and Country
chart for a week.
The first Gold record album presented by the Recording Industry
Association of America (RIAA) was awarded to the soundtrack LP,
"Oklahoma". The honor signified that the album had reached one million
dollars in sales. The first Gold single issued by the RIAA was "Catch a
Falling Star" by Perry Como in March of 1958. A Gold single represented
sales of one million
Hank Ballard records a self-penned tune called "The Twist" at Vee-Jay
Records' studios in Gary, Indiana. A re-recorded version released by
King Records would make a modest splash on the R&B charts in 1959, but
it would take
Chubby Checker to make a giant hit out
of it in 1960.
The Dave Clark Five followed The
Beatles onto the silver
screen with a movie of their own
called Catch Us If You Can. The film was renamed to Having a
Wild Weekend for its US release and featured the group performing
"Catch Us If You Can", "Having a Wild Weekend" and "I Can't Stand It".
In what is ruled an attempted suicide, singer Marianne Faithful takes an
overdose of barbiturates on the set of the Australian movie, Ned
Kelly. She was dropped from the cast and entered hospital for
treatment of heroin addiction.
The Everly Brothers
Summer TV series debuts on
CBS-TV for the first of a ten week run.
34 year old Bill Withers had the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 with
"Lean On Me", his second US Top Ten hit after "Ain't No Sunshine" in
September 1971. The song reached #18 in the UK. Just a couple of years
earlier, Withers was making toilet seats for Boeing 747s.
Donny Osmond scores the first of his
three UK number one singles with "Puppy Love", a remake of Paul Anka's
1960 #2 hit. Donny's version reached #3 in the US.
After a six month stay, the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever is
finally knocked out of the top spot on the Billboard
album chart by Gerry Rafferty's
"City To City", which contained the single "Baker Street".
After signing with Island Records, the B-52s make their live debut at
London's Lyceum Ballroom.
Chuck Negron of
Three Dog Night is admitted to the
psychiatric ward of a Los Angeles hospital because of drug-induced
problems. He would eventually recover, but was denied re-admission to
the band and would be forced to tour as a solo act.
Playboy magazine runs a nude pictorial of Madonna, using black
photos of her that were taken in
1977. Cover notes announced: Madonna Nude. Unlike a Virgin... for the
very first time.
Michael Jackson spoke out against the
music industry's treatment of artists, alleging that the business was
rife with racism. Speaking at a civil rights meeting in New York,
Jackson claimed there was a 'conspiracy' among record companies,
especially towards Black artists. A spokesman for Jackson's record label
said the remarks were "ludicrous, spiteful and hurtful."
One of Elvis Presley's teeth went up for auction on eBay. The tooth was
owned by the King's former fiancee, Linda Thompson, until it went to the
Elvis Presley Museum which later sold the tooth. The current owner said
he'd been contacted by a European company that wanted to extract DNA
from the tooth, but he refused. The opening bid on the tooth, a lock of
hair from his Army induction haircut and a Gold record for "Love Me
Tender" was $100,000.
A landmark in music history is established on July 9th, when
Bill Haley's "Rock Around The Clock"
reaches number one on the Billboard chart. Many music historians will
eventually acknowledge the song as a dividing line, separating Rock and
Roll from everything that preceded it.
Pat Boone releases his cover version of
Fats Domino's "Ain't That A Shame".
Domino's recording reached number ten in the US while Boone's version
went all the way to number one.
Les Paul and Mary Ford enter the
Billboard charts with "Hummingbird", which will reach #7 and become the
first of their five Pop chart entries.
Dick Clark made his debut as host of Bandstand on Philadelphia TV
station WFIL. He took over from Bob Horn, who had been charged with
driving while intoxicated during a highly-publicized police crackdown.
The show's name would be changed to American Bandstand when it
went to ABC-TV in 1957. Clark relinquished his hosting duties in 1989 to
26 year-old David Hirsch, but the program died within a matter of
months. Still, it had been on the air for 37 years - a record for a
television variety show.
After the June 30th trouble at Asbury Park,
Bill Haley And His Comets are denied
permission to play at the Roosevelt Stadium in Jersey City. A city
ordnance was passed that read: "Rock and roll music encouraged juvenile
delinquency and inspired young females in lewd bathing suits to perform
obscene dances on the city's beaches."
Bobby Helms records "My
Special Angel", which will
become his first US Top 40 hit when it reaches #7 later in the year.
Johnny Cash signs with Columbia Records, where he will remain for the
next 30 years.
After enjoying his first hit in England with "Handy Man" earlier in the
year, 23 year old Jimmy Jones tops the UK chart with "Good Timin'", a #3
hit in the US.
Paul McCartney and
Wings played their very first show when
they appeared in the small French town of Chateauvillon. The band
included Denny Laine, Denny Seiwell, Henry McCullough and Paul's wife,
Linda. It was McCartney's first time on the road since The Beatles quit
touring in 1966.
Crosby, Stills, and Nash start their
reunion tour in Seattle.
"Undercover Angel" by
Alan O'Day reached the top spot on the
Billboard Pop chart. It was his only
solo hit, but it was not the
first visit to the top of the Pop music world. He wrote "Angie Baby", a
#1 hit for
Helen Reddy and the #3 hit, "Rock And
Roll Heaven" for
The Righteous Brothers. "Undercover
Angel" stalled at #43 in the UK.
The Jacksons begin a 36 city tour that
would produce the LP "The Jacksons Live". The series of
concerts will gross five and a
half million dollars, $100,000 of which they will donate to the Atlanta
The Police started an eight week run at #1 on the US
singles chart with "Every Breath
You Take", also a chart topper in the UK.
"Fantastic", the debut album by
Wham!, enters the UK chart at #1.
The Rolling Stones were forced to
cancel a show for the first time ever when Keith Richards' index finger
becomes inflamed in Glasgow, Scotland.
Mick Jagger's eight year marriage to Jerry Hall is annulled. After
hearing evidence on behalf of Hall, the judge ruled their marriage in
Bali in 1990 was not
valid either in Indonesia or
under English law, and a decree of nullity was granted.
Milan B. Williams, one of the founding members of
The Commodores, died at the age of 58
after a long battle with cancer. He wrote the band's first hit, "Machine
Bobby Rydell underwent both a kidney
and liver transplant. Six months later, he would be back onstage.
Elton John told the British tabloid
The Sun that he considered himself lucky to be alive after
unknowingly battling appendicitis. The Rocket Man played through the
pain during a series of concerts before seeking medical attention. He
told the press, "I'm lucky to be alive. I was a ticking time bomb. I
guess I could have died at any time."
Jon Bon Jovi returned to his home town of Sayreville, New Jersey to
donate $1 million to the Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund. Presenting a check
to Governor Chris Christie, the singer told a crowd in front of the town
hall, "One thought came to me. What can I do? One of the residents
responded, saying, 'Use your voice.'"
The US music show Your Hit Parade premiered on NBC-TV. The
program, which featured vocalists covering the top hits of the week, had
been on radio since 1935. It moved to CBS in 1958 but was canceled the
following year, unable to cope with the rising popularity of Rock 'n'
Producer Sam Phillips took an acetate of
Elvis Presley singing "That's All
Right" to DJ Dewey Phillips at Memphis radio station WHBQ. After Dewey
played the song on the air around 9:30 that evening, listeners flooded
the phone lines requesting to hear the song again.
New York radio station WINS announced the
hiring of pioneer Rock disc
Alan Freed to be the host of their
Rock 'n' Roll Party. As he did on his earlier Moondog's Rock 'n'
Roll House Party Show on WJW in Cleveland, Freed programmed records
by Black R&B artists that many White teenagers had never heard before.
Freed is often credited with popularizing the term "Rock and Roll",
although the phrase was first used in 1942 by Billboard magazine
columnist Maurie Orodenker to describe upbeat recordings.
"Tossin' and Turnin'" by 28 year old Bobby Lewis reaches the top of the
Billboard chart for the first of a seven week run, one of the longest of
the year. A few months later he'll have another Top Ten song, "One Track
Mind", his only other major hit record.
Martha And The Vandellas release "Heatwave",
reach #4 on the Billboard Pop
chart and #1 on the R&B chart by mid-August. The song became their first
million-seller and eventually won the group their only Grammy nomination
for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group.
The Rolling Stones classic rocker
"Satisfaction" was number one in the US on both the Cashbox and
Billboard charts. In 2004 Rolling Stone magazine placed
"Satisfaction" in the number two spot on its list of The 500 Greatest
Songs of All Time, and in 2006 it was added to the Library of Congress
National Recording Registry, despite its sexually suggestive lyrics.
Wilson Pickett's "In The Midnight Hour"
is released, as is
Sonny And Cher's "I Got You Babe".
The Strangeloves, a New York-based
American songwriting team who pretended to be a band from Australia,
cracked the Billboard Top 40 for the first time with "I Want Candy".
They had already had success by writing "My Boyfriend's Back" for The
Angles and would place two more of their own recordings on the chart
with "Cara-Lin" (#39) and "Night Time" (#30).
Cat Stevens cuts his first record, "I
Love My Dog" at Decca Records' studio in London. It would peak at #28 in
the UK the following November.
Kenny Rogers and several other members
of the New Christy Minstrels quit to form the First Edition. The new
group received their first national exposure on the Smothers Brothers
TV show and went on to have such hits as "Just Dropped In (To See What
Condition My Condition Was In)" in 1968, "Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to
Town" in 1969 and 1971's "Something's Burning" as well as
hosting their own weekly TV
Bobbie Gentry records "Ode to Billie Joe", which will top the Billboard
chart next August. Originally intended as the B-side of her first
single, the song has now sold over 3 million copies world-wide.
The Nice was banned from Royal Albert Hall in London after stomping on
and burning an American flag during a concert. Two years later, Keith
Emerson, leader of the Nice, joined Greg Lake and Carl Palmer in
Emerson, Lake and Palmer.
Former Rolling Stones' guitarist Brian Jones is laid to rest at the
Priory Road Cemetery in Prestbury, England. The other members of the
band, except Mick Jagger, were in attendance.
Three Dog Night's "Liar" is released.
It would become their sixth Billboard Top Ten song, topping out at #7.
Harry Nilsson's album, "Son of
Schmilsson" is released. It featured George Harrison under the name
George Harrysong and Ringo Starr, listed as Richie Snare, on some of the
After being married for only ten days,
Cher petitioned for divorce from
Greg Allman. She would change her mind
a few days later, but the pair eventually split for good in 1979.
Gladys Knight's NBC-TV Summer variety
series begins, as does The Mac Davis Show.
The Starland Vocal Band, the first act to be signed to John Denver's new
Windsong label, had the top tune on the Billboard chart with "Afternoon
Delight". The song reached #18 in the UK.
After years of trying to find hit material,
England Dan and John Ford Coley reach
the Billboard Hot 100 with, "I'd Really Love To See You Tonight". The
single will rise to number two in North America and sell over two
Elvis Presley has his father Vernon
fire three of his
Sonny West, Red West and Dave Hebler.
No reason for the dismissal was ever given to the trio. Sonny West and
his cousin Red had been with Elvis since 1960. Hebler had been his
self-defense instructor and personal bodyguard for four years.
Chuck Berry is sentenced to four months
in prison for income-tax evasion. In 1973, he short-changed Uncle Sam
The Grateful Dead's Jerry Garcia goes
into a diabetic coma. He recovered and was released from hospital three
weeks later on his 44th birthday.
Promoters cancel the remainder of a
reunion tour due to poor ticket
sales. The tour featured Diana Ross without
Mary Wilson or Cindy Birdsong, who
refused to join due to the little money they were offered.
Arista Records announced a September release date for
Barry Manilow's next album, "The
Greatest Songs of the Seventies". This was his third volume of
decade-driven, covers albums, the first two of which sold nearly 1.7
million copies in the United States combined.
Olivia Newton-John married 49-year old
Australian entrepreneur, John Easterling, in a small wedding at her
Malibu, California home.
A US judge drastically reduced a $675,000 US verdict against a Boston
University graduate student charged with illegally
downloading and sharing 30
songs. The student admitted in court to downloading songs between 1999
and 2007 and a jury assessed the damage award last July. The US District
Court judge in Boston cut the damage award to $67,500, stating the
original fine was "unconstitutionally excessive" and "wholly
A pub in Dundee, Scotland called Lennon's Bar was forced to change the
name of the venue and remove all Beatles memorabilia after Yoko Ono
threatened legal action for copyright infringement
Alan Freed debuts his Moondog Rock 'n'
Roll House Party on WJW radio in Cleveland, where he plays mostly R&B
tunes. The broadcast ran from 11:15 PM until 2 AM and enjoyed a loyal
following by Freed's fans who called themselves Moondoggers.
The novelty song "Alley-Oop" sat at the top of Billboard's chart,
credited to a then fictitious group called The
Argyles. The song was actually sung by Gary Paxton, who had been the
latter half of Skip And Flip and was recorded after he had been advised
that he was still under contract to Brent Records. Gary made up the
group's name and then had to put a band together when the song became a
hit. In the UK, the record reached #24.
Although the music world was being dominated by Rock and Roll, crooner
Dean Martin's version of a tune written in 1947, "Everybody Loves
Somebody", cracked the Billboard Top 40 on its way to number one. This
would be Dino's first Top 40 hit since 1958 and ultimately replaced
"That's Amore" as his signature song.
The Supremes' "Where Did Our Love Go?"
is released and enters the Hot 100. It stays on the chart for 14 weeks
and would become the group's first number one hit next August.
Stevie Wonder released his first single
without the title "Little" in front of his name. "Hey Harmonica Man"
reached number 29 on the
singles chart, his third Top 40
David Bowie's single, "Space Oddity" is
released to coincide with the first lunar landing by Apollo 11 on July
20th. The song would rise to #5 in the UK but would not become a hit in
the US until it was re-released in 1973 when it would
The Rolling Stones' "Honky Tonk Women"
is released. The band started recording the tune as a Country song based
on Hank Williams' "Honky Tonk Blues", but found that it made a better
Three Dog Night's version of Randy
Newman's "Mama Told Me Not To Come" sat at the top of the Billboard Hot
100 and the Cashbox Best Sellers Chart. It was a song that took singer
Cory Wells over two years to convince the rest of the band to record. It
reached #3 in the UK.
The soundtrack to the 1969 Woodstock concert becomes the first
triple-disc album to top the Billboard chart.
The Grateful Dead receive two Gold
records for albums they released in 1970, "Workingman's Dead" and
Hubert Johnson, a member of the Motown group The Contours, committed
suicide in Detroit. Johnson was a cousin of Jackie Wilson, who
introduced The Contours to Motown head Berry Gordy Jr. The group took
their feverish dance tune "Do You Love Me?" to number three on the
Billboard Hot 100 in 1962.
Lars Ulrich of Metallica appears before a US Senate panel to testify
against websites like Napster, that allowed people to trade music
for free over the
More than 200 mourners attended the funeral of
The Who's bass player, John Entwistle,
held in the 12th Century church of St. Edward in Stow-on-the-Wold.
The hand-painted drum skin that appeared on the cover of
The Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely
Hearts Club Band" sold for $1.1 million at a Christie's memorabilia sale
in London. John Lennon's handwritten lyrics for "Give Peace a Chance"
fetched $834,000, well above pre-sale expectations of around $500,000.
Rob Grill, lead singer and bassist for the 1960s rock band
The Grass Roots, whose hits included
"Midnight Confessions", "Temptation Eyes" and "Let's Live for Today",
died after suffering a head injury from a fall caused by a stroke. He
Tommy Ramone, drummer for The Ramones, died from from
cancer of the bile duct at the
age of 62. He was born Erdelyi Tamas.
Elvis Presley quit his day job as a
truck driver for the Crown Electric
Company and signed a recording
contract with Sun Records. He also inked a one year, personal management
deal with Scotty Moore, who would receive 10% of all earnings from
Presley's live appearances.
Alan Freed's show The Big Beat
debuts on ABC-TV with guests
The Everly Brothers, Frankie Lymon,
Buddy Knox and
Connie Francis. The show was later
canceled after an episode in which Frankie Lymon was seen dancing with a
White girl, which reportedly offended the management of ABC's local
affiliates in the
Pianist Floyd Cramer records his biggest hit, "Last Date", which will
reach #2 in the US by next November, selling over a million copies.
Pat Boone begins a 10-day tour of South
Africa at the Ice Dome in Durban. When he returns to California, he will
begin filming State Fair.
The Rolling Stones played their first
concert at the Marquee club in London. Their line-up consisted of lead
vocalist Mick Jagger, guitarists Keith Richards and Brian Jones, Dick
Taylor on bass, pianist Ian Stewart and Mick Avory, later of The Kinks,
on drums. Avory and Taylor would be replaced by Tony Chapman on drums
and Bill Wyman on bass. Chapman didn't work out and drummer Charlie
Watts completed the Stones' line-up in January 1963.
The Beach Boys record "Sloop John B", a
1927 Folk song that featured rhythm guitarist Al Jardine on lead vocal.
The record would climb to number three in May, 1966.
After being released just three weeks earlier, the futuristic ballad "In
The Year 2525" was Billboard's number one song. After getting a lot of
requests to sing the song that they included in their live act, Denny
Zager and Rick Evans had invested just $500 to press 1000 copies of the
tune. After a Texas radio station added it their play list, RCA signed
the duo, but the record would prove to be their only US chart entry. It
did however stay at #1 in the US for 6 weeks, which was longer than any
other song that year and earned it the distinction of #1 record of the
Billed as "The Ultimate Supergroup", Blind Faith begin their one and
only US tour with a sold-out show at New York's Madison Square Garden.
Janis Joplin debuted with her new
group, the Full Tilt Boogie Band, before 4,000 people in Louisville,
Kentucky. Less than three months later, she would be dead from a heroin
The New Seekers re-record a song they did as a commercial for Coca-Cola
last year, re-naming it from "I'd Like To
Buy The World A Coke" to "I'd
Like To Teach The World To Sing". The effort would reach #7 on the
K.C. and The Sunshine Band make their
US Pop chart debut with "Get Down Tonight". It's the first of four
singles by the group to make it to Billboard's number one spot.
Minnie Riperton, who had scored a 1975 smash with a song called "Lovin'
You", died of cancer at the age of 31. She had also been a member of
Wonderlove, a backup group for Stevie Wonder.
Chicago disc jockey Steve Dahl held the infamous Disco Demolition
of a baseball doubleheader at Comiskey Park in Chicago. Dahl burned
Disco records brought by fans who received discount admission. Some of
those fans decided to start their own fires and a mini-riot ensued,
forcing the White Sox to forfeit the second game.
Bennie Mardones' "Into The Night"
enters the Billboard chart where it will reach #11. A re-recorded
version of the same song would climb to #20 nine years later.
Billy Joel had the best selling single
in America with "It's Still Rock And Roll To Me", a number he wrote in
the back of a car on the way to a recording session. The lyrics are sung
from the prospective of a manager and an artist, arguing about remaining
hip for the younger crowd vs. staying the course and letting the music
speak for itself. The song would go on to be certified Platinum by the
Chris Wood, sax and flute player with Stevie Winwood's band Traffic,
died in London of liver failure after a long illness. He was 39.
A statue erected in the memory of John Lennon is unveiled in London's
Trafalgar Square. The sculpture features a revolver with a knotted
barrel created by Swedish artist Carl Fredrik Reutersward.
Al Kooper, the legendary producer,
musician and founder of
Blood, Sweat And Tears, releases his
solo album in nearly thirty
Even after his death, Johnny Cash was still popular enough to top The
Billboard 200. "American V: A Hundred Highways" earned the Man in Black
his first #1 album since 1969's "Johnny Cash at San Quentin".
Sara Caplan, a former
attorney for Phil Spector,
agreed to testify in his murder trial about evidence allegedly withheld
by a defense expert rather than go to jail for contempt of court. Caplan
says she saw a forensic expert pick up a small white object about the
size of a fingernail at the scene and put it in a vial. Autopsy pictures
of Clarkson show a small piece of acrylic fingernail missing from her
Pollstar magazine announced that former
Pink Floyd bassist Roger Waters had
racked up $158.1 million in concert ticket sales worldwide so far this
year with 'The Wall Live' show. Bruce Springsteen was a distant second
with $79.9 million
Paul Anka's "Lonely Boy" was the number
one song on the Billboard Hot 100. Paul would also sing the song in the
movie Girls Town, in which he starred with Mamie Van Doren and
Steppenwolf's "Born To Be Wild" is
released in the US, where it will reach #2. A line from the song which
includes the words "heavy metal thunder" is often credited with
popularizing a new term for loud, guitar dominated music.
Black Sabbath played their first gig at
a small backstreet Blues club in Birmingham, England. The group would
develop into one of the biggest Heavy Metal bands of the 1970's with
such albums as "Paranoid", "Masters of Reality" and "Sabbath, Bloody
Eric Clapton's version of Bob Marley's
"I Shot The Sheriff" is released in America where it will become his
only US #1. Clapton would later say "I tried to ask him (Marley) what
the song was all about, but couldn't understand much of his reply. I was
just relieved that he liked what we had done."
After topping the Billboard Hot 100 last week, vocalist Flemming
The Hues Corporation to the number one
spot on the Cash Box Best Sellers chart with "Rock The Boat". The record
first appeared as though it would flop, as several months went by
without much radio airplay or sales activity. It wasn't until the song
became a Disco club
favorite in New York that Top 40
radio finally began playing the song.
Britain's BBC announces a ban on The Sex Pistols' latest single "No One
Is Innocent", which features vocals performed by Ronnie Biggs, a British
criminal notorious for his part in the Great Train Robbery of 1963. At
the time of the recording, Biggs was living in Brazil, still wanted by
the British authorities but immune from extradition. Despite the lack of
radio play, the song would still reach number seven on the UK chart. As
for Biggs, he voluntarily returned to the United Kingdom in 2001 and
spent several years in prison before being released on compassionate
grounds in 2009.
The first Live Aid
concerts were held at JFK
Stadium in Philadelphia and at Wembley Stadium in London. Producer Bob
Geldof headed the effort by attracting big name artists such as
The Who, Paul McCartney,
David Bowie, Mick Jagger,
Queen, Bryan Adams,
Tina Turner, The Cars,
Hall And Oates, Phil Collins and
Lionel Richie. The performances were
shown live via satellite for 18 consecutive hours and helped raise
millions of dollars for starving people in Ethiopia.
Madonna is featured in Penthouse magazine with pictures lifted
from a soft-core porn film she had made years earlier. Most of these
photos had already been published in Spin magazine.
Representatives of fifty of America's largest record retailers are
Michael Jackson's home in Encino,
California to preview his new album, "Bad". The LP, which includes the
singles, "I Just Can't Stop Loving You", "Bad", "The Way You Make Me
Feel", "Man in the Mirror" and "Dirty Diana", would go on to reach
number one on the Billboard Hot 200 chart and sell over 30 million
Sony announces that it has accepted a $40 million buyout of George
Michael's contract, following the singer's request. The company would
retain the rights to his back catalog, a greatest hits album and would
receive 3% of retail sales of his next two albums.
Over 2,000 guitar players, including Chet Atkins and Jeff "Skunk"
Baxter, set a new world record for the largest
jam session ever when they
played "Heartbreak Hotel" for 75 straight minutes at Nashville's
Riverfront Park. The previous record was set in Vancouver, Canada on May
7th, 1994, when
Randy Bachman led 1,322 mostly-amateur
guitarists in a performance that lasted 68 minutes.
John Denver's drunk driving trial ended
in a hung jury, deadlocked 3-3. Denver's
defense attorney argued that the
singer suffered from a
thyroid condition that had
distorted his blood alcohol tests.
Arthur Kane, best known as the bassist for the pioneering Glam Punk band
The New York
Dolls, died of leukemia at the
age of 55.
Tom Jones received an apology from
Island Records after a company executive's e-mail branded his comeback
album Praise & Blame a "sick joke." However, the e-mail leak
prompted some members of the UK press to suggest that it was actually a
clever marketing stunt in the build-up to the July 26 release