John Lennon got married for the first time today in 1962, to a girl he met in a calligraphy class at Liverpool Art College, Cynthia Powell. Manager Brian Epstein served as best man, but also insisted that their marriage be kept secret for fear of alienating female fans. At the time she was two months pregnant with their son, Julian, but it was one day shy of exactly 6 years later that they filed for divorce after Cynthia found John in bed with Yoko Ono.
The Rolling Stones appeared on the Brit TV music show Ready! Steady! Go! for the first time today in 1963. They owned it, and would do the show 19 more times before outgrowing it in 1966.
Having soured on playing live shows earlier in the week during a massive Midwestern rainstorm, The Beatles were at Shea Stadium in New York tonight in 1966 on what would be their last-ever tour. Hard to believe since they’d easily sold the place out the year before, there were 11,000 empty seats in the 55,600 capacity facility.
The Who’s mild mannered drummer Keith Moon was celebrating his 21st birthday at the Holiday Inn in Flint, Michigan tonight in 1967. Things started going downhill after a cake-fight in which well lubricated members of Keith’s band and the group they were opening for, Hermann’s Hermits, pinned him to the floor, smeared him with cake, and removed his trousers. The half-naked drummer then tried to leave his “calling card”, flushing a stick of dynamite down a toilet, and barely escaping injury when the explosive failed to go down the bowl. As local police closed in, he broke his front tooth somewhere between fleeing the completely trashed hotel room and ending up in the hotel’s swimming pool behind the wheel of a Lincoln Continental. While Holiday Inn management had so far been tolerant of The Who’s antics, so long as they paid for the damage, this was the final straw, and Keith is still banned from the hotel chain even though he’s been dead for 34 years.
Lou Reed performed with his band The Velvet Underground for the last time tonight in 1970 at Max’s Kansas City in New York. While trying to get a solo career off the ground, he would work for his father as a typist for the next two years, at $40 per week.
Ric Okasek of The Cars married four-time Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition cover-girl Paulina Porizkova today in 1989. They met on the set of the band’s Drive video.
Rock and Roll Birthdays
The Who’s legendary drummer Keith Moon would be 66 today, had he not died in 1978 looking much older than his 32 years.
Soap opera actor turned rock singer Rick Springfield is 63.