The Rolling Stones had released their second album in January (February in the Americas), and were on their 2nd North American tour when they played Toronto’s Maple Leaf Gardens tonight in 1965 in front of over 16,000.
The Beatles had finished Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band just a few days earlier when they started in on recording the theme song to Magical Mystery Tour at Abbey Road today in 1967. Bands worked a lot harder back in the day than they do now.
The Doors Jim Morrison’s longtime girlfriend Pamela Courson died of a heroin overdose today in 1974. She had got to using more drugs since finding Jim dead in the bathtub of their Paris flat three years earlier.
Elvis Presley made the last recordings of his life at a show at the Civic Center in Saginaw Michigan tonight in 1977. He would die of a heart attack in August, and while his personal physician Dr. Nichopoulos would later be exonerated for his death, he had prescribed over 10,000 doses of sedatives, amphetamines, and narcotics, and The King’s pill habit was considered responsible for the singer checking out at age 42.
The Police made their TV debut tonight in 1979, performing their hit Roxanne on the BBC’s Top of the Pops.
Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder were at #1 in the U.S. and Britain today in 1982 with Ebony and Ivory. It was Paul’s 24th #1 hit as a songwriter, with lyrics inspired by a conversation he’d had with singer and actor Spike Milligan, when he said, “Black notes, White Notes, you need to play the two to mkaea harmony, folks!”. It was later named “the worst song of All Time” by readers of Blender magazine, and “The Worst Duet In History” by BBC listeners.
Irish band U2 started a 5-week run at #1 on the U.S. album charts with their 5th studio album The Joshua Tree today in 1987. The songs were inspired by previous tours in America, literature, and politics, and would go on to be one of the best-selling records of all time, selling over 25 million copies.
The white Fender Stratocaster played by Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock was sold at auction for a then-record $295,000 to Microsoft co-founder and major Hendrix fan Paul Allen today in 1990, to be enshrined in his Experience Music Project museum here ion Seattle.
Hell froze over today in 1994, when The Eagles played the first of two shows recorded for an album bearing that name, which came from Glenn Frey’s response to an interviewer’s question, “when will the Eagles get back together?”
Singer Bobby “Boris” Pickett died of leukemia today in 2007. His one hit from 1962, The Monster Mash, became a seasonal monster hit come Halloween time every year since, except in England where it had been banned by the BBC as “offensive” until 1973.
Rock and Roll Birthdays
Blues guitarist Albert King would be 90 today, and enjoying his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last week if he hadn’t died at age 69.
Songwriter Jerry Leiber would be 80 if he hadn’t died two years ago. With partner Mike Stoller he wrote an incredible string of hits for other artists,l including Hound Dog, Jailhouse Rock, Stand By Me, Kansas City, and On Broadway.
Born one day after his Creedence Clearwater Revival bandmate, drummer Doug “Cosmo” Clifford, bass player Stu Cook is 68.
Blue Magoos bass player Ron Gilbert is 67.