The Beatles had their 4th U.S. #1 hit today in 1964 when Love Me Do topped the charts. American teenagers were head over heels for John, Paul, George, and Ringo, but what they didn’t know was producer George Martin had stuck with EMI’s policy and used go-to session drummer Andy White, while Ringo was relegated to tambourine. He’d already recorded a version of the song Paul wrote when he was 16 with Pete Best on drums and complained about his timekeeping, and another with his replacement Starr, which was released as the single in Britain and when American kids finally found out, sales of the imported version with Ringo skyrocketed.
The Rolling Stones were in New York today in 1965, playing the last three shows of their 3rd U.S. tour at the New York Academy of Music. They also “mimed” (these days called “lip-synching”) to six songs for the Clay Cole Show, a local teen dance program. The Stones would be back in the States later that year for their 4th tour, which included their first Seattle appearance, at the Coliseum on December 2nd.
14 year old Bernadette Whelan of London died today in 1974 from injuries suffered at a David Cassidy show at the White City Stadium there 4 days earlier. As thousands of teenagers pushed for the stage, some 650 had been injured, 30 of them badly enough to be taken to the hospital, and David was deeply troubled by the tragedy. He sent condolences to the family, and though he wanted to, didn’t attend her funeral to avoid turning it into a media circus.
Delaney and Bonnie and Friends, Derek and the Dominoes, Eric Clapton, and Joe Cocker bass player Carl Radle died today in 1980 of a kidney infection brought on by heavy use of booze and nasty drugs. He was just 37.
Seattle was just beginning to be the “it” town on America’s musical map when The Black Crowes topped the U.S. album charts with their 2nd album The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion today in 1992. While the big-hair buttrock bands of the 80’s were being banished from American airwaves by the likes of Nirvana, the Georgia boys were a throwback to the blues rock of the early 70’s.
British record producer Mickie Most (real name Michael Hayes), who’d had an incredible string of hits with The Animals, Herman’s Hermits, Donovan, and the Jeff Beck Group, died at home today in 2003 of cancer at 64.
Giuseppe Della Camera had spent the last 10 years restoring an old ice cream van he’d spotted on a rural British chicken farm being used as a shed, and finally having it done had it at a car show on the Wandsworth Common today in 2009 and was stunned when Mick Jagger came up and offered him £100,000 for it, but he turned him down.
Ozzy Osbourne filed a lawsuit against his former Black Sabbath bandmate Tony Iommi today in 2009. Tony was denying Ozzy ownership of the band’s name, saying Ozzy relinquished any and all rights when he was booted for excessive intoxication in 1980, while Ozzy’s lawyers argued that the rights and money should be split equally among all four original members as they’d agreed at the outset in 1968. This would come back to haunt him 3 years later when original drummer Bill Ward asked for a full fourth of the proceeds of their reunion album and tour, which led to his dismissal by Ozzy’s manager-wife Sharon. Guitarist Iommi has been the band’s only constant member over it’s 46 years.
Rock and Roll Birthdays
Nicky “Topper” Headon of The Clash is 59.