It happened this week…

This is the week that was in matters musical…

1927, bluesman Texas Alexander records “Range In My Kitchen Blues” for Paramount Records in New York City …

1937, George Beauchamp is granted patent #2,089,171 by the U.S. Patent Office for an “Electrical Stringed Musical Instrument” … the original “frying pan” electric guitar … George was a Hawaiian musician living in Los Angeles … Bunny Berrigan and his orchestra record the jazz standard, “I Can’t Get Started” … the chord changes from this oft-covered tune become a staple for bebop musicians a decade later …

1949, Louis Jordan and His Tympani Five record “Saturday Night Fish Fry,” an influential proto-rock song …

1957, John Lennon and his band The Quarry Men play their debut date at Liverpool’s Cavern Club, a venue devoted to jazz and skiffle … after the band performs “Come Go With Me,” “Hound Dog,” and “Blue Suede Shoes,” irate club owner Alan Sytner sends a note up to the stage reading, “Cut out the bloody rock!” … so it was back to standard skiffle fare such as “Rock Island Line” and “Midnight Special” … in 1997, the five original Quarry Men (besides Lennon) will reunite for some gigs: Len Garry, formerly on tea-chest bass, will have moved to guitar and lead vocals; Rod Davis, originally on banjo, will have moved to guitar; drummer Colin Hanton; washboard player Pete Shotton, who retired in 2000; and guitarist Eric Griffiths, who will die in 2005 …

1960, 25,000 copies of the death-rock single “Tell Laura I Love Her” by Ray Peterson are destroyed by Decca Records after a critic deems the song “too tasteless and vulgar for English sensibility” … it is interesting to speculate what that critic may have made of Ozzy Osbourne or the Sex Pistols a little later on …

1962, “Your Heart Belongs to Me” by the Supremes debuts on the Hot 100 chart … it’s the first of their eventual 47 hits …

1964, Rod Stewart makes his television debut singing with the Hootchie Coochie Men on the British show The Beat Room

… The Rolling Stones know they have arrived when they get the chance to hang out with two of their idols, Muddy Waters and Willie Dixon, while recording at Chicago’s Chess studios … the band’s name resulted from a tune by Muddy …

1965, singer-organist Mike Smith of The Dave Clark Five suffers two fractured ribs when he’s pulled off the stage by an enthusiastic fan …

1967, Beatle George Harrison hangs out at a love-in in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park … he’s less than enchanted recalling “It was full of hideous, spotty little teenagers. It turned me off to the whole thing” … recording sessions resume for the classic Love album Forever Changes … sessions that began in June were marked with bickering and personnel changes that resulted in the producer bringing in session musicians from L.A.’s “The Wrecking Crew” to record backing tracks for three tunes … properly chastened, the band members went back to work …

1968, performing at England’s National Jazz and Blues Festival, Jerry Lee Lewis whips the crowd into a frenzy that begins to turn violent … three rockers leave with bleeding mouths, a stage assistant loses four teeth, and thanks to a six-inch scaffold coupling pin being thrown through the bass drum of Andrew Steele, his band The Herd, doesn’t get heard … fearing a full-scale riot, officials ask Lewis to leave the stage … “I don’t care about you all dancing on the stage,” Lewis tells his fans, “but some of these people do.” … interestingly, The Herd’s lead guitarist is none other than a young Peter Frampton, who later splits from the band after a long hitless spell to form Humble Pie with Steve Marriott … this same week, the record industry marks its first billion-dollar year several years ahead of expectations …

The Herd – “From the Underworld”

1969, photographer Ian Macmillan gets on a stepladder in the middle of London’s Abbey Road to snap The Beatles as they stride across the zebra crossing … several crossings and six pictures later, the session is over … Paul picks the best one, which ends up as the cover for Abbey Road … because The Fabs (as George called them) are so famous, no other graphics are used …

1970, Janis Joplin springs for a headstone to mark Bessie Smith’s grave … the blues singer was one of her idols … four days later she makes her last concert performance at Harvard Stadium …

Bessie Smith – “St. Louis Blues”

1973, Stevie Wonder is seriously injured in North Carolina when the auto in which he’s riding is hit by logs rolling off a truck … he emerges from a coma after four days sans his sense of smell …

1974, in Beverly Hills, J. Geils Band lead singer Peter Wolf marries actress Faye Dunaway … their union will end in 1979 …

1975, Hank Williams Jr. tumbles 500 feet down a Montana mountain … after two year’s worth of surgeries he will resume his career …

1978, Muddy Waters plays for President Jimmy Carter at the White House …

1979, The Knack starts a five-week hold on the top spot of the U.S. album charts with Get The Knack … this triggers an anti-Knack backlash that will hasten the group’s demise …

1980, The Plasmatics show that was to feature an exploding car at the London’s Hammersmith Odeon is canceled after fire inspectors watch a demonstration and find that safety techniques are inadequate …

1985, introduced to the benefits of owning publishing rights by friend Paul McCartney, Michael Jackson purchases the ATV music catalog that includes 251 Lennon/McCartney songs at auction for $47.5 million … McCartney and Yoko Ono had attempted to purchase the songs only to be outbid by Jackson … McCartney and Jackson’s friendship ends promptly as a result … Duran Duran singer Simon Le Bon nearly drowns after his yacht capsizes during a race off the coast of England …

1986, David Crosby is released from prison after doing time on drug and weapon charges …

1991, a group called On A Friday plays at the Jericho Tavern in Oxford, England … they will soon change their name to Radiohead …

1992, citing a sore throat, Axl Rose of Guns N’ Roses cuts short the band’s set in Montreal … many of the 55,000 fans in attendance riot … this is a fitting end to a concert in which Metallica also cuts their set short after singer James Hetfield suffers third-degree burns from a pyro effect …

1994, the Woodstock ’94 festival in Saugerties, New York, includes performances from the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day, Aerosmith, and Nine Inch Nails … the crowd of 30,000 endures the same rain and resulting mud as the original event …

1996, former Mötley Crüe singer Vince Neil runs into trouble at an Indiana club date … after starting the show four hours late, Neil pulls the plug after just three songs saying he is feeling ill and suggests that the audience of “rednecks” doesn’t appreciate his talent … a riot by 500 surly ticket holders is narrowly averted by the prompt arrival of the cops … after touring as part of the sixth annual Lollapalooza festival, The Ramones soldier on to Los Angeles to perform their 2,263rd and final show …

2000, the Jimi Hendrix estate successfully evicts the holder of the web domain jimihendrix.com …

2003, during a radio interview, Ted Nugent says that the people of Illinois are “spineless, apathetic, embarrassing wimps” for their lack of involvement in their state government … Nugent’s comments result from his displeasure over the state’s gun laws … despite his scorn, Nugent will play the Illinois State Fair later in the day … fortunately for the Motor City Madman, the audience is apparently a bunch of embarrassing wimps who are too spineless and apathetic to demand refunds …

2005, Leonard Cohen files a suit against his former business manager charging that Kelley Lynch ripped him off for $5 million from 1994 through 1999 while Cohen was chilling in a Buddhist center … FCC chairman Kevin Martin announces that his agency is investigating payola by record labels in the wake of Sony BMG Music Entertainment’s settlement of $10 million with New York over charges that the company plied key radio stations with lavish gifts and money to get its releases played … the list of artists who benefitted from Sony’s generosity include Jennifer Lopez, Jessica Simpson, Avril Lavigne, Maroon 5, Franz Ferdinand, Good Charlotte, Gretchen Wilson, Audioslave, and Celine Dion …

2008, the format of Rolling Stone magazine is downsized from large-format pages to a traditional magazine size to spur lagging sales … singer-songwriter Jackson Browne, who has a long history of supporting liberal causes, files suit against presidential candidate John McCain and the Ohio Republican Party for using his 1977 hit “Running on Empty” without permission … The Allman Brothers sue Universal Music Group for more than $10 million charging that they are owed royalties on downloads and CD sales of material they cut on the Capricorn label between 1969 and 1980 … The Police cap their 150-show world tour with a two-hour tour de force at Madison Square Garden … the first Police tour in 20 years, it started shakily and gained momentum as it went along … reflecting on the early shows, drummer Stewart Copeland is brutally frank, “At the beginning, we were crap. Each one of us had our own opinion of what was wrong … which could be summed up as ‘the other two guys'” …

2009, Eddie Van Halen is reported to be mending from surgery intended to deal with severe pain in his left hand … it is estimated that healing will be a four to six-month process …

…and that was the week that was.

Arrivals:

August 5: jazz singer Jeri Southern (1926), Vern Gosdin (1934), R&B vocalist Damita Jo (1940), guitarist Lenny Breau (1941), percussionist Airto Moreira (1941), sax player Rick Huxley of The Dave Clark Five (1942), country star Sammi Smith (1943), Rick Derringer of The McCoys (1947), Gregory Leskew of Guess Who (1947), Eddie Ojeda of Twisted Sister (1954), Pat Smear of Foo Fighters (1959), Pete Burns of Dead Or Alive (1959), Adam Yauch of The Beastie Boys (1964)

August 6: Delta bluesman Willie Brown (1900), The Ravens’ Jimmy Ricks (1924), jazz bassist Charlie Haden (1937), Isaac Hayes (1938), Judy Craig of The Chiffons (1946), guitarist Allan Holdsworth (1948), Pat McDonald of Timbuk 3 (1951), Randy DeBarge (1958), singer-songwriter Elliot Smith (1969), Geri Halliwell a.k.a. Ginger Spice of the Spice Girls (1972)

August 7: multi-instrumentalist jazz bandleader Benny Carter (1907), swing bandleader Freddie Slack (1910), pianist Mose Vinson (1917), lyricist Felice Bryant (1925), The Platters’ Herb Reed (1931), multi-instrumentalist jazz titan Rahsaan Roland Kirk (1936), Magic Slim—born Morris Holt (1937), pop vocalist Ron Holden (1939), B.J. Thomas (1942), Alfa Anderson of Chic (1946), Rodney Crowell (1950), bassist-songwriter Andy Fraser of Free (1952), Bruce Dickinson of Iron Maiden—not THE Bruce Dickinson (1958), Jacqui O’Sullivan of Bananarama (1960), Ian Dench of EMF (1964), Kristin Hersh of Throwing Muses (1964), Toxic (19??)

August 8: bandleader Lucky Millender (1900), honky-tonk vocalist Webb Pierce (1921), blues and jazz singer Jimmy Witherspoon (1923), blues singer Al King (1923), Sonny Til of The Orioles (1925), Mel Tillis (1932), pedal steel player extraordinaire Pete Drake (1932), Joe Tex (1933), pop singer Connie Stevens (1938), Philip E. Balsley of the Statler Brothers (1939), John “Jay” David of Dr. Hook (1942), English guitar virtuoso John Renbourn (1944), The Grateful Dead’s Ron “Pig Pen” McKernan (1946), Airrion Love of The Stylistics (1949), Stax-Volt drummer Willie Hall (1950), Madness guitarist Chris Foreman (1955), Ali Score of Flock of Seagulls (1956), Dennis Drew of 10,000 Maniacs (1957), Ricki Rockett of Poison (1959), U2’s The Edge a.k.a. David Evans (1961), Kool Moe Dee (1962), Aaron Abeyta of NOFX (1965), Creed singer Scott Stapp (1973), JC Chasez of *NSYNC (1976), Drew Lachey of 98 Degrees (1976)

August 9: barrelhouse pianist Robert Shaw (1908), string band musician Odell Thompson (1911), Harry Mills of The Mills Brothers (1913), Bill Henderson of The Spinners (1939), jazz drummer Jack DeJohnette (1942), Rinus Gerritsen of Golden Earring (1946), Barbara Mason (1947), Cars bassist Benjamin Orr (1955), rapper Kurtis Blow (1959), Aimee Mann (1960), Whitney Houston (1963), Arion Salazar of Third Eye Blind (1970)

August 10: Leo Fender (1909), country singer-sausage king Jimmy Dean (1928), bluegrass ace Jimmy Martin (1929), country-pop entertainer Larry Finnegan (1938), Righteous Brother Bobby Hatfield (1940), Ronnie Spector of The Ronettes (1947), Ian Anderson (1947), Patti Austin (1948), INXS drummer Jon Farriss (1961), singer Neneh Cherry (1964), Todd Nichols of Toad The Wet Sprocket (1967), Michael Bivins of New Edition (1968), Aaron Kamin of The Calling (1977)

August 11: Mike Hugg of Manfred Mann (1942), David Box—a Buddy Holly soundalike who ironically also died in a plane crash (1943), Jim Kale of Guess Who (1943), Eric Carmen (1949), Joe Jackson (1955), Bragi Olafsson of The Sugarcubes (1962), guitarist Charlie Sexton (1968), Chris “Mack Daddy” Kelly of Kriss Kross (1968), Ali of A Tribe Called Quest (1970), J-Boog of B2K (1985)

Departures:

August 5: bassist Randy Hobbs of The McCoys and Johnny Winter (1993), drummer Jeff Porcaro of Toto (1992), N’awlins bluesman Isidore “Tuts” Washington (1984), avant-garde bassist George Scott (1980), The Who’s first manager Pete Meadon (1978), country guitarist Luther Perkins (1968), one-man blues band Joe Hill Louis (1957)

August 6: Italian opera legend Luciano Pavarotti (2007), jazz bassist Keter Betts (2005), legendary Cuban singer Ibrahim Ferrer (2005), Rick James (2004), guitarist Tommy Mottola (2004), the U.K.’s answer to Louis Armstrong, Nat Gonella (1998), new wave singer Klaus Nomi (1983), blueswoman Memphis Minnie (1973), trumpeter Bix Beiderbecke (1931)

August 7: country guitarist William “Billy” Byrd (2001), harmonica virtuoso Larry Adler (2001), record store mogul Sam Goody (1991), R&B chanteuse Esther Phillips (1984), Homer a.k.a. Henry Haynes of Homer & Jethro (1971)

August 8: pianist Irving Sidney “Duke” Jordan (2006), alto sax man Julian “Cannonball” Adderley (1975)

August 9: composer David Raskin (2004), Drowning Pool’s Dave Williams (2002), producer Bob Herbert (1999), Jerry Garcia (1995), New Orleans session sax man Clarence Ford (1994), reggae singer Wilfred “Jackie” Edwards (1992), Brandon Mitchell, rapper with Wreckx-N-Effects (1990), trumpet player Bill Chase (1974), Lillian Roxon, one of rock’s first music critics (1973), Joe Gilbert of Joe and Eddie (1966)

August 10: singer-songwriter-soul man Isaac Hayes (2008), Widespread Panic guitarist Mikey Houser (2002), Bill Baker of The Five Satins (1994), New Orleans sax man Clarence Ford (1994), Ed Roberts of Ruby And The Romantics (1993), jazz singer Ernestine Allen (1992), swing bandleader Freddie Slack (1965), blues diva Lucille Bogan of “Shave ‘em Dry” infamy (1948)

August 11: pedal steel player Don Helms (2008), singer-talk show host Mike Douglas (2006), conductor Rafael Kubelick (1996), The Ventures drummer Mel Taylor (1996), bandleader-pianist Sonny Thompson (1989), Percy Mayfield—one day short of his 64th birthday (1984)

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