It happened this week…

This is the week that was in matters musical…

1939, Kathryn “Kate” Smith records a revised version of a composition Irving Berlin had originally written in 1918, titled “God Bless America” … the 5’10”, 235-pound entertainer becomes famous for singing the song before Philadelphia Flyers hockey games, at which it was said “It ain’t begun ’til the fat lady sings!” …

1948, Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra are featured in the first televised symphonic concert …

1952, Cleveland DJ Alan Freed mounts his first rock ‘n’ roll show dubbed The Moondog Coronation Ball … the venue holds 10,000 but 30,000 rock-hungry teens turn up causing the cops to call off the show … the resulting riot is a precursor to the coming age of rock …

1956, Carl Perkins receives severe injuries in a Delaware auto accident … he was on his way to the Big Apple to perform on Perry Como’s TV variety show … the El Capris enjoy a minor hit with the tune “(Shimmy Shimmy) Ko Ko Wop” … the song will resurface as a hit for Little Anthony and the Imperials in 1960 … in an early instance of political correctness, it’s retitled “Shimmy Shimmy Ko Ko Bop” …

1957, Elvis Presley buys Graceland Farms, a house and farm on the outskirts of Memphis that is still a mecca for fans of “The King” …

1958, Tom and Jerry, aka Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel, release their first song, appropriately titled “Our Song” &hellip Hank Williams Jr. makes his stage debut in Swainsboro, Georgia, at the tender age of eight, continuing a family tradition …

1962, Bob Dylan releases his self-titled debut album selling a measly 5,000 copies in its first year …

1963, The Beatles first album Please Please Me is released in the UK … no one seems to take notice either … Not! …

1965, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and Bill Wyman are busted for peeing on a petrol station wall after they’re refused admittance to the loo …

1967, The Grateful Dead release their first album … Jerry Garcia reveals that it was recorded on “dietwatcher’s speed and pot” and that “the tempo was way too fast” …

1968, Donovan travels to India to study transcendental meditation under Maharishi Mahesh Yogi … the Beatles are soon to follow … Donovan teaches Lennon a finger-picking technique (Travis-picking) that he teaches to Harrison. It makes its way onto the songs “Julia” and “Dear Prudence” … the latter written about actress Mia Farrow’s sister who was also there at the time &hellip Donovan pens the hit “Jennifer Juniper’ for his girlfriend Jennifer Boyd who is also present … a late night jam in L.A.’s Laurel Canyon with Eric Clapton and Buffalo Springfield is broken up by the police who, upon arriving, smell marijuana … Stills escapes through a window; Clapton is somehow set free; the rest, including Neil Young, spend the night in jail and later plead guilty to disturbing the peace in exchange for having the drug charges dropped … The Bee Gees make their U.S. television debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. They performed “To Love Somebody” and “Words” … Sullivan says it “was a very good shooow” …

1969, John and Yoko are married in Gibraltar … two days later they begin their famous “bed-in for peace” …

1970, David Bowie and Angela Barnett (the inspiration for his hit song “Golden Years”) are married at Bromley Register Office in Beckenham Lane, Kent …

1973, Yoko Ono is granted permission to live in the U.S. permanently … the person who grants her permission must not be a big Beatles fan …

1977, The John Denver TV special “Thank God I’m a Country Boy” is aired on ABC …

1982, soul-singing smoothie Teddy Pendergrass is paralyzed from the waist down in Philly when he flips his Rolls attempting to avoid another auto … Randy Rhoads, lead guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne’s band, is killed when a plane he is flying in crashes into a home and explodes … the band has stopped at the Leesburg, Florida, home of its bus driver, Andrew Aycock, a licensed pilot … Aycock “borrows” a plane from a nearby airfield and invites Rhoads and costume designer Rachel Youngblood to take a quick flight … as Ozzy and the rest of the band sleep on the bus, Aycock circles and buzzes it three times without incident … on the fourth pass, the aircraft bumps the bus, clips a wing, and crashes into a nearby house, erupting in flames … all three onboard are killed … a postmortem exam finds cocaine in Aycock’s system …

1985, Spin magazine begins publishing … Billy Joel and model Christie Brinkley are married in New York … less than 10 years later the uptown girl tells the piano man she’s movin’ out and they divorce …

1987, U2 releases The Joshua Tree, which spends 9 weeks at the top of the Billboard charts, only surpassed by Whitney Houston’s album from the previous year and the Dirty Dancing soundtrack … but it is proof nobody puts Bono in a corner … The “Soul Train Music Awards” debuts, becoming the first televised awards ceremony exclusively celebrating black producers, songwriters, and recording artists …

1990, Gloria Estefan is seriously hurt when a tractor-trailer smacks into her band’s tour bus near Scranton, Pennsylvania … she returns to touring 11 months later …

1991, Eric Clapton’s 4-year-old son, Conor, falls 56 floors out the window of a New York apartment building in a freak accident … the little boy is in the custody of his mother, Italian actress Lori Del Santo … they are visiting New York and staying in a friend’s apartment … the housekeeper has just cleaned a room and opened the window to air it out when young Conor comes dashing by and falls out the window … Clapton is in his hotel nearby … he had just taken Conor to the circus the previous evening … “Tears in Heaven,” “The Circus Left Town,” and “Lonely Stranger” are all inspired by the deep impact the accident has on Conor’s grieving father …

1994, Bruce Springsteen wins the Oscar for Best Original Song for “Streets of Philadelphia” … the song is from the film Philadelphia, and is the first ever written by Springsteen specifically for a film … Four guns and 25 boxes of ammo are confiscated from Kurt Cobain (Nirvana) after his wife, Courtney Love, calls police fearing he is going to commit suicide … He does commit suicide about 3 weeks later … The Rolling Stones announce that Darryl Jones will replace drummer Bill Wyman who no longer wants to tour …

1996, The Beatles last charting single, “Real Love,” begins its climb up the Top 100 and will eventually rise to #11 … the song is based on a demo cut by John Lennon in 1979 to which the other Beatles added new vocals 16 years after Lennon’s death … The original four Sex Pistols reunite in 1996 for the six-month Filthy Lucre Tour, with dates in Europe, North and South America, Australia, and Japan …

1999, rapper Ol’ Dirty Bastard is arrested yet again, this time in New York City when police claim to have found crack cocaine in his vehicle after pulling him over for missing license plates … ODB is charged with misdemeanor drug possession and driving with a suspended license … he will be arrested again five days later after police pull him over because once again, the vehicle he is driving has no license plates …

2000, the Recording Industry Association of America certifies 17 million copies sold of Shania Twain’s album Come On Over, making it the best-selling album by a solo female artist and surpassing Garth Brooks’ No Fences for best-selling country album of all time … Brooks eventually proved he’s “still the one” with the release of Double Live, currently the only country album with more sales than Come On Over, proving once again he has plenty of friends in low places …

2002, The Ramones are inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame at the 17th annual induction dinner … Pearl Jam frontman and self-admitted Ramones fanatic Eddie Vedder is their presenter … with a freshly cut mohawk atop his shaved head, Vedder delivers a 16-minute-long tribute to the band before bringing them onstage …

2004, Courtney Love repeatedly flashes her breasts during an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman … later that night she plays an unannounced gig at the New York club, Plaid, where she throws a mic stand into the audience and is arrested for reckless endangerment … the next night she turns up at the Bowery Ballroom with the legend “EAT MY F**K” emblazoned in 10-inch high letters on her tank top, then tops off the night with a Kodak moment in which she is photographed breast-feeding a fan at a local Wendy’s … like the man said, “All you need is Love” …

2005, rapper Lil’ Kim is convicted of perjury for lying to a federal grand jury in connection with a 2001 shooting involving her manager and a former member of her posse …

2006, Utah Jazz forward Carlos Boozer withdraws a civil suit he filed against Prince resulting from the Purple One’s redecoration of the mansion he rents from the basketballer … among Prince’s improvements: lavender stripes painted on various surfaces, installation of purple-and-black carpets, and modifications to the plumbing system to accommodate several beauty-salon chairs … Aerosmith is obliged to cancel the rest of its tour dates when Steven Tyler is operated on for unspecified throat problems …

2007, members of the ’70s Scots pop band Bay City Rollers sue Arista, their former label, charging that they are owed millions in unpaid royalties … Elsrock, an outdoor heavy-metal rock festival, is given conditional approval to put on its show outside the town of Rijssen, located in the Netherlands’ Bible Belt … the proviso prohibits cursing and blasphemy … the 2006 version of the festival had outraged residents … in explaining why the permit was granted, Mayor Bort Koelewijn cites “the stated readiness of the organizers to make sure that no blasphemous words are used, and that the honor of God’s name is not besmirched” …

2008, a judge awards Heather Mills nearly $50 million in her divorce from Paul McCartney … R.E.M. singer Michael Stipe publicly reveals he’s gay in an interview with Spin magazine …

2010, Justin Bieber releases My World 2.0, taking him from a YouTube sensation to mega-superstar and garners several nominations and accolades … Bieber Fever and Beiber backlash sweeps the nation and the world …

… and that was the week that was in matters musical.

Arrivals:

March 17: clarinetist Alcide Nunez (1934), film composer Alfred Newman (1900), singer-drummer-bandleader Ray Ellington, born Henry Pitts Brown (1916), singer-songwriter-pianist Nat “King” Cole, born Nathaniel Adams Coles (1917), Adam Wade (1937), Zola Taylor of The Platters (1938), Clarence Collins of Little Anthony & The Imperials (1939), Vito Picone of The Elegants (1940), Paul Kantner of The Jefferson Airplane (1941), singer-songwriter-multi-instrumentalist John Sebastian of The Lovin’ Spoonful (1944), Elis Regina (1945), Harold Brown of War (1946), Ian Gomm of Brinsley Schwartz (1947), Canadian singer-songwriter Daniel Lavoie (1949), producer Patrick Adams (1950), Thin Lizzy’s Scott Gorham (1951), Mike Lindup of Level 42 (1959), The Flaming Lips’ bassist Michael Ivins (1963), Paul Black of L.A. Guns (1965), Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan (1967), Gene Ween of Ween (1970), Melissa Auf der Maur of Hole (1972), Marc Gunn of Brobdingnagian Bards (1972), Caroline Corr of The Corrs (1973), German metal keyboardist Oliver Palotai (1974), Justin Hawkins (1975), Mason Jennings (1975), Miles Kane of The Last Shadow Puppets (1986)

March 18: Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844), jazz pianist Jean Goldkette (1893), Lester “Smiley” Burnett (1911), composer John Kander (1927), Lester “Big Daddy” Kinsey (1927), Robert Lee Smith of The Tams (1936), Charley Pride (1938), Wilson Pickett (1941), singer Eric Woolfson of The Alan Parsons Project (1945), dub-style reggae pioneer Keith Hudson (1946), B.J. Wilson of Procol Harum (1947), John Hartman of The Doobie Brothers (1950), Bill Frisell (1951), Irene Cara (1959), James McMurty (1962), guitarist Jeff LaBar of Cinderella (1963), Vanessa Williams (1963), Courtney Pine (1964), Rozalla (1964), Jerry Cantrell of Alice in Chains (1966), Lush’s Miki Berenyi (1967), Queen Latifah born Dana Owens (1970), Jamiroquai’s Stuart Zender (1974), Devin Lima of LFO (1977), Adam Levine of Maroon 5 (1979), Lykke Li (1986)

March 19: German composer Max Regar, born Johann Baptist Joseph Maximilian Reger (1873), saxophonist Ornette Coleman (1930), Chicago blues singer Sam Myers (1936), New Orleans R&B singer Clarence “Frogman” Henry (1937), R&B artist Walter Jackson (1938), singer-songwriter Richard Dobson (1942), Grateful Dead keyboard player Tom Constanten (1944), The Monkees’ Mickey Dolenz (1945), The Zombies’ Paul Atkinson (1946), Ruth Pointer of The Pointer Sisters (1946), Austrian singer-songwriter Wolfgang Ambros (1952), bassist Billy Sheehan (1953), The B-52s’ Ricky Wilson (1953), Bay City Rollers’ Derek Longmuir (1955), Bruce Willis (1955), Terry Hall of The Specials (1959), Brazilian jazz pianist-singer Eliane Elias (1960), composer Yoko Kanno (1964), Gary Jules (1969), Brant Bjork, drummer for Kyuss (1973), rapper Bun B (1973), Brann Dailor, drummer for Mastodon (1975)

March 20: big band leader Bob Chester (1904), Oswald “Ozzie” Harriet (1906), Soviet pianist Sviatoslav Richter (1915), British singer Vera Lynn (1917), gospel singer-guitarist Sister Rosetta Tharpe (1921), guitarist Jerry Reed (1937), blues saxist Eddie Shaw (1937), blues pianist Marcia Ball (1949), Carl Palmer of ELP (1950), guitarist Jimmy Vaughan (1951), Slim Jim Phantom of Stray Cats (1961), singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman (1964), Indian playback singer Alka Yagnik (1966), Belgian singer Natacha Atlas (1969), Franz Ferdinand vocalist Alex Kapranos (1972), vocalist Chester Bennington of Linkin Park (1976), Nick Wheeler of All-American Rejects (1982), Norwegian R&B singer Winta (1984)

March 21: Johann Sebastian Bach (1685), Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky (1839), Florenz Ziegfeld of the Ziegfeld Follies (1867), Delta bluesman Bo Carter (1893), Delta blues legend Eddie “Son” House (1902), Chicago bluesman Otis “Big Smokey” Smothers (1929), blues pianist Otis Spann (1930), Solomon Burke (1940), Vivian Stanshall of The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band (1943), Rosemary Stone of Sly and the Family Stone born Rosemary Stewart (1945), Ray Dorset of Mungo Jerry (1946), Eddie Money, born Edward Mahoney (1949), Roger Hodgson of Supertramp (1950), Conrad Lozano of Los Lobos (1951), Russell Thompkins of The Stylistics (1951), Robert Sweet of Stryper (1960), guitarist Shawn Lane of Black Oak Arkansas (1963), Prodigy’s MC Maxim (1967), Ace of Base’s Jonas Berggren (1967), Andrew Copeland of Sister Hazel (1968), rapper Notorious B.I.G. born Christopher Wallace (1972), Kevin Federline (1978), Deryk Whibley of Sum 41 (1980), Rochelle Wiseman of The Saturdays (1989), rapper Diggy Simmons (1995)

March 22: jazz tenor saxophonist Fred Anderson (1929), composer Stephen Sondheim (1930), William Shatner (1931), radio host J.P. McCarthy (1933), Roger Whitaker (1936), Brazilian musician Jorge Ben Jor (1942), jazz guitarist George Benson (1943), Keith Relf of The Yardbirds (1943), Tony McPhee of The Groundhogs (1944), Jeremy Clyde of Chad and Jeremy (1944), Harry Vanda of The Easybeats (1947), Patrick Olive of Hot Chocolate (1947), Andrew Lloyd Webber (1948), McCoys/Johnny Winter bass player Randy Jo Hobbs (1948), drummer Jay Dee Daughtry of The Patti Smith Group (1952), R&B/soul singer Stephanie Mills (1957), Pete Wylie (1958), Richard Ploog of The Church (1962), Euronymous, born ø ystein Aarseth of the band Mayhem (1968), Swedish singer Andreas Johnson (1970), Beverley Knight (1973), singer Shannon Bex (1980), songwriter David Choi (1986), Australian singer-songwriter Lisa Mitchell (1990)

March 23: Joey d’Ambrosio of Bill Haley & His Comets (1934), jazz vibraphonist Dave Pike (1938), swamp bluesman Louisiana Red (1936), Brit blues guitarist Tony McPhee of The Groundhogs (1944), bluegrass mandolinist David Grisman (1945), folk songwriter David Olney (1948), Ric Ocasek of The Cars (1949), disco singer Karen Young (1952), Chaka Khan, born Yvette Marie Stevens (1953), Epic Soundtracks, born Kevin Godfrey, founding drummer of the punk band Swell Maps (1959), singer Marti Pellow, born Mark McLachlan, of Wet Wet Wet (1965), Damon Albarn of Blur (1968), classical pianist Jan Liseicki (1995)

Departures:

March 17: Alex Chilton, born William Alexander Chilton of Box Tops and Big Star (2010), blues musician Lester “Mad Dog” Davenport (2009), Narvin Campbell of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band (2006), Lumumba Nelson aka Professor X of the ’90s rap posse X-Clan (2006), MTV VJ J.J. Jackson (2004), Lillian McMurry, co-founder of Trumpet Records (1999), ’80s R&B and pop singer Jermaine Stewart (1997), Elvis sound-alike Terry Safford (1996), Chicago blues pianist Sunnyland Slim, born Albert Luandrew (1995), singer Yvonne Fair of The Chantels (1994), Ric Grech, bass player for Blind Faith and Traffic (1990), New Orleans R&B singer Bobby Mitchell (1989), Samuel George, singer-drummer with The Capitols (1982)

March 18: New Orleans pianist Eddie Bo (2009), rapper Darnell “King Tut” Brittingham (2009), session bassist Wayne Pedzwater (2005), The Mamas & the Papas co-founder John Phillips (2001), jazz trumpeter Billy Butterfield (1988)

March 19: drummer Jeff Ward of Nine Inch Nails and Ministry (1993), Mother Love Bone’s Andrew Wood (1990), Randy Rhoads (1982), Chicago’s first big blues star, bottleneck slide man Tampa Red (1981), Paul Kossoff of Free (1976)

March 20: blues guitarist Mel Brown (2009), Klaus Dinger of Neu!, Kraftwerk, and La Düsseldorf (2008), Canadian funk/rock musician Gene Eugene (2000), jazz saxophonist George Howard (1998), jazz and R&B guitarist Billy Butler (1991), Cadence Records founder Archie Bleyer (1989), Greek bouzouki virtuoso Minolis Chiotis (1970), Danish composer Hans Christian Lumbye (1874)

March 21: singer Bobby Short (2005), Motown songwriter Johnny Bristol (2004), songwriter Fred Spielman (1997), Leo Fender (1991), Dino Martin Jr., son of Rat Packer Dean Martin, and singer in his own right (1987)

March 22: drummer Reg Isidore who worked with Robin Trower (2009), Israel “Chacao” L"pez, Cuban mambo musician (2008), singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Dan Hartman (1994), Don Murray of the Turtles (1996), Dave Guard of The Kingston Trio (1991), one-hit-wonder Mark Dinning of “Teen Angel” fame (1986)

March 23: Walter Turnbull, founder of the Boys Choir of Harlem (2007), Cindy Walker, country songwriter who also wrote hits for Ray Charles and Roy Orbison (2006), opera singer Eileen Farrell (2002), songwriter-producer J.D. Miller (1996), Don Murray, drummer for The Turtles (1996), Ripley Ingram, tenor vocalist with The Five Keys (1995), Alan Barton of Black Lace and Smokie (1995), Donald Ibrah’m Swann (1994), Jeanine Deckers aka the Singing Nun (1985), Frank Kirkland, Bo Diddley’s drummer (1973)

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