It happened this week

This is the week that was in matters musical…

1958, 14-year-old George Harrison demonstrates his guitar prowess by playing the Bill Justus instrumental “Raunchy” for an impressed John Lennon and Paul McCartney while the three are riding a Liverpool bus … he’s invited to join their group, The Quarry Men, thus forming the front line of what will become The Beatles … 30 years later to the day, Harrison’s last American chart single “When We Was Fab,” a remembrance of the Beatles era, enters the Top 100 …

1960, “Money (That’s What I Want)” recorded by Barrett Strong for the Tamla label, enters the Billboard charts and ultimately rises to #23 … the song was written by Tamla founder Berry Gordy and Janie Bradford, becoming the first hit record for Gordy’s Motown enterprise … the song will be covered by a plethora of artists including The Beatles, John Lennon during his solo career, Buddy Guy, The Trashmen, Dave Matthews Band, The Kingsmen, The Rolling Stones, The Who, Led Zeppelin, The Doors, Ike & Tina Turner, Bern Elliott and the Fenmen, Pearl Jam, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Flying Lizards, Shonen Knife, The Pretenders, Scissor Sisters, Secret Machines, The Sonics, The Smashing Pumpkins, Hanson, The B-52’s, Cheap Trick, Josie and the Pussycats, Great White, RC Succession, The Blues Brothers, The Avengers; plus Motown label mates The Supremes, Jr. Walker & the All Stars, The Miracles, Etta James, Jimmy Barnes, Waylon Jennings and Boyz II Men … the song will also featured in the movie Animal House, performed by John Belushi …

1964, Beatlemania reaches a feverish pitch when The Fab Four deplane in New York and are greeted by thousands of screaming teenyboppers … that same day Baskin-Robbins unveils its newest flavor: Beatle-Nut … The Beatles make their live American TV debut on The Ed Sullivan Show, reaching the eyes and ears of over 70-million viewers, the largest television audience ever recorded at the time … the show receives over 50,000 requests for tickets …

1969, George Harrison’s tonsils are removed at University College Hospital in London … it is reported that they have been destroyed to prevent the glands from turning up in the memorabilia market …

1969, former Cream members Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker, together with ex-Traffic singer-keyboardist Stevie Winwood, announce auditions for a bass player to join them in a new quartet … with Rick Grech recruited, the band becomes the short-lived supergroup, Blind Faith …

1972, former Beatle Paul McCartney’s new band Wings, featuring his wife Linda and former Moody Blues singer Denny Laine, plays its first concert at Nottingham University in the UK …

1977, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours is released … the LP races to the #1 slot on the album chart where it remains for 31 weeks … it ultimately moves over 17-million platters … ABC-TV’s American Bandstand celebrates its 25th birthday with a TV special hosted by perennial teenager Dick Clark … an eclectic all-star band that includes Chuck Berry, Gregg Allman, Johnny Rivers, Donald Byrd, Chuck Mangione, Seals & Crofts, Junior Walker, The Pointer Sisters, Charlie Daniels, Doc Severenson, Les McCann, and three-quarters of Booker T and the MGs, plays “Roll Over Beethoven” …

1979, Stephen Stills is the first rock act to record on digital gear at L.A.’s Record Plant but the tracks are never released … guitarist Ry Cooder’s rockabilly-inflected album Bop ‘Til You Drop becomes the first ones-and-zeroes pop record …

1981, Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau inducts Joni Mitchell into the Juneau Hall of Fame …

1990, Billy Idol fractures an arm and leg in a Hollywood motorcycle wreck … the mishap dashes his plans to play a major role in Oliver Stone’s film, The Doors

1995, Bob Marley’s backup singing group, The I-Threes, which includes his widow Rita, stages a 50th birthday concert for the late reggae star at the Bob Marley Museum in Kingston, Jamaica … son Ziggy Marley also performs …

1999, Foo Fighter Dave Grohl and his music publisher sue movie distribution outfit Miramax for unauthorized use of the Fighters’ hit “Big Me” in the trailer for the film Rounders

2000, ABBA rejects an offer of nearly $1 billion to reunite for a world tour after being apart for 17 years … it’s the largest rejection in history … apparently Frank Zappa was only in it for the money; ABBA is all about the art …

2005, Courtney Love, the woman who put the “court” in Courtney, pleads no contest to charges of assaulting musician Kristin King … she is ordered by a Los Angeles court to take anger-management classes, pay a $1,000 fine, and perform 100 hours of community service … Love then travels across town to a Beverly Hills court where a judge reduces her two felony charges of illegal possession of prescription drugs to one misdemeanor … she is ordered to continue a rehab program she is already enrolled in and avoid alcohol and drugs …

2006, Israel Ramirez, a Busta Rhymes bodyguard, is shot dead outside a Brooklyn studio where his boss is recording a video … word on the street is that the shooting resulted from rapper Tony Yayo being ejected from the session for being disruptive … this brings new meaning to the judgment “does not work and play well with others” …

2007, Van Halen announces they’ll be touring with David Lee Roth’s tonsils aboard for the first time since 1984 …

… Prince keeps his costume intact while delivering a well-received halftime show at the Super Bowl … a Los Angeles court grants producer Phil Spector a $900,000 judgment against a former assistant whom he claimed had embezzled the money from his pension fund … Spector will need all that money and more to defend against murder charges involving the death of starlet Lana Clarkson … in a convoluted deal between Apple (formerly Apple Computer Inc.) and The Beatles’ Apple Corps, the Mac-maker acquires rights to all Apple logos used by both companies and will license the green apple logo back to Apple Corps … country singer Keith Urban files suit against New Jersey painter Keith D. Urban, claiming that the latter’s website, keithurban.net, misleads people into believing the site is related to the performer … the suit does not specify any monetary damages and asks the court to transfer the URL to the country star … the painter countersues … Apple chief Steve Jobs calls on record companies to quit building anti-piracy features into digital music … SoundScan reports that January 2007 was the worst month for record sales since it began tracking sales in 1991 … with only 34.1 million records sold, the industry is down 40% compared to a decade earlier …

2008, Green Day frontman Billy Joe Armstrong plays a five-date mini-tour with his side project, Pinhead Gunpowder … at the Troubador club in West L.A., Armstrong is faced with an arsenal of fans pointing their cell-phone cameras at him … he tells the crowd to put the cameras away saying, “YouTube can’t own everything. There’s also something called memories.” … hours after a Velvet Revolver show in L.A., vocalist Scott Weiland checks himself into rehab … it’s reported that AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” has become one of the most requested funeral songs in Australia …

2009, Death Cab For Cutie organizes a mock-political campaign against Auto Tune abuse in music …

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

Arrivals:

Feb 4: Bernie West of The Five Keys (1930), The Animals’ John Steel (1941), Florence LaRue of the Fifth Dimension (1944), saxophonist John Stubblefield (1945), Alice Cooper aka Vincent Furnier (1948), Phil Ehart of Kansas (1951), Humble Pie’s Jerry Shirley (1952), country singer Clint Black (1962), singer-songwriter Natalie Imbruglia (1975), Rick Burch of Jimmy Eat World (1975), rapper-actor Cam’ron, AKA Killa Cam (1976)

Feb 5: rural blues harmonica player Will Shade (1898), Samie “Sticks” Evans, session drummer with Ray Charles and James Brown (1923), Louisiana rockabilly star Jackie Lee Cochran (1934), Alex Harvey, Scottish jazz and blues bandleader (1935), soul singer-songwriter Barrett Strong (1941), country singer Henson Cargill (1942), Cory Wells of Three Dog Night (1942), Chuck Winfield of Blood, Sweat & Tears (1943), Al Kooper, founder of Blood, Sweat & Tears (1943), J.R. Cobb of Atlanta Rhythm Section (1944), Steve Miller Band’s Dave Denny (1948), Elton John drummer Nigel Olsson (1949), Steppenwolf bassist Andy Chapin (1952), Duff McKagan of Guns N’ Roses/Velvet Revolver (1964), Chris Barron of Spin Doctors (1968), Bobby Brown of New Edition (1969)

Feb 6: songwriter-musician Leon Rene (1902), teen idol Fabiano Forte AKA Fabian (1943), funk and soul keyboardist-singer-songwriter Wilson “Willie Tee” Turbinton (1944), reggae pioneer Bob Marley (1945), Richie Hayward, drummer with Little Feat (1946), Canadian folksinger Kate McGarrigle (1946), singer-songwriter-performer Natalie Cole (1950), Axl Rose of Guns N’ Roses, born William Bruce Rose (1962), pop singer Rick Astley, famous for unwittingly Rickrolling unsuspecting YouTube viewers (1966)

Feb 7: pianist Eubie Blake (1883), bluegrass singer Wilma Lee Cooper (1921), Warren Smith, rockabilly artist discovered by Roy Orbison (1932), king of soul sax, King Curtis, born Curtis Ousley (1934), the first lady of bluegrass mandolin, Donna Stoneman (1934), Earl King, major New Orleans singer, guitarist, and songwriter (1934), Walter Scott, lead vocalist for Bob Kuban and the In Men (1943), country singer-songwriter Sammy Johns (1946), Jimmy Greenspoon of Three Dog Night (1948), Alan Lancaster of Status Quo (1949), Brian Travers of UB40 (1959), Steve Bronski of Bronski Beat (1960), keyboardist David Bryan of Bon Jovi (1962), country music artist Garth Brooks (1962)

Feb 8: composer John Williams (1932), rockabilly artist Donnie Owens (1932), folk singer Tom Rush (1941), Creed Bratton II of the Grass Roots (1943), Jim Capaldi of Traffic (1944), Adolfo “Fito” De La Parra of Canned Heat (1946), Vince Neil of Motley Crue (1961), Sam Llanas of The BoDeans (1961), Collective Soul’s Will Turpin (1971), Darren “Phoenix” Farrell of Linkin Park (1977)

Feb 9: country music pioneer Ernest Tubb (1914), Chicago soul singer Johnny Sayles (1932), prolific Canadian folk singer “Stompin” Tom Connors (1936), singer-songwriter Carole King, born Carole Klein (1942), Dennis Thomas of Kool & the Gang (1951), country artist Travis Tritt (1963)

Feb 10: singer Jimmy Durante (1893), zydeco accordionist Rockin’ Dopsie, born Alton Jay Rubin (1932), Don Wilson of The Ventures (1933), singer-songwriter Roberta Flack (1939), James Merchant of Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers (1940), noted Elvis impersonator Ral Donner (1943), folk singer-songwriter Donovan, born Donovan Phillip Leitch (1946), folksinger-songwriter Tom Jans (1949), pop singer Robbie Nevil (1961), Cliff Burton of Metallica (1962)

Departures:

Feb 4: Cramps founder and punk pioneer Lux Interior (2009), pioneering black singer-actress Barbara McNair (2007), composer Iannis Xenakis, pioneer of stochastic music (2001), mandolinist Jethro Burns of Homer and Jethro (1989), Vincent Crane, leader of Atomic Rooster (1989), Australian singer-songwriter Trevor Lucas (1989), flamboyant pianist Liberace (1987), Paul Gardiner, bassist with Gary Numan’s The Tubeway Army (1984), singer-drummer Karen Carpenter of The Carpenters (1983), alto sax-playing singer and band leader Louis Jordan (1975), saxophone inventor Adolphe Sax (1894), singer-pianist Cecil Gant (1951)

Feb 5: Tim Kelly, guitarist for metal rockers Slaughter (1998), Rudy Pompilli, sax player and bandleader of Bill Haley’s Comets (1976)

Feb 6: Mutsumi Fukuhara of Super Junky Monkey (1999), Carl Wilson, founding member of the Beach Boys (1998), Australian techno-pop star Falco (1998), composer-conductor Hugo Montenegro (1981), R&B balladeer Jesse Belvin (1960)

Feb 7: jazz singer and pianist Blossom Dearie, born Marguerite Blossom Dearie (2009), big-voiced crooner and balladeer Frankie Laine (2007), Real Kids bassist Allen “Alpo” Paulino (2006), Elton Dean, British sax man with Soft Machine and Elton John (2006), “Ring of Fire” co-writer Merle Kilgore (2005), singer-songwriter Dale Evans, born Lucille Wood Smith (2001), Dave Peverett of Foghat (2000), songwriter Bobby Troup (1999), smooth British crooner Matt Monro (1985), Al Smith, Chicago blues producer and bassist (1974), New Orleans blues guitarist Eddie “Guitar Slim” Jones (1959)

Feb 8: Buffalo Springfield drummer Dewey Martin (2009), Keith Knudsen of The Doobie Brothers (2005), pioneering jazz organist Jimmy Smith (2005), pop singer Del Shannon, born Charles Weedon Westover (1990)

Feb 9: guitarist-songwriter-producer Scott Turner (2009), Cuban bassist Orlando “Cachaito” Lopez (2009), soul singer Tyrone Davis (2005), Billy Jones, guitarist with The Outlaws (1995), The Reverend Dr. James Cleveland, gospel singer, arranger, and composer (1991), Bill Haley of Bill Haley & His Comets (1981), jump blues bandleader Buddy Johnson who wrote “Since I Fell For You” (1977)

Feb 10: rock ‘n’ roll singer Freddie Bell (2008), ’60s NY folkie and Dylan mentor Dave Van Ronk (2002), saxophonist Buddy Tate (2001), Brian Connolly of Sweet (1997), British music promoter Tony Secunda (1995), Stooges bassist Dave Alexander (1975)

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