It happened this week

This is the week that was in matters musical…

1900, Len Spencer, believed to be the first nationally-known recording star, watches his biggest hit “Arkansas Traveler” enter the U.S. charts … his other hits included “Ta-Ra-Ra-Boom De Ay,” “A Hot Time In The Old Town,” and “Hello! Ma Baby” …

1928, a candle starts a fire at a Gypsy caravan in France … the left hand of 18-year-old guitarist Django Reinhardt is badly burned, rendering two fingers useless … with his right leg also injured, Django is bedridden for 18 months and uses that time as therapy to rebuild his guitar chops so that by the mid-1930s he is a master of swing guitar and ultimately one of the best guitarists of any genre …

1936, country singer Hank Snow records for the first time … the songs are “Lonesome Blue Yodel” and “Prisoned Cowboy” …

1956, Elvis makes his second appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show

1964, “Oh, Pretty Woman” by Roy Orbison turns gold … is his ninth and last Top Ten single …

1965, The Who release “My Generation” as a single …

1970, Jim Morrison gets six months in the slammer for exposing his privates in Miami …

1972, James Taylor and Carly Simon tie the knot in her Manhattan apartment … they will separate ten years later …

1975, Queen releases “Bohemian Rhapsody” as a single…with three and-a-half minutes being the standard limit to the length of a single, the band and producer Roy Thomas Baker have to convince EMI executives to release the six-minute recording without any edits … the single tops the U.K. chart for nine weeks and goes to number two in the U.S. … it will go to #1 again in the U.K. in 1991 after lead singer Freddie Mercury’s AIDS-related death …

…this same week, Joan Baez signs on as a member of The Rolling Thunder Revue

1977, during a London concert Elton John announces that he is retiring from live performance … he gets back in the road game in February 1979 …

1983, Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon becomes the longest-listed album ever on the Billboard chart – 491 continuous weeks …

1986, The Beastie Boys release their album License To Ill, which will become the first rap album to reach number one on the album chart …

1988, Nirvana lead singer Kurt Cobain smashes his guitar onstage for the first time at the Evergreen State Dorm Room Party in Olympia, Washington …

1991, more than 300,000 attend a free show in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park called “A Benefit for Laughter, Love & Music” to commemorate the death of rock promoter Bill Graham … the bill includes The Grateful Dead; Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young; Joan Baez; Santana; and Journey who reunite for the memorial show … Graham died on October 25 when his helicopter hit a utility tower …

1995, Hootie and the Blowfish and Bob Dylan reach an out-of-court settlement over the band’s unauthorized use of Dylan’s lyrics in their song, “Only Want To Be With You” …

1996, the cover of Newsweek features Melissa Etheridge and her partner Julie Cypher to highlight an article on gay parents …

1999, Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, and John Entwistle, the surviving members of The Who, reunite for the first time in two years for a concert in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand … KISS, Tony Bennett, and the Dixie Chicks also are on the bill … the concert marks the launch of Internet video company Pixelon and is webcast …

2002, hip-hop giant Jam Master Jay of Run-DMC is shot dead in his Jamaica, Queens, recording studio … police pursue many leads and theories as to motive: unpaid drug bills, rival rappers, armed robbery, insurance scams, a rivalry with Murder, Inc. over 50 Cent, and more … the crime remains unsolved to this day …

2005, the pioneer of overdriven distorted guitar tones, Link Wray dies … part Shawnee Indian, Link’s most influential recording, “Rumble” from 1958, was inspired by The Diamonds’ “The Stroll” and was featured in the 1994 movie Pulp Fiction

2007, former co-manager of The Ramones and later self-styled “real estate agent to the stars” Linda Stein is found beaten to death in her New York apartment … also this week, Cass County Sheriff Paul D. Laney snares 36 Ozzy Osbourne fans wanted for various infractions in a sting … the Ozzheads were offered free tickets to Osbourne’s show in Fargo, ND, only to be popped when they showed up at the venue … Ozzy is not amused saying, “Sheriff Laney should be apologizing to me for using my name in connection with these arrests. It’s insulting to me and to my audience, and it shows how lazy this particular sheriff is when it comes to doing his job.”…

2008, producer Phil Spector’s retrial on charges of murdering actress Lana Clarkson convenes … his first trial ended with a hung jury …

2009, Michael Jackson’s posthumously released film This is It opens on 18,000 screens worldwide and gets generally good reviews … the film is edited from 120 hours of rehearsal footage of Jackson putting together the extravaganza that he would not live to see …

…and that was the week that was.

Arrivals:

October 28: good ‘ol boy Charlie Daniels (1936), singer-songwriter Ted Hawkins (1936), blues-rock saxist-organist Graham Bond (1937), Hank Marvin of The Shadows (1941), singer Wayne Fontana (1945), Rickie Reynolds of Black Oak Arkansas (1948), Thelma Hopkins of Tony Orlando & Dawn (1948), Stephen Morris of New Order (1957), William Reid of The Jesus & Mary Chain (1958), Ben Harper (1969), American Idol runner-up Justin Guarini (1978)

October 29: composer Vivian Ellis (1904), jazz arranger-composer Neal Hefti (1922), The Big Bopper J.P. Richardson (1930), Mickey Gallagher of Frampton’s Camel (1940), Denny Laine of the Moody Blues and Wings (1944), Peter Green, founder of Fleetwood Mac (1946), Roger O’Donnell of The Cure (1955), Kevin DuBrow of Quiet Riot (1955), Randy Jackson of the Jackson 5 (1961), Einar Orn Benediktsson of The Sugarcubes (1962), Peter Timmins of the Cowboy Junkies (1965), Douglas “SA” Vincent Martinez of 311 (1970), Toby Smith of Jamiroquai (1970)

October 30: trumpeter Clifford Brown (1930), rockabilly star Ray Smith (1934), Grace Slick born Grace Wing (1939), Timothy Schmidt of The Eagles (1947), Jim Messina (1947), David Green of Air Supply (1949), Otis Williams of the Temptations (1949), Gavin Rossdale of Bush (1967)

October 31: Dale Evans (1912), Bernard Edwards of Chic (1952), South African rocker Johnny Clegg (1953), U2 drummer Larry Mullen Jr. (1961), Adam Horovitz a.k.a. King Ad Rock of the Beastie Boys (1966), Vanilla Ice born Robert Van Winkle (1967), Linn Berggren of Ace Of Base (1970)

November 1: blues songstress Sippie Wallace (1898), Peacock Records founder Don Robey (1903), Barry “Ballad of Green Berets” Sadler (1940), Rick Grech, bass player for Blind Faith and Traffic (1946), Dan Peek of America (1950), Ronald Bell of Kool and the Gang (1951), Lyle Lovett (1956), Anthony Kiedis of Red Hot Chili Peppers (1962), Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen (1963), Willie D of The Geto Boys (1966), LaTavia Roberson of Destiny’s Child (1981)

November 2: trumpet legend Bunny Berigan (1908), Keith Emerson (1944), J.D. Souther (1945), Dave Pegg of Jethro Tull (1947), Maxine Nightingale (1952), Carter Beauford of the Dave Matthews Band (1957), Bobby Dall of Poison (1958), Matt Sorum of Cult, Guns N’ Roses, and Velvet Revolver (1960), k.d. lang born Katherine Dawn Lang (1961), Alex James of Blur (1968), Reginald Arvizu of Korn (1969), John Hampson of Nine Days (1971), Nelly (1978)

November 3: Brian Poole of The Tremeloes (1941), Marie McDonald Lawrie a.k.a. Lulu (1948), Adam Ant born Stuart Leslie Goddard (1954)

Departures:

October 28: country star Porter Wagoner (2007), R&B keyboard man Jon Thomas, who sang “It’s Hurtin’ Me” (1995), R&B singer Billy Wright (1991), jazz arranger Oliver Nelson (1975), R&B reedman Earl Bostic (1965)

October 29: saxophonist Henry Berthold “Spike” Robinson (2001), jazz bandleader Woody Herman (1987), King Harvest drummer Wells Kelly (1984), guitar master Duane Allman (1971)

October 30: crooner Robert Goulet (2007), Ramones co-manager Linda Stein (2007), Jam Master Jay of Run-DMC (2002), TV host and musician Steve Allen (2000), hard swingin’ sax man Chu Berry (1941)

October 31: John Holohan, drummer for Bayside (2005), record exec Lester Sill (1994), A Chorus Line producer Joseph Papp (1991), Procol Harum drummer B.J. Wilson (1990), guitarist Malcolm Hale of Spanky and Our Gang (1968)

November 1: Grand Funk Railroad manager Terry Knight (2004), classic blues singer and pianist Sippie Wallace (1986), pioneer Delta blues singer Tommy Johnson (1956)

November 2: Sammy Kaye Band singer Wandra Merrell (1994), Mississippi John Hurt (1966)

November 3: singer Art Wood (2006), Lonnie Donegan (2002), blues harmonica player William Clarke (1996), songwriter Mort Shuman (1991)

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