1943: Richard Manuel (The Band)
1946: Dee Murray (Elton John Band)
1949: Richard Thompson
1951: Mel Schacher (Grand Funk Railroad)
1962: Simon Raymonde (The Cocteau Twins)
1968: Sebastian Bierk a.k.a. Sebastian Bach (Skid Row)
1964: Bob Dylan made his first entry on the UK album charts with ‘The Times They Are A-Changin’.
1979: Kate Bush kicked off the 28-date ‘Tour of Life’ trek, making her concert debut at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre, England. She did not perform live gigs again until 35 years later, in 2014.
1986: Metallica released their third album, ‘Master of Puppets’.
1990: Death of jazz singer, Sarah Vaughan [aged 66].
This live clip of Kate Bush is from Hammersmith Apollo in 1979. When her ‘Tour of Life’ concluded, she did not perform another concert again for over 35 years! When she announced her string of dates at the same venue in 2014, tickets for all 22 shows sold out in a matter of minutes. Wow!
1928: Serge Gainsbourg
1939: Marvin Gaye
1942: Claude Bridges a.k.a. Leon Russell
1943: Larry Coryell
1946: Kurt Winter (The Guess Who)
1947: Emmylou Harris
1952: Leon Wilkeson (Lynyrd Skynyrd)
1964: The Beatles had their 4th UK No.1 single with “Can’t Buy Me Love”, including advanced sales of over 2.1 million.
1965: The Who made their first radio appearance, on the BBC’s ‘Joe Loss Pop Show’.
1967: Steve Winwood quit Spencer Davis Group to form Traffic.
1967: The Beatles completed recording their album, ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’.
1977: Fleetwood Mac went to No.1 on the US album chart with ‘Rumours’.
1983: Pink Floyd scored their third UK No.1 album with ‘The Final Cut’.
1987: Death of drummer, Buddy Rich [aged 69].
2003: Death of singer, Edwin Starr [aged 61].
Marvin Gaye would have been 81 today! But tragically, he was shot dead by his father in 1984, the day before his 45th birthday. Thankfully, he left a lot of beautiful songs for the world to hear.
1939: Rudolph Isley (The Isley Brothers)
1945: John Barbata (The Turtles / Jefferson Starship)
1946: Ronnie Lane (The Small Faces)
1948: Jimmy Cliff
1949: Gil Scott-Heron
1952: Billy Currie (Ultravox)
1954: Jeff Porcaro (Toto)
1964: Leslie Langston (Throwing Muses)
1965: Peter O’Toole (Hothouse Flowers)
1961: The Beatles began a 3-month residency at The Top Ten Club, Hamburg.
1972: The 3-day Mar Y Sol festival in Puerto Rico featured Rod Stewart, Dr John, Allman Brothers, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Emerson Lake & Palmer, Osibisa, Alice Cooper & more.
1976: Rush released their fourth album, ‘2112’.
1983: Kirk Hammett joined Metallica.
1984: Death of singer / songwriter, Marvin Gaye [aged 44].
1985: David Lee Roth quit Van Halen to persue a solo career.
2004: Death of guitarist, Paul Atkinson of The Zombies [aged 58].
2012: Yes played live for the first time ever in New Zealand at Vector Arena, Auckland ~ I was there! It was also the first concert performance with Yes for new lead singer, Jon Davison.
2015: Death of guitarist / singer / songwriter, Dave Ball of Procol Harum & Bedlam [aged 65].
2016: Guns N’ Roses original members performed their first reunion concert at Troubadour, West Hollywood, California. It was the first time that Axl, Slash, Duff & Dizzy had played on stage together since 17 July, 1993. The club gig was a warm-up for the scheduled GNR extensive world tour.
2020: Death of guitarist / singer / songwriter, Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne [aged 52].
8 years ago today already? YES! 44 years, 8 months, and 1 day since their debut gig, YES finally played their first ever concert in New Zealand!!! Of course, it was a fantastic show and we all had a blast. Thanks to Paul Watson for filming and providing this footage.
1732: Franz Joseph Haydn
1944: Mick Ralphs (Mott The Hoople / Bad Company)
1948: Thijs Van Leer (Focus)
1954: Tony Brock (The Babys)
1955: Angus Young (AC/DC)
1958: Paul Ferguson (Killing Joke)
1974: Stefan Olsdal (Placebo)
1958: Chuck Berry’s rock ‘n’ roll classic, “Johnny B. Goode” single was released.
1967: Jimi Hendrix set fire to his guitar for the first time at Finsbury Park, Astoria.
1976: Led Zeppelin released their ‘Presence’ album.
1986: Death of O’Kelly Isley of The Isley Brothers [aged 46].
1995: Jimmy Page escaped being knifed when a fan rushed the stage at a Page/Plant gig in Michigan.
1995: Death of singer, Selena [aged 23], murdered by the president of her fan club.
1996: Death of singer / songwriter, Jeffrey Lee Pierce of The Gun Club [aged 37].
2017: Death of singer / songwriter / activist, David Peel [aged 73].
Happy Birthday to Angus Young!! The AC/DC founder / guitarist / songwriter / icon is 65 today. He took rock ‘n’ roll, injected high voltage to his riffs and conquered the world with his unique approach to guitar playing and rebellious schoolboy image. Long Live Rock, AC/DC & Angus!
Above: Photo of me with Angus Young, backstage with AC/DC on ‘The Razor’s Edge’ tour in Auckland, 16th November, 1991.
1942: Graeme Edge (The Moody Blues)
1945: Eric Clapton
1948: James Mangrum a.k.a. Jim Dandy (Black Oak Arkansas)
1949: Lili-Marlene Premilovich a.k.a. Lena Lovich
1950: Dave Ball (Procol Harum / Bedlam)
1954: Lene Lovich
1964: Tracy Chapman
1967: Martin “Ace” Kent (Skunk Anansie)
1976: Mark McClelland (Snow Patrol)
1979: Norah Jones
1967: The cover of the Beatles’ ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ was staged and photographed.
1979: Split Enz played a concert at Regent Theatre, Dunedin — I was there!
1987: Prince released his double album, ‘Sign O’ the Times’.
2004: Death of soul singer, Timi Yuro [aged 62].
2015: Death of guitarist, Jeremy Brown of The Wildabouts [aged 34].
2016: Death of pianist, Andy Newman of Thunderclap Newman [aged 73].
Happy Birthday to Eric Clapton ~ Mr. “Slowhand” is 75 today!! Of course, Eric is one of the greatest and most influential guitarists of all time and has written or contributed to some of the finest songs in the last 50 years. My favourite Clapton numbers are from the John Mayall / Cream / Blind Faith era and into Derek and the Dominos with Duane Allman. It’s so hard to pick just one song, but I always love hearing this one… Electric!
1940: Astrud Gilberto (Getz / Gilberto)
1940: Ray Davis (Parliament / Funkadelic / The Temptations)
1943: Evangelos Papathanassiou a.k.a. Vangelis
1943: Eric Idle (Monty Python’s Flying Circus / The Rutles)
1945: John “Speedy” Keen (Thunderclap Newman)
1947: Bobby Kimball (Toto)
1949: Randy Brecker (The Brecker Brothers / Frank Zappa Band, sessionist)
1949: Dave Greenfield (The Stranglers)
1959: Perry Bernstein a.k.a. Perry Farrell (Jane’s Addiction)
1968: Lucille Ryan a.k.a. Lucy Lawless
1871: Queen Victoria opened the Royal Albert Hall.
1974: King Crimson released their sixth album, ‘Starless and Bible Black’.
1975: Led Zeppelin had all their six albums in the US Top 100 chart in the same week, with their latest album ‘Physical Graffiti’ at No.1.
1975: Jeff Beck released his ‘Blow By Blow’ LP. Produced by George Martin, the instrumental album remarkably reached No. 4 on the U.S. charts and has achieved Platinum in sales.
1978: David Bowie kicked off his ‘Low / Heroes’ 77-date World Tour at San Diego Sports Arena, California.
1979: Supertramp released their sixth LP, ‘Breakfast in America’. It went on to become one of the best selling albums in the world.
1980: Pink Floyd’s ‘The Dark Side of the Moon’, spent its 303rd week on the US album chart, beating the record set by Carole King’s album ‘Tapestry’.
1993: Throwing Muses played a concert at The Powerstation, Auckland — I was there!
2005: Neil Young was successfully treated for a brain aneurysm at a hospital in New York.
2020: Death of singer / songwriter / guitarist / actor / model, Alan Merrill [aged 69]. Alan was a member of pop trio, The Arrows, but was best known for writing the smash hit “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll”.
Happy 77th Birthday to Eric Idle! He will always be a kid at heart and forever known for his work with Monty Python (my favourite bunch of comedians). Eric was also one of the pre-fab four, The Rutles, but his most famous song is this gem, which he wrote for Python’s ‘Life of Brian’ movie…
1945: Chuck Portz (The Turtles)
1948: John Evan (Jethro Tull)
1948: Milan Williams (Commodores)
1955: Reba McEntire
1986: Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta a.k.a. Lady Gaga
1958: Eddie Cochran recorded “Summertime Blues”.
1967: Van Morrison recorded “Brown Eyed Girl”.
1969: Joe Cocker played his first American concert.
1973: Led Zeppelin released their fifth album, ‘Houses of the Holy’.
1976: Genesis began its first North American tour since Peter Gabriel’s departure. Phil Collins was the new lead singer.
1979: Eric Clapton and Patti “Layla” Boyd were married. Patti was George Harrison’s ex-wife.
1994: Pink Floyd released the album ‘The Division Bell’.
One of the greatest albums in rock history, Led Zeppelin‘s ‘Houses of the Holy’ LP was released on this day, 47 years ago! It captured the mighty Zeppelin in the studio at their peak. Major highlights include the amazing “No Quarter” (featuring atmospheric keyboard work from John Paul Jones), the brilliant “Over the Hills and Far Away”, the catchy super-crunch of “Dancing Days” and fun tracks such as “D’yer Mak’er” and “The Ocean”. Very powerful track, “The Song Remains the Same” is most impressive, with Jimmy Page in full flight on guitar and Robert Plant belting out the vocals, as if on helium! John Bonham’s drumming is nothing short of astounding. It segues beautifully into “The Rain Song”, as they often performed these songs so well in concert. No doubt about it ~ ‘Houses of the Holy’ is one of the most essential rock albums ever!!!
1934: Sarah Vaughan
1946: Andrew Brown (The Herd)
1950: Tony Banks (Genesis)
1957: Billy MacKenzie (The Associates)
1959: Andrew Farriss (INXS)
1975: Stacy Ann Ferguson a.k.a. Fergie
1973: After becoming a disciple of Sri Chinmoy, Carlos Santana added ‘Devadip’ to his name, which means “The Lamp of the Light of the Supreme”.
1979: Eric Clapton married Patti Harrison (ex-wife of George) at Temple Bethel, Tucson, Arizona.
1984: Metallica made their UK live debut at the Marquee, London.
2000: Death of singer / songwriter / actor, Ian Dury [aged 57].
2002: Death of actor / comedian / musician / composer, Dudley Moore [aged 66].
Happy 70th Birthday to masterful keyboardist / composer, Tony Banks, of Genesis. Tony wrote or co-wrote a major share of the Genesis catalogue over the years… here is some rare footage of just a couple of their classics in one great medley:
1944: Diane Earle a.k.a. Diana Ross
1948: Steven Tallarico a.k.a. Steve Tyler (Aerosmith)
1948: Richard Tandy (Electric Light Orchestra)
1949: Fran Sheehan (Boston)
1968: James Iha (The Smashing Pumpkins / A Perfect Circle)
1827: Death of Ludwig Van Beethoven [aged 56].
1965: It was announced that Jeff Beck would replace Eric Clapton in the Yardbirds.
1975: The film ‘Tommy’ premiered in London. The movie was based on the rock opera by The Who.
1976: Thin Lizzy released their ‘Jailbreak’ LP.
1986: Roy Harper played a concert at His Majesty’s Theatre, Auckland Auckland ~ I was there!
1993: Metallica played a concert at Mt. Smart Stadium, Auckland ~ I was there!
1994: Soundgarden entered the US album chart at No.1 with ‘Superunknown’.
2000: Santana started a 2-week run at No.1 on the UK album chart with ‘Supernatural’.
2002: Death of drummer, Randy Castillo of Ozzy Osbourne band [aged 51].
2005: Death of drummer, Paul Hester of Crowded House / Split Enz [aged 46].
2006: Death of guitarist, Pete Wells of Rose Tattoo [aged 58].
2015: Death of guitarist, John Renbourn of Pentangle [aged 70].
2019: Death of singer, “Ranking Roger” Charlery of The Beat [aged 56].
Happy Birthday to Steve Tyler of Aerosmith ~ he’s 72 today!!! Steven is such a great singer, with a very distinctive voice and a true showman on stage. Here’s one of the best from the good ol’ days… originally on the ‘Get Your Wings‘ LP, this is “Seasons of Wither”.
1938: Hoyt Axton
1942: Aretha Franklin
1947: Reginald Dwight a.k.a. Elton John
1949: Nick Lowe (Rockpile)
1954: Nathan Watts (Motown / Miles Davis Group)
1966: Jeff Healey
1971: Michael McKeegan (Therapy)
1974: Finley Quaye
1964: The Beatles made their debut on UK TV show ‘Top of the Pops’.
1967: The Who made their U.S. concert debut at RKO 58th Street Theatre, New York City.
1969: John & Yoko started their week long “bed-in” at The Amsterdam Hilton hotel.
1970: Jimi Hendrix released the ‘Band of Gypsys’ album, featuring his new band with bassist, Billy Cox and drummer, Buddy Miles. The live LP was recorded on New Year’s Eve & New Year’s Day, 1970.
1975: Aerosmith began their 63-date North American ‘Toys in the Attic’ tour in Fort Wayne.
1986: Guns N’ Roses signed a world-wide deal with Geffen Records.
1995: Pearl Jam played a concert at Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland — I was there! Earlier in the day, Eddie Vedder had been rescued by a lifeguard, while surfing at Piha beach.
2006: Death of country singer / guitarist, Alvis “Buck” Owens Jr. [aged 76].
2017: Don Henley & his 15-piece band (with Jewel as support act) played a concert at TSB Stadium, Wellington — I was there!
2018: Death of Mike Harrison, lead singer of Spooky Tooth [aged 72].
2019: Death of singer / songwriter / producer, Scott Walker [aged 76].
Happy 73rd Birthday to Sir Elton Hercules John! Named at birth as Reginald Dwight, the singer / songwriter / pianist has released over 30 albums since 1969 and sold in excess of 300 million records worldwide! My two favourites are ‘Madman Across the Water‘ & ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road‘… here’s the outstanding first cut from the latter…