August 25th: On this day
1957, Canadian singer, songwriter Paul Anka was at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Diana’ (written about his brother’s baby-sitter). His only UK No.1 as an artist, Anka was the first teenage solo act to reach No.1.
1958, Staten Island, New York doo wop group The Elegants went to No.1 on the US singles chart with their re-worked version of the Mozart lullaby, “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” re-titled “Little Star”. The Elegants would be around in one form or another until the 1980s, but never had another hit record.
1960, The Shadows were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Apache’. The first of five UK No.1’s for Cliff Richard’s backing group.
1961, After playing a lunchtime gig at The Cavern Club Liverpool, The Beatles played aboard the Merseyside riverboat M.V.Royal Iris supporting Acker Bilk and his Paramount Jazz Band.
1962, Little Eva went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘The Loco-motion’. The Carole King and Gerry Goffin song was offered to Dee Dee Sharp (Mashed Potatoes), who turned it down. The writers had their babysitter record it who took it to No.1.
1965, Two female Beatles fans hired a helicopter to fly over the house The Beatles were renting in Beverly Hills, California and jumped from the helicopter into the swimming pool.
1966, During their last US tour, The Beatles played two shows at the Coliseum in Seattle, Washington. The first show at 3pm was attended by only 8,000 fans (the arena seated 15,000), but the evening show was a sell-out.
1967, Bobbie Gentry started a four week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Ode To Billy Joe’, a No.13 hit in the UK. The song generated eight Grammy nominations, resulting in three wins for Gentry and one win for arranger Jimmie Haskell.
1967, Brian Wilson returned to performing live with The Beach Boys in Honolulu after a 2 year hiatus. The group had just released ‘Heroes and Villains’ in the US.
1970, A party was held to celebrate the official opening of ‘Electric Ladyland’ studios in New York City, New York. Artists who went on to record at the studio include: Jimi Hendrix, John Lennon, AC/DC, David Bowie, Stevie Wonder, Frank Zappa and Guns N’ Roses.
1970, Elton John made his US live debut when he kicked off a 17-date tour at the Troubadour in Los Angeles. In the audience that night were Don Henley, Quincy Jones and Leon Russell. Elton’s latest single ‘Border Song’ had just debuted at number 92 on the US chart.
1973, Donny Osmond was at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Young Love’ his third and last No.1. Tab Hunter also had a hit with the song in 1957.
1973, One Hit Wonders Stories started a two week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Brother Louie’. Hot Chocolate who had a No.7 hit with the song in the UK wrote the song.
1979, 25 years after his first UK No.1 single Cliff Richard had his 10th chart topper with ‘We Don’t Talk Anymore’ his first No.1 for eleven years.
1979, The Knack started a five week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘My Sharona’, the group’s only US chart topper, a No.6 hit in the UK. Lead singer Doug Fieger said he was inspired to write the tune by Sharrona Alperin, a 17 year old senior at Los Angeles’ Fairfax High.
1981, R.E.M. appeared at The Scorpio, Charlotte, North Carolina. This show was billed as “Charlotte’s First Gay New Wave Disco and Costume Party”, with the $3 tickets benefitting various gay-lesbian charities.
1990, ‘Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini’ by Bombalurina was the UK No.1 single. Bombalurina was childrens TV presenter Timmy Mallett with a remake of Brian Hyland’s 1960 hit.
1993, Snoop Doggy Dogg was released on $1 million bail after being accused of being involved with the murder of a member of the By Yerself gang during a shooting in Los Angeles. He was acquitted of the charges in 1996.
1994, Jimmy Page and Robert plant recorded their MTV unplugged set at London’s television centre.
1994, Jimmy Buffett crashed his Grumman G-44 Widgeon seaplane on take-off in Nantucket, Massachusetts. Buffett swam away from the wreckage.
1995, Bassist and singer Doug Stegmeyer shot himself dead. He’d worked with many artists including Billy Joel, Hall and Oates and The Carpenters.
1997, A deranged man who had escaped from a mental institution near Helsinki Finland was arrested. The man had planned to set fire to the stage that Michael Jackson was performing from was arrested before he was able to light the gasoline he had put on the stage.
1999, Robert Fisher from New Romantic duo Naked Eyes and Climie Fisher died of cancer aged 39. With Climie Fisher scored the 1988 UK No.2 single ‘Love Changes Everything’ and wrote songs for Rod Stewart, Milli Vanilli, Fleetwood Mac and Jermaine Jackson. Fisher also worked as a producer, working with various acts including Eric Clapton.
1999, Oasis bass player Paul McGuigan announced he had quit the band just a few days after guitarist Bonehead had left the band.
2000, Academy Award-winning film score composer and record producer Jack Nitzsche died of a heart attack. He produced The Rolling Stones, Neil Young, Buffalo Springfield and The Walker Brothers. Musical scores including The Exorcist, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, co-wrote ‘Up Where We Belong’ with Buffy Sainte-Marie from 1982 film An Officer and a Gentleman.
2001, American singer, actress Aaliyah was killed in a plane crash in the Bahamas aged 22. The small Cessna plane crashed a few minutes after take off killing everyone on board with exception to four passengers who were pulled from the wreckage but later died. Aaliyah had been filming a video for her latest release ‘Rock The Boat’ on the island.
2005, Two former members of Guns N’ Roses were suing singer Axl Rose for allegedly naming himself sole administrator of the US rock band’s copyrights. Slash and Duff – otherwise known as Saul Hudson and Michael McKagan, accused Rose of “arrogance and ego”. The legal action claimed the singer “was no longer willing to acknowledge the contributions of his former partners”.
2006, Aerosmith bassist Tom Hamilton was undergoing treatment for throat cancer causing him to sit out the first half of the band’s Route of All Evil Tour, the first time he would miss any shows in the band’s history. Longtime band friend David Hull filled in for Hamilton until his return.
2009, Bob Dylan revealed during his weekly radio show broadcast on 6 Music, that he was speaking to a number of car companies about becoming the voice of their satellite navigation systems. The 68 year-old said he thought it be would be good for drivers to hear him saying things such as: “Take a left at the next street. No, a right. You know what, just go straight”.
2010, A selection of previously unseen photographs of The Beatles went on display in Liverpool at the Victoria Gallery and Museum. The images were taken by Astrid Kirchherr the former girlfriend of original bass player Stuart Sutcliffe, who took pictures of the band’s early years after meeting them in Hamburg in 1960. The exhibition included images of the Beatles on holiday in Tenerife and of the making of their film A Hard Day’s Night in 1964 in Liverpool.
2014, Led Zeppelin’s ‘Whole Lotta Love’ was voted the greatest guitar riff of all time by listeners of BBC Radio 2 in the UK. The rock classic came out top from a list of 100 riffs drawn up by a panel of Radio 2 and 6 Music DJs, critics and record producers. ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ by Guns ‘N’ Roses was second in the poll, with Back In Black (AC/DC) and ‘Smoke On The Water’ (Deep Purple) the next most popular.
August 25th: Born on this day
1918, Born on this day, composer, pianist, conductor, Leonard Bernstein. Composed music for 1957 ‘West Side Story’, ‘On The Waterfront’, conducted the New York Philharmonic aged 25. Died on 14th October 1990.
1933, Born on this day, Wayne Shorter, saxophonist, Miles Davis, Weather Report, (1976 single ‘Birdland’, 1977 album Heavy Weather’).
1942, Born on this day, Walter Williams, The O’Jays, (1973 US No.1 & UK No.9 single ‘Love Train’).
1949, Born on this day, Gene Simmons bass, vocals, KISS (1974 US No.5 single ‘On And On’, 1976 US No 11 album ‘Rock and Roll Over’, spent 26 weeks on the chart. 1987 UK No.4 single ‘Crazy Crazy Nights’).
1950, Born on this day, Willy DeVille, Mink DeVille, (1977 UK No.20 single ‘Spanish Stroll’). Died of pancreatic cancer on 6th Aug 2009.
1951, Born on this day, James Warren, The Korgis, (1980 UK No.5 single ‘Everybody’s Got To Learn Sometime’).
1951, Born on this day, Rob Halford, singer, Judas Priest, (1980 UK No.12 single ‘Living After Midnight’, 1980 UK No.4 album ‘British Steel’).
1954, Born on this day, Elvis Costello, (Declan McManus), singer, songwriter. Had the 1979 UK No.2 single with The Attractions ‘Olivers Army’ and his 1979 UK No.2 album Armed Forces spent 28 weeks on the chart. Costello has won multiple awards in his career, including a Grammy Award, and has worked with Paul McCartney, Tony Bennett, Lucinda Williams, Kid Rock, and Brian Eno.
1956, Born on this day, Matt Aitken, part of the Stock, Aitken and Waterman production team, produced over 10 UK No.1 singles.
1961, Born on this day, Billy Ray Cyrus, US singer, (1992 UK No.3 single ‘Achy Breaky Heart’, 17 week run at No.1 on the US album chart in 1992 with ‘Some Gave All’).
1962, Born on this day in Lisburn, County Antrim, Northern Ireland, was Vivian Campbell, the guitarist who joined Def Leppard in 1992, replacing Steve Clark, who had died the previous year. Campbell had also been a member of Dio and Whitesnake.
1963, Born on this day, Candida Doyle, Pulp, (1995 UK No.2 single ‘Common People’).
1965, Born on this day, Erik Dahlgren, drummer, The Wannadies, (1996 UK No. 18 single, ‘You And Me Song’).
1966, Born on this day, Norman Rogers, Public Enemy, (1988 UK No.18 single ‘Don’t Believe The Hype’).
1967, Born on this day, Jeff Tweedy, American songwriter, musician and leader of the band Wilco who released the albums Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, A Ghost Is Born, Sky Blue Sky and Wilco (The Album).
1969, Born on this day, Luke Scott, Babybird, (1996 UK No.3 single ‘You’re Gorgeous’, 1996 UK No. 9 album ‘Ugly Beautiful’).
1985, Born on this day, Diana “Wynter” Gordon, American pop/dance singer-songwriter who had the 2011 word wide hit ‘Dirty Talk’.
1987, Born on this day, Amy MacDonald, Scottish singer/songwriter. (2008 UK No.1 with her debut album ‘This Is the Life’).
1988, Born on this day, Ray Quinn, English actor and singer, runner-up to Leona Lewis in the third series of ITV talent show The X Factor, (2007 UK No.1 album ‘Doing It My Way’).
1988, Born on this day, Alexandra Burke, R&B singer and winner of the 2008 series of UK television talent show The X Factor. 2009 UK No.1 single ‘Bad Boys’ featuring Flo Rida.