August 31st: On this day
1957, Elvis Presley appeared at the Empire Stadium in Vancouver, Canada. This was only the third time ever Presley had performed outside of the U.S. and for Elvis it would be the last. 26,000 fans attended the show with tickets costing $1.50, $2.50 and $3.50.
1963, The girl trio Angels started a three week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘My Boyfriend’s Back’. The writers of the song Bob Feldman, Jerry Goldstein and Richard Gottehrer were a trio of Brooklyn songwriter/producers who went on to write the hits ‘Sorrow’ and have the 1965 US No.11 single as The Strangeloves with ‘I Want Candy’.
1963, The Ronettes first entered the US singles chart with ‘Be My Baby’ the girl group’s only top 10 hit. Lead singer, Veronica Bennett who became Ronnie Spector, took producer and ex-husband Phil Spector to court in the late 1990s for unpaid royalties.
1968, The Move, The Pretty Things, The Crazy World Of Aurthur Brown, Orange Bicycle, Jefferson Airplane, Fairport Convention and Tyrannosaurus Rex all appeared at the first Isle Of Wight Festival held over two days. Tickets, 25 shillings, ($3.00).
1968, Decca Records released what has been called The Rolling Stones most political song, ‘Street Fighting Man’, written after Mick Jagger attended a March 1968 anti-war rally at London’s US embassy, during which mounted police attempted to control a crowd of 25,000. The single was kept out of the US Top 40 (reaching No.48) because many radio stations refused to play it based on what were perceived as subversive lyrics.
1971, The Rolling Stones plus the father of Brian Jones filed a high court writ against ex managers Oldham and Easton. Claiming they made a secret deal with Decca Records in 1963 to deprive the group of royalties.
1974, Traffic made their last live performance at the annual UK Reading Festival. Other acts appearing included; Alex Harvey, 10cc, Focus, Steve Harley and Procol Harum. £5.50 for a weekend ticket.
1976, George Harrison was found guilty of ‘subconscious plagiarism’ of the Ronnie Mack song ‘He’s So Fine’ when writing ‘My Sweet Lord’. Earnings from the song were awarded to Mack’s estate; The Chiffons then recorded their own version of ‘My Sweet Lord’.
1984, ‘Purple Rain’ the movie-starring Prince opened at cinemas across the UK with special late night previews. The film grossed more than US $80 million at the box office and became a cult classic.
1985, ‘Brothers In Arms’ by Dire Straits started a nine-week run at No.1 on the US album charts. The album also topped the charts in 25 other countries and went on to sell over 20 million worldwide.
1985, UB40 with guest vocals from Chrissie Hynde had the UK No.1 single with their version of the Sonny Bono song ‘I Got You Babe’ a hit for Sonny & Cher in 1965.
1986, After living together for 10 years Bob Geldof married TV presenter Paula Yates in Las Vegas with Duran Duran singer Simon Le Bon as the best man. Yates died of a drug overdose on 17th September 2000.
1987, The largest pre-order of albums in the history of CBS Records occurred as 2.25 million copies of Michael Jackson’s ‘Bad’ album were shipped to record stores in the US. The LP followed the Jackson album, Thriller the biggest Jackson-seller of all time (over 35 million copies sold). ‘Bad’ went on to sell over 13 million copies.
1990, Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt and Stevie Wonder sang ‘Amazing Grace’ at a memorial service held for guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan who had been killed in a helicopter crash 4 days earlier.
1991, Metallica started a four-week run at No.1 on the US album chart with, Metallica. The album featured ‘Enter Sandman’ ‘Sad But True’, ‘The Unforgiven’ and ‘Nothing Else Matters’ went on to sell over 10 million copies in the US alone.
1997, Oasis went to No.1 on the UK album chart with their third album ‘Be Here Now.’ The album had sold over a million copies on the first day of release. At that point, Oasis were at the height of their fame, and ‘Be Here Now’ became the United Kingdom’s fastest selling album to date.
2002, NASA announced that Lance Bass, singer with *NSYNC, was to become the first celebrity astronaut. His $23.8 million (£14 million), place on a Russian Soyuz module would make him the youngest person at 23 years of age to go into orbit. Bass ended up not taking part in the flight after failing to pay for his $20 million ticket on the craft.
2003, Elton John went to No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Are You Ready For Love.’ The song was recorded in 1977 and released in 1979, when it reached No.42. It was used by Sky TV for their Premiership football ads.
2004, Carl Wayne the singer with The Move died from cancer. They had the 1969 UK No.1 single ‘Blackberry Way.’ Wayne also worked with The Hollies.
2004, UK medical magazine Thorax issued a warning to music fans saying that listening to loud music in the car can give you a collapsed lung. One 19 year-old had been treated in Bristol after his left lung collapsed as his 1,000-watt bass box boomed out in his Fiat Panda.
2006, The Times ran a story on the demands of rock stars when on tour. Ozzy Osbourne insists on an eye, ear, nose and throat doctor at each venue. The Beach Boys require a licensed masseur, Meat Loaf a mask and one small tank of oxygen. David Bowie requests that the dressing room temperature is between 14c and 18c and Paul McCartney must have a large arrangement of white Casablanca lilies in his dressing room. Mick Jagger must have an onstage autocue with the lyrics to all the songs, it would also tell him the name of the city in which they were performing.
2007, Hilly Kristal, founder of the New York punk club CBGB died from complications arising from lung cancer at the age of 75. Kristal was credited with discovering Patti Smith and the Ramones and his club became a breeding ground for punk rock. The New York City venue, whose full title CBGB OMFUG stood for ‘country, bluegrass, blues and other music for uplifting gourmandisers’, was originally launched to showcase country music.
2014, Jimi Jamison, the lead singer for US rock band Survivor, who sang and co-wrote ‘I’m Always Here’ the theme tune for hit TV series Baywatch, died aged 63. The band are best known for their 1982 hit ‘The Eye of the Tiger’ which pre-dated Jamison joining the group.
August 31st: Born on this day
1939, Born on this day, Jerry Allison, drums, The Crickets, (1957 US No.1 single ‘That’ll Be The Day’, No.1 single ‘It Doesn’t Matter Anymore’ plus over 15 other UK top 40 singles).
1940, Born on this day, Wilton Felder, The Crusaders, (1979 UK No.5 & US No.36 single ‘Street Life’).
1944, Roger Dean, English artist. Designed album covers for Yes, Atomic Rooster, Uriah Heep, Gentle Giant, Greenslade, Steve Howe, Asia.
1945, Born on this day, Northern Irish singer, songwriter and musician Van Morrison, singer, songwriter, Them, (1965 UK No.2 single ‘Here Comes The Night’), solo, (1970 album ‘Moondance’, plus over 15 other UK Top 40 albums). He has received six Grammy Awards, the 1994 Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music, and has been inducted into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
1945, Born on this day, Bob Welch, American musician. A former member of Fleetwood Mac, Welch had a briefly successful solo career in the late 1970s. His singles included Hot Love, Cold World, Ebony Eyes, Precious Love, and his signature Sentimental Lady. Welch committed suicide in his Nashville home on 7th June 2012. He was found by his wife with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest.
1948, Born on this day in 1948 was German guitarist Rudolf Schenker from Scorpions, who he formed in 1965 when he was 17 years old. Their 1990 power ballad Wind Of Change topped the European charts and was a No.4 hit in the US. The Scorpions hold the record for the best-selling single by a German artist and band.
1955, Born on this day, Anthony Thistlethwaite, The Waterboys, (1991 UK No.3 single ‘Whole Of The Moon’, first released in 1985).
1957, Born on this day, Gina Schock, drums, The Go-Go’s, (1982 US No.2 single, ‘We Got The Beat’, 1982 UK No.47 single ‘Our Lips Are Sealed’).
1957, Born on this day, Glenn Tilbrook, guitar, vocals, Squeeze, (1979 UK No.2 single ‘Up The Junction’). Now solo.
1959, Born on this day, Tony DeFranco, The DeFranco Family, (1973 US No.3 single ‘Heartbeat-It’s A Lovebeat’, biggest selling US single of 73. Based on The Osmonds, featured 10 year-old Tony DeFranco).
1967, Born on this day, Gerard Love, bass, Teenage Fanclub, (1992 UK No.31 single ‘What You Do To Me’).
1970, Born on this day, Debbie Gibson, US singer, (1988 US No.1 & UK No.9 single ‘Foolish Beat’).
1977, Born on this day, Craig Nicholls, singer, songwriter, guitarist, The Vines, (2002 UK No. 3 album ‘Highly Evolved’).
1977, Born on this day, Del Marquis, (Derek Gruen), guitar, Scissor Sisters, (2004 UK No.1 self-titled album, 2004 UK No. 12 single ‘Laura’