This Day In Rock History: Dec 17th

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

  • 1962, Bob Dylan arrived in England for the first time; he played his first UK date the following night at the Troubadour Club in London.
  • 1963, James Carroll at WWDC in Washington, DC, became the first disc jockey to broadcast a Beatles record on American radio. Carroll played ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’, which he had obtained from his stewardess girlfriend, who brought the single back from the UK. Due to listener demand, the song was played daily, every hour. Since it hadn’t been released yet in the States, Capitol Records initially considered court action, but instead released the single earlier than planned.
  • 1971, David Bowie released his fourth album Hunky Dory, which was the first to feature all the members of the band that would become known the following year as Ziggy Stardust’s Spiders From Mars.
  • 1973, Slade were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Merry Xmas Everybody’ their sixth chart topper. It has been released during every decade since 1973, and has been covered by numerous artists. In a 2007 poll, ‘Merry Xmas Everybody’ was voted the UK’s most popular Christmas song.
  • 1977, Deputising for the Sex Pistols on NBC- TVs ‘Saturday Night Live’, Elvis Costello stops his performance of ‘Less Than Zero’, saying ‘ there’s no reason to do this’, and launches into ‘Radio Radio’ which he’d been told not to perform.
  • 1982, American Delta blues musician and songwriter Big Joe Williams died in Macon, Mississippi aged 79. Wrote ‘Baby Please Don’t Go’, a 1965 UK Top 10 for Them, (featuring Van Morrison).
  • 1982, Karen Carpenter made her last live appearance with The Carpenters when she performed in Sherman, California. Carpenter suffered from anorexia nervosa, the eating disorder which was a little-known illness at the time. She died at the age of 32 from heart failure, on February 4, 1983 caused by complications related to her illness.
  • 1995, A statue of the late Frank Zappa was unveiled in Vilnius, the capital of the Republic Of Lithuania. It had been organised by Zappa fan club President Saulius Pauksty.
  • 1999, American jazz-funk, soul-jazz saxophonist Grover Washington Jr died of a heart attack aged 56. He collapsed in the green room after taping four songs for The Early Show, at CBS Studios in New York City, He released over 20 solo albums and featured on the 1981 Bill Withers hit ‘Just The Two of Us.’
  • 2004, Elvis Presley’s daughter Lisa Marie Presley agreed to sell 85% of his estate to businessman Robert Sillerman in a deal worth $100m. Sillerman would run Presley’s Memphis home Graceland, and own Elvis’ name and the rights to all revenue from his music and films. In the deal Lisa Marie would retain possession of Graceland and many of her father’s ‘personal effects.’
  • 2006, English saxophonist Denis Payton died. Member of Dave Clark Five who had the 1964 UK No.1 single ‘Glad All Over’, 1965 US No.1 single ‘Over And Over’, plus over 15 other UK top 40 singles.
  • 2010, Captain Beefheart died aged 69 from complications from multiple sclerosis. The American musician, singer-songwriter, artist and poet born Don Glen Vliet in Glendale, California recorded 13 studio albums.
  • 2012, Adele was named Billboard’s top artist of 2012, while her hit record 21 was named top album of the year in the music magazine’s annual review. The 24-year-old became the first to receive both accolades two years in a row. The year’s top three songs were Gotye’s Somebody That I Used to Know, Carly Rae Jepsen’s Call Me Maybe and Fun’s We Are Young. respectively.

Born on this day:

  • 1936, Born on this day, Tommy Steele, singer, actor, (1957 UK No.1 single ‘Singing The Blues’, plus over 20 other UK Top 40 singles).
  • 1937, Born on this day, Art Neville, vocals, piano, The Neville Brothers, (1989 UK No.47 single ‘With God On Our Side’)
  • 1939, Born on this day, Eddie Kendricks, vocals, The Temptations, (1971 US No.1 & UK No.8 single ‘Just My Imagination’ and re- issued ‘My Girl’ UK No.2 in 1992, solo US No.1 & UK No.18 single ‘Keep On Truckin’). Died on 5th October 1992.
  • 1942, Born on this day, Paul Butterfield, blues singer, harmonica player, (1965 album ‘Paul Butterfield Blues Band’). Appeared at The Bands, ‘Last Waltz’. Died on 4th May 1987.
  • 1943, Born on this day, David Dee, Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich, (1968 UK No.1 single ‘Legend Of Xanadu’). Dee died on 9th Jan 2009 at the age of 65, following a three-year battle with cancer. The singer, whose real name was David Harman, was originally a police officer and as a police cadet was called to the scene of the car crash that killed Eddie Cochrane during a UK tour in 1960.
  • 1949, Born on this day, Paul Rodgers, singer, guitarist, Free, (1970 UK No.2 & US No.4 single ‘All Right Now’). Bad Company, (1974 UK No.15 single ‘Can’t Get Enough’). Also a member of The Firm, with Jimmy Page.
  • 1958, Born on this day, Mike Mills, bass, R.E.M. (1991 UK No.6 & US No.10 single ‘Shiny Happy People’, plus over 20 Top 40 UK singles, 1992 UK No.1 & US No.2 album ‘Automatic For The People’).
  • 1959, Born on this day, Bob Stinson, guitar, The Replacements died of an accidental drug overdose, (1984 album ‘Let It Be’).
  • 1964, Born on this day, David Walls, ‘Ginger’, vocals, guitar, The Wildhearts, (1996 UK No.14 single ‘Sick Of Drugs’).
  • 1969, Born on this day, Micky Quinn, bass, Supergrass, (1995 UK No.2 single ‘Alright’, 1995 UK No.1 album ‘I Should Coco’ spent 35 weeks on the UK chart).
  • 1973, Born on this day, Eddie Fisher, drummer and percussionist in OneRepublic who had the 2013 UK No.1 hit ‘Counting Stars’.
  • 1978, Born on this day, Neil Christopher, drummer, Three Days Grace.
  • 1989, Born on this day, Taylor York, guitarist, Paramore, 2009 UK No.1 album ‘Brand New Eyes’ and their 2013 self-titled fourth studio album hit No.1 on the US chart.

Photos: Getty

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