The Beatles wore their trademark matching suits for the first time today in 1962, at the insistence of their manager, Brian Epstein. It was for a radio show, also their first, the BBC programme Teenagers Turn-Here We Go, at the Playhouse theater in Manchester. Their “uniform” until that point had been the black leather jackets the Ramones would revive in the late 70’s.
The Rolling Stones were in Manchester tonight in 1965, playing the Palace Theater. While they were playing, a girl fell from the upper deck. Luckily for her, her fall was broken when she landed on fans below. They were not seriously injured, and she only suffered a few broken teeth.
Brian Wilson became the first of the Beach Boys to release a solo single today in 1966. The words written by lyricist Tony Asher probably about a former girlfriend, but Brian had been obsessed with a woman named Carol Mountain in high school as well. The song was called Carol, I Know, but Brian heard it as Caroline, No, and the name stuck. The backing musicians, drummer Hal Blaine, bassist Carol Kaye, and guitarists Barney Kessel and Glen Campbell would later be collectively known as The Wrecking Crew, and were picked by Wilson for their work for producer Phil Spector. The song would later be included on the Pet Sounds album.
Tina Turner was working with producer Phil Spector today in 1966, recording her vocals for River Deep, Mountain High, which would be released as a single with her then-husband Ike, though Spector paid Ike, at that point a well-known control freak, $20,000 to stay away from the session. Spector considers it his best work ever, and it was a hit again when it was covered by Eric Burdon and the Animals in 1968.
Led Zeppelin played the Bluesville 69 Club in London tonight in 1969, on a stage so small it could barely hold John Bonham’s drum kit. The rest of the band stood on the floor in front. They would play the tiny club again two years later on their “Thank You” to their fans tour of England, and charge the same admission price, which was dirt-cheap.
CBS Records held a showcase at Max’s Kansas City nightclub in New York City tonight in 1973, to celebrate the signing of Bruce Springsteen. During his performance, label president John Hammond suffered a heart attack. The 67 year old Hammond, who signed acts as diverse as Benny Goodman, Pete Seeger, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan (Referred to as Hammond’s Folly when he signed him), Leonard Cohen, and Stevie Ray Vaughn, survived and lived to see 76.
Elton John became the first musical act since The Beatles to be immortalized in wax at Madame Tussaud’s in London today in 1976.
The first 5 Beatles albums, Please Please Me, With The Beatles, A Hard Day’s Night, Beatles For Sale, and Help!, were re-released in the new digital Compact Disc format today in 1987. Capitol Records decided to go with the original British releases, which meant that the first four were available in their original mono mixes in the United States for the first time.
Rock and Roll Birthdays
The Zombies bass player Chris White is 69.
Love guitarist and frontman Arthur Lee would be 68. He died of leukemia in 2006.
Procul Harum organist Matthew Fisher is 66.
J. Geils Band singer Peter Wolf is 66.
The youngest of the Isley Brothers, Ernie Isley is 60. He was just 11 when Jimi Hendrix, then the touring guitarist in his brother’s band, moved into the family house and inspired him to teach himself guitar, but his first gig with the band came at age 14 as the drummer. By the time they finally had a big hit with It’s Your Thing, he was playing bass. He recently performed at the opening of the Experience Music Project’s Hendrix in London exhibit here in Seattle.