Jackie Wilson was playing for some 400 people at a nightclub in Port Arthur Texas tonight in 1966 when local police decided the crowd was too excited and ordered him to stop singing and leave the stage, which he refused to do. He was arrested and charged with inciting a riot, failing to obey orders from police, and public drunkenness, and fined $30. Jackie kept a bottle of mouthwash in his dressing room, as much to hide the smell of alcohol regularly on his breath as to sweeten it for “kissing the ugliest girl in the room…so they’ll all think they can have me and keep coming back and buying my records”. The soul singer was a major influence on many, and the inspiration for Van Morrison’s 1972 hit Jackie Wilson Said. . He garnered the nicknames “Mr. Excitement“and “The White Elvis“, to which Elvis Presley had said, “Well then I must be the white Jackie Wilson”. Jackie died of a heart attack on stage in 1975, and was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll hall of Fame in 1987.
A week after their electrifying performance at the Monterey Pop Festival, The Jimi Hendrix Experience were in San Francisco today in 1967 playing a free afternoon show at Golden Gate Park at the height of the “Summer of Love”, which they’d decided to do as their two shows that night at the Fillmore West were already sold-out.
The world’s first internationally produced TV program broadcast live all over the world using satellites, Our World, aired tonight in 1967. Some 10 thousand technicians and producers worked on the broadcast to 31 countries, with an estimated audience of 400 to 700 million people, with 14 countries producing content following a set of rules: No politicians or heads of state allowed, and everything had to be live. Austria started the show with the Vienna Boy’s Choir singing an Our World theme song sung in 22 different languages, America stretched the rules, showing the outside of a house where president Lyndon Johnson was meeting with Soviet premier Alexi Kosygin, Greece featured opera singer Maria Callas, Canada showed a rancher cutting cattle with a horse in Alberta, and Spain showed painter Pablo Picasso at work. But the most memorable part of the broadcast came from England, where the BBC had commissioned The Beatles to write a song for the occasion. John Lennon had seized the opportunity to make a statement about America’s increasing involvement in Vietnam, and wrote All You Need Is Love, which they performed live for the world, with a small orchestra accompanying and a room full of background singers including Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Marianne Faithful, Eric Clapton, Graham Nash, and Keith Moon. Their appearance helped Our World top The Beatles appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show three years earlier as the most-watched television show ever to date.
The Hollies were at EMI’s Abbey Road studio in London today in 1969 recording He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother with Elton John on piano.
David Letterman did his last show on NBC before moving to CBS tonight in 1993 when he was joined by a surprise guest, Bruce Springsteen.
Seattle’s Pearl Jam cancelled their current tour today in 1994, refusing to play venues with exclusive ticket sales agreement with Ticketmaster, who were adding their own fees to ticket prices. The band would file a lawsuit against Ticketmaster for their monopolization of venues, members Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament would testify before congress, and the band would attempt a tour at non-Ticketmaster venues, but while Pearl Jam had made a lot of money they couldn’t compete with the corporate giant and the case was eventually dismissed by a conservative U.S. Supreme Court.
Rock and Roll Birthdays
The Moody Blues original bass player Clint Warwick would be 76 if he’d made it past 63.
Singer Carly Simon is 71, and has still never fully spilled the beans on who her song You’re So Vain is about, though contrary to some rumors it’s not Mick Jagger, who can clearly be heard singing background vocals on it.
Blue Öyster Cult rhythm guitar and keyboard player Allen Lanier would be 70 if he hadn’t died three years ago of COPD.