David Geffen Vs. Neil Young, Pink Floyd Vs. SCOTUS: This Day In Classic Rock [Videos]

Three of those early great rock and roll moments were tonight in 1957 on The Ed Sullivan Show when Buddy Holly and The Crickets played That’ll Be The Day and Peggy Sue, and Sam Cooke did You Send Me.

The Who played the first of 22 consecutive Tuesday nights at London’s uber-hip Marquee Club tonight in 1964. They would use the poster created  for these shows, a black and white photo of Pete Townsend windmilling his Rickenbacker with The Who printed in the classic Mars (male) symbol “O” logo with the words “Maximum R&B”, for years to come, and include a copy with every early copy of their Live At Leeds album.

Queen were the scheduled guest on Britain’s ITV news-talk “Today” show this evening in 1976, but when Freddy Mercury had a dental emergency they cancelled at the last minute. Luckily a producer was able to find a quick stand in group, The Sex Pistols, who brought along a group of their exotically dressed fans known as The Bromley Contingent, which included Siouxsie Sioux and Steve Severin who would form Siouxsie and The Banshees, and Billy Idol, soon to be the singer of Generation X and a huge solo star. Newsman and host Bill Grundy seemed game enough ( he later admitted he was quite drunk at the time), but when singer Johnny Rotten used the word ****, things began to deteriorate. Siouxsie piped in with “I’ve always wanted to meet you”, and when Grundy replied, “Did you really? We’ll meet afterward, shall we?”, guitarist Steve Jones’ tirade managed to get them fired from EMI records and create tabloid fodder for months to come.

Hollywood mogul David Geffen was a huge Neil Young fan, and practically begged him to sign with the Geffen Records label he’d created two years earlier. His enthusiasm had waned some by today in 1983 when Geffen took Young to court. He’d taken his contract’s artistic freedom clause to mean he could do as he pleased, and played with synthesizers and drum machines on the “New Wave” Trans album, then got into the Rockabilly Revival started by The Stray Cats with The Shocking Pinks to make Everybody’s Rockin’, neither of which Geffen found had any commercial appeal. Lawyers for the plaintiff claimed Neil was making “music unrepresentative of himself”.

The U.S. Supreme Court decided today in 1987 that the free speech rights of a Kentucky teacher had not been violated, and that he could indeed be fired for showing Pink Floyd’s movie version of The Wall to his class, as it’s foul language and sexual content were indecent for minors.

Using a “circular breathing” technique, Seattle “smooth jazz” saxophonist Kenny “G” Gorelick set a Guinness Book World Record today in 1997 for holding a single note for 45 minutes and 45 seconds, since broken by Geovanny Escalante at 1 hour, 30 minutes, and 45 seconds. No word as to whether or not the judges were offered ear protection. Though you never hear him on KZOK, not to worry about Ken. In addition to selling a few records, he was an early investor in Starbucks.He’s rumored to still have a place in Bellevue, but these days mostly lives in Malibu California where he has become very good at golf, sometimes appearing at celebrity Pro-Am tournaments with the likes of Tiger Woods, and is an avid pilot who owns his own Kenmore Beaver. 

Rock and Roll Birthdays

Silky voiced singer Lou Rawls (no relation to Seattle Seahawks running back Thomas Rawls though that doesn’t stop some members of the 12 Army from shouting “Loooooou!” as he goes into Beast Mode Junior, and indeed rumor has it Lou is his nickname at the V Mac) would be 80 if he hadn’t passed at 72.

Blue Öyster Cult singer and guitarist Eric Bloom is 72.

The Doors drummer John Densmore is 72.

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