July 18th: On this day
1953, Truck driver Elvis Presley made his first ever recording when he paid $3.98 at the Memphis recording service singing two songs, ‘My Happiness’ and ‘That’s When Your Heartaches Begin’. The so-called vanity disc, was a gift for his mother. It would surface 37 years later as part of an RCA compilation called ‘Elvis – the Great Performances’.
1960, Brenda Lee went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘I’m Sorry’ it made No.12 in the UK. Seeking publicity the 4′ 11 tall singer was once billed as a 32-year- old midget and had the nickname Little Miss Dynamite.
1964, The Four Seasons started a two week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Rag Doll’, the group’s fourth No.1 and a No.2 hit on the UK chart. Co-writer Bob Gaudio said that he got the inspiration for the song from a young girl in tattered clothes that cleaned his car windows at a stop light.
1964, The Rolling Stones appeared on the US chart for the first time when their cover of Buddy Holly’s ‘Not Fade Away’ peaked at No.48.
1966, Bobby Fuller leader of The Bobby Fuller Four was found dead in his car in Los Angeles aged 23. Fuller died mysteriously from gasoline asphyxiation, while parked outside his apartment. Police labelled it a suicide, but the possibility of foul play has always been mentioned. Had the 1966 US No.9 single ‘I Fought The Law’ written by Sonny Curtis of Buddy Holly’s Crickets and covered by The Clash.
1968, Working at Abbey Road studios The Beatles recorded ‘Cry Baby Cry’ and ‘Helter Skelter’. One take of ‘Helter Skelter’ lasted 27′ 11”, the longest Beatle recording ever.
1969, During sessions at Abbey Road studios, London, Ringo Starr recorded his vocal to ‘Octopus’s Garden’, for the Abbey Road album. Starr had written the song when he ‘quit’ The Beatles the previous year and was staying on actorPeter Seller’s yacht in the Mediterranean.
1970, UK BBC Radio 1 DJ Kenny Everett was sacked after he joked on air that the wife of the conservative transport minister Mary Peyton had ‘crammed a fiver into the examiner’s hand’, when taking her driving test’.
1970, Pink Floyd, Roy Harper, Kevin Ayers, and the Edgar Broughton Band, all appeared at a free concert held in Hyde Park, London, England.
1972, Members from Sly and the Family Stone were arrested after police found two pounds of marijuana in the group’s motor home.
1973, Bruce Springsteen played the first of four nights at Max’s Kansas City in New York City, New York, supported by Bob Marley and The Wailers who were on their first ever North American tour.
1974, The US Justice Department ordered John Lennon out of the country by September 10th. The Immigration and Naturalization Service denied him an extension of his non-immigrant visa because of his guilty plea in England to a 1968 marijuana possession charge. The US Court of Appeal would overturn the deportation order in 1975 and Lennon was granted permanent resident status the following year.
1978, Def Leppard made their live debut at Westfield School, Sheffield, England in front of 150 students.
1980, Billy Joel held the top position of both the US albums and singles charts. His album Glass Houses contained his first and biggest No.1 hit, ‘It’s Still Rock ‘n’ Roll to Me.’
1988, Nico died after suffering a minor heart attack while riding a bicycle on holiday with her son in Ibiza Spain. The German born singer-songwriter and keyboard player with Velvet Underground, had also worked as a fashion model and actress.
1988, Ike Turner was sentenced in Santa Monica, California to one year in jail for possessing and transporting cocaine. Police had stopped Turner, former husband of Tina Turner, in August 1987 for driving erratically and found about six grams of rock cocaine in his car.
1991, The first night of the ‘Lollapalooza’ tour at The Compton Terrace, Phoenix, featuring, Living Colour, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Jane’s Addiction, Nine Inch Nails, Henry Rollins Band and The Butthole Surfers.
1992, Bobby Brown married Whitney Houston at her New Jersey estate who was dressed in a $40,000 Marc Bouwer wedding gown. Those in attendance included Stevie Wonder, Gloria Estefan, Natalie Cole, Patti LaBelle and Freddie Jackson. After years of making tabloid headlines, she would file for divorce in September, 2006.
1998, The Beastie Boys went to No.1 on the UK album chart with ‘Hello Nasty’, only the second rap album to make No.1 in the UK, the first being Wu-Tang Clan.
2001, KISS added another product to their ever-growing merchandising universe: the “Kiss Kasket.” The coffin featured the faces of the four founding members of the band, the Kiss logo and the words “Kiss Forever.” Pantera guitarist Dimebag Darrell was buried in one after he was shot and killed on-stage in Dec 2004.
2002, Rapper Mystikal and two other men were arrested on suspicion of raping a 40-year-old woman in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Mystikal, (real name Michael Tyler), was charged with the offence as well as one of extortion after giving himself up to police, he was subsequently released on $250,000 (£161,000) bail.
2002, The Rolling Stones crew chief, 54 year old Royden Magee, who had worked with the band for 30 years, died during a rehearsal in Toronto. A spokesman for the band said Magee had said that he wasn’t feeling well and went to another room to take a nap. The Stones had just finished dinner and resumed rehearsing when they got word that Magee had collapsed and stopped breathing. He was taken by ambulance to nearby Sunnybrook Hospital. He was pronounced dead on arrival. The members of the band said they were devastated by his death.
2007, Sting and his wife, Trudie Styler were ordered to pay their former chef compensation after losing a sexual discrimination case. Jane Martin, 41, was awarded £24,944 at an employment tribunal in Southampton, England after she was sacked by Miss Styler from the couple’s estate in Wiltshire because she became pregnant
2007, Paul Simon filed a law suit against Rhythm USA Inc. a Georgia-based subsidiary of a Japanese firm, claiming the company never had his permission to sell wall clocks that played ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’. The suit claimed that as one of the best known songs throughout the world, a proper licensing agreement would earn at least a $1 million licensing fee.
2008, Rolling Stone guitarist Ronnie Wood was ‘seeking help’ with his battle with alcohol in a rehabilitation centre. The move followed tabloid speculation over the state of his 23-year marriage to former model Jo Wood. ‘Following Ronnie’s continued battle with alcohol he has entered a period of rehab,’ his spokeswoman said.
July 18th: Born on this day
1929, Born on this day, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, (Jalacy Hawkins), R&B singer, (1956 ‘I Put A Spell On You’, 1993 UK No.42 single ‘Heart Attack And Vine’). Hawkins died on 12th February 2000. ‘I Put a Spell on You’ was selected as one of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.
1935, Born on this day, Johnny Funches, singer, The Dells, (1968 US No.10 single ‘Stay In My Corner’). He died on 23rd January 1998.
1938, Born on this day, Ian Stewart, keyboard player, The Rolling Stones. Stewart died of a heart attack in his doctor’s Harley Street waiting room on 12th December 1985.
1939, Born on this day, Brian Auger, keyboards, (1968 UK No.5 single with Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger And The Trinity, ‘This Wheel’s On Fire’).
1939, Born on this day, Dion Dimucci, US singer, (1961 US No.1 & UK No.11 single ‘Runaround Sue’).
1941, Born on this day, Martha Reeves, American R&B and pop singer and former politician, (1964 US No.2 & 1969 UK No.4 single with The Vandellas ‘Dancing In The Street’, plus ten US & six UK other top 40 singles).
1941, Born on this day, Lonnie Mack, American rock, blues and country singer-guitarist. In the early 1960s, he was a “pioneer” in virtuoso rock guitar soloing whose recordings were pivotal to the emergence of the electric guitar as a lead voice in rock music. For this, it has been said that he launched the era of “modern rock guitar”. He scored the hit single instrumentals, ‘Memphis’ and ‘Wham!’ Mack died of natural causes on April 21, 2016, in hospital near his log-cabin home, seventy miles east of Nashville, Tennessee.
1943, Born on this day, Robin McDonald, guitar, Billy J Kramer and the Dakotas, (1964 UK No.1 & US No.7 single ‘Little Children’).
1945, Born on this day, Danny McCullock, guitar, The Animals, (1964 UK & US No.1 single ‘House Of The Rising Sun’).
1946, Born on this day, Tim Lynch, The Flamin Groovies, (1976 album ‘Shake Some Action).
1948, Born on this day, Phil Harris, Ace, (1974 UK No.20 single ‘How Long’).
1949, Born on this day, Wally Bryson, The Raspberries, (1972 US N.5 single ‘Go All The Way’).
1950, Born on this day, Cesar Zuiderwyk, Golden Earring, (1974 UK No.7 & US No.13 single ‘Radar Love’).
1950, Born on this day, Glenn Hughes, The Village People, (1978 US No.2 & 1979 UK No.1 single ‘YMCA’). Hughes died on 4th March 2001.
1950, Born on this day, Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Records and the Virgin Empire.
1954, Born on this day, Ricky Scaggs, country singer, 1982 Country Music Association singer of the year, (US country No.1 single ‘Crying My Heart Out Over You’).
1955, Born on this day, Terry Chambers, drums, XTC, (1982 UK No.10 single ‘Senses Working Over Time’).
1957, Born on this day, Keith Levene, guitar, Public Image Ltd, (1983 UK No.5 single ‘This Is Not A Love Song’).
1958, Born on this day, Nigel Twist, drums, The Alarm, (1983 UK No.17 single ’68 Guns’).
1962, Born on this day, Jack Irons, drummer who has worked with Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Redd Kross and Joe Strummer.
1975, Born on this day, Daron Malakian, guitar System of a Down, (2001 US No.1 & UK No.13 album ‘Toxicity’, 2005 US No.1 & UK No.2 album ‘Mezmerize’).