December 24 – Today in Music History

1924 Lee Dorsey born in New Orleans, Louisiana. US Singer/Songwriter. (1966 US & UK No.8 single ‘Working In The Coalmine’). Dorsey contracted emphysema and died on December 2, 1986, in New Orleans, at the age of 61.
1931 Ray Bryant born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. US Pianist/Bandleader from 1955 as Ray Bryant Combo. Bryant died in 2011 at the age of 79 in Queens, New York, after a long illness.
1944 Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt died in hospital in Marbella, Spain aged 68. He died from a severe infection after going to hospital, following complications to a shoulder injury. His partnership with Francis Rossi became the core of Status Quo, one of Britain’s most enduring bands. Status Quo had over 60 chart hits in the UK, more than any other rock band, including “Pictures of Matchstick Men” in 1967, “Whatever You Want” in 1979 and “In the Army Now” in 2010. Twenty-two of these reached the Top 10 in the UK Singles Chart. In July 1985 the band opened Live Aid at Wembley Stadium with “Rockin’ All Over the World”. born in Savannah, Georgia. US songwriter/Producer with the Mike Curb Congregation. 
1944 Eddie Furey – Irish Folk Musician with The Fureys. 
1945 Lemmy born Ian Fraser Kilmister in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire. .English musician, singer, and songwriter who founded and fronted the rock band Motörhead. His music was one of the foundations of the heavy metal genre. He was known for his appearance (including his friendly mutton chops), his distinctive gravelly voice and distinctive bass playing style. Alongside his music career, he also had many minor roles in film and television. Motorhead, (1980 UK No.15 single ‘Ace Of Spades’). On 28 December 2015, four days after his 70th birthday, Lemmy died at his apartment in Los Angeles at 4pm PST, from prostate cancer, congestive heart failure, and cardiac arrhythmia.
1946 Jan Akkerman born in Holland Dutch Guitarist/Songwriter with Focus, (1973 UK No.4 single ‘Sylvia’, 1973 US No. 9 single ‘Hocus Pocus’). 
1954 Johnny Ace shot himself dead backstage at the City Auditorium in Houston, Texas. The R&B singer was playing with a revolver during a break between sets, someone in the room said “Be careful with that thing’’ and he said ‘It’s OK the gun’s not loaded, see’’ and pointed it at himself with a smile on his face. 
1957 Ian Burden born in Sheffield, Yorkshire, England. UK synthesizer player with the Human League. 
1963 The first night of The Beatles Christmas show at The Finsbury Park Astoria, London with Billy J. Kramer, The Fourmost, Cilla Black and Rolf Harris. 
1963 Mary Ramsey (10,000 Maniacs) is born in Washington, DC. 
1965 The Beatles had the number one album in the US for the third Christmas in a row. ‘Rubber Soul’ sat atop the LP chart in ’65, following ‘Beatles For Sale’ in 1964 and ‘With The Beatles’ in 1963. The Fab Four would repeat this feat again in 1968 with ‘The Beatles’ (The White Album) and again in 1969, with ‘Abbey Road’. 
1966 Tommy James recorded ‘I Think We’re Alone Now’. 
1967 The Bee Gees performed their Christmas special ‘live’ from Liverpool Cathedral, which was broadcast on UK TV. 
1971 Ricky Martin (Enrique Jose Martin Morales) born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Latin American Singer, (1999, US & UK No.1 single ‘Livin’ La Vida Loca’. Recorded the world’s biggest selling football song ‘The Cup Of Life’). 
1971 Slade appeared at London’s Marquee Club, for a Christmas Eve party night. 
1972 David Bowie appeared at the Rainbow Theatre, London, England giving a special Christmas Eve concert. 
1972 The Eagles, The Bee Gees, Stevie Wonder and Mott The Hoople all appeared at The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, California. 
1973 Tom Johnson of the Doobie Brothers was arrested in Visalia, California and charged with possession of marijuana. His court date is set for January 10th, the same day the band’s new LP is to be released. The album is ironically titled “What Were Once Vices Are Now Habits”. 
1975 Joe Washbourne born in Sidcup, Kent, England. Vocalist/Keyboardist with Toploader, (2000 UK No.7 single ‘Dancing In The Moonlight’). 
1975 AC/DC appeared at The Hordern Pavillion, Sydney, Australia. 
1976 Hotel California’, The Eagles’ sixth album, spent the first of eight non-consecutive weeks at the top of the Billboard chart. The band’s first LP with Joe Walsh and last with bassist Randy Meisner which has now sold over 16 million copies. 
1977 The Bee Gees started a three week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘How Deep Is Your Love’, the group’s 4th US No.1. It stayed in the top 10 for 17 weeks giving it the longest chart run in history, a No.3 in the UK. 
1977 The Sex Pistols played their last ever UK gig, (until 1996), before splitting, at Ivanhoes in Huddersfield. It was a charity performance before an audience of mainly children. 
1978 Björn Ulvaeus and Agnetha Fältskog of ABBA announce they are separating and getting a divorce. 
1983 The Police appeared at The Brighton Centre, Brighton, England on their Synchronicity Tour. 
1988 Anita Baker started a four-week run at No.1 on the US album chart with ‘Giving You The Best That I Got’. 
1988 Cliff Richard started a two-week run at No.1 on the UK album chart with ‘Private Collection.’ 
1988 Poison started a three-week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Every Rose Has Its Thorn.’ 
1988 American glam metal band Poison started a three-week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Every Rose Has Its Thorn.’ 
1988 Nirvana started recording their first album ‘Bleach’ using a $600 loan from an old school friend. 
1990 Dave Clark’s company ‘Right Time’ took out double page ad’s in the press thanking those who helped him win £665,000 damages against Rank Theatres who he claimed had been responsible for the closure of the ‘Time’ musical. 
1991 Louis Tomlinson born in Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Vocalist with English-Irish pop boy band One Direction who formed after finishing third in the seventh series of The X Factor in 2010. Scored the 2011 UK No.1 single ‘What Makes You Beautiful’ and the 2013 No.1 ‘One Way or Another (Teenage Kicks)’. 
1992 Bobby LaKind (The Doobie Brothers) dies of colon cancer in Los Angeles, California, at age 47. He was a conga player, vocalist, songwriter and occasional live backup drummer with The Doobie Brothers. He was originally a lighting roadie for the band. After observing LaKind goofing around on the congas after a concert, the band took notice of his talent and asked him to join as a sideman for studio sessions.
1994 Pearl Jam went to No.1 on the US album chart with ‘Vitalogy’. Their third studio album was first released on vinyl record, followed by a release in other formats two weeks later. 
1997 Appearing live all over the UK, tribute bands including, Bi Jovi at The Wheatsheaf Stoke on Trent, T-Rextasy at Sheffield City Hall, The Silver Beatles at Portsmouth Wedgewood Rooms and Voulez Vous, The Abba tribute show at The Venue, London. 
1999 Zeke Carey of The Flamingos died. Had the 1959 US No.11 single ‘I Only Have Eyes For You’, (which was also a 1975 UK No.1 hit for Art Garfunkel). 
2000 Four Seasons bassist Nick Massi died of cancer. They scored the 1976 UK & US No.1 single ‘December 1963, Oh What A Night’, as well as hits with ‘Sherry,’ and ‘Rag Doll.’ 
2003 Jack White of The White Stripes turned himself in to Detroit police to face aggravated assault charges stemming from a bar room altercation in which he allegedly attacked Jason Stollsteimer of The Von Bondies. White was also fingerprinted and formally booked on the charges before he was released on bail. 
2005 Rapper Foxy Brown was handcuffed and threatened with jail after she stuck her tongue out at a New York judge who asked her to stop chewing gum. Judge Melissa Jackson told the singer, she had showed disrespect to the court. Brown was in court on charges of assaulting two nail salon workers during a row over payment. 
2005 Winner of the second series of the X-Factor TV show, Shayne Ward was at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘That’s My Goal’ the second biggest selling single of 2005. 
2009 Larry Knechtel, the keyboard player for the Soft-Rock group Bread, died following a heart attack at the age of 69. Knechtel earned a Grammy award for his arrangement of Simon and Garfunkel’s ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’ and also performed with Neil Diamond, Randy Newman, Ray Charles, The Beach Boys, The Doors, Elvis Presley, Hank Williams Jr., The Dixie Chicks and Elvis Costello. 
2012 American musician Ray Collins died aged 76. Collins was the lead vocalist on early Mothers of Invention albums, including Freak Out!, Absolutely Free, and Cruising with Ruben & the Jets and continued to contribute to other Frank Zappa projects through the mid-1970s. 
2015 William Guest of Gladys Knight And The Pips died of heart failure at the age of 74. His background vocals can be heard on all of the group’s hits, including ‘Midnight Train To Georgia’, ‘I Heard It Through The Grapevine’ and the Grammy winning ‘Neither One Of Us (Wants To Be The First To Say Goodbye)’. 
2016 Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt died in hospital in Marbella, Spain aged 68. He died from a severe infection after going to hospital, following complications to a shoulder injury. His partnership with Francis Rossi became the core of Status Quo, one of Britain’s most enduring bands. Status Quo had over 60 chart hits in the UK, more than any other rock band, including “Pictures of Matchstick Men” in 1967, “Whatever You Want” in 1979 and “In the Army Now” in 2010. Twenty-two of these reached the Top 10 in the UK Singles Chart. In July 1985 the band opened Live Aid at Wembley Stadium with “Rockin’ All Over the World”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *