February 5 – Today in Music History

1929 Hal Blaine (Harold Simon Belsk) born in Holyoke, Massachusetts. American drummer and session musician. He is most known for his work with the Wrecking Crew in California. Blaine played on numerous hits by Elvis Presley, John Denver, the Ronettes, Simon & Garfunkel, the Carpenters, the Beach Boys, Nancy Sinatra, and the 5th Dimension. Blaine has played on 50 No.1 hits, over 150 top ten hits and has recorded, by his own admission, on over 35,000 pieces of music over four decades of work. Blaine died of natural causes on March 11, 2019, at the age of 90 in Palm Desert, California.
1923 Claude King born in Shreveport, Los Angeles. US Country Singer/Guitarist/Songwriter with one hit ‘Wolvertop Mountain’. King died suddenly at his home in Shreveport on March 7, 2013, at the age of ninety.
1935 Alex Harvey born in Glasgow, Scotland. Vocals/Guuitarist with The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, (1975 UK No.7 single ‘Delilah’). On 4 February 1982 on the way to a gig in Belgium, Harvey died from heart failure, a day before his 47th birthday.
1941 Barrett Strong born in West Point, Mississippi. US songwriter. Wrote many Motown hits with Norman Whitfield including, Marvin Gayes’I heard It Through The Gravpevin’ Temptations ‘Ball Of Confusion’, ‘Papa Was A Rolling Stone’& Edwin Starr ‘War’
1942 Corey Wells born in Buffalo, New York. Vocalist with US Band Three Dog Night, (1970 UK No.3 & US No.1 single ‘Mamma Told Me Not To Come’). Wells died in his sleep on October 20, 2015, at Brooks Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk, New York at the age of 74. His family later confirmed he was fighting multiple myeloma, a form of blood cancer.
1941 Henson Cargill born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. American country music singer best known for the socially controversial 1968 Country No. 1 hit “Skip a Rope”. He died on March 24, 2007, aged 66, during surgery.
1943 Chuck Winfield born in Monessen, Pennsylvania. US Saxophonist with the original line-up of Blood Sweat And Tears (1969 USNo.2 & UK No.35 single ‘You’ve Made Me So Very Happy’).
1944 Al Kooper born in Brooklyn, New York. US Keyboard Player/Guitarist/Songwriter with. The Royal Teens, (1958 US No.3 single ‘Shorts Shorts’), Blood Sweat & Tears, (1969 US No.12 & UK No.35 single ‘You’ve Made Me So Very Happy’). Played organ on Dylan’s ‘Like A Rolling Stone.’ Co-Wrote ‘This Diamond Ring’ for Gary Lewis & The Playboys.
1944 James R.Cobb born in Birmingham, Alabama. American guitarist and songwriter, most notable for co-writing “Spooky” and “Stormy”, among others, as a member of the Classics IV, plus “Champagne Jam” and “Do It Or Die”, among others, as a member of the Atlanta Rhythm Section. Cobb was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 1993, and the Alabama Music Hall of Fame in 1997, where he received the Music Creator’s Award. He died May 4, 2019 from a heart attack. He was 75.
1948 David Denny born in Berkeley, California. Guitarist with the Steve Miller Band who had the 1974 US No.1 & 1990 UK No.1 single ‘The Joker’.
1948 Nigel Tufnel (Christopher Guest) Guitarist with the parody heavy metal band Spinal Tap, who made the 1984 film ‘This Is Spinal Tap’.
1955 The Fontane Sisters’ “Hearts of Stone” hits #1 in America, for the first of three weeks.
1957 5,000 fans greeted Bill Haley when he arrived from New York on the liner Queen Elizabeth at Southampton, for his debut UK concert tour. Haley was the first American rock artist to tour the UK.
1960 Paul Jones – Bassist with Catatonia who had the 1998 UK No.3 single ‘Mulder And Scully’.
1961 Two big influences of ’60s pop make their debuts . Mary Wellsʹ with “Bye Bye Baby” and Gene Pitney with “Love My Life Away.”
1962 The Beatles played two shows, one at the Cavern Club at lunchtime and in the evening at the Kingsway Club in Southport. This was the first time Ringo Starr appeared live with the group after drummer Pete Best became ill.
1963 “1812 Overture — Tschaikovsky” album by Dorati, A/minneapolis Symphony was certified Gold
1964 Duff McKagan (Michael McKagan) born in Seattle, Washington. Bass Player with Guns N’ Roses, (1998 US No.1 & 1989 UK No.6 single ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’). Velvet Revolver (2004 US No.1 album ‘Contraband’).
1964 Sally Still -Bassist/Vocalist with Furniture, (1986 UK No.21 single ‘Brilliant Mind’).
1966 Petula Clark had her second No.1 in the US singles chart with ‘My Love’, (it made No. 4 in the UK).
1966 “No Matter What Shape (Your Stomachʹs In)” by The T-Bones peaked at number three on the American pop singles chart.
1966 “Tijuana Taxi” by Herb Alpert and The Tijuana Brass peaked at #38 on the American pop singles chart; suddenly, Susan hates that song now!
1966 Sargeant Barry Sadlerʹs “The Ballad of the Green Berets” split America over the Vietnam War question, with flag-waving patriots faced off against anti-war protestors. Depending on what side of the Vietnam War controversy you fell on, you loved it or hated it.
1966 Surf-rockers the Marketts enter the Hot 100 for the fifth and last time with the “Batman Theme.” It reaches #17 in nine weeks on the charts.
1967 The Beatles filmed part of the promo clip for ‘Penny Lane’ around the Royal Theatre, Stratford, London and walking up and down Angel Lane.
1967 Pop Stars And Drugs – Facts That Will Shock You screams the headline of the British newspaper News of the World. The article describes LSD parties thrown by The Moody Blues and attended by Pete Townshend, Ginger Baker and other prominent rock stars, and claims that Mick Jagger took Benzedrine tablets and lured girls back to his apartment to smoke hash. Jagger sues for libel, as it was actually Brian Jones with the Benzedrine. The paper responds by staking out Jagger and tipping police to drug activity at Keith Richards’ Redlands estate. On February 12, police raid the place, arresting Jagger, Richards and Marianne Faithfull on drug charges.
1968 Christopher Barron Gross born in Honolulu, Hawaii. Vocalist with The Spin Doctors, (1993 UK No.3 & US No.7 single ‘Two Princes’). He moves with his family to Australia at age 8, then to Princeton, New Jersey at 12, where he goes to high school with John Popper of Blues Traveler.
1968 The Beatles’ album Yellow Submarine is certified gold.
1969 Bobby Brown born in Boston, Massachusetts. US Singer with New Edition, (1983 UK No.1 & US No.46 single ‘Candy Girl’) solo, (1988 UK No.6 & 1989 US No.1 single ‘My Prerogative’). Married Whitney Houston 18th July 1992.
1969 The Move were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Blackberry Way’, the group’s only UK No.1.
1970 David Bowie recorded four songs at the BBC Paris Cinema, London, for the John Peel Sunday Concert radio show. This was guitarists Mick Ronson’s first appearance with Bowie.
1971 Sara Evans is born in Boonesboro, Missouri. American country music singer and songwriter.
1971 Black Sabbath started recording what would be their third album, ‘Master Of Reality’ at Island Studios in London, England. Released in July of this year, it is sometimes noted as the first stoner rock album. Guitarist Tony Iommi, decided to down tune his guitar down three semi-tones, Geezer Butler also down tuned his bass guitar to match Iommi. The result was a noticeably ‘darker’ sound that almost two decades later would prove hugely influential on at least three of the biggest grunge acts, namely Smashing Pumpkins, Soundgarden, and Nirvana.
1972 T Rex were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Telegram Sam’, the group’s third UK No.1 and taken from their album The Slider.
1972 Paul Simon released his first solo single with Mother & Child Renunion, in America.
1976 Mary MacGregor started a two week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Torn Between Two Lovers’, it made No.4 in the UK.
1976 American saxophonist Rudy Pompilli died of lung cancer aged 52. Although not a smoker himself, it is believed he contracted the disease through second hand smoke. With Bill Haley and his Comets, he had the 1955 UK & US No.1 single with ‘Rock Around The Clock’, Pompilli released one solo album, Rudy’s Rock: The Sax That Changed the World.
1976 Elvis Presley records “For the Heart,” “Hurt,” and “Danny Boy.”
1977 “Ainʹt Nothing Like The Real Thing” by Donny and Marie peaked at #21 on the pop singles chart.
1979 Fifteen months after announcing his retirement on stage, Elton John is back in action in Stockholm with the first show of his A Single Man tour. “A Simple Man” Album included “Part Time Love” & “Song For Guy”.
1979 The Pointer Sisters’ “Fire” is certified Gold.
1980 “Rise” album by Herb Alpert was certified Gold and Platinum by the RIAA
1981 Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau inducts Joni Mitchell into Canadaʹs Juno Hall of Fame.
1983 Def Leppard’s album ‘Pyromania’, started a 92 week run on the US charts, it never reached No.1 but sold over 6 million copies in the US alone.
1983 Toto went to No.1 on the US singles with ‘Africa’; a No.3 hit in the UK.
1985 “Arena” live album by Duran Duran was certified Multi Platinum 2.00 by the RIAA
1986 Starship went to No.1 in the Australian Singles Chart with ‘We Built This City’. Staying at the top spot for 1wk.
1991 The John Hughes film She’s Having A Baby debuts in US theaters. Kevin Bacon and Elizabeth McGovern star as a young married couple whose lives are about to be upended by the birth of their first child. The soundtrack features Kate Bush’s heart-wrenching ballad “This Woman’s Work,” written and recorded expressly for the movie.
1992 Touring Australia and New Zealand for the first and only time Nirvana appeared at the ANU Bar in Canberra, Australia.
1996 La Bouche went to No.1 in the Australian Singles Chart with ‘Be My Lover’. Staying at the top spot for 3wks.
1998 Tim Kelly (guitarist Slaughter) dies in a car accident in Arizona at age 35.
1998 Elton John and Stevie Wonder perform at the White House for US President Bill Clinton and British Prime Minister Tony Blair
2000 Powered by a sample of Bob Dylan’s “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door,” “Rise,” by Gabrielle goes to #1 in the UK
2001 Juliet Peters appeared in a London court accused of making death threats to singer Billie Piper. Peter’s had made threatening telephone calls to the singer threatening to decapitate her and burn her body. The court listened to tapes of the 13 calls she has made to the singers record company.
2003 Courtney Love blamed her bad language for the alleged air rage incident that led to her arrest at London’s Heathrow Airport. As she left Heathrow’s police station the singer said: “I cussed at a lady-my daughter always said I had a potty mouth.” When asked what it had been like inside the police station, the singer said: “It was fine. They were wonderful in there. It was like being on Prime Suspect.”
2004 Prosecutors in the murder case of producer Phil Spector demanded that a fingernail overlooked by police investigating Lana Clarkson’s shooting should be put forward as evidence. They claimed the fingernail, blackened with gunpowder, could indicate that the 40 year old actress killed herself at Spector’s Los Angeles mansion. Spector, had denied murdering Clarkson.
2004 Janet Jackson’s right breast became the most searched-for image in net history, Jackson’s breast was seen by millions on TV after Justin Timberlake pulled at her bodice during a duet. Search engines reported a big jump in searches for Janet Jackson and Super Bowl, as people turned to the web for images of the event.
2006 The Rolling Stones played three songs during the half-time show of The Super Bowl in Detroit. After the event, the Stones expressed their displeasure over having Mick Jagger’s microphone turned down during the song “Start Me Up”. The line “you make a dead man come” was cut short and a barnyard reference to “cocks” in the new song “Rough Justice” also disappeared.
2006 A 29-year-old man is shot to death near a video shoot for rapper Busta Rhymes in the Greenpoint section of Brooklyn, New York. The man worked as a bodyguard at Kiss the Cactus Productions, where the video for Rhymes’s “Touch It” was being filmed
2007 Producer Phil Spector won $900,000 (£459,000) after settling an embezzlement claim. Spector said former assistant Michelle Blaine removed $425,000 (£216,000) from his pension and did not repay a $635,000 (£324,000) loan. Ms Blaine claimed the loan was a gift, and the pension funds were for a film aimed at improving Spector’s image. As part of the settlement, she dropped a counter-claim of sexual harassment.
2007 Apple Computers settles a long-standing legal battle with Apple Records, which is the label set up by The Beatles. The companies have disputed the rights of the computer maker to sell music under the Apple name
2008 Amy Winehouse was questioned by police in connection with a video apparently showing her smoking a crack-cocaine pipe. The singer, who was not arrested, was interviewed under caution after the video was posted online by the Sun newspaper.
2008 Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the developer of the Transcendental Meditation technique that attracted The Beatles and The Beach Boys, among others, during the 1970s, dies in his sleep at age 90
2008 Lenny Kravitz releases his eighth studio album, It Is Time For A Love Revolution, which peaks at #4 in the US
2009 R&B/blues singer-songwriter Piney Brown dies at age 87
2012 The Super Bowl XLVI halftime show becomes the most-watched television event in history, at 118 million views. Performing artists include Madonna, LMFAO, Nicki Minaj, and Cee Lo Green
2012 The Cult’s “She Sells Sanctuary” is mashed with Flo Rida’s “Good Feeling” for a special Budweiser commercial that airs during Super Bowl XLVI
2015 INXS guitarist Tim Farriss said he may never play the guitar properly again after severing his finger in a boating accident. Farriss caught his left hand while operating a winch on his boat in Sydney, severing his ring finger. He had undergone surgery twice to try to reattach the finger but had been left with permanent hand damage.
2016 A new species of black tarantula that lives near Folsom Prison, California, was named after Johnny Cash. Aphonopelma johnnycashi was among 14 new tarantula species from the southern US which were described by biologists in the journal ZooKeys.
2017 Lady Gaga opens the Super Bowl halftime show with a verse from “God Bless America,” followed by the song Woody Guthrie wrote as a parody, “This Land Is Your Land.”

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