Presty the DJ for July 21

Today in 1970, after Joe Cocker dropped out due to illness, and unable to get Jimi Hendrix, promoter Bill Graham (possibly at Hendrix’s suggestion) presented Chicago in concert at Tanglewood, a classical music venue in Lenox, Mass.:

I would have loved to go to this concert, but I was 5 years old at the time, and I doubt my parents would have allowed me to go to Massachusetts.

The number one song today in 1973:

The number one R&B song today in 1979:

Today in 1980, AC/DC released “Back in Black,” their first album with new singer Brian Johnson, who replaced the deceased Bon Scott:

That same day, Keith Godchaux, formerly of the Grateful Dead, was seriously injured in a car crash north of San Francisco. Two days later, the keyboard player for the Dead would be, well, dead.

Birthdays of note start with saxophone player Plas Johnson …

… Larry Tolbert, drummer of Raydio …

… Eric Bazilian of the Hooters …

… Taco Ocheriski, an ’80s one-hit wonder …

… the same day as Milwaukeean Howie Epstein, bass player for Tom Petty and the Hearbreakers:

Who is Steven Demetre Georgiou? For that matter, who is Yusaf Islam? You knew him as Cat Stevens:

Stevens, or Islam, put himself in the Foot in Mouth Hall of Shame through what he said in 1989 while speaking to a group of college students, which was reported as his approval of the fatwa an imam put on author Salman Rushdie for daring to write The Satanic Verses. The next day, Stevens denied that he approved of vigilantism, claiming all he said was what the legal punishment for blasphemy was in Islam; later, he said he was joking and that the video was improperly edited. Some radio stations refused to play Stevens’ music after that. I thought that was a poor decision at the time; my suggestion was to play Cat Stevens songs, followed immediately by a record from another Stevens — Ray’s “Ahab the Arab.” Needless to say, that would not fly today.


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