Today’s first item comes from the Stupid Laws File: Today in 1956, Ohio youths younger than 18 were banned from dancing in public unless accompanied by an adult, the result of enforcing a law that dated back to 1931.
The number one single today in 1965:
The number one British single today in 1971 was the first number one by a singer from his previous group:
Today in 1977, Patti Smith broke a vertebra after falling off the stage at her concert in Tampa, Fla.
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Today in 1963, the London Times’ music critics named John Lennon and Paul McCartney Outstanding Composers of 1963. Two days later, Sunday Times music critic Richard Buckle named Lennon and McCartney “the greatest composers since Beethoven.”
The number one album today in 1969 was “Led Zeppelin II” …
… the same day that the number one single was this group’s last:
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The number one British album today in 1969 was the Rolling Stones’ “Let It Bleed”:
The number one British single today in 1980 came 12 days after its singer’s death:
The number one song today in 1986:
The number one album today in 1975 for the second consecutive week was “Chicago IX,” which was actually “Chicago’s Greatest Hits”:
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Today in 1961, this was the first country song to sell more than $1 million:
The number one single today in 1962:
The number one single today in 1970 (which sounded like it had been recorded using 1770 technology):
The number one album today in 1975 was “Chicago IX,” which was actually “Chicago’s Greatest Hits”:
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The number one song today in 1957 …
… came from a just-opened movie:
The number one song today in 1967:
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The number one British album today in 1973 was the Rolling Stones’ “Goats Head Soup,” despite (or perhaps because of) the BBC’s ban of one of its songs, “Star Star”:
Who shares a birthday with my brother (who celebrated his sixth birthday, on a Friday the 13th, by getting chicken pox from me)? Start with Paul Simon:
Robert Lamm plays keyboards — or more accurately, the keytar — for Chicago:
Craig McGregor of Foghat:
John Ford Coley, formerly a duet with England Dan Seals:
Rob Marche played guitar for the Jo Boxers, who …
One death of note: Ed Sullivan, whose Sunday night CBS-TV show showed off rock and roll (plus Topo Gigio and Senor Wences) to millions, died today in 1974:
Today in Great Britain in the first half of the 1960s was a day for oddities.
Today in 1960, a campaign began to ban the Ray Peterson song “Tell Laura I Love Her” (previously mentioned here) on the grounds that it was likely to inspire a “glorious death cult” among teens. (The song was about a love-smitten boy who decides to enter a car race to earn money to buy a wedding ring for her girlfriend. To sum up, that was his first and last race.)
The anti-“Tell Laura” campaign apparently was not based on improving traffic safety. We conclude this from the fact that three years later, Graham Nash of the Hollies leaned against a van door at 40 mph after a performance in Scotland to determine if the door was locked. Nash determined it wasn’t locked on the way to the pavement.
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Today in 1956, London police were called to break up a crowd of teenagers after the showing of the film “Rock around the Clock” at the Trocadero Cinema.
That prompted a letter to the editor in the Sept. 12, 1956 London Times:
The hypnotic rhythm and the wild gestures have a maddening effect on a rhythm loving age group and the result of its impact is the relaxing of all self control.
The British demonstrated their lack of First Amendment by banning the film in several cities.
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Today in 1959, Bertolt Brecht‘s “Threepenny Opera” reached the U.S. charts in a way Brecht …
… could not have fathomed:
T0day in 1968, Apple Records released its first single by — surprise! — the Beatles:
Today in 1969, this spent three weeks on top of the British charts, on top of six weeks on top of the U.S. charts, making them perhaps the ultimate one-number-one-hit-wonder:
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Today in 1967, Jimi Hendrix released “Purple Haze”:
Three years later, Hendrix made his last concert appearance in Great Britain at the Isle of Wight Festival, which also featured, for your £3 ticket …
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