Kanye West is a mutha-fucken’ “G” – that’s not “G” as in Gangsta, by the way, that’s “G” as in GENIUS. Think what you may about Kanye’s antics, and he’s always full of surprises, but you can’t touch him when it comes to creating some of the greatest Hip Hop records…ever! Truth be told, the point Kanye was making at the Grammy Awards when he interrupted Taylor Swift was a valid one. Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” was the best video of that particular year, certainly better than the ones that were receiving the awards, and with the passage of time the video has become one of the most iconic music videos of all time. It was the bone-headed way he chose to handle himself that night that caused him problems. The “GOOD” of GOOD Music stands for “Getting Out Our Dreams” and it is also Kanye’s record label. The new album called “Cruel Summer” features many of the artists from the label’s roster including John Legend, Kid Cudi, Common, Pusha T, plus some of his other high-profile friends. This track features Kanye, Jay-Z and Big Sean.
1966, The Beatles got together for the first time since their return from the summer tour of the United States, ready to record a new album. The first song selected for recording was John’s “Strawberry Fields Forever,” which would end up, not on the album, but on The Beatles’ next single. This day’s session was devoted entirely to “Strawberry Fields Forever.”
1966, Gary Lewis and the Playboys, Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs, Bryan Hyland, and Distant Cousins appeared at the Civic Center in Charleston, West Virginia.
1967, The Who play The Swinging Gate in Fort Wayne, Indiana. After the show The Who go to local booking agent Linda Wren’s home for Thanksgiving dinner.
1968, Jefferson Airplane played at the Grande Ballroom, Detroit, Michigan.
1968, Diana Ross and The Supremes were at number one on the US singles chart with “Love Child,” their eleventh chart topper in the US. The song is also notable for knocking off and keeping The Beatles’ “Hey Jude” off the top spot in the US.
1969, The Rolling Stones played at the Detroit Olympia, Detroit, Michigan.
1971, Led Zeppelin appeared at Free Trade Hall, Manchester, England.
1972, King Crimson performed at Essex University, Colchester, England.
1973, Ringo Starr went to number one on the US singles chart with “Photograph.” This was his first of two US chart toppers as a solo artist. Written by Starr and George Harrison, the promotional film shot for the single showed Starr walking around his new house at the time, Tittenhurst Park, which had been previously the home of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, and where the Imagine promo film was shot.
1974, Genesis appeared at the Masonic Temple, Indianapolis, Indiana.
1974, Roxy Music played at the Tower Theater, Upper Darby, Pennsylvania.
1975, The Who performed at The Omni in Atlanta, Georgia.
1976, Chicago started a three-week run at number one on the UK singles chart with “If You Leave Me Now,” the American group’s only UK chart topper. It went on to win a Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Performance.
1976, Rush played at Memorial Auditorium, Sacramento, California.
1977, Yes appeared at Ahoy-Hallen Rotterdam, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
1978, David Bowie played the first of two sold-out nights at the RAS Show Grounds, in Sydney, Australia, during his 8-date Low/Heroes tour of Australia and New Zealand.
1978, The Grateful Dead appeared at the Capitol Theatre in Passaic, New Jersey.
1979, Stevie Ray Vaughn performed at Lupo, in Providence, Rhode Island.
1980, Bruce Springsteen played at the Capital Centre, Landover, Maryland.
1980, The Allman Brothers Band appeared at the Fox Theatre, Atlanta, Georgia.
1981, Alice Cooper headlined at Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto.
1984, Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee married his girlfriend, nude model Candice, aka Elaine Margaret Starchuk. The marriage lasted one month. Lee has also been married to actress Heather Locklear, and the former Playboy Playmate, and Baywatch star, Pamela Anderson.
1991, Eric Carr (Paul Charles Caravello,) drummer with Kiss died aged 41, of complications from cancer in a New York hospital. Carr replaced Peter Criss in 1980 and remained a band member until he became ill in 1991. For his Kiss stage persona, Carr was known as “The Fox.”
1991, Freddie Mercury died of complications from AIDS at his home in London’s Holland park aged 45, just one day after he publicly admitted he was HIV positive. Mercury was openly bisexual and enjoyed a colorful rock star lifestyle. During his career with Queen he scored over forty UK Top 40 singles, including the worldwide number one “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
1992, Bill Wyman’s divorce was finalized with the high court awarding his ex wife Mandy Smith £580,000 ($928,000.) The Rolling Stones bassist had started to date Smith when she was 13, the marriage lasted for two years.
1993, American blues guitarist and singer Albert Collins died of lung cancer aged 61. He was known as ‘The master of the telecaster.” He shared a Grammy for the 1985 album Showdown! which he recorded with Robert Cray and Johnny Copeland.
2002, Robbie Williams started a five week run at number one on the UK album chart with his fifth studio album Escapology. The album became the best selling album of 2002 in the United Kingdom, selling 1.2 million copies.
2002, Jay-Z was at the top of the US album charts with The Blueprint 2, the rapper’s first US number one album.
2006, Winners at the American Music Awards included, Kelly Clarkson, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Shakira, Jamie Foxx, Nickelback, Sean Paul, Black Eyed Peas, Eminem, Faith Hill, Rascal Flatts, Tim McGraw and Mary J. Blige. Nelly Furtado, John Mayer, and Fall Out Boy.
2008, English drummer Michael Lee died from a seizure at age 39. Lee had worked with Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, Little Angels, The Cult, Ian Gillan, Echo & The Bunnymen, The Quireboys, and Thin Lizzy.
Born on November 24: Donald “Duck” Dunn (1941); Pete Best (1941) Bev Bevan, ELO (1944); Lee Micheals (1945); Clem Burke, drummer, Blondie (1955); Chris Hayes, Huey Lewis and the News (1957); John Squire, guitar, The Stone Roses (1962); Chad Taylor, guitarist, Live (1970)
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Growing up in public is nothing new. Sammy Davis, Jr. did it. So did Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson. Heck, even Justin Bieber’s doing it now. Some have handled it better than others, and while it’s probably not the easiest thing to do, there are some that make it seem effortless.
Justin Timberlake is one of them. He’s the total package…actor, comedian, singer, musician, fashion plate, record label honcho, business man…he’s got it all!
Timberlake’s career began at age 11 when he sang country tunes on Star Search under the name Jason Randall. From there, he went on to become a cast member of The New Mickey Mouse Club along with Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, JC Chasez and Ryan Gosling.
His career really took off when he joined the boy band, ‘N Sync (along with JC Chasez). Worldwide success ensued with record breaking tours, smash hit singles like “Bye Bye Bye,” “That I Promise You,” “Girlfriend,” “Gone,” “Tearin’ Up My Heart” and “It’s Gonna Be Me,” and the chart-topping albums No Strings Attached and Celebrity.
But what would happen to young JT once ‘N Sync’s popularity waned? Could he make it in music? Perhaps he could go back to the medium of TV. It was a crap shoot as to whether he’d even have a career at all. Look at the rest of ‘N Sync, and the members of New Kids On The Block for that matter. Where are they now?
No worries, Justin Timberlake took the bull, and the opportunities, by the horn and let his talent lead the way by releasing his first solo album Justified in 2002. The album was not only a critical success, but it also spawned the hit singles “Like I Love You,” “Senorita,” “Cry Me A River” and “Rock Your Body.”
In the meantime, our golden boy recorded with everybody from Madonna and Duran Duran to 50 Cent and Lil Wayne, which just added to his allure and credibility. A movie career ensued, including parts in The Social Network, Bad Teacher, In Time, Friends With Benefits, Alpha Dog, Black Snake Moan and Shrek the Third, and he mostly got good notices too!
He emerged pretty much unscathed from his participation in the Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction that caught Janet Jackson with her breast exposed to over 100 million people. Then came his second album, FutureSex/LoveSounds where he singlehandedly brought sexy back to the top of the charts, and with Andy Samberg and The Lonely Island he also brought bawdy back to the television airwaves with “D**k In A Box” and its companion piece “Motherlover” on Saturday Night Live. He recently became a member of the “Five Timers Club” for hosting that show five times.
And so with great fanfare, Justin Timberlake announced his return to music this year after a seven year layoff with The 20/20 Experience, and it is a stunner of a record. The album features ten long song-suites that have as much in common with Paul McCartney’s “Band On The Run” and “Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey” as they do with the retro soul music of Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder, and the dance music that is currently all over the charts today.
With sturdy production by Timbaland, his trusted companion in music, The 20/20 Experience is both totally up to date and retro at the same time.
Many of the songs have long codas, abrupt rhythm changes and elongated vamps that take them into many different directions, like today’s Song Of The Day which switches gears half way through, and “Strawberry Bubblegum,” whose coda comes straight from the Stevie Wonder playbook. All of the songs revolve around metaphors for love and sex, as drugs in “Pusher Love Girl,” candy in “Strawberry Bubblegum” and even space travel in “Spaceship Coupe” (with room for two and making love on the moon).
There’s the deep soul grind of “That Girl” that is punctuated by a great rhythm guitar and horn part, and Timberlake is at his most Michael Jackson on the dance floor shaker “Let The Groove Get In.” Barry White is channeled on the retro string intro of “Pusher Love Girl,” as well as during the opening vamp of “Strawberry Bubblegum” and throughout “Hold The Wall.” While the backbeat on “Suit & Tie” is very reminiscent of Marvin Gaye’s “Mercy Mercy Me.” The proceedings come to a close with the album’s sole atmospheric ballad, “Blue Ocean Floor” which ends things on a meditative note.
While some of the songs tend to ponder on a little too long at times, for the most part Timberlake has delivered his most consistent effort yet. Stay tuned for the second ten songs of The 20/20 Experience coming out this November…
1966, The Doors officially signed with Elektra Records in a deal for the band to produce seven albums. The band also reluctantly agreed to release “Break On Through” as their first single. The lyric “She gets high/she gets high/she gets high” was changed to “She gets/she gets/she gets” in order to secure radio play.
1967, Pink Floyd plays two shows at Winter Gardens in Bournemouth, England.
1968, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band performs at the University of Toledo Armory in Toledo, Ohio.
1968, The Who pre-tape their appearance on ITV’s Time For Blackburn plugging “Magic Bus.” From there, they go to The Roundhouse in London to perform in the first of two all-night Middle Earth shows along with Joe Cocker, Arthur Brown, the Mindbenders and Yes. Also performing that night are The Small Faces in one of their last live gigs.
1968, The Steve Miller Band played at the Grande Ballroom, Detroit, Michigan.
1968, Pink Floyd make their first ever appearance in Germany with two shows at the Blow Up Club in Munich. The Morgen Soul Star Band and Jackie Edwards are also on the bill.
1969, Janis Joplin was arrested during a gig in Tampa, Florida, after badmouthing a policeman and using vulgar and indecent language. Joplin became upset after police moved into the hall forcing fans to move back to their seats. As the singer left the stage she confronted a detective calling him “a son of a bitch” and told him she would kick his face in. She was released on $504 bail.
1969, The Rolling Stones appeared at Assembly Hall, Champaign, Illinois.
1969, Hamburg’s Star Club, one of the Beatles” haunts when they were cutting their professional chops in Germany, announces it will close at the end of the month.
1970, Hawkwind appears at the Eyes Club, Chelmsford, England.
1971, Pink Floyd’s tenth concert appearance in New York City occurs at the fabled Carnegie Hall.
1971, The Grateful Dead play the Austin, Texas Municipal Auditorium.
1971, In this week’s Disc and Music Echo’s Progressive album chart: No.5, Cat Stevens, Teaser and the Firecat, No.4, Hawkwind, In Search Of Space, No.3, Santana III, No.2, Rod Stewart, Every Picture Tells A Story and No.1 John Lennon, Imagine.
1972, Yes played at the Knoxville Civic Auditorium, Knoxville, Tennessee.
1973, Neil Young performs at Queens College, Flushing, New York.
1974, Golden Earring, with support band Lynyrd Skynyrd, appeared at the Odeon Theatre, Edinburgh, Scotland.
1974, The Beach Boys performed at The Spectrum, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
1974, The Faces release “You Can Make Me Dance, Sing or Anything,” which becomes their last single when Rod Stewart announces he’s leaving the band in 1976.
1974, Frank Zappa performed at Memorial Auditorium, Buffalo, New York
1975, Rush and KISS appear at the Armory in Rockford, Illinois.
1977, Yes perform at Westfalenhalle, Dortmund, Germany.
1977, Led Zeppelin played the first of four shows at the Chicago Stadium during their North American tour. Two more were scheduled for later in the tour but were cancelled due to the death of Robert Plant’s son.
1978, Bob Dylan plays at The Forum, Inglewood, California.
1979, Aerosmith appeared at the Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, North Carolina.
1980, Blondie had their fifth number one single and third number one of this year with “The Tide Is High,” a song written by reggae star John Holt.
1981, Earth, Wind & Fire performed at the Capital Centre, Landover, Maryland.
1987, Dire Straits became the first act to sell over three million copies of an album in the UK. Brothers in Arms contained five, top 40 singles, “Money for Nothing,” “So Far Away,” “Walk of Life,” “Brothers in Arms,” and “Your Latest Trick.” The album is the eighth-best-selling album in UK chart history.
1990, Milli Vanilli producer Frank Farian held a press conference to confirm the rumors that the two members of the group Rob and Fab had not sung on any of their hit records.
1991, French music producer and songwriter Jacques Morali, died of complications from AIDS. He formed The Village People and co-produced their film, Can’t Stop the Music. Between 1974 and 1982 Morali produced over 65 albums.
2007, Jay-Z went to number one on the US album chart with American Gangster his 10th number one album. This made the rapper tied for second with Elvis Presley for the most number one albums on the chart; only the Beatles have had more, with 19. Since 1998, all eight of Jay-Z’s solo studio albums have hit the top spot, in addition to his “Collision Course” project with Linkin Park, and his “Unfinished Business” collaboration with R. Kelly.
Born on November 15: Mantovani (1905); Bill Fries, aka CW McCall (1928); Petula Clark (1932); Fryda Lyngstad, Abba (1945); and Chad Kroeger, guitar, Nickelback (1974)
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