1957, Elvis Presley bought the Graceland mansion for $102,500. The 23 room, 10,000 square foot home, on 13.8 acres of land, would be expanded to more than 17,000 square feet before Elvis moved in a few weeks later. The original building had at one time been a place of worship, used by the Graceland Christian Church. It was named after the builder’s daughter, Grace.
1967, Working at Abbey Road studios in London, The Beatles finished the recoding of “She’s Leaving Home” after adding backing vocals to the track. Harpist Sheila Bromberg who was part of the string section on the track became the first woman to play on a Beatles recording.
1967, the Jimi Hendrix Experience released “Purple Haze” in the UK. It is thought that based the song on Night of Light, a 1966 novel by Philip José Farmer. In the story set on a distant planet, sunspots produced a “purplish haze” which had a disorienting effect on the inhabitants.
1968, The Bee Gees made their US television debut when they appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show.
1968, A Pink Floyd show to be held at Universiteit Leuven, in Leuven, Belgium was cancelled just as the band was about to take the stage when fighting broke out between French and Flemish members of the audience.
1971, Peter Gabriel married is girlfriend Jill. They were together on and off for 17 years.
1973, Eric Weissberg started a three-week run at number one on the chart with ‘Dueling Banjos.’ Taken from the film Deliverance.
1973, Dr Hook’s single ‘On The Cover Of Rolling Stone peaked at No.6 on the US chart. The single was banned in the UK by the BBC due to the reference of the magazine.
1976, Bob Dylan’s protest song “Hurricane” leads to boxer Rubin “Hurricane” Carter’s murder case being reopened.
1978, U2 won £500 ($850) and a chance to audition for CBS Ireland in a talent contest held in Dublin. The Limerick Civic Week Pop ’78 Competition was sponsored by The Evening Express and Guinness Harp Lager.
1981, Blues Project, with Al Kooper, Steve Katz and Roy Blumenfeld, reunite for one-off concert at Bonds in New York.
1988, The Grateful Dead performed at the Henry J. Kiser Auditorium in Oakland, California.
1990, Rick Grech who had worked with Family, Blind Faith, Traffic, and Ginger Baker’s Air Force died of renal failure at the age of 43, as a result of alcoholism. Grech also worked as a session musician with Rod Stewart, Ronnie Lane, Vivian Stanshall, Muddy Waters, The Crickets, the Bee Gees and Gram Parsons.
2010, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer, Alex Chilton died in hospital of heart related problems in New Orleans aged 59. As a teenager Chilton had been a member of The Box Tops who had the 1967 hit “The Letter” and later in 1971 co-founded the power-pop group Big Star, with Chris Bell.
Born on March 17: Nat King Cole (1919); Paul Kantner, Jefferson Airplane (1941); John Sebastian (1941); Harold Brown, War (1944); Billy Corgan (1967)