Today in Rock History – May 10

1966, A year after returning to her home state of Texas from San Francisco, Janis Joplin heads west again. She was summoned by Chet Helms, a friend who is now managing Big Brother & the Holding Company. He dispatches Travis Rivers, an old acquaintance of Janis’ from her Port Arthur, Texas days to convince the singer to join Big Brother. Joplin had even considered becoming a member of 13th Floor Elevators.

1967, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards appeared at Chichester Crown Court, Sussex, charged with being in possession of drugs, they elect to go to trial pleading not guilty and were both granted £100 bail.

1968, Jimi Hendrix performed at the Fillmore East in New York.

1968, Jim Morrison incites a riot at a Doors gig in Chicago.

1969, Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd, The Move, Status Quo, Tremeloes, Marmalade, Love Sculpture, Van Der Graaf Generator all appeared at Nottingham’s Pop & Blues Festival, held at the Notts County Football Ground, Nottingham, England. Presented by John Peel, tickets 22/6 at the gate. Floyd closed the day’s events, playing in the pouring rain.

1969, The Who played at the Grande Ballroom in Detroit, Michigan.

1969, The Moody Blues started a two-week run at number one on the album chart with On The Threshold Of A Dream. It was their first number one album.

1969, The Turtles gave a special performance at the White House as guests of Trica Nixon. Stories circulate concerning members of the group allegedly snorted cocaine on Abraham Lincoln’s desk.

1969, Frank Sinatra’s version of “My Way” made the British Top ten for the first time. Over the next three years it re-entered the Top 50 singles chart on eight different occasions. Paul Anka re-wrote the original French song for Sinatra, after he told Anka he was quitting the music business. Anka changed the melodic structure and lyrics to the song with Sinatra in mind.

1969, Led Zeppelin made their first appearance on the album chart when the bands debut album charted at number six, going on to spend 71 weeks on the UK album chart. It entered the US chart the following week at number ten. Now considered one of the most important debuts in rock, creating an entirely new interpretation of the rock and roll genre because of the groundbreaking music and recording techniques. The album was recorded in thirty-six hours.

1969, The Who played the first of three nights at the Grande Ballroom, Detroit, Michigan on their North American Tommy tour.

1970, The Allman Brothers Band performed at the Sports Arena, Atlanta, Georgia.

1970, David Bowie was awarded an Ivor Novello Award for Best Original Song “Space Oddity,” which he performed that night accompanied by the Les Reed Orchestra. The event was transmitted live via satellite to venues in America, France, Spain, Australia, Holland and Venezuela. Bowie would later revisit his Major Tom character in the songs “Ashes to Ashes” and “Hallo Spaceboy.”

1971, Yes appeared at Teatro Lirico, Milan, Italy.

1972, Hawkwind played at City Hall, Newcastle, England.

1974, The Who sold out Madison Square Gardens in New York City for four nights selling 80,000 tickets.

1974, Queen appeared at the Uris Theater, New York.

1974, Eric Clapton records “I Shot the Sheriff.”

1974, A party to celebrate the launch of Led Zeppelin’s Swan Song label at Los Angeles’ Bel Air Hotel ends with the guests tossing food and chinaware at one another.

1975, Stevie Wonder played in front of 125,000 fans at a free concert near the Washington Monument to celebrate Human Kindness Day.

1976, Aerosmith played at Madison Square Garden, New York.

1976, The Rolling Stones kicked off a 12-date UK tour at the Apollo Theatre, Glasgow.

1977, Rush appeared at the Riverside Theatre, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

1979, Roxy Music played at City Hall, Newcastle, England.

1980, Pete Townshend’s solo album Empty Glass is released in the U.S. John Rockwell in The New York Times says, “it a success that sounds like The Who of a decade before,” while Jon Parales in Mademoiselle says it shows “Pete has risen to the challenge set forth by punk rock.”

1980, Bob Dylan performed at City Hall, Portland, Maine.

1984, David Gilmour played at the Forum in Montreal.

1986, Falco was at number one on the UK singles chart with “Rock Me Amadeus.” Falco became the first-ever Austrian act to score a UK and US number one hit single and the first German speaking artist to achieve a US chart topper. Falco died of severe injuries received on  February 6, 1998, when his sports car collided with a bus in the Dominican Republic. It was later determined that the bus driver was speeding, for which the driver served three years in prison.

1997, The Hillsborough Benefit gig took place at Liverpool’s Anfield Stadium with The Beautiful South, Manic Street Preachers, Dodgy, Space, Stereophonics and The Lightning Seeds.

1999, American singer, songwriter poet, cartoonist, screenwriter, and author of children’s books Shel Silverstein died of a heart attack aged 57. He penned “A Boy Named Sue” for Johnny Cash, which earned Silverstein won a Grammy for in 197o. He also authored many songs for Dr Hook including “Sylvia’s Mother” and “The Cover of the Rolling Stone.”

2010, New York City’s Apollo Theatre began installing bronze plaques on the sidewalk outside the building of legends who had close ties to the theater. Among the first to be honored were James Brown, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and Ella Fitzgerald.

Born on this day –  Dave Mason, Donovan, and Graham Gouldman, 10cc (1946); Jay Ferguson, Spirit (1947); Sid Vicious (1957); and Bono (1960)

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