Today in Rock History – May 16

1966, The Beach Boys released the album ‘Pet Sounds.’ The album is now regarded as the masterpiece of composer-producer Brian Wilson, and is often hailed as one of the best and most influential albums in popular music.

1966, Dylan’s iconic Blonde On Blonde album was released, reaching the ninth spot in the US charts and number three in the UK. Rock’s first double album, and Dylan’s seventh studio effort, it was recorded with Al Kooper, Robbie Robertson and Nashville country music session players, and had what Dylan later called ‘that wild mercury sound’.

1967, Jeff Beck appeared at the Corn Exchange in Bristol, Manfred Mann played at the Industrial Ballroom in Norwich, and appearing on the ITV show ‘As You Like It’; Lulu, Cat Stevens, Herd, Georgie Fame and the Tremeloes.

1969, Jack Casady of Jefferson Airplane was arrested for possession of marijuana and received a two and a half year suspended sentence.

1969, Pete Townshend spent the night in jail for assaulting a man during a Who gig at The Fillmore East. What Townshend didn’t know was the man who jumped onto the stage was a plainclothes policeman trying to warn the audience that a fire had broken out. The Who guitarist was later fined $30 for the offense.

1970, Police burst into the Bloomington, Minnesota hotel room of Jefferson Airplane’s Marty Balin after neighbors complain about noise. They find Balin and friends with marijuana and teenaged girls. The singer is sentenced to a year’s hard labor and a fine, but on appeal only has to pay the fine.

Randy Bachman, second from right

1970, Randy Bachman leaves the Guess Who.

1970, Crosby Stills Nash & Young went to number one on the album chart with Deja Vu.

1970, Pink Floyd played at the Warehouse in New Orleans, with support from The Allman Brothers Band and Country Funk.  The band had $40,000 worth of equipment stolen from their truck overnight. Nick Mason told Melody Maker in an later interview, “We sat at our hotel thinking – ‘Well that’s it. It’s all over.’  – We were pouring out our troubles to a girl who worked at the hotel and she said her father worked for the FBI. The police hadn’t helped us much, but the FBI got to work and four hours later it was found.”

1972, The Grateful Dead’s Europe ’72 tour stops at Theatre Hall in Luxembourg.

1974, Brian May collapsed in New York while Queen were on a US tour and was flown back to England suffering from hepatitis.

1974, Neil Young made an unannounced appearance at The Bottom Line in New York and played songs from his new album On The Beach.

1975, Chubby Checker hosts The Midnight Special, with appearances by Lesley Gore and Danny & the Juniors.

1976, Patti Smith made her UK debut at The Roundhouse, London.

1978, A David Bowie show at Deutschlandhalle in Berlin was halted during “Station to Station” when Bowie noticed security manhandling an audience member. Bowie ordered him in German to stop, which he did and the show resumed.

1987, U2 started a three week run at No.1 on the US singles chart ‘With Or Without You’, the group’s first US No.1. The third track from their 1987 album, The Joshua Tree, the song was the group’s most successful single at the time.

Born on this day: Liberace (1919); Robert Fripp, King Crimson (1946); Darrell Sweet, Nazareth (1947); Jonathan Richman, The Modern Lovers (1951); and Janet Jackson (1966)

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Crosby Stills Nash & Young, David Bowie, Jefferson Airplane, Neil Young, Patti Smith, Pete Townshend, Pink Floyd, Queen, The Allman Brothers Band, The Beach Boys, The Guess Who.