Monday, September 7, 2009

#MusicMonday


This last week has been boring as far as music is concerned. I managed to get five pages deep in PR News wire before I found anything even remotely interesting. So, I'm posting some Rock/Pop Tid Bits graciously borrowed from My friend Robert Benson's blog. His blog of all things music, is here. Check it out and tell him I sent you.

Rock/Pop Tidbits
Mr. Aker Bilk, who took "Stranger On The Shore" to Billboard's number one spot in May, 1962, learned to play the clarinet while he was in prison. He had been sentenced to three months in jail after falling asleep while on guard duty for the British Army in Egypt.

Elvis Presley was number 1 in record sales in the US in the 1950s. In the 1960s he was number 2 and in the 70s he was number 13.

John Lennon and Paul McCartney were always on the look-out for interesting titles to write a song around. They did just that when a tired Ringo uttered "God, it's been a hard days night" and again when a chauffeur told Paul, "I'm very busy at the moment. I've been working eight days a week."

Ellas Bates was still in grammar school when classmates started calling him "Bo Diddley". He says he doesn't know why. A bo diddley is actually a one-string, African guitar.

Songwriters Felice and Boudleaux Bryant wrote "All I Have To Do Is Dream" in 15 minutes, but the tune would reach the US charts in four straight decades. The Everly Brothers took it to number one in 1958, Richard Chamberlain's version (go figure) went to number 14 in 1963, Glen Campbell and Bobby Gentry reached number 27 with it in 1970, and Andy Gibb and Victoria Principal peaked at number 51 in 1981.

Dan Whitney, the comedian known as "Larry The Cable Guy" has been influenced by show business all his life. His father used to played guitar with the Everly Brothers.

The first time that Del Shannon and his keyboard player, Max Crook, ever played "Runaway" on stage, Crook improvised the organ solo as he went along. When it came time to record the song and in all future performances, he never changed a single note.

John Fred and his Playboy Band hit the top of the Billboard Hot 100 in January, 1968 with "Judy In Disguise". At one time, John's father, Fred Gourrier was a professional baseball player.

Before Pete Townshend of the Who began working on the rock opera “Tommy,” he had planned to write an opera about a big white rabbit that ruled the world.

After The Tokens achieved a number one record with "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" in 1961, follow up recordings failed to sell. The group however continued to perform and sang back up vocals for Connie Francis, Del Shannon and Bob Dylan, as well as recording commercials for Pan Am, Ban Deodorant, Wendy's and Sunkist.

In the 1960s, during the height of Beatlemania, there were about 90 records released every week in the UK. Only 2 or 3 ever made the charts.




The Shirelles 1962, US Top 10 hit, "Baby, It's You" was actually recorded with only Shirley Alston Reeves' voice over the instrumental demo. The other members of the group don't appear on the record at all, as the original backup vocals, provided by male singers, were left in place.




It took Elvis Presley 31 takes of "Hound Dog" to get the final version that we hear today. In 1988, the song was named the most played record of all time on American juke boxes.
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