It’s The Last Hurrah for 2020 at The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 12/31/2020

Good Morning, Students! There will be no rest for the weary here in The Mermaid Lounge as we close out the year. Take out your pens and grab a pad of paper. There’ll be a quiz later (just kidding).

On New Year’s Eve 1978, The Grateful Dead closed Bill Graham’s Winterland Arena in style. We’ve got the concert for you tonight at 10:00 p.m.

Here’s today’s lesson from the College:

December 31, 1961: The Beach Boys make their live debut with their new name at the Long Beach Civic Auditorium in California.

December 31, 1963: The Kinks made their live debut at the Lotus House Restaurant in London.

December 31, 1965: The Beatles song I Feel Fine and their album Beatles ’65 are certified Gold.

December 31, 1969: Jimi Hendrix introduced his new band at a show at the Fillmore East in New York City. They are bassist Billy Cox and former Electric Flag drummer Buddy Miles. The concerts is recorded for their album Band of Gypsies, which will eventually reach #5 in America and #6 in the UK.

December 31, 1970: Melody Maker magazine reported that The Beatles were searching for a new bass guitarist, as Paul McCartney files suit to dissove The Beatles’ corporation. Truly one of the saddest days of my life.

December 31, 1974: Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham are invited to join Fleetwood Mac. It is the band’s tenth line-up change since 1967.

December 31, 1975: Elvis Presley performed a New Year’s Even concert in front of a record-breaking 60,000 fans at the Silverdome in Pontiac, Michigan.

December 31, 1978: The Grateful Dead play their 48th and final show at Bill Graham’s Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco, closing this institution in style. We have the concert for you tonight at 10:00 p.m. on a special New Year’s Eve edition of Live Dead.

December 31, 1980: Bruce Springsteen plays a kick-ass show at the Nassau County Coliseum, playing for more than four hours and covering 38 songs.

December 31, 1985: Rock n’ Roll legend Rick Nelson is killed enroute to a New Year’s eve show in Dallas, Texas. His private DC-3 (formerly owned by Jerry Lee Lewis) crashed in a field near DeKalb, Texas, killing Rick, his band and his future wife, Helen Blair. The pilot and co-pilot survived.

Born On This Day

December 31, 1930: Blues and folk singer Odetta was born Odetta Holmes in Birmingham, Alabama. She is known as the Queen of American Folk Music. Odetta would sing O Freedom at Martin Luther King’s 1963 March on Washington.

December 31, 1943: Pete Quaife, the original bass guitarist for The Kinks, was born in Tavistock, Devon, England.

December 31, 1947: Burton Cummings, lead singer and keyboardist of the great band The Guess Who was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

December 31, 1951: Tom Hamilton, bass player for Aerosmith, was born in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He co-wrote the hits Janie’s Got A Gun and Sweet Emotion, among others.

And that is it on this fine day in the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge!

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