It’s Saturday in The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 1/23/2021

Good Morning, fellow music trivia buffs, and welcome to The Mermaid Lounge! We have today’s lesson all prepared for you. We guarantee you’ll impress your friends and family with your knowledge if you apply yourselves.

The Winter Dance Party Tour begins. But before it’s over, Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper will die in a plane crash. Don McLean called it “the day the music died” in his hit American Pie.

Here’s today’s lesson:

January 23, 1959: The Winter Dance Party Tour began at the Million Dollar Ballroom in Milwaukee. Before the 24-city tour is over, the headliners, Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper will die in a plane crash.

January 23, 1964: The Temptations released The Way You Do The Things You Do, one of the best R & B songs ever, in my opinion.

January 23, 1965: Herman’s Hermits released Can’t You Hear My Heartbeat.

Also on this day, Downtown made Petula Clark the first woman to have a #1 in the US since Vera Lynn in 1952. Of course, she’ll have many more here, but she is an old hand at this in the UK where she has been charting since 1954.

Beatles ’65 spent a third week at #1 on the Album charts.

January 23, 1966: Stevie Wonder played The Cavern Club in Liverpool.

January 23, 1967: Johnny Rivers, one of our favorites here, released Baby I Need Your Lovin’.

January 23, 1969: Alan Parsons (later of The Alan Parsons Project) engineered his first session at Apple Studios (as 2nd engineer to Glyn Johns) as The Beatles record one of their best ever, Get Back.

Elvis Presley records Suspicious Minds at American Sound, a small studio in Memphis. It is a huge comeback hit for The King, and it is also his final #1 hit in America.

January 23, 1970: Judy Collins is denied the opportunity to sing her testimony at the infamous Chicago 7 trial.

January 23, 1971: George Harrison is the first ex-Beatle to hit #1 on the UK charts with My Sweet Lord.

Also on this day, Gladys Knight & The Pips recached #1 on the R & B charts with If I Were Your Woman. This band never got the recognition it deserved, in my opinion, and Gladys Knight was a powerhouse of a singer.

January 23, 1973: While singing to a sell-out crowd at Madison Square Garden in New York, Neil Young is handed a message. He then announces that a peace accord had been reached in Vietnam. The crowd goes wild for 10 minutes. Here we are in 2020, and American imperialism continues on unabated and forgotten as we fucking argue over masks.

January 23, 1978: Terry Kath of Cbicago accidentally shoots himself in the head with a gun he believed was empty. He dies instantly, just eight days shy of his 32nd birthday. It also marks the death of Chicago, as far as I am concerned, as Peter Cetera leads them down the path of elevator music and renders them irrelevant.

Born On This Day

January 23, 1950: Danny Federici, keyboardist for the E Street Band, was born in Farmington, New Jersey.

January 23, 1950: Bill Cunningham, bassist for The Box Tops, was born in Memphis, Tennessee.

And that is all because we do not give a flying fuck about Mariah Carey or Justin Bieber. We will be back with our line-up soon!

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