Good Morning, Musicologists! It’s another fine Sunday here in The Mermaid Lounge (although, I confess that I am writing this earlier than usual). We have a new album of the week, and we feature our five-hour British Invasion playlist today.
Here’s today’s simple but satisfying line-up:
12:00 p.m. Album of The Week: Hotcakes by Carly Simon NEW!
Hotcakes was Carly Simon’s fourth studio album, released by Elektra Records in 1974. She recorded the album while she was pregnant with her first child, and I have to say that it’s one of the best albums on the planet. It is also one of the hottest-sellers of her career. Unfortunately for Carly, Elektra released two other albums that year, one was Planet Waves by Dylan and the other was Court & Spark by Joni Mitchell. That kept Hotcakes off the top spot. It peaked at number three.
The album generated two hits, Mockingbird, which she recorded with her then-husband James Taylor, and the other was Haven’t Got Time For The Pain. However, I have to agree with David Geffen’s assessment that Forever My Love was the finest song she ever recorded.
3:00 p.m. The British Are Coming! Various Artists
Once again, we give you more than five hours of great music from across the pond, from the British Invasion bands up through the mid eighties. You’ll hear The Clash, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Searchers, Lulu, The Dave Clark Five, Them (featuring Van Morrison), Electric Light Orchestra, The Kinks, Led Zeppelin, Cream, The Spencer Davis Group, The Who, and then some.
My fingers are tired, so I’m not going into all the detail about how you should be listening to us. You know, we’re totally free, ask no personal information, take no advertising, no commercial interruptions…all that shit. Just do it.
Good Morning, Musicologists! We’ve got a great line-up today here from The Mermaid Lounge. Some people are forgotten at times. We won’t allow that to happen to Sam Cooke.
Here’s today’s line-up:
11:00 a.m. One Night Stand: Sam Cooke Live at The Harlem Square Club, Miami, Florida, January 12, 1963
This performance was recorded back in 1963, but not released until 1985. RCA kept it locked in their vaults, thinking it was too gritty and would tarnish his pop image. In fact, it is now recognized as one of the best live performances in popular music history. Today we celebrate what would be Sam Cooke’s 90th birthday.
3:00 p.m. The Shadow: 08 Murder By The Dead FINAL AIRING!
That pesky beyond-the-grave killer returns. It’s a mystery, of course, until The Shadow figures it out.
7:00 p.m. Between Heaven & Hell: Various Artists
Haven’t heard this one in a while. This is a good day for it. Tuning us in will bring you Donovan, Led Zeppelin, The Foo Fighters, Emmylou Harris, Tom Petty, The Grass Roots, Pink Floyd, ZZ Top, Elvis Presley, Van Morrison, and then some!
We’re free. We’re not intrusive. We do not require a credit card or personal information. All you need to do is click on the link below.
Happy Sunday, Musicologists! We are here in The Mermaid Lounge where we never sleep and the music never stops. It has been running 24/7 since February of 2017.
Here’s Sunday’s musical lesson:
January 17, 1963: The Beatles played their usual lunchtime gig at The Cavern Club, and then at the Majestic Ballroom in Birkenhead in the evening. The Majestic tickets all sold in advance. With literally hundreds of fans turned away, it was definitely time to look for a bigger venue.
January 17, 1964: The Rolling Stones released their first EP, which included You Better Move On, Poison Ivy, Bye Bye Johnny, and Money.
January 17, 1966: The Turtles released the song You Baby on this day. By the way, The Turtles were a great little band.
January 17, 1967:The Daily Mail ran a story about a local council survey finding 4,000 holes in the road in Lanashire, inspiring John Lennon’s contribution to the Beatles’ amazing A Day In The Life.
Also on this day, the Jimi Hendrix Experience recored a session for Radio Luxembourg’s Ready Steady Radio. The band ran up a $6.21 bar bill which they could not afford to pay. That would change soon.
January 17, 1970: The Doors performed the first of several concerts at the Felt Forum in New York City.
Also on this day, Led Zeppelin II would take over the #1 Album spot from Abbey Road after an 11-week run.
January 17, 1972: Neil Young released the great single Heart of Gold, with friends Linda Ronstadt and James Taylor singing background vocals.
Meanwhile, Paul Simon released his hit Mother and Child Reunion.
And a section of Highway 51 in South Memphis, Tennessee, was renamed Elvis Presley Boulevard. It was intended to be the entire road, but a church objected to their section being named after Elvis the Pelvis. No sense of humor.
January 17, 1974: Joni Mitchell’s amazing album, Court and Spark, was released on this day.
Bob Dylan also released Planet Waves on this day.
January 17, 1975: Bob Dylan released another great album on this day a year later called Blood On The Tracks.
Born On This Day
January 17, 1927: The amazing Eartha Kitt was born on this day in North, South Carolina.
January 17, 1949: Mick Taylor, guitarist for both John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers and the Rolling Stones, was born in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England.
January 17, 1955: Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Steve Earle was born in Fort Monroe, Virginia. Johnny Cash, Emmylou Harris, Gretchen Peters, and Shawn Colvin have covered his tunes.
And that is it for today’s lesson. Back with the line-up soon.
We almost never sleep here in The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge. We have your trivia lesson for this fine Sunday morning. The Beatles continue to dominate and Linda Ronstadt’s career takes off.
Here’s today’s lesson:
January 10, 1956: Elvis Presley recorded music for his new record label, RCA, including Heartbreak Hotel, I Was The One, I’m Counting On You, I Got A Woman, and Money Honey.
January 10, 1963: The Beatles released their second single in the UK called Please Please Me.
January 10, 1964: The Beatles release their first US album, Introducing The Beatles.
Also on this fine day, The Whiskey A Go Go opens its doors on Sunset Strip in West Hollywood. It will play host to the likes of The Doors, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Rivers and many others.
January 10, 1967: Jimi Hendrix started a recording contract with Track Records and recorded Purple Haze on this day.
Also, The Hollies, one of the greatest British Invasion bands, began recording On A Carousel.
January 10, 1969:The Beatles (aka, The White Album) was unstoppable. After just five weeks of release total, it notched week number three at #1.
Also on this day, Marvin Gaye celebrated five weeks at #1 on the R & B charts with his remake of I Heard It Through The Grapevine.
January 10, 1971: Chicago released Chicago III. They were still innovative and hot at this stage of the game. This was before they went Christian elevator music and dropped off our radar. (Hint: Terry Kath was still alive and Peter Cetera was not in charge.)
January 10 1975: Linda Ronstadt’s brilliant album, Heart Like A Wheel, entered the Top 10 on this day. In spite of the fact that most music outlets treat women as though they were second-class music citizens, we do not. Heart Like A Wheel was Ronstadt’s first #1 album on The Billboard Top 200, and it spent four weeks at #1 on the Billboard Country Album chart in 1975.It spent 51 weeks on the charts, produced two #1 hit songs, sold more than a million copies, and won her a Grammy award. Anything else required here?
And, oh yeah, I forgot that Led Zeppelin’s Kashmir was performed for the first time at The Ahoy, Rotterdam, The Netherlands. I guess this was more newsworthy than Linda Ronstadt’s news (a great deal of snark here).
Born On This Day
January 10, 1917: Jerry Wexler was born on this day in New York City. He will be responsible for the success of greats Aretha Franklin, Led Zeppelin and Wicked Wilson Pickett.
January 10, 1935: Ronnie Hawkins, whose band The Hawks is a precursor to one of my favorites, The Band, was born in Huntsville, Alabama.
January 10, 1939: Scott McKenzie, who performed one of the greatest sixties anthems of all time, San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Flowers in Your Hair), was born in Jacksonville, Florida.
January 10, 1948: Donald Fagan of the great Steely Dan was born in Passaic, New Jersey.
January 10, 1956: Folk singer Shawn Colvin was born in South Dakota. Her song Sunny Came Home, pretty much about a woman who burns her house down, will win the Grammy for both Record of the Year and Song of the Year in 1998.
And that’s about it from The College because we don’t give a shit about Justin Bieber or Lady Gaga. Have a great day.
Yes, the sun is out for a change here. Let’s see how long it lasts. But in the meantime, we have all the news that’s fit for a trivia buff.
Here’s today’s lesson:
January 9, 1962: Sam Cooke releases Twistin’ The Night Away, a great fucking song.
January 9, 1963: Charlie Watts joins the Rolling Stones on drums, replacing Tony Chapman.
January 9, 1965: The Beatles begin nine weeks at #1 on the US Album chart with Beatles ’65, their fourth #1 album.
January 9, 1967: The Buffalo Springfield release one of the greatest songs in history, For What It’s Worth.
Meanwhile, back in the UK, The Beatles supervised the recording of the flutes, trumpets, piccolos and flugelhorn for Penny Lane.
January 9, 1969: The Beatles owned #1 on the UK Album chart with The Beatles (also known affectionately as, The White Album).
January 9, 1970: During their UK tour, Led Zeppelin played Royal Albert Hall on Jimmy Page’s 26th birthday. John Lennon, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton were in attendance.
January 9, 1976: Queen was at #1 on the UK singles chart with Bohemian Rhapsody.
Born On This Day
January 9, 1941: American singer, songwriter, musician and activist Joan Baez was born in Staten Island, New York. She recorded and released her debut album in 1960 at the age of nineteen. She is the first singer to record songs written by Bob Dylan.
January 9, 1944: James Patrick “Jimmy” Page was born in Heston, Middlesex, England. he was a session musician before forming The Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin. One of the greatest guitarists on the planet.
And that is it. It’s Saturday. Your lesson should be light and it is. Have a great day and we’ll be back with the line-up.
Good Morning, Music Lovers! Here we are again bringing you news from the annals of rock n’ roll. Today, a very important person in the music world was born.
Here’s today’s lesson:
January 8, 1957: Bill Haley & The Comets, LaVern Baker, and Big Joe Turner start an Australian tour in Newastle Stadium, Newcastle. This is the world’s first rock n’ roll concert.
January 8, 1960: Eddie Cochran records Three Steps To Heaven in Hollywood. It will be his final recording session.
January 8, 1966: The Beatles had only been charting for a couple of years, yet they had their 11th number one hit with We Can Work It Out.
Also on this day, the album Rubber Soul soared from #60 to #1 to take over the Album chart. It was The Beatles’ seventh #1 US album.
The Who and The Kinks were the final guests on the last episode of the TV show Shindig.
A great new folk group called The Mamas & The Papas were gaining a lot of attention. On this day, they charted their first hit single, California Dreamin’.
January 8, 1968:(Sittin’ On) The Dock of The Bay, by Otis Redding, was released by Stax Records. It would be his only hit. He passed away the year before in a plane crash before he ever had the opportunity to see its release.
January 8, 1975: Three Led Zeppelin shows scheduled for Madison Square Garden sell out in a matter of four hours.
Born On This Day
January 8, 1931: Bill Graham, concert promoter whose name is synonymous with The Fillmore, was born Wolfgang Grajunca in Berlin, Germany.
January 8, 1935: Elvis Aaron Presley, also known as The King, was born in Tupelo, Mississippi. He had his first hit in 1956 with the great song Heartbreak Hotel.
January 8, 1940: Jerome “Little Anthony” Gourdine of Little Anthony & The Imperials was born in Brooklyn, New York.
January 8, 1946: Robby Krieger, songwriter and elite guitarist with The Doors, was born in Los Angeles.
January 8, 1947: Terry Sylvester, who replaced Graham Nash in The Hollies, was born in Liverpool, England.
And that is it on this day in music history. We will be back with the line-up soon.
Good Morning, Students of Music Trivia! It’s always so much less stressful when I get a jump on thing, not always possible, I might add.
Here’s today’s lesson, kids:
January 7, 1954: Muddy Waters recorded Hoochie Coochie Man.
January 7, 1955:Rock Around the Clock by Bill Haley & The Comets debuted on the UK charts.
January 7, 1964: Bluesman Long John Baldry forms The Hoochie Coochie Men.
Also on this day, The Beatles recorded for the BBC program Saturday Club, singing Chuck Berry’s Johnny B. Goode, along with All My Loving, Money, I Want to Hold Your Hand and three other songs. It was their third appearance on the show.
January 7, 1967: The Doors and The Young Rascals played the second of two nights at the Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco.
Also on this day, Aaron Neville had the first #1 song of the new year with Tell It Like It Is, undoubtedly one of my favorite songs ever.
January 7, 1970: Fleetwood Mac started a five-night stint at The Whiskey A Go Go on Sunset Strip.
January 7, 1978: Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours album, which was already #1 for 29 weeks, returns to #1 after 46 weeks of release.
January 7, 1980: Led Zeppelin’s In Through The Out Door is certified Platinum. It is the final album John Bonham appears on before his death.
January 7, 1981: The Eagles Live is certified Platinum. In spite of that, it will be 13 years before their next album is released.
Born On This Day
January 7, 1948: Kenny Loggins was born on this day in Everett, Washington.
And that is it. We are done here, and will return with today’s line-up shortly. (It really is tomorrow’s line-up today.)
Good Morning from the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge where the inhabitants of The Mermaid Lounge rarely sleep. Or so it seems. This is a pretty busy day in rock n’ roll, as you will see.
Here are the facts, children:
January 3, 1955: 20-year-old Elvis Presley appeared live in Boonesville, Virginia. He was still only a regional success but, by the end of 1956, he would explode into a national sensation.
January 3, 1957: Fats Domino records I’m Walkin’ (one of the greatest songs ever made, in my opinion). He wrote the song after his car broke down and he heard a fan yell, “Hey, look at Fats Domino, he’s walking!” The song would reach #4 on the US Pop chart and #1 on the R & B chart.
January 3, 1963: After placing 30 songs on the Billboard chart with Imperial Records, Rick Nelson signed a $1 million, 20-year contract with Decca (you know, the label that turned the Beatles down). He would generate six more Top 40 hits for Decca before his tragic death.
Speaking of The Beatles, they kicked off a five-day tour of Scotland on this day at the Two Red Shoes Ballroom in Elgin.
January 3, 1964: The Beatles were seen on television for the (first? second?) time (nobody has the definitive answer except them) when a BBC clip from a show called The Mersey Sound showing the band singing She Loves You was released on the Jack Paar Show. Old Jack, of course, made fun of them, particularly their hair cuts. In short order, The Beatles would teach them a lesson and shut them the fuck up.
January 3, 1967: The Beach Boys’ Carl Wilson refused to report to his local draft board after receiving his draft notice. He would eventually win conscious objector status. In the meantime, Good Vibrations was in its fourth week in the #1 slot.
January 3, 1970: The Beatles’ final recording session was held at Abbey Road Studios on this day. The final song they played together was I Me Mine, which would also be the title of George Harrison’s autobiography ten years later.
Also on this day, Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head, from the Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid soundtrack, would become B.J. Thomas’ third US Top 10 hit, and his first #1.
January 3, 1972: Don MacLean’s American Pie receives a Gold record. It reached #1 in both America and the UK, eventually selling three million copies.
January 3, 1974: Bob Dylan & The Band reunite for a US tour. Dylan was promoting his Planet Waves LP, while The Band had just released Moondog Matinee (last week’s Album of The Week) and the single Ain’t Got No Home. The tour was chronicled six months later with the release of the double album set Before The Flood.
January 3, 1976: Bob Dylan’s song about former boxer Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter (called Hurricane), which peaked at #33 on the Billboard chart, caused enough negative publicity to eventually get Carter released from prison. The song protested Carter’s innocence and his wrongful conviction on murder charges, as well as the authorities’ failure to even consider another perpetrator because Carter was black.
January 3, 1987: Aretha Franklin becomes the first woman inducted into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame. It seems like ridiculous amount of time for women to get the recognition they deserved in this business, and consider that it would take Linda Ronstadt until 2014 to be inducted, one of the biggest travesties in the music business.
Born On This Day
January 3, 1926: Sir George Martin, British record producer, arranger, composer, conductor, audio engineer and musician who nurtered The Beatles’ creative side and was known appropriately, according to McCartney, as The Fifth Beatle, was born in Highbury, London.
January 3, 1943: Van Dyke Parks, songwriter and producer who worked with Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys on the Smile album (a great album, by the way), played keyboards on The Byrds’ Eight Miles High, and produced Ry Cooder, Randy Newman, and Judy Collins, was born in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
January 3, 1945: Stephen Stills, singer-songwriter who was a member of Buffalo Springfield, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Manassas, and who released an album with Neil Young as The Stills-Young Band, was born in Dallas, Texas.
January 3, 1946: John Paul Jones, bassist, keyboardist, and producer with Led Zeppelin, was born in Sidcup, London.
And that is all today from The College. We’ll be back with the line-up in a bit.
Good Morning, Students! It appears that it was a very quiet day in rock n’ roll history. Of course, there’s more than this but, frankly, we dont’ give a shit about them.
Here’s your lesson. It’s an easy day:
January 2, 1964: The Rolling Stones perform I Wanna’ Be Your Man, written for them by Lennon & McCartney, on Britain’s Top Of The Pops.
January 2, 1965: The Beatles made it two weeks at #1 with I Feel Fine.
January 2, 1969: The Beatles began filming for the Let It Be documentary at Twickenham Studios in London.
Also on this day, Led Zeppelin and opening act, Alice Cooper, performed at the Whiskey a Go Go in Los Angeles, the first of four nights they would perform there.
January 2, 1971: The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (a fine band indeed) released a cover of Jerry Jeff Walker’s Mr. Bojangles, and it entered the Billboard Top 40 on this day, where it would peak at #9. The song remained on the charts for an amazing 36 weeks.
January 2, 1978: Jackson Browne released the song Running On Empty.
That is your very easy day from the College. We’ll be back soon with today’s musical line-up!
Good Morning, Musicologists! Here we are with today’s lesson from the college, where nobody ever really sleeps much these days.
Here’s today’s lesson from The Lounge:
December 27, 1958: Buddy Holly makes his first appearance in his home town of Lubbock, Texas, since becoming a major star.
December 27, 1960: The Beatles played to a welcome home crowd at the Litherland Town Hall in Liverpool, after completing a residency in Hamburg, Germany. They played with a sit-in drummer, as Pete Best remained in Germany and would, actually, never return to the group. As a result of the crowd’s reaction to their performance at this event, the Beatles finally believed in themselves. The rest, as they say, is fucking history, people.
December 27, 1963: The Animals performed for the first time on a BBC radio broadcast called Saturday Club. This would lead to a contract with Columbia.
December 27, 1964: The Supremes make their first of 16 appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show.
December 27, 1967: Bob Dylay released the album John Wesley Harding.
December 27, 1969: The Supremes’ final release with Diana Ross, Someday We’ll Be Together, becomes the final #1 hit of the sixties.
Also on this day, Led Zeppelin II, goes to #1 on the Album charts, replacing Abbey Road after eight weeks.
December 27, 1974: Bob Dylan recorded Idiot Wind and You’re a Big Girl Now on this day.
December 27, 1975: Faces announced their break-up (unfortunately). Rod Stewart focuses on his solo career (I have a love-hate with this guy) and Ron Wood joins the Stones.
December 27, 1980: Weeks after his murder, John Lennon’s Just Like Starting Over goes to #1 in both the US and the UK. It was chosen as the release not because Lennon considered it the best song on the album, but because he thought it was appropriate after a five-year hiatus from recording. It was his only #1 solo release.
Born On This Day
December 27, 1944: Mick Jones, great guitarist and songwriter with Spooky Tooth and co-founder of Foreigner, was born in Somerton, Somerset, England.
December 27, 1948: Larry Byrom, guitarist for Steppenwolf, was born in Huntsville, Alabama.
December 27, 1951: Karla Bonoff, singer-songwriter, solo artist, and back-up vocalist for Linda Ronstadt was born in Santa Monica, California. She wrote several songs for Ronstadt’s Hasten Down The Wind album, and also wrote All My Life, the Linda Ronstadt-Aaron Neville duet which won a 1991 Grammy.
And that is it for today, my friends. We will be back with the line-up shortly.