It’s a Big Day for The Brits With The Beatles, Pink Floyd, and The Moody Blues, Friday, April 23, 2021

Good Morning, British Music Lovers! It’s a bit of a departure from the norm here today in The Mermaid Lounge, beginning with some new Beatles material (new to us, that is).

Pop Go The Beatles!

Here’s today’s line-up!

11:00 a.m. The Beatles Live at The BBC, Volume One: Pop Go The Beatles NEW!

Back in the day, the Beatles ruled, and with good reason. I’m not sure anyone could appreciate how tight a musical band they really were for their time. Even to this day, people who think the computerized shit produced in this generation is actually music and the Beatles didn’t have a clue. That’s a load of bullshit. And by the way, real musicians do not share the fickle public’s opinions. Neither do we. All of these songs were recorded live at BBC Studios between during June, July and August of 1963…before Beatlemania took hold.

3:00 p.m. In The Spotlight: The Music of Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd was formed in London in 1965, and became one of the premier psychedelic rock bands. The band’s hallmarks were extended compositions, sound experimentation, cosmic lyrics, and rather elaborate live shows. They were true pioneers of the progressive rock sound.

7:00 p.m. The Moody Blues Live at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, Colorado, with The Colorado Symphony Orchestra, November 9, 1972

The Moody Blues were formed in Birmingham, England in 1964, and initially came to prominence playing R & B music. Early on, they fused rock with classical, and became pioneers of what is known as art rock. Their album Days of Future Passed is considered one of the earliest successful concept albums.

This would be a jolly good day to tune us in for the first time, I might add. Join your fellow listeners from Germany, the UK, Norway, the Russian Federation, France, and points beyond who tune in as the U.S. goes to sleep!

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Welcome to Saturday in The Mermaid Lounge with Money, Honey; The Beatles “Let It Be” Sessions; Paul Simon In the Spotlight; and Live Dead, March 6, 2021

Welcome to the weekend in The Mermaid Lounge, where we have our usual slate of programming for your listening pleasure. We’ll kick it all off at 10:00 a.m. this morning.

The Beatles’ during the “Let It Be” Sessions.

Here’s today’s line-up:

11:00 a.m. Money, Honey: Various Artists

Music about money, earned, stolen, alimony, in every form imaginable, from The Beatles, Van Morrison, Tom Waits, Pink Floyd, Warren Zevon, J.J. Cale, Slim Harpo, Albert King, Tom Rush, Chuck Berry, The Traveling Wilburys, and more.

3:00 p.m. The Beatles: The Let It Be Sessions, Rare and Unreleased

By the time Let It Be rolled around, the Fab Four were barely talking to each other or recording together. But the Let It Be sessions prove that The Beatles were all about the music at the end of the day, and at the end of their run.

6:00 p.m. In The Spotlight: The Music of Paul Simon

Paul Simon is legend in music. He spent years with his pal Art Garfunkel, singing together for the first time at the age of sixteen. Together they made some of the best music of the sixties and seventies. Then Simon continued on as a solo artist doing the same. We feature the music of Paul Simon today, both with and without Art Garfunkel.

10:00 p.m. Live Dead! The Grateful Dead Live at The Providence Civic Center, Providence, Rhode Island, September 7, 1987 NEW!

Another (brand new) marathon session from The Dead for your listening pleasure. No two shows ever sound the same, even when they are on the same tour.

Tune us in. It’s Saturday, kids. We’re on the case, bringing you great music totally free, no subscription required, no credit card required, no personal information asked. Just pull up a tab and click the link below:

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The Doors to the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge are Back Open: 2/17/2021

Well, we’re back up and running again. I am not sure the stamina is there to get this done every day, but I’m sure going to give it a hell of a shot.

Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash recorded together when Dylan was making Nashville Skyline. One of the songs found its way onto the album.

Here’s today’s lesson:

February 17, 1955: Little Richard sent his first audition tape to Specialty Records.

February 17, 1960: Elvis Presley received his first Gold Record for his debut album, Elvis.

Also on this day, after a string of hits on Cadence Records, The Everly Brothers sign a 10-year contract with Warner Brothers. The price is said to be a million dollars, but many think that was inflated for PR purposes.

February 17, 1962: The Beach Boys debuted on the charts with the song Surfin’.

February 17, 1964: Chad & Jeremy appear on the Patty Duke Show.

February 17, 1965: The Kinks release their single Tired of Waiting For You.

February 17, 1966: James Brown recorded It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World at Bob Gallo’s Talentmasters studio in New York. The song would eventually top the Billboard R & B chart.

Also on this day, The Beach Boys begin recording the Brian Wilson masterpiece, Good Vibrations. It would take eleven sessions and multiple layered overdubs to complete the song. Although it hit #1 around the globe and sold millions of copies, it would be the band’s last #1 for the next ten years.

February 17, 1967: The Beatles’ double A-side hit Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields Forever was released in the US.

Also on this day, The Beatles began recording a John Lennon song, Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite. The lyrics were taken from an antique poster that Lennon bought promoting a circus performance that took place in February 1843 in Rochdale, Lancashire.

February 17, 1968: Big Brother & The Holding Company signed a recording contract with the new CBS label, Columbia Records.

February 17, 1969: Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash got together to record some duets in Nashville while Dylan was recording his Nashville Skyline album. The song Girl From the North Country finds its way onto Dylan’s album. Cash wrote the liner notes for the album. The rest of their session would be released later.

February 17, 1971: James Taylor makes his debut on ABC’s Johnny Cash Show.

February 17, 1972: Pink Floyd wrapped up a tour of the UK with the first of four shows at The Rainbow Theatre in London. They perform Eclipse at the show. A year later, it becomes The Dark Side of the Moon album.

Born On This Day

February 17, 1941: Gene Pitney, who had hits with It Hurts To Be In Love and Only Love Can Break A Heart, was born in Hartford, Connecticut.

February 17, 1972: Taylor Hawkins, who was touring drummer for Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill tour, and drummer for the Foo Fighters, was born in Fort Worth, Texas.

And that is it for today.

It’s Wednesday in the College of Rock N’ Roll Knowledge: 1/27/2021

Good Morning, Trivia Buffs! It is one of the more boring days in rock history, I have to admit. Nevertheless, we press on here in The Mermaid Lounge.

The pre-disco Bee Gees were the bomb. But Saturday Night Fever killed it for me.

Here’s today’s lesson:

January 27, 1956: Elvis Presley made his TV debut on The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show where he sang Blue Suede Shoes and Heartbreak Hotel.

January 27, 1965: The Moody Blues reached #1 in the UK with Go Now.

Also on this day, The Who made their UK television debut when they appeared on Ready, Steady, Go! to promote their single, I Can’t Explain.

January 27, 1967: The Four Tops performed at the Royal Albert Hall.

January 27, 1971: The Bee Gees recorded How Can You Mend A Broken Heart at International Broadcasting Company Studios in London.

January 27, 1974: Paul McCartney & Wings released the song Jet.

January 27, 1977: Pink Floyd’s tenth studio album, Animals, entered the UK charts at #2.

January 27, 1978: Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours LP goes to #1 on the UK Album chart.

Born On This Day

January 27, 1943: Brian Keenan, drummer for the Chambers Brothers and Manfred Mann, was born in New York City.

January 27, 1946: Rick Allen, bassist for The Box Tops was born in Little Rock, Arkansas.

January 27, 1949: Eddie Bayers, drummer for Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band was born in Patuxent, Maryland.

January 27 1968: Sarah McLachlan was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

That is all. We’ll be back soon with today’s musical line-up!

It’s Monday Again in The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 1/25/2021

Welcome to another Monday here in The Mermaid Lounge, where the trivia pursuit never stops, and the Mermaid almost never sleeps.

The Cilla Black statue outside the legendary Cavern Club. The Beatles loved Cilla Black. She was part of the British Invasion, and we recently added her music to our standard rotation.

It’s a light day today, so here’s your lesson:

January 25, 1958: Elvis Presley’s Jailhouse Rock (on of my favorite songs of all time) becomes the first song ever to enter the UK charts at #1.

January 25, 1963: Cilla Black made her stage debut at the legendary Cavern Club in Liverpool. It was Cilla Black who put the great song You’re My World on the map, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. We recently added her catalogue to our standard rotation, so be listening for it.

Also on this day, The Rolling Stones play at the Ricky Tick Club at the Star & Garter Hotel, Windsor, Berkshire, UK. This was the first time the Stones played this venue.

And EMI awards the US record label Vee Jay the rights to distribute Beatles records in the United States.

January 25, 1964: The Beatles scored their first #1 hit in the US when I Want To Hold Your Hand reached the top of the Cash Box magazine music chart. The Beatles would eventually rack up 25 number one hits in the US.

January 25, 1967: The Beatles did a last-minute remix of Penny Lane before the pressing of their Double A sided hit (backed with Strawberry Fields Forever). Both were originally intended for Sargeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, but did not make the cut. (Is that even possible?)

January 25, 1969: Pink Floyd appeared at the Sixty-Nine Club, Royal York Hotel, Ryde, Isle of Wight.

January 25, 1986: Albert Grossman dies of a heart attack while flying on the Concorde from New York to London. Grossman managed Bob Dylan (from 1962-1970), Peter, Paul & Mary, The Band, Janis Joplin, and Todd Rundgren. He also built the Bearsville Recording Studio near Woodstock in 1969, then founded Bearsville Records in 1970.

January 25, 1999: The Rolling Stones begin their No Security Tour in Oakland, California.

Born On This Day

January 25, 1938: Blues singer Etta James was born Jamesetta Hawkins in Los Angeles, California.

And that’s it for today, folks. Enjoy your Monday, and we’ll be back with the line-up shortly.

Welcome to Sunday Funday in the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 1/24/2021

Good Morning, Music Lovers! The DJ slept late because she couldn’t fall asleep until nearly 2 a.m. I mean, seriously? What the hell was that all about? But here we are with your lesson!

The Beatles and the one and only manager they ever had, Brian Epstein.

Here’s your lesson:

January 24, 1958: The Quarrymen performed at the legendary Cavern Club in Liverpool. It was their first and last performance there until they changed their name to The Beatles.

January 24, 1961: The Beatles officially sign on with manager Brian Epstein, their one and only manager. His signature does not appear on this contract. Epstein always had the band’s best interest at heart. He was a man of his word. He said he would not sign until he had a record contract for the band. He also said that they could opt out of that contract if they could find a better deal somewhere else. On October 1, 1962, a final contract was drawn up with Epstein’s signature included. He had fulfilled his promise. In return for his loyalty, The Beatles gave him 25% of all profits, far above the standard 10% of the day.

On this day, another momentous occasion as Bob Dylan arrived in New York after dropping out of the University of Minnesota. He put his musical career in action immediately by performing at the club, Cafe Wha?, in New York’s Greenwich Village.

January 24, 1965: The Animals appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show.

January 24, 1967: The Who began a world tour at Central Pier in Morecambe, England.

Also on this day, Aretha Franklin gets a $25,000 signing bonus to record her first tracks for Atlantic Records. It was quite a tumultuous session as her husband apparently got into a fight with one of the musicians. Nevertheless, over her career, Aretha Franklin would have twenty #1 hit singles and ten #1 albums on the R & B charts.

January 24, 1969: Jethro Tull played its first concert in the US, opening for Blood, Sweat & Tears at The Fillmore East in New York City.

Meanwhile, The Doors also performed at Madison Square Garden in New York.

January 24, 1970: Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young performed at The Royal Albert Hall in London.

And Abbey Road by The Beatles returned to the #1 position for a third time, giving the album eleven weeks at the top of the Album charts.

January 24, 1975: Pink Floyd began recording tracks for their album Wish You Were Here at Abbey Road Studios in London.

Born On This Day

January 24, 1941: Aaron Neville, elite vocalist with The Neville Brothers, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. He will also have a successful solo career, recording two duets with Linda Ronstadt.

January 24, 1947: Wild man Warren Zevon was born in Chicago. He initially tours as keyboardist for The Everly Brothers while he tries to get a jump on his own career. He finally catches a break when Linda Ronstadt begins to record his compositions as she dominates the seventies.

The End. We are done. And I will be back with today’s line-up shortly.

Good Morning From The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 1/19/2021

We return to retail slavery, so we’re getting a jump on the day today

The Pretenders have their first #1 hit with Brass In Pocket.

Here’s your lesson:

January 19, 1957: Fats Domino’s Blueberry Hill moves up to #2 on the charts.

Also on this day, Elvis Presley recorded It’s No Secret, Blueberry Hill (speak of the devil), Have I Told You Lately That I Love You, and Is It So Strange.

January 19, 1962: Jackie Wilson spent a sixth week at #1 with Lonely Teardrops.

January 19, 1963: The Beatles made their first national TV appearance in the UK, performing Please Please Me on Thank Your Lucky Stars.

January 19, 1966: Simon & Garfunkel released Homeward Bound.

January 19, 1967: The Beatles began recording A Day In The Life at Abbey Road Studios. They lay down the rhythm track, John Lennon’s vocal, and the alarm clock sound used in the song.

Also on this day, Pink Floyd and Marmalade play a bill at The Marquee Club in London.

January 19, 1970: The Easy Rider soundtrack, featuring The Byrds (The Ballad of Easy Rider) and Steppenwolf (Born To Be Wild) is certified Gold.

January 19, 1971: The Beatles song Helter Skelter is introduced as evidence and played at Charles Manson’s murder trial. He claims it’s about a race war and led to his murderous acts.

January 19, 1973: The Moody Blues released I’m Just A Singer (In A Rock n’Roll Band).

January 19, 1974: Jim Croce is still at #1 with You Don’t Mess Around With Jim.

Also, two shows by Bob Dylan and The Band are so popular that they cause a nine-mile traffic jam.

January 19, 1976: The Beatles turn down a $30 million offer by promoter Bill Sargeant to reunite. By now they don’t need the money.

January 18, 1980: The Pretenders have the new #1 song in the UK with the great Brass In Pocket.

And Pink Floyd reaches #1 with The Wall after just six weeks of release.

January 19, 1998: Rock & Roll legend Carl Perkins (who wrote Blue Suede Shoes) dies at the age of 65 after suffering three strokes over two days.

Born On This Day

January 19, 1939: Phil Everly (of the Everly Brothers) was born in Chicago, Illinois.

January 19, 1943: The great Janis Joplin was born in Port Arthur, Texas.

January 19, 1946: Dolly Parton (the fourth of twelve children) was born in Sevier County, Tennessee.

January 19, 1952: Dewey Bunnell of America was born in Harrogate, Yorkshire, England.

And that is it for today, my friends. We’ll be back with the line up soon.

Greetings & Salutations From the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 1/6/2021

Here we are again hanging out in The Mermaid Lounge cramming in my musical duties before an opening shift. I hope you are soaking all this knowledge in like a sponge.

Tom Petty (& The Heartbreakers) with his Gibson Flying V.

Here’s your lesson for Wednesday:

January 6, 1957: Elvis Presley makes his third and final appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show, where he sings seven songs, including Hound Dog, Don’t Be Cruel, and Heartbreak Hotel. Of course, they only show Elvis the Pelvis from the waist up.

January 6, 1958: Great Balls of Fire by Jerry Lee Lewis hits #2 where it will remain for four weeks before dropping down. What’s keeping it from #1? At The Hop by Danny & The Juniors. (Are you fucking kidding me?)

January 6, 1964: The Rolling Stones headlined their first UK tour, with The Ronettes as the opening act.

January 6, 1966: The Beatles’ We Can Work It Out is awarded a Gold record, two days before it begins a three-week stay at #1.

January 6, 1968: Gibson patents its signature Flying V Electric Guitar.

January 6, 1973: Carly Simon hits #1 with You’re So Vain, and people continue to obsess to this day trying to figure out for whom the song is written. Carly’s conflicting answers shed no light on this mystery.

January 6, 1975: Pink Floyd begins recording their album Wish You Were Here, after abandoning their original idea of recording an album making music using ordinary household items. Thankfully.

January 6, 1993: Rolling Stones bass player Bill Wyman leaves the group after 30 years because he didn’t see anything new coming on the horizon.

January 6, 2007: “Sneaky Pete” Kleinow, one of the finest pedal steel guitarists ever who played with The Flying Burrito Brothers, died in Petaluma, California, of complications from Alzheimers.

Born On This Day

January 6, 1937: R & B singer-songwriter Doris Troy was born Doris Elaine Higginsen in The Bronx, New York.

January 6, 1946: Syd Barrett, vocalist and guitarist for Pink Floyd, was born in Cambridge, England.

January 6, 1947: Sandy Denny was born in London. She would become the lead singer of Fairport Convention, and the only guest singer on a Led Zeppelin song, The Battle of Evermore.

January 6, 1951: Blues singer Kim Wilson of The Fabulous Thunderbirds was born in Detroit, Michigan.

And that, my friends, is it from the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge.

All the Pertinent Details From The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 1/5/2021

It is another day in the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge, and we’re getting a jump on all things musical today. It’s a fairly active day on the trivia front.

Jesse Winchester left the U.S. for Canada to avoid the draft. But when he left the planet, the world lost one of its best songwriters ever.

Here’s today’s lesson:

January 5, 1954: Elvis Presley recorded a 10-minute demo tape at Memphis Recording Studios.

January 5, 1959: Buddy Holly released It Doesn’t Matter Anymore, his final release before his death.

January 5, 1961: The Beatles played at Literton Town Hall in Liverpool. Two members of Rory Storm & The Hurricanes were on hand to watch — Johnny Guitar, and drummer Ringo Starr. Paul McCartney played bass for the first time with the band as Stu Sutcliffe remained at home.

January 5, 1965: The Supremes recorded Stop! In The Name of Love at Motown Studios in Detroit. Soon after, they depart on the first Motown revue tour in Europe.

January 5, 1967: Jesse Winchester, one of the finest singer-songwriters ever to grace this planet, moves from the U.S. to Canada to avoid the draft and serving in Viet Nam.

Also on this day, Paul McCartney recorded his vocal for Penny Lane which was planned (but actually never included) on the upcoming Sargent Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band album.

Tommy James & The Shondells released their single, I Think We’re Alone Now.

Pink Floyed played in concert at The Marquee Club.

January 5, 1968: Bob Dylan’s Greatest Hits album is certified Gold.

January 5, 1969: Creedence Clearwater Revival releases the album Bayou Country.

January 5, 1973: Bruce Springsteen released his debut album, Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J.

January 5, 1974: Jim Croce remained at #1 with the song Time In A Bottle, rated one of the Top 500 Songs of the Rock Era.

Bruce Springsteen plays the song Rosalita for the first time in concert at Joe’s Place in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It becomes a fan favorite and is often played as his encore.

January 5, 2004: John Guerin, one of the most respected and prolific session drummers who worked with Joni Mitchell, Elvis Presley, Linda Ronstadt, The Byrds, Willie Nelson, and many more, died from pneumonia on this date in West Hills, California. He was 64.

Born On This Day

January 5, 1923: Sam Phillips, the founder of Sun Records, who discovered Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Johnny Cash, was born near Florence, Alabama.

January 5, 1929: Wilbert Harrison, who wrote and recorded the great classic Kansas City in 1959, was born in Charlotte, North Carolina.

January 5, 1934: Phil Ramone, songwriter, violinist, recording engineer, and legendary producer who made albums with Billy Joel, Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles, and many others, was born in South Africa.

And that just about sums it up from The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge!

It’s Another Merry Monday in The College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge: 12/28/2020

It’s an odd day in the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge today. Aside from two entries, all of the events seem to have happened in 1968. It was, as Frank Sinatra said, a very good year musically. Devastating in others.

The year that changed the world.

Here’s today’s lesson:

December 28, 1968: The Doors released Touch Me. Believe it or not, the song’s opening guitar riff was inspired by the opening of C’mon Marianne by The Four Seasons. I shit you not. (And I think that’s probably the only song I like by The Four Seasons, come to think of it.) Touch Me would peak at #3 in America.

These other musical events also happened on this day:

The Beatles’ ninth studio album, The Beatles (aka, The White Album), hits #1 in the US.

The Rolling Stones‘ Beggars Banquet debuts at #3 on the Album chart.

Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Jeff Beck and The Pretty Things appeared at the Flight to Lowlands Paradise II festival at the Margriethal-Jaarbeurs in Utrecht, Netherlands.

Marvin Gaye remained at #1 on the R & B chart with I Heard It Through The Grapevine. I’ll say it again, he remade Gladys Knight’s version, which was released in 1967. Hers also went to #1. I love Marvin, but the record needs to be set straight.

In what could be viewed as a dry run for Woodstock, Joni Mitchell, Three Dog Night, The Turtles, Fleetwood Mac, Marvin Gaye, The Grass Roots, Chuck Berry, Steppenwolf, The Box Tops, Canned Heat, Jr. Walker & The All Stars, Procol Harum, The Grateful Dead, Jose Feliciano, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band and others performed at the Miami Pop Festival at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, Florida.

Whew.

December 28, 1970: John Lennon released the song Mother.

December 28, 1983: Depressed by mounting debt and his personal problems, Dennis Wilson of The Beach Boys drowned while diving near his boat in Marina Del Rey, California. Brian Wilson, dealing with his own issues, did not attend the funeral.

Born On This Day

December 28, 1914: Roebuck “Pops” Staples, songwriter/guitarist/singer for The Staple Singers (I’ll Take You There, Respect Yourself) was born in Winona, Mississippi.

December 28, 1938: Charlie Neville (The Neville Brothers) was born in New Orleans, Louisiana.

December 28, 1946: Edgar Winter, multi-instrumentalist, leader of The Edgar Winter Group, and younger brother of Johnny, was born in Beaumont, Texas.

December 28, 1948: Joseph “Ziggy” Modeliste, drummer for The Meters, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana.

And that is today’s lesson from the College of Rock n’ Roll Knowledge!