Bandleader Glenn Miller made his last radio broadcast on CBS’ Moonlight Serenade program in 1942. Glenn had left to enlist in the Army. Glenn Miller was a big band musician, arranger, composer and bandleader in the swing era. He was the best-selling artist from 1939 – 1943. His hits include “In The Mood”, “Moonlight Serenade”, “Pennsylvania 6-5000”, “Chattanooga Choo Choo”, “A String Of Pearls”, “At Last”, “Tuxedo Junction” and many more. While he was traveling to entertain the U.S. troops in France during WWII, the aircraft he was in disappeared in bad weather over the English Channel.
Elvis Presley received an invitation to appear at the Royal Variety performance in the U.K. in 1962, which is attended by members of the British Royal Family. Presley’s manager, Colonel Tom Parker graciously declined, citing motion picture commitments. The real reason was that Parker was an illegal Dutch immigrant living in the United States who feared he might not be allowed to return if he left the country.
James Hendrix arrived in London with his manager Chas Chandler on a flight from New York City. James only possession was the clothes he had on. He had sold all of his belongings to pay for a hotel bill in New York. One of the first things he did after arriving in London was to legally change his name from James to Jimi. The man that witnessed his new name was Andy Summers who later became the guitarist for The Police.
The Association started a three-week run at No.1 on the U.S. singles music chart in 1966 with “Cherish”. The New Christy Minstrels almost recorded the track but Association member and songwriter, Terry Kirkman, held onto “Cherish” instead of selling if for $1,000. The finished recording was for 3 minutes and 25 seconds so that DJs would not be discouraged from playing a “long song”.
The Jackson 5 appeared on the cover of Life magazine in 1971, with the headline “Rock Stars At Home With Their Parents”. Life magazine served as the nation’s foremost authority on cultural trends and the state of the American experience. They published weekly from 1936 – 1972. The magazine ceased publication until 1978, when it returned as a monthly until the year 2000.
Rod Stewart was at No.1 on the U.K. singles music chart in 1975 with “Sailing”. The song became a hit after it was used for a television documentary series. Although the song was recorded in the United States at the Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in Sheffield, Alabama, for his album “Atlantic Crossing”, and the video was shot in New York Harbor and was one of the first videos to run on MTV, “Sailing” only climbed to No.58 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Styx released “Come Sail Away” in 1977. The song by the American progressive rock group was featured on the band’s seventh music album “The Grand Illusion”. Upon its release as the lead single from the album, “Come Sail Away” charted at No.8 on the Billboard Hot 100 and helped “The Grand Illusion album achieve multi-platinum sales in 1978.
Billy Joel went to No.1 on the U.S. singles music chart in 1983 with “Tell Her About It”. The former boxers second U.S. No.1 and a No.4 hit in the U.K. Joel had originally planned on paying homage to the Motown Sound but later indicated the song, heard out of context of the “Innocent Man” album, sounds more like a Tony Orlando and Dawn record than the Motown sound he intended. None-the-less, the song was certified Gold by the RIAA for U.S. sales of over 500,000 copies.
Bobby McFerrin started a two-week run at No.1 on the singles music chart in 1988 with “Don’t Worry Be Happy”, the first a-cappella record to be a No.1. It mad No.2 in the U.K. and was also included in the movie “Cocktail.” The “instruments” in the song are entirely overdubbed voice parts and other sounds made by McFerrin. And comedian Bobby McFerrin decided he would throw in an affected accent. It all paid off as the song won a Grammy Award for both Record of the Year and Song of the Year.
Clint Black picks up his first gold album for “Killin’ Time” in 1989. The album topped the charts and had mega success producing five No.1 music singles: “A Better Man”, “Nothing’s News”, “Walking Away”, “Nobody’s Home” and “Killin’ Time”.
AC/DC released “The Razors Edge” in 1990, their 11th internationally released studio album. This was the only studio album to feature drummer Chris Slade and it reached No.2 on the U.S. music chart and No.4 in the U.K.
Mark Chesnutt receives his first gold album for his debut “Too Cold At Home” in 1991. This is the second album released by the American country music artist. The album produced 5 Top Ten singles for Chesnutt on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts: “Too Cold At Home”, “Brother Jukebox”, “Blame It On Texas”, “Your Love Is A Miracle” and “Broken Promise Land”.
Nirvana’s album “Nevermind” was released in America in 1991, entering the chart at No.144 on its first week. The album which peaked at No.1 in January 1992, has now sold over 30 million copies world-wide. The idea for the now iconic front cover shot of the baby swimming came after Kurt Cobain and drummer Dave Grohl saw a TV documentary on water babies.
In 1997, “Strawberry Wine” wins twice at the 31st annual Country Music Association awards, broadcast by CBS from the Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry House. “Strawberry Wine” earns Single of the Year for Deana Carter and producer Chris Farren, and Song of the Year for writers Matraca Berg and Gary Harrison.
The Dave Matthews Band played at Central Park in New York City in 2003 in front of 100,000 fans. This is the largest audience to date for the band. The Central Park Concert was later released as an album. Matthews took the stage around 7:20 p.m. and played until 10:30 p.m. Dave opened the show by telling his fans “It is so nice to run into you in the park here, the greatest park in the world, and the greatest city in the world.”
Sara Evans completed her run to No.1 on the Billboard country singles music chart in 2005 with “A Real Fine Place To Start”. The song was written by Radney Foster and George Ducas. It was released as the lead-off single to Evans’ album Real Fine Place. The song was certified Gold by RIAA in 2006.
Miranda Lambert performed her entire “Revolution” album at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium in 2009 for an audience that included Taylor Swift. In addition to “White Liar”, and “The House That Built Me”, the set list included covers of “Crazy”, “The Way I Am” and “Settin’ The Woods On Fire”.
Country music great Jason Aldean proposed to Brittany Kerr at the San Diego Zoo. Jason and Brittany were caught on camera in California in 2012 while he was still married. Jason and his then wife tried to patch things up but it never worked out. Aldean picked up the relationship with Kerr right where it left off and the two were inseparable after that.
And now it is time to say Happy Birthday to the people that brought us great music or had a hand in creating the music we all love. Those born today, September 24th are:
Mel Taylor – born in 1933, Mel was a longtime drummer for the band The Ventures. After drumming for Boris Pickett and Herb Albert, Taylor joined the Ventures to fill in for Howie Johnson who was injured in a motorcycle accident. The band loved his hard rock edge and asked him to stay permanently with The Ventures. They had the 1960 U.S. No.2 and No.8 music single “Walk Don’t Run”.
Barbara Allbut – born in 1940, Barbara and her sister Phyllis teamed up with Bernadette Carroll and Linda Malzone and had a small local band. After Linda left, Linda Jankowski joined the band as the lead singer. This band never went anywhere and Barbara and Phyllis returned to normal lives. Not long after, Barbara and Phyllis were invited into a studio and performed for the manager of the studio. They had a hit on their hands and soon the band was named The Angels. They were the first white girl group to have a U.S. No.1 hit in 1963 with “My Boyfriend’s Back”.
Linda Eastman – born in 1942, Linda Eastman married Paul McCartney and she was a photographer, animal rights campaigner and had her own brand of vegetarian food. Linda played keyboards with Wings and on solo McCartney records. In 1971 Paul and Linda had the No.1 U.K. music album “Ram”.
Carson Van Osten – born in 1946, Carson was an American comic creator and musician. He joined a band in 1966 called Woody’s Truck Stop before forming the rock group Nazz with Todd Rundgren in 1967. Van Osten was the band’s guitarist until he left the group in 1969. Later he went to work for Disney comics.