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Music History Monday: January 26

Posted by Jeff Harris, January 26, 2015 10:17am | Post a Comment

To read more Behind The Grooves, go to http://behindthegrooves.tumblr.com.

Born on this day: January 26, 1955 - Virtuoso rock guitarist Eddie Van Halen (born Edward Lodewijk Van Halen in Nijmegen, The Netherlands). Happy 60th birthday, Eddie!
 


On this day in music history: January 26, 1970Bridge Over Troubled Water, the fifth studio album by Simon & Garfunkel, is released. Produced by Paul Simon, Art Garfunkel, and Roy Halee, it is recorded at Columbia Recording Studios in Los Angeles and New York City from November 1968 - November 1969. After a triumphant year in 1968 with the back to back successes of the soundtrack forThe Graduate and their fourth album Bookends, Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel will begin work on what will be their final studio album in the Fall of 1968. Progress on the album will be slow at first with Simon having little new material written at the outset. Then work will be further hampered when Garfunkel leaves the sessions to work on his first film, director Mike Nichols’ Catch-22, spending eight months on location in Mexico. In the interim period, Simon will write the rest of the songs and recording will resume in the Fall of 1969. The ambitious breadth of material will push the boundaries of what the duo has done previously, and though the sessions are productive, there will also be tension between the old friends as relations between the two begin to break down. The two will argue over what is to be the twelfth track on the album. Simon prefers a song he’s written called “Cuba Si, Nixon No,” while Garfunkel favors a Bach chorale-influenced song called “Feuilles-O.” When they cannot resolve the argument, the album will be released with 11 tracks instead of 12. When Bridge is finally completed, it is released to near universal acclaim from both fans and critics alike. At the time of its release, it will be one of the biggest selling albums in the history of Columbia Records. It will spin off four singles including “The Boxer” (#7 Pop), “Cecilia” (#4 Pop), "El Condor Pasa" (#18 Pop), and the epic title track (#1 Pop). The album will also sweep the Grammy Awards in 1971, winning six including Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year, and Album Of The Year. In March of 2011, Sony will release a 40th anniversary edition of the album which also includes two DVD's featuring the long unseen Songs Of America TV special (which previewed songs from the album before its release), and a documentary titled The Harmony Game. Bridge Over Troubled Water will spend ten weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200 and is certified 8x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.
 

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Music History Monday: January 19

Posted by Jeff Harris, January 19, 2015 08:48am | Post a Comment

To read more Behind The Grooves, go to http://behindthegrooves.tumblr.com.

Born on this day: January 19, 1946 - Country music icon Dolly Parton (born Dolly Rebecca Parton in Sevierville, TN). Happy 69th Birthday, Dolly!!
 


Born on this day: January 19, 1949 - Singer and songwriter Robert Palmer (born Robert Allen Palmer in Batley, Yorkshire, UK). Happy Birthday to this brilliant blue-eyed soul/rock vocalist on what would have been his 66th birthday.




On this day in music history: January 19, 1959 - "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" by The Platters hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks. Written by Jerome Kern and Otto Harbach, it is the third and final chart topping single for the pioneering R&B/Pop vocal group fronted by lead singer Tony Williams.The song is originally written in 1933 for the musical Roberta, and is also sung by actress Irene Dunne in the film adaptation of the musical in 1935. The Platters will record their version in Paris in October of 1958. At first, Kern's widow will seek to file an injunction to block the record from being distributed, fearing that the group has turned her late husband's song into a "rock & roll record." One of Kern's colleagues, legendary songwriter Oscar Hammerstein II will intervene, not only convincing Mrs. Kern to drop her suit, but also publicly thanking The Platters and their producer Buck Ram for reviving the song and introducing it to a new generation of fans. Entering the Hot 100 at # 86 November 17, 1958, it will climb to the top of the chart nine weeks later. "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" will be The Platters last major hit, after a public scandal a few months after the song's run on the charts results in the four male members of the group being arrested in Cincinnati, OH on drug and prostitution charges. Though the charges are dropped, the incident will do irreparable damage to their reputation resulting in radio stations dropping their past records from playlists and refusing to play subsequent releases. "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.
 

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Music History Monday: January 12

Posted by Jeff Harris, January 12, 2015 10:57am | Post a Comment

To read more Behind The Grooves, go to http://behindthegrooves.tumblr.com.

Born on this day: January 12, 1946 - Keyboardist and producer extraordinaire George Duke (born in San Rafael, CA). Happy Birthday to this brilliant artist on what would have been his 69th Birthday.
 


On this day in music history: January 12, 1939 - Pioneering vocal group The Ink Spots record "If I Didn't Care" at the Decca Recording Studio in New York City, NY. Written by Jack Lawrence, it is the first major hit record for the legendary vocal group. Formed in Indianapolis, IN in 1934 as The Four Riff Brothers, the group's original line up consists of Orville "Hoppy" Jones, Ivory "Deek" Watson, Jerry Daniels, and Charlie Fuqua. After the group perform at the Apollo Theater in Harlem the same year, their name will be changed to The 4 Ink Spots by legendary bandleader Paul Whiteman. The group will shorten their name to The Ink Spots and will record several singles for Victor Records, none of which will be commercially successful. A major turning point for the group will occur in 1936 with the departure of founding member Jerry Daniels, who is replaced by Bill Kenny as lead singer. Kenny's unique high tenor voice and vocal style will lift The Ink Spots to international stardom. The group will sign with Decca Records in late 1938, and will quickly see their fortunes turn around. "If I Didn't Care" will be among the first sides they cut for the label. After its release in February of 1939, it will become one of the biggest selling singles in the history of Decca Records, peaking at #2 on the Pop singles chart and selling over nineteen million copies worldwide, only being surpassed by Bing Crosby's "White Christmas." The Ink Spots distinctive vocal style will be hugely influential on rhythm & blues and Doo Wop vocal groups who will emerge in the coming decades. "If I Didn't Care" will have lasting popularity over several generations having been used in commercials, television, and period films including over the opening credits to The Shawshank Redemption in 1994. Comedian Redd Foxx will often quote the song on the sitcom Sanford & Son. The Ink Spots original recording of "If I Didn't Care" is inducted into the Grammy Hall Of Fame in 1987.

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Music History Monday: January 5

Posted by Jeff Harris, January 5, 2015 10:44am | Post a Comment

To read more Behind The Grooves, go to http://behindthegrooves.tumblr.com.

On this day in music history: January 5, 1969Bayou Country, the second album by Creedence Clearwater Revival, is released. Produced by John Fogerty, it is recorded at RCA Studios in Hollywood in Late 1968. Sharp and fine tuned from heavy touring in support of their self-titled debut album, CCR will re-enter the studio in the Fall of 1968 to record their second LP. It will mark the start of an impressive run of hits for the El Cerrito-based band, spinning off the hit single "Proud Mary" (#2 Pop for 3 weeks), as well as the rock radio staple "Born On The Bayou" (the B-side of "Proud Mary"). The album is remastered on CD for its 40th anniversary in 2008, featuring four bonus tracks. Bayou Country will peak at number seven on the Billboard Top 200, number 41 on the R&B album chart, and is certified 2x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.


 

On this day in music history: January 5, 1974The Singles 1969-1973 by The Carpenters hits #1 on the Billboard Top 200 for one week. Produced by Jack Daughtery and Richard & Karen Carpenter, it is recorded at A&M Studios in Hollywood from January 1969 - April 1973. Their first greatest hits album, the 12-track compilation features hit singles from The Carpenters first four years on A&M Records. The album's unique sequencing includes musical introductions and segues between the tracks. Original vinyl LP pressings were packaged in a gatefold sleeve with a 12-page booklet featuring photos and song lyrics. It will become the brother and sister duos' biggest-selling album worldwide (also topping the UK album chart for 17 weeks). The Singles 1969-1973 is certified 7x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.
 

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Music History Monday: December 29

Posted by Jeff Harris, December 29, 2014 10:30am | Post a Comment

To read more Behind The Grooves, go to http://behindthegrooves.tumblr.com.

On this day in music history: December 29, 1966 - The Beatles begin recording "Penny Lane" in Studio Two at Abbey Road Studios in London. Written by Paul McCartney (credited to Lennon/McCartney), the song is inspired by a street and district near the town center in Liverpool. The first recording session will begin with McCartney laying down several different piano parts (processed in multiple ways) as part of the basic track. These parts will be bounced down and combined into a single track as more overdubs are recorded. After the band has been working on the song for a couple weeks, McCartney mentions to producer George Martin that he had heard this "high pitched trumpet" while watching a performance of Bach's "Brandenburg Concerto" the night before. They will hire David Mason from the LSO to play piccolo trumpet and add the crowning touch to the song, which is completed on January 17, 1967. Originally intended to be part of the next Beatles albuSgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, it will instead be paired with "Strawberry Fields Forever" and released as a stand alone single on February 13, 1967 in the US and on February 17, 1967 in the UK. It is added to the US LP release of Magical Mystery Tour in November of 1967.
 

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