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Music History Monday: November 10

Posted by Jeff Harris, November 10, 2014 10:59am | Post a Comment

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

On this day in music history: November 10, 1975Chicago IX: Chicago's Greatest Hits, the ninth Chicago IXalbum by Chicago, is released. Produced by James William Guercio, it is recorded at CBS Studios in New York City, Columbia Recording Studios in Los Angeles, and the Caribou Ranch in Nederland, CO from January 1969 - December 1973. The first greatest hits package for the band, the 11-song compilation will feature tracks from Chicago's first seven albums. Though it will exclude any selections from their third and fourth albums, due to Chicago III not yielding a major hit single and their sprawling 4-LP live set recorded at Carnegie Hall also not having any singles released from it. It will also not contain any tracks from Chicago VIII, which had only been released eight months before. Since XI is issued only as a single LP, it will include the edited versions of "Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? (original pressings feature the promo radio edit, later replaced by the commercial 45 edit when reissued on CD), "Make Me Smile," and "Beginnings" (faded earlier to run only 6:28, with the full 7:51version restored on the CD release) to meet the time constraints of vinyl. The album's cover artwork features a photo of the band members on a painting scaffold, making it one of the few Chicago albums to actually feature the band on the front cover. Original vinyl pressings will feature custom label artwork and inner sleeve, with later repressings using the standard red Columbia label and generic inner sleeves. CBS will also release the album in quadraphonic stereo. Chicago IX: Chicago's Greatest Hits will spend five weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 5x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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Music History Monday: October 27

Posted by Jeff Harris, October 27, 2014 10:49am | Post a Comment

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

On this day in music history: October 27, 1956 - “Ain’t Got No Home” by Clarence “Frogman” Henry is released. Written by Clarence Henry, it is the debut single and first hit for the New Orleans-born singer and pianist. Issued on Chess RecordsArgo imprint, the song will quickly establish Henry's music career and make him a staple of the Bourbon Street strip in his hometown. The rock & roll classic will peak at #3 on the Billboard Rhythm & Blues chart and #20 on the Best Sellers chart in January of 1957. "Ain't Got No Home" will become a pop cultural touchstone, later being featured in several films including Diner, The Lost Boys, and Casino, and has been covered by numerous artists over the years including a version by The Band.
 


On this day in music history: October 27, 1975 - Bruce Springsteen will make history when he Bruce Springsteen, Time, Newsweekappears on the covers of both Time and Newsweek Magazine the same week. Riding a huge wave of success brought on by Born To Run, Springsteen will find the massive amount publicity generated by his record label, and the overwhelming amount of attention he receives in the wake of it, unnerving and attempts to distance himself from it in order to maintain his artistic integrity. Before his performance at the Hammersmith Odeon in London (on November 18, 1975), he will tear down posters at the venue that bare the legend “Finally London is ready for Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band.”

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Music History Monday: August 25

Posted by Jeff Harris, August 25, 2014 12:03am | Post a Comment

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

Born on this day: August 25, 1949 - Gene Simmons (born Chaim Weitz in Tirat Carmel, Haifa, Israel), bassist and vocalist of KISS. Happy 65th Birthday, Gene!
 



Born on this day: August 25, 1954 - Singer, songwriter, and musician Elvis Costello (born Declan Patrick MacManus in Paddington, London, UK). Happy 60th Birthday, Elvis!


Remembering singer and actress Aaliyah (born Aaliyah Dana Haughton in Brooklyn, NY), January 16, 1979 - August 25, 2001.
 


On this day in music history: August 25, 1975 - Born To Run, the third album by Bruce Springsteen is released. Produced by Bruce Springsteen, Mike Appel, and Jon Landau, it is recorded at 914 Sound Studios in Blauvelt, NY and The Record Plant in New York City from January 1974 - July 1975. After the poor initial sales of his first two albums, Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ and The Wild, The Innocent, And The E Street Shuffle, the critical third album will be Springsteen's last shot to prove his commercial viability or be dropped by his label Columbia Records. Springsteen and his band will spend over 14 months in the studio laboring over the album until he feels it is perfect. Even upon completion of the album, Springsteen will still be unsure and nervous about its chances in the commercial marketplace. His doubts will be quelled after he leaks an early version of the title track to rock radio. The positive response it receives will stoke demand for the album among the musician's loyal fanbase and will finally attract the attention of radio. Upon its release, Born To Run will be a commercial and artistic triumph for the New Jersey-born rocker, spinning off two singles including the title track (#23 Pop), with several other songs on the the album ("Thunder Road," Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out," "Backstreets," "She's The One") becoming rock radio staples and highlights of Springsteen's epic live concert performances. The album's iconic cover photo (taken by photographer Eric Meola), features Bruce holding his trademark '53 Fender Esquire while leaning on saxophonist Clarence Clemons shoulder. The picture is taken during a three hour long photo shoot and is selected out of 900 frames shot by the photographer. The cover will become most of the most imitated and parodied images in rock history. In 2005, the album will be reissued as a three disc box set to commemorate its 30th anniversary. It will include a remastered version of the original album and two DVDs. The first being an extensive documentary about the making of the landmark album titled "Wings For Wheels," which will win a Grammy Award for Best Long Form Music Video in 2007. The third disc is a complete and previously unreleased live concert filmed at the Hammersmith Odeon in London in November of 1975 and additional footage from a show filmed at Ahmanson Theater in Los Angeles in May of 1973. Born To Run will peak at number three on the Billboard Top 200 and is certified 6x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.
 

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Music History Monday: June 9

Posted by Jeff Harris, June 9, 2014 11:15am | Post a Comment

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

On this day in music history: June 9, 1958 - "The Purple People Eater" by Sheb Wooley hits #1 on the Billboard Best Sellers chart for six weeks. Written by Wooley, the novelty song will be the biggest hit for the Oklahoma born singer/actor. Wooley will audition for the head of MGM Records in early 1958, singing mostly ballads. At the auditions' conclusion, he will sing "The Purple People Eater" when the label president asks if he has any other material. Sensing its hit potential, he will sign the singer and rush him into the studio with producer/A&R man Neely Plumb (father of actress Eve Plumb, Jan Brady on The Brady Bunch). The song is quickly cut and released, becoming an immediate smash. Entering the Best Sellers chart at #7 on June 2, 1958, it will leap to the top of the chart the following week. "The Purple People Eater" will sell over two million copies. Following the success of the record, Sheb Wooley will star on then new TV series Rawhide with an up and coming new actor named Clint Eastwood. "The Purple People Eater" is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.
 


On this day in music history: June 9, 1972 - Bruce Springsteen officially signs with Columbia Records. Having performed in bars and clubs in his native New Jersey for several years, the young bruce springsteensinger/songwriter will audition for legendary A&R man John Hammond whose previous discoveries include Billie Holiday, Benny Goodman, Charlie Christian, George Benson, Bob Dylan, and Aretha Franklin. Now under contract to Columbia, the label will put Springsteen in the studio in July to begin work on his debut album Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ. The first album will initially sell only 25,000 copies, with the follow up The Wild, The Innocent & The E Street Shuffle not performing much better. Eventually, Springsteen's recording career will take off with his breakthrough album Born To Run in 1975. Over his four decade career, Bruce Springsteen will come to be regarded as one of the preeminent singer and songwriters of all time, selling over 120 million records worldwide, winning 20 Grammy Awards (to date), two Golden Globes, and an Academy Award.

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May Day 2014: Songs That Celebrate and Defend The Rights of Workers Everywhere

Posted by Billyjam, May 1, 2014 09:40am | Post a Comment
        Common a month ago doing a free show in support of workers at the Nissan car
        plant in Canton, Miss. who are pushing for a vote to organize as part of the UAW


In light of the ever increasing war being waged against unions and in turn the stripping of the basic rights of the working class in this country and elsewhere, this year's May Day (the internationally recognized day to celebrate and to defend the rights of workers everywhere from Modesto to Moscow) seems extra significant on this May 1st, 2014; perhaps even as significant as that very first mass US May Day protest back in 1886 when hundreds of thousands of disgruntled workers across the US, in a fight for an 8 hour work day, walked off their jobs in protest. Hence for this May Day I have assembled a selection of songs/videos that reflect the plight of struggling workers in a time when the gap between the rich controlling class and the rest of us gets wider and wider. 

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