The Grateful Dead's debut album dropped on this day in 1967. Recorded in a matter of just a few days in hastily arranged sessions in Los Angeles, the album included a number of tracks the label insisted be shortened in hopes the release would get more airplay. Six of the nine songs on it clocked-in under 3 minutes. Despite that, the album failed to get much radio time beyond the band's Bay Area home turf. Drummer Bill Kreutzmann once remarked that Viola Lee Blues, a 10 minute long song, was the only tune on the record that came close to capturing what the band really sounded like.
Musicians of note born on March 17 include the Lovin' Spoonful's John Sebastian (1944) and Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins (1968).
Bad Company released Desolation Angels on this day in 1979 and Van Halen III, the only release with Gary Cherone out front, came out on 3/17/1998.
And Eddie Vedder joined the Red Hot Chili Peppers on Shine On You Crazy Diamond on this night in 2017 when the RHCP's played Key Arena in Seattle.