1975 was a year of individual and collective turmoil for Gregg Allman and the Allman Brothers Band. There had already been discord within the group over Gregg's decision to record a solo album and release it just a matter of weeks after Brothers and Sisters, the band's 1973 album, came out.
The ABB was one of the biggest touring acts in 1974, making enough money to charter the Boeing jet the Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin had used to tour. But internal disagreements said to have been fueled by heavy drinking and drug use pushed things to the breaking point. Matters only got worse when Gregg took up with Cher at the start of 1975.
OnJune 30, 1975, the two married, taking up residence in Hollywood, making the couple a convenient target of the tabloids. The group ground out a Win, Lose or Draw and managed to get in another tour, but came apart at the seams when Gregg provided testimony in the drug trial of Scooter Herring, a close associate of the band.
With the other band members refusing to work with Gregg, he recorded another solo record as well as a disastrous one with Cher. The two embarked on a tour of Europe that was cancelled after altercations between his and her fans started breaking out during shows.
Legal disputes over the rights to his own songs made John Fogerty reluctant to perform Creedence Clearwater Revival music for a number of years as a solo artist. It may have also have been a factor in why no official video was ever released for one of CCR's biggest songs. That changed this week.
On this date in 1969, $6 was all it took to get into the opening day of the Denver Pop Festival, a 3 day event at, appropriately, Mile High Stadium that included performances by Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Three Dog Night, Joe Cocker, Tim Buckley, The Flock and others. June 29th, the promoter declared it a free festival. It closed with police attempting to clear the field with a tear gas barrage during the the last performance ever by the Jimi Hendrix Experience.
On this day in 1976 the Grateful Dead released the double album recorded during the band's Wall Of Sound tour concerts in the fall of 1974 at Winterland in San Francisco. Ironically, the album title is a lyric extracted He's Gone, a song that is not included on the record.
It's high decibels and hot cars on Huntington Beach in SoCal on October 6th when Sammy Hagar stages his High Tide Beach Party & Car Show. The Red Rocker had no trouble recruiting other Rockers that think cars and guitars are a great combination. Hagar and his Circle band with Michael Anthony, Jason Bonham and Vic Johnson will be joined on the surf side bill by Joe Satriani, REO Speedwagon, Vince Neil and several other performers.
The Wilson sisters grew up in a very mobile and musical household. Daughters of a career Marine, Ann and Nancy lived in the Far East and Central America before the family settled in Washington state. Their father's ranging musical tastes meant the Wilson home was frequently filled with classical, opera, showtunes, jazz and rock. Ann overcame a childhood stutter with the help of music and went on to become one of the most powerful front women in music with Heart.
It was Rock & Bowl on the Jersey shore Monday night (6/18) when Bruce Springsteen joined the Tangiers Blues Band on four songs at the re-opening of Asbury Lanes as a music venue. Bruce and the band tore into Rockin' Pneumonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu, I Just Want to Make Love to You, Down the Road Apiece and Twist and Shout.
The accolades and awards are mind boggling. He could have retired comfortably decades ago. Instead, just a few days shy of his 76th birthday, Paul McCartney did an unannounced pub concert with his band for around 50 people. Born on this day in 1942, we salute MACCA.
He launched his post James Gang career with a solo album released on June 17, 1973 with a wacky title and never stopped. Alons the way, he gave us reeases titled So What, You Can't Argue witha Sick Mind, But Seriously, Flolks, There Goes The Neighborhood, You Bought it - You Name It, Got Any Gum and ordinary Average Guy.
David Bowie released the groundbreaking album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars on this day in 1972. The album's lead figure was an androgynous Rocker that channeled messages from extraterrestrials to humans. Much of the material on the album had been performed during stops on a tour Bowie began in January of the release year.
Bob Dylan and a crew of musicians booked for the session by producer Tim Wilson entered Columbia Records Studio A in New York City on this day in 1965 to work on a song Dylan had distilled from a 10 page rant he'd written. Just back from a European tour and feeling disillusioned to the point that he was giving serious thought to quitting the music business, Bob and the band did 5 takes of the song. None of them hit the mark to Dylan's ears. The next day, Al Kooper (Blues Project, Blood, Sweat & Tears) joined them in the studio as a guest of Wilson.
At a point during that day's recording, Kooper, who at the time was primarily a guitarist, mentioned he had what he thought wold be a good part for the organ. The skeptical Wilson was said to be dismissive, but he allowed Kooper in on a subsequent take. Dylan loved what he heard and ordered Wilson to boost the organ in the mix during playback. The front-and-center sound of the improvised part played on that Hammond organ became the musical signature of Dylan's master work - and had a part in keeping Bob a musician.
Talking with Rolling Stone the following year, Dylan said, "Last spring, I guess I was going to quit singing. I was very drained, and the way things were going, it was a very draggy situation... But 'Like A Rolling Stone' changed it all."
Jackson Browne and Stevie Ray Vaughan don't have much in common musical style wise, but Jackson had an important role in the Texan guitar great's early career. Browne saw Vaughan perform at the Montreux Jazz festival in 1982 and was so impressed that he invited Stevie and his band to use his LA studio for free. Songs they recorded there got the band signed by John Hammond, the legendary producer credited with landing contracts for Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Bruce Springsteen, Janis Joplin and many others. Texas Flood, Stevie Ray's debut studio album with Double Trouble was recorded in just a couple of days, with no overdubs. It came out on this day in 1983.
Boston's Brad Delp was born on this day in 1951 in Peabody Mass. Delp not only did all of the lead vocals on the group's monumentally successful 1976 debut album, he did all of the background vocals as well. Brad, Barry Goudreau and Fran Sheehan were also together in the group RTZ in the early 90's. Sadly, Delp took his own life in his New Hampshire home in March of 2007, leaving behind a note in French that read simply, "I am a lonely soul'.
Billy Joel was on hand at the Tony Awards in New York Sunday (6/10) night to hand Bruce Springsteen a Lifetime Achievement award. Springsteen, whose solo run on Broadway has been extended three times, accepted it with brief remarks that included him saying, 'Thank you for making me feel so welcome on your block. Being a part of the Broadway community has been a great thrill and an honor for me, and it's been one of the most exciting things that I've ever experienced. Bruce was back later in the show to deliver a poignant sliver from one man show - a spoken intro about his family and neighborhood followed with a portion of My Hometown.
Paul McCartney popped up in a Liverpool club Saturday to do an unannounced concert. The show at the Philharmonic Club in the city the Beatles put on the musical map came at the end of a day McCartney had been seen in several places with James Corden and free tickets were reportedly distributed by a television industry company, so maybe some of it will get aired on his show.
Fleetwood Mac did not gain huge international acclaim until 1975, but in its early years released some really good albums. One contributor to those passed away Friday. Danny Kirwan was just 17 when he was opening club shows for Fleetwood Mac as the guitar player in the band Boilerhouse. He impressed the headliners enough to be asked to join FM in 1968. He was a member during the years the band produced Then Play On, Kiln House, Future Games and Bare Trees. Kirwan was fired after refusing to take the stage with the band at a concert during its US tour in the fall of 1972.
Canton, Ohio, home of the Football Hall of Fame can also boast of being the birthplace of guitar great William Royce 'Boz' Scaggs. His family relocated to Texas when Scaggs was quite young. He met Steve Miller at a school the pair attended and they formed a group known as the Marksmen. Scaggs and Miller continued playing together while at the University of Wisconsin before Boz headed off to Europe and recorded a solo album. Reuniting in San Francisco in 1967, Scaggs was on the first two Steve Miller Band albums before landing his own contract and putting out his outstanding 1968 album that featured Duane Allman and the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section.
Bother bands are notoriously unbrotherly. Ray and Dave Davies sniped at each other relentlessly and even came to blows during a Kinks concert. John and Tom Fogerty fought over so many things while together in Creedence Clearwater Revival that they were estranged until Tom's death. While less overtly disdainful of one another, Rich and Chris Robinson couldn't get along well enough to keep the Black Crowes together. It's a shame, because Shake Your Money Maker hinted that the Crowes could become a band for the ages at a time when so many other groups with that potential were imploding for a variety of other reasons.
Rich has remained the more musically active of the Robinson brothers, but none of the projects he's been involved in post-Crowes fulfilled the potential many thought that group had. His latest band, The Magpie Salute, will put out its debut album on August 10th. From it, here's Send Me An Omen. See whether you think it bodes well for Rich.
Some albums sound so different from anything that came before them that the first time you hear them sticks with you. My first listen to The Cars debut was, appropriately, in a car - the rental of a guy from Elektra Records. It was a few weeks before its release and he mentioned that there was some debate within the label about whether the debut by this Boston band would get traction.
Did it ever! Released on this day in 1978, it spent nearly the next 6 months on the Billboard album chart, spawned several of the biggest Rock radio tracks of the year and earned the group Best New Artist of the Year from Rolling Stone - back when the magazine still had musical cred.
One of the biggest releases of the 1980's made its debut on June 4. 1984. Born In The U.S.A. was Bruce Springsteen's 7th studio album and is close to having sold 40 million copies. It also has the distinction of being the first commercially released U.S. made compact disc.
The Ian Gillan, Roger Glover era of Deep Purple began with the release of Deep Purple In Rock, the group's 4th studio album, on this date in 1970. Ian Hunter (1946), Suzi Quatro (1950) and Lynyrd Skynyrd's Billy Powell (1952) were born on June 3. The Stones opened the Exile On Main Street tour ('72), Phil Collins released Face Value ('81)... and in 1970, Ray Davies of the Kinks had to fly from New York back to London to change the lyric in Lola from "Coca-Cola" to "cherry cola" because the BBC was refusing to play it as originally recorded.
After a 3 year recording hiatus brought on by legal wrangling with his former manager, Bruce was back on this day in 1978 with his highly anticipated follow-up to Born To Run. Springsteen had stockpiled close to 70 songs between albums. Some of the ones he left off of Darkness were big songs for other artists. Because The Night became the top track of Patti Smith's career and was also a hit for the Pointers Sisters. Fire put Robert Gordon on a lot of peoples radar. Bay Area rocker Greg Kihn had a good run with Rendezvous and Southside Johnny included three Darkness leftovers on his Hearts of Stone album.