Thursday, December 31, 2020

Music History Today: January 1, 2021

January 1, 1975: Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham officially join Fleetwood Mac, bringing with them the songs "Rhiannon" and "Landslide."

One of Stevie Nicks’ most mystical songs, “Rhiannon,” came to her right around the Halloween of 1974.  About two months prior to joining Fleetwood Mac, Nicks stumbled across the enchanting name of her title character while reading Triad: A Novel of the Supernatural by Mary Leader.  

 

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The novel itself, being about a woman with divided personalities, presented Rhiannon as the darker, hidden version of the main character.  Enchanted by the beauty of the name, Stevie Nicks began to write.  Ten minutes later, Rhiannon had come to life.  

Read more: American Songwriter

January 1, 1953: Hank Williams dies of a heart attack in the back seat of a Cadillac while traveling to a concert in Ohio. He was 29. 

Montgomery --- Just before sunrise on New Year's Day a sleek baby-blue Cadillac roared up to the rural Oak Hill, W.Va., hospital in the cold Appalachian darkness. The driver was just 17, exhausted and scared. The passenger was barely 29 and dead. 

Hank Williams, Sr.

At the wheel was Charles Carr, a college freshman on Christmas break from Auburn. The man in the back seat was singer-songwriter Hank Williams. "I ran in and explained my situation to the two interns who were in the hospital, " said Carr, now a 67-year-old Montgomery businessman. "They came out and looked at Hank and said, 'He's dead.'" 

Read more: Atlanta Journal Constitution

 

January 1, 1964: The first Top of the Pops show aired on BBC television in the U.K. from an old church hall in Manchester, England.  The first song played was "I Only Want To Be With You" by Dusty Springfield  

The very first episode of  Top Of The Pops was shown at 6:36 pm on New Year's Day in 1964. The pilot episode was titled "The Teen & Twenty Record Club." 

At the top of the UK charts at the time of the series launch were: 
  1. I Want to Hold Your Hand (The Beatles) 
  2. Glad All Over (The Dave Clark Five) 
  3. She Loves You  (The Beatles) 
  4. You Were Made For Me (Freddie & The Dreamers) 
  5. I Only Want to Be With You  (Dusty Springfield) 
  6. 24 Hours From Tulsa  (Gene Pitney) 
  7. Dominique  (Soeur Sourire (aka The Singing Nun) 
  8. Secret Love (Kathy Kirby) 
  9. Swingin' On a Star  (Dee Ervin) 
  10. Hippy Hippy Shake  (The Swinging Blue Jeans). 
Read more: IMDB

January 1, 1964: The Beach Boys begin the new year with a 7-hour session at Western Recorders in Hollywood, where they record "Fun, Fun, Fun" and "The Warmth Of The Sun."

The Beach Boys’ ‘Fun, Fun, Fun’ is one of their best-loved numbers, and a highlight of their live shows for the past 50 years. Released 1964, it entered the Billboard Hot 100 on 15 February at No.69 and on the week of 21 March it climbed to No.5 on the charts.

The Beach Boys

It was kept from climbing any higher by three Beatles singles, ‘She Loves You’, ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’ and ‘Please Please Me’, with the Four Seasons, ‘Dawn (Go Away)’ holding down the fourth spot. Perhaps most surprising of all, given its popularity, is that ‘Fun Fun Fun’ never made the UK chart. 
Read more: U Discover Music

 

January 1, 1972: With one smash hit at the top, Three Dog Night continued the momentum, as "Never Been To Spain" moved from number 81 to 43 in its second week on the chart.

Written by songwriting legend Hoyt Axton – whose mother, Mae Boren Axton, wrote Elvis Presley’s breakout hit “Heartbreak Hotel” – “Never Been to Spain” takes on a deliciously soul shaking quality when performed by American rock legends Three Dog Night and featured on their 1971 album Harmony.

Three Dog Night

With late singer Cory Wells taking the lead it doesn’t matter that the song’s narrator has never left his town; suddenly, we’re all authorities on places we’ve never been, thanks to Cory’s spectacular delivery. 

Read more: Society of Rock

Rhiannon
Stevie Nicks

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