Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Music History Today: November 4, 2020

November 4, 1977:  The movie The Last Waltz, which featured The Band's final concert, premiered in New York City.

When the Band gave their final concert in their original lineup, it was a massive swan song that these Canadian troubadours turned into an all-star spectacle. 

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As far as farewells go, this one was major, and it might have been relegated to the you-had-to-like-have-been-there-man history books had a bearded, jittery Martin Scorsese not decided to ditch some responsibilities and call in some favors. 

Read more: Rolling Stone

November 4, 1972: "I Can See Clearly Now" by Johnny Nash claims the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100. 

Born in Texas, Johnny Nash began recording music in the 1950s and was originally marketed as an easy listening artist to rival Johnny Mathis. In 1965, he and his manager moved to Jamaica. 

Johnny Nash

A year later, Neville Willoughby took Nash to a Rastafarian party, where Bob Marley & The Wailing Wailers were performing.  Members Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh, and Rita Marley introduced Nash to the local music scene, and Nash signed them to an exclusive publishing contract
Read more: Smooth Radio

November 4, 1974: Stevie Wonder released the single "Boogie On Reggae Woman."

A generation or two of stoners may consider this a Phish song, but anyone who listened to the radio in 1974 knows that "Boogie on Reggae Woman" is a Stevie Wonder jam.  

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Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder,
It's one of the standout tracks from Fulfillingness' First Finale, the first LP that Wonder recorded after his 1973 car accident. 
Read more: Rolling Stone

November 4, 1978: Linda Ronstadt's LP Living In The USA hits Number 1.

The first track on her album, Living in the USA, is a cover of Chuck Berry's song, "Back In the USA."

Ronstadt had heard the Berry original while being driven around Los Angeles by Eagles member Glenn Frey who had once been in her band. The single of Ronstadt's version rose as high as number 11 in Cash Box and reached number 16 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. 
Read more:Wikipedia

November 4, 1980: REO Speedwagon released what would prove to be their breakthrough single, "Keep On Loving You."

REO Speedwagon were part of the wave of semi-anonymous studio-rock titans that had first flourished in the mid-’70s. When REO Speedwagon hit their commercial zenith, you couldn’t ignore them.

REO Speedwagon

REO’s formula for success was simple enough: They weaponized the power ballad, fusing soft rock and hard rock into one unstoppable whole.  
Read more: Stereogum

I Shall Be Released
The Band

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