Saturday, April 3, 2021

Music History Today: April 4, 2021

April 4, 1915: Chicago blues legend Muddy Waters is born McKinley Morganfield in Rolling Fork, Mississippi.

Muddy Waters was a second-generation blues man, his father Ollie Morganfield was also a talented musician and guitarist. By 17, Muddy had chops enough to chase the hellhound riffs of Robert Johnson and Eddie James "Son" House,” Jr.

Muddy Waters
Muddy Waters

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In 1941, the great musicologist Alan Lomax appeared at Muddy’s shack in Stovall, Mississippi, to record him. Two test pressings and a check for $20 arrived in the mail sometime later. The blues visionary noted in a Rolling Stone interview that after hearing his own voice on shellac he was convinced, “I can do it.”  That was when he set his sights on the big city. 

Read more: Muddy Waters Official

April 4, 1963: The Beatles hit number 1 with their single "Can't Buy Me Love."  

The Beatles took Paris by storm as they played 18 days of concerts in January 1964 at the Olympia Theater.

The Beatles
The Beatles

They stayed at the iconic George V hotel, now a Four Seasons property and the gold standard of luxury in the city since its construction in 1928. The accommodating staff granted a request for a piano in the Beatles' suite, where Paul McCartney began to experiment with some blues phrasing. The result was the first draft of a future hit called "Can't Buy Me Love." 

Read more: Ultimate Classic Rock

 

April 4, 1966: The Cyrkle released the single "Red Rubber Ball."

The Cyrkle was an American band. They were originally called the Rhondells and were formed circa 1962 by singers Don Dannemann and Tom Dawes while the two were students at Lafayette College in Easton, Pa. The group also included drummer Jim Maiella and keyboardist Earle Pickens. 

The Cyrkle
The Cyrkle
The quartet played frat parties and gigs in nearby Atlantic City, N.J., where they were heard by music business lawyer Nat Weiss, who was duly impressed with their vocal harmonies and ability to grab an audience’s attention. In the fall of 1965, Weiss brought the group to the attention of Beatles manager Brian Epstein, with whom he had a business relationship. 
Read more: Best Classic Band

 

April 4, 1969: Neil Diamond released the studio album "Brother Love's Travelling Salvation Show."

Neil Diamond's second album for Uni offered the typical strengths and weaknesses of his LPs for the label. The strengths? A good single (the title track) and a rather remarkable stylistic diversity. 

Neil Diamond
Neil Diamond

The weaknesses? The failure of any of the other tracks to stand out nearly as much as the single, and the feeling that sometimes Diamond was doing something just to prove he could do it, without the quality material to justify the experimentation. 
Read more: Allmusic


April 4, 1968: US civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. is shot on a Memphis motel balcony.

Hoochie Coochie Man
Muddy Waters & the Rolling Stones

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