Saturday, July 31, 2021

Music History Today: August 1, 2021

August 1, 1987: "Shakedown" by Bob Seger topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

The first Beverly Hills Cop soundtrack launched three different singles into the top 10.  The biggest of those was “The Heat Is On,” Glenn Frey’s opening-credits track.  

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Harold Faltermeyer and Keith Forsey, the former Donna Summer collaborators who’d co-written Summer’s 1979 chart-topper “Hot Stuff,” wrote and produced “The Heat Is On” for Frey.  Glenn Frey was supposed to sing “Shakedown,” another police-themed song that Faltermeyer and Forsey had written. A week before he was scheduled to record “Shakedown,” Frey caught laryngitis. Frey’s old Detroit buddy. Seger, sang the song. 
Read more: Stereogum 

August 1, 1934: Leadbelly is released from prison after a four-year stint for attempted homicide. 

Famed musician Lead Belly was born in Louisiana in the late 1880s. He was imprisoned in Texas for murder in 1918. 

Leadbelly
Leadbelly

According to tradition, he won his early release in 1925 by singing a song for the governor of Texas. Lead Belly was imprisoned again, for attempted murder, in 1930. There, he was "discovered" by folklorists John Lomax and Alan Lomax, who were collecting songs for the Library of Congress. Subsequently, he published 48 songs. 

Read more: Biography

August 1, 1964: With The Beatles' album A Hard Day's Night already at number 1 in America, the title track also hits the top spot.

“A Hard Day’s Night” is the title track for the Beatles’ first album of wholly original compositions. The soundtrack to the film by the same name, A Hard Day’s Night showcases the band’s newfound confidence and style. 

The Beatles'  A Hard Day's Night
The Beatles'  A Hard Day's Night

As the mop-top cuts became a bit more imperfect and formats a bit less rigid, the Beatles began to sound more like a rock band and less like a pop outfit. For the first time, we see a clear consciousness of effort and fame in the writing. Musically, the fab four still stick to a neat arrangement for the song, but small flourishes like Ringo’s cowbell and George’s lingering final notes prove the Beatles can capture the sweet sound of controlled chaos. 

Read more: American Songwriter

 

August 1,1987: "Rhythm is Gonna Get You" by Gloria Estefan & Miami Sound Machine peaked at number 5 on Billboar's hot 100 chart.

Gloria Estefan’s “Rhythm Is Gonna Get You,” which represents the apex of Cuban influence on American R&B, also serves as a thermometer for Latino assimilation to the United States, especially in Miami, which was always Estefan’s base. 

Gloria Estefan
Gloria Estefan

The song came about shortly before her bus accident in 1990, as she was touring, an event that marked her profoundly, physically and creatively. As such, it represents her “early” style and approach, in comparison with a later period in which Estefan would invoke her Cuban roots and upbringing in more concrete fashion. 

Read more: Library of Congress

 

August 1, 2014: The movie Guardians of the Galaxy opens in America, reviving '70s favorites like "Hooked On A Feeling," "Come And Get Your Love," and "Moonage Daydream."

Guardians of the Galaxy does the impossible. Through dazzle and dumb luck, it turns the clich├ęs of comic-book films on their idiot heads and hits you like an exhilarating blast of fun-fun-fun. 

Another is the up-for-anything cast. Chris Pratt is blissfully right as Peter Quill, who calls himself the Star Lord, mostly because no one else will. If you’re a fan of Pratt as chubby Andy Dwyer, you’ll want to catch him here. Whether he’s busting funky dance moves to the 1970s oldies songs on his late mom’s cassette player (he kills it on “O-o-h Child”) or showing his chops as a space warrior, Pratt nails every beat in the role.  
Read more: Rolling Stone

 


 Shakedown
Bob Seger

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