A small riot broke out at a Rolling Stones show in Hamilton, Scotland tonight in 1964 as some 4000 fans with forged tickets who were being denied entry crashed the gate at their show at the Chantingall Hotel.
John Lennon and Paul McCartney stopped by the Olympic Studios in London today in 1967 and sang background vocals on the Rolling Stones song We Love You. The song was written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards in appreciation of their fans who stood by them during their witch hunt drug trial that year that saw each of them spend exactly one night in prison.
While John and Paul were singing with the Stones, at the BBC offices in London The Beatles were selected to represent England in the first-ever worldwide satellite TV broadcast today in 1967. The band agreed to perform live in a studio and write a new song for the occasion. Because the broadcast would reach many countries that don't speak English, they were asked to "keep it simple". John wrote All You Need Is Love for the show that would be broadcast June 25th.
Meanwhile across London in Chelsea, The Pink Floyd were recording See Emily Play today in 1967, which Syd Barrett wrote about an early Floyd fan Emily Young, who hung around London rock clubs with her school friend Angelica Huston. Emily is today one of Britain's most renowned sculptors. During the session Pink Floyd were visited by one of their own school friends who had just come back from Paris where he was playing with his own band: David Gilmour.
Ray Stevens started a 3 week run at number one on the charts with The Streak today in 1974, an ode to the fad of running naked, often at public events, that had started the previous year. At one point a Seattle area top-40 AM station promoted a streaking race across the East Channel bridge from Mercer Island to Bellevue. Though it was a short-lived craze in the early 70's, the earliest known incident of "streaking" was in 1799, when a man in London was arrested for running naked through town to win a bet of 10 Guineas (about $1100 in today's currency).
Ian Curtis, lead singer of the highly influential British band Joy Division, hung himself in his kitchen on the eve of their debut North American tour today in 1980.
Having more to do with rock than roll, Mt. St. Helens in Southwest Washington blew up today in 1980, sending some 3,900,000 cubic yards of volcanic rock and ash into the atmosphere and in a pyroclastic flow down the river paths to the Columbia called a Lahar (great name for a metal band), destroyed 250 homes, 47 bridges, 185 miles of highway, and killed 57 people.
It was today in 2011 that John Lennon's handwritten lyrics to Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds sold at auction for $237,132. Many people thought the title was an expansion of the acronym L.S.D., but John said they came from a drawing his son Julian had made of a classmate, Lucy Vodden, who died of Lupus in 2009. The sheet also included the opening lyrics of She's Leaving Home.
Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell was found after apparently hanging himself in his Detroit hotel room early this morning in 2017, following the band's show the night before at the Fox Theater. This came as a huge shock to your This Day In Classic Rock reporter, who first met Chris when he was running the sound system at the Rainbow Tavern in the U-District...in...1985?...one of Soundgarden's first shows, when Chris started the set on drums, then leaped out front to sing while some dude with a mustache took over, and...not just the women, the room...swooned. Total godhead sex god. I'd already got to know Kim Thayil a bit at the UW's KCMU, and though none of us were super close, we hung at the same shows, same after-show parties...back in those days the Seattle Scene was bands watching each other....but I always had a sense that Soundgarden were the smartest, funniest, and most together guys in the room. As they got huge, and I was pleased to play at least a small part in that...I saw them less often, but we'd bump into each other now and then and...still they seemed like they had their **** together more than some dudes who struck it rich in the Great Seattle Grunge Rush. I wouldn't have expected it from him. If a medication you saw on TeeVee you were thinking of asking your doctor about has a disclaimer that sounds like "May cause suicidal thoughts or actions", I'd say look for an alternative. Damned shame.
Rock and Roll Birthdays
Bluesman and rock and roll pioneer Big Joe Turner would be 109 today. He died at 74, long after his songs Shake Rattle and Roll and Sweet Sixteen had become standards.
Finally inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017 for his work with Yes, keyboard player Rick Wakeman is 71. His dad had played piano in a British Army dance band, and started him in at 7, his oldest son Oliver would take over for him in Yes '08-'11. Intending to become a concert pianist, Rick discovered the Devil's Music and quit the Royal College of Music to become a session musician, most notably on Bowie's Space Oddity, but also for the likes of T Rex, Cat Stevens, Black Sabbath, Al Stewart, and Elton John who used Wakeman's organ to embellish his piano (uh-huh-huh). He's also found time to release some 90 solo albums, host a radio show for the BBC, and star in their Grumpy Old Men comedy talk show on telly. At the induction his Yes bandmates agreed to legally allow Yes (Steve Howe, Alan White, and Geoff Downes) to tour in the U.S. simultaneously with Yes (Featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin, and Rick).
Guess Who bass player Bill Wallace is 71.