Stand in studio drummer Jimmie Nicol played his last two shows as A Beatle tonight in 1964 in Adelaide Australia, where the band had been met by the biggest crowd of Beatlemaniacs ever the day before. The Beatles only played half-hour sets back in the day, but they'd received over 50,000 requests for the 12,000 tickets available for the four shows, which was 200,000 people less than showed up to greet them at the airport and lined the 10 mile route to their hotel. Ringo Starr, having recovered from his London tonsillectomy, was already en-route down under, and would rejoin the band in Melbourne the next day, and Nicol would head back to England and play on in relative obscurity. So far at age 79, Jim has never done interviews or appearances or made the slightest attempt to make even one thin dime from his stint in the World's Most Famous Band, though on his return said "The day before I was a Beatle, girls weren't interested in me at all. The day after, with the suit and the Beatle cut, riding in the back of the limo with John and Paul, they were dying to get a touch of me. It was very strange and quite scary", and added of the way the spent their time between shows, "I thought I could drink and lay women with the best of them until I caught up with these guys". During the 8-show run, John Lennon and Paul McCartney would frequently ask him how he was coping with it all, his invariable reply "It's getting better..." would be turned into a pretty great song by Paul 3 years later.
The Rolling Stones held a photo-op press conference in London's Hyde Park today in 1969 to introduce their new guitarist, 20 year old Mick Taylor, formerly of John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and Charlie Watts had gone to founding guitarist Brian Jones' Cotchford Farm (formerly owned by Winnie The Pooh author A. A. Milne) two days earlier to tell him he was out of the band. Though popular legend has it that Brian had been mostly very wasted before being found at the bottom of the pool there, bluesman Alexis Korner had visited him and said he "seemed happier than he had ever been", and had contacted Korner, Ian Stewart, John Lennon, Mitch Mitchell, and Jimmy Miller about starting a new band. Taylor would be back at Hyde Park on July 5th for his live debut with The Stones at a free concert that had been set up before, and it was only coincidence that Brian died three days before at age 27.
Grand Funk Railroad headlined a show at the Ocean Ice Palace in Bricktown New Jersey tonight in 1970, The opening act was a local band called Steel Mill, who nobody remembers save for their 21 year old frontman Bruce Springsteen.
Former Humble Pie guitarist Peter Frampton played the first of two nights at San Francisco's Winterland Ballroom tonight in 1975. The shows were recorded, and became the best-selling live album of all time, and the one that made Frampton one of the biggest rock icons of the 70's, Frampton Comes Alive!
40 years after conservative Britons had been outraged that The Queen's Birthday Honours List had included rock and roll dirtbags The Beatles, Elizabeth II was at it again today in 2005, conferring CBE (Commander of the most excellent order of the British Empire, one rank below full Knighthood) status on David Gilmour of Pink Floyd and Sting of The Police.
Rock and Roll Birthdays
Uriel Jones, drummer for Motown Records in-house studio band The Funk Brothers, would be 86 if he hadn't been killed by a heart attack at age 74.
Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show singer and guitarist Dennis Locorriere is 71.
Howard Leese, guitarist and keyboard player for Seattle's own Heart is 69. He left amicably in '98 the longest-tenured member of the band not named Ann or Nancy, when he began touring with The Paul Rodgers Band and Bad Company, and spends his down-time in the Las Vegas musical production Raiding The Rock Vault, and at his homes in Malibu and Kent.