This Day In Classic Rock [Videos] 5/16

The Beatles appeared on the BBC's Pops and Lenny children's TV programme today in 1963. Not exactly up to J.P.Patches standards, Pops was a smiling ventriloquist, Lenny was his hand-puppet lion ventriloquist dummy. The kids in the live audience were treated to From Me To You and Please Please Me, which they mostly listened to without screaming. Sadly the footage does not survive, the only footage of the early 60's show we have is of Isle of Wight pop singer Craig Douglas.

The Rolling Stones were leaving their gig at the Long Beach Civic Hall tonight in 1965 when the roof of the limousine they were riding in caved in from the weight of fans climbing on top. The Stones tried to hold the roof up while the driver sped off with bodies flying off onto the pavement.

The Beach Boys released Pet Sounds today in 1966. Rolling Stone magazine ranked Brian Wilson's masterpiece #2 on their Top 500 Albums Of All time List, behind only The Beatles Sgt. Pepper, which the Beatles freely admitted was heavily influenced by Pet Sounds....and Wilson later admitted that Pet Sounds was him trying to make a record as good as The Beatles Rubber Soul.

Jack Casady of The Jefferson Airplane was arrested for possession of a small amount of cannabis today in 1969 . He was given a two and a half year prison sentence, suspended on condition that he never misbehave like that again.

Pete Townsend was also arrested today in 1969, though not for weed. Pete was never friendly toward anyone who got on his stage when The Who were performing, most famously political activist Abbie Hoffman at Woodstock, but this time he spent the night in jail and was fined $30 for beaning a man who jumped on stage at the Fillmore East over the head with his guitar. Pete had no way of knowing, and probably didn't much care that the man was a plainclothes police officer trying to warn the crowd that a fire had broken out.

The London Evening Standard reported that Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant had been arrested at the airport in Atlanta Georgia today in 1977, for drunkenly pulling a knife. This was a surprise to Robert, who was at home in Wales at the time. Turned out the knife-wielding man was a Led Zeppelin fan who'd told police he was Plant, the paper printed a retraction the next day.

Ozzy Osbourne was arrested in Memphis TN for staggering drunkenly down Beale Street today in 1984.

Ronnie James Dio of Elf, Blackmore's Rainbow, and Ozzy's replacement in Black Sabbath lost his battle to stomach cancer at age 67 today in 2010. He was not arrested.

Rock and Roll Birthdays

Guitarist #42 on the Rolling Stone Top 100 list is 74 today. Robert Fripp of King Crimson has his birthday the day after his friend Brian Eno.

Nazareth drummer Darrell Sweet would be 73 today, he died of a heart attack in 1999.

Singer-songwriter-guitarist Jonathan Richman is 69. You know him best from his appearance in the Ben Stiller-Cameron Diaz RomCom There's Something About Mary, but his Boston band from the early 70's The Modern Lovers was highly influential, and the drummer David Robinson would go on to start The Cars, and the Keyboard player Jerry Harrison went on to The Talking Heads.

And perhaps the tallest bass player in rock, and the only one to hit himself in the head with his instrument on national television, the delightful Krist Novoselic of Nirvana and Giants in the Trees is 55, and still being encouraged by us to run for statewide political office.

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