Today in Rock & Roll History: February 19th

1958: Carl Perkins left Sun Records to sign with the Columbia label as their first rockabilly artist. Two weeks later he released the single “Pink Pedal Pushers.”

1958: The Miracles’ first single “Got a Job,” backed with “My Mama Done Told Me,” was released by End Records. Written by Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr., the record was an answer to the Silhouettes’ 1957 hit “Get a Job.” The group’s original name had been “The Five Chimes,” but after Gordy struck a deal with End Records to distribute the record, they changed their name to the Miracles shortly before its release. After earning only $3.19 for his production success, Gordy was told by Robinson to form his own label. Gordy took the advice and later created Tamla Records in 1959, which a year later was incorporated as Motown Records.

1966: Jefferson Airplane and Big Brother and the Holding Company with Janis Joplin performed at the Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco. It was the first concert presented by music promoter and 1960s counterculture figure Chet Helms, who was also the founder and manager of Big Brother and the Holding Company.

1966: “Daydream” by The Lovin’ Spoonful was released. It became the group’s third straight top 10 hit on the Billboard Hot 100, reaching #2.

1966: Lou Christie topped the Billboard Hot 100 for the first and only time with “Lightnin’ Strikes.”

1966: Cleveland band The Outsiders debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Time Won’t Let Me.” It became their biggest hit and peaked at #5 in April.

1966: B.J. Thomas debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 with “I’m So Lonely I Could Cry.”

1968: The group known up until that time as The Young Rascals released Once Upon a Dream, their fourth studio album and first credited to “The Rascals.” It was their last non-compilation album to reach the top 10 on the US pop charts.

1971: Former Beatles member Paul McCartney released his first solo singer, “Another Day.” Recorded during sessions for his album Ram, the song was written by McCartney during sessions for the Beatles’ 1969 album Let It Be.

1971: Yes released their third studio album, The Yes Album. It was the band’s first album to feature guitarist Steve Howe, who replaced Peter Banks in 1970, as well as their last to feature keyboardist Tony Kaye until their eleventh studio LP, 90125, in 1983.

1972: Harry Nilsson achieved his only #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with his cover of Badfinger’s “Without You.” The single was Nilsson’s only international hit and only top ten record on the UK chart.

1977: Manfred Mann’s Earth Band’s cover of the Bruce Springsteen song “Blinded By The Light” hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was the group’s first of two top 40 hits in the US and only single to reach #1.

1979: Splitz Enz released their fourth studio album, Frenzy. It saw the band move from art rock to a more pop rock sound, and was their first album to feature member Neil Finn on lead vocals.

1982: Stevie Wonder released “Do I Do,” the second single from the compilation album Stevie Wonder’s Original Musiquarium I. The five-minute single version of the song was half as long as the full album version, and reached #1 on the US dance chart.

1985: Mick Jagger released his first solo album, She’s the Boss. Jagger had started work on the LP after the Rolling Stones signed with CBS Records two years earlier and sanctioned the help of various musician friends including Pete Townshend, Jeff Beck, Carlos Alomar, Herbie Hancock, and the Compass Point All Stars.

1990: Tears for Fears released “Advice for the Young at Heart,” the third single from their third studio album, The Seeds of Love. It is the album’s only track to feature lead vocals by co-founder Curt Smith.

1990: Peter Wolf released his third solo studio album, Up to No Good.

1991: R.E.M. released “Losing My Religion,” the lead single from the band’s seventh studio album, Out of Time. It became their highest charting hit in the US, reaching #4 on Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on the Mainstream and Alternative Rock charts.

1991: Joni Mitchell released her fourteenth album, Night Ride Home.

2016: Mavis Staples released her tenth solo studio album, Livin’ on a High Note. It features songs written by a variety of artists including Ben Harper, Nick Cave, M. Ward, Valerie June, and Benjamin Booker.

Birthdays Today

Smokey Robinson, singer, songwriter, record producer, and founder and frontman of Motown group The Miracles, was born William Robinson, Jr. in Detroit, MI in 1940.

Bobby Rogers, tenor vocalist, member of The Miracles, and part-time Motown songwriter who co-wrote hits by The Miracles, The Temptations, Mary Wells, The Contours, and Marvin Gaye, was born in Detroit, MI in 1940.

Lou Christie, singer-songwriter, was born Lugee Alfredo Giovanni Sacco in Glenwillard, PA in 1943.

Schuyler Larsen, bassist for Every Mother’s Son, was born in 1947.

Mark Andes, bassist and member of Canned Heat, Spirit, Jo Jo Gunne, Firefall, Heart, and Mirabal, was born in Philadelphia, PA in 1948.

Eddie Hardin, pianist, singer-songwriter, and member of the Spencer Davis Group, Axis Point, and Hardin & York, was born in London, England in 1949.

Andy Powell, guitarist, songwriter, and founding member of Wishbone Ash, was born in Stepney, London, England in 1950.

Andy Merrill, vocalist, guitarist, songwriter, and co-founder of Arrows who wrote and sang lead on the first version of “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll,” was born in The Bronx, NY in 1952.

Dave Wakeling, songwriter, singer, and guitarist for The Beat (known as the English Beat in North America) and General Public, was born in Birmingham, England in 1956.

Peter Holsapple, singer, songwriter, guitarist, and co-founder of the dB’s, was born in Greenwich, CT in 1956.

Falco, singer and songwriter, was born Johann Hölzel in Vienna, Austria in 1957.

Jon Fishman, drummer, songwriter, and co-founder of Phish, which was partly named after him, was born in Philadelphia, PA in 1965.

Seal, singer and songwriter, was born Henry Olusegun Adeola Samuel in Paddington, London, England in 1963.

Teddy Thompson, musician and son Richard and Linda Thompson, was born in London, England in 1976.