Today in Rock & Roll History: February 5th

1965: Donovan performed the first of three performances on British television program Ready, Steady, Go!, which presented him to a widespread audience for the first time. He had yet to release any records to lip sync to, and thus became the first act to sing live on the show.

1966: “You Baby,” the title track from the Turtles’ second album, entered the Billboard Hot 100. The song was originally recorded by The Vogues in 1965, though their version was not released until 1996.

1966: Petula Clark scored her second of two #1 singles on the Billboard Hot 100 with “My Love.”

1968: “Jennifer Jupiter,” the second single from Donovan’s sixth studio album, The Hurdy Gurdy Man, was released in the UK.

1969: Following the breakup of Cream in November 1968, the group’s fourth and final studio album, Goodbye, was released. It reached #1 in the UK and #2 in the US.

1969: The Move was at #1 on the UK singles chart with “Blackberry Way,” their only song to top the chart.

1970: David Bowie recorded several songs during a BBC Session at Paris Cinema Studio in London for the John Peel Sunday Concert radio show. Appearing with Bowie for the first time was guitarist Mick Ronson, who later became a member of his backing band, the Spiders from Mars.

1972: “Heart of Gold” by Neil Young entered the Billboard Hot 100. Six weeks later, it became Young’s only #1 single on the chart.

1980: Boys Don’t Cry, the first compilation album by English band the Cure, was released in the UK. Later in August, it became the band’s debut release in the US as an altered version of their 1979 debut album, Three Imaginary Boys.

1983: Toto had their only #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Africa.”

1986: Prince and the Revolution released “Kiss,” the lead single from Prince’s eighth studio album, Parade.

1990: Everything but the Girl released their fifth studio album, The Language of Life.

1993: R.E.M. released “The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite,” the third single from their eighth studio album, Automatic for the People.

1993: Rod Stewart recorded his second live album, Unplugged… and Seated, at Universal Studios in Los Angeles as part of MTV’s Unplugged series. Stewart reunited with fellow Faces band member Ronnie Wood for the first time in nearly twenty years, performing classics as well as new material. The MTV special aired in May, and later that same month, the live album was also released, and later peaked at #2 on both the US and UK charts.

1996: Gin Blossoms released “Follow You Down,” the first single from their third studio album, Congratulations I’m Sorry.

2008: Jack Johnson released his fourth studio album, Sleep Through the Static.

2016: Lucinda Williams released her twelfth studio album, The Ghosts of Highway 20.

2016: Elton John released his thirtieth studio album, Wonderful Crazy Night.

Birthdays Today

Hal Blaine, was born in Holyoke, MA in 1929. (one of most prolific drummers in rock history, who as a member of California session group The Wrecking Crew, played on over 40 #1 hits and 150 top-10 records by acts like Jan & Dean, Elvis Presley, the Ronettes, Simon & Garfunkel, the Beach Boys, the Grass Roots, the Monkees, Steely Dan, and many others)

Alex Harvey, singer, songwriter, and frontman of The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, was born in Glasgow, Lanarkshire, Scotland in 1935.

Barrett Strong, singer, songwriter, and first artist to record a hit for Motown Records who, together with producer Norman Whitfield, wrote some of the most successful and critically acclaimed soul songs ever to be released by Motown, was born in West Point, MS in 1941.

Cory Wells, singer and founding member of Three Dog Night, was born in Buffalo, NY in 1941.

Chuck Winfield, trumpet player, flugelhorn player, and backing vocalist for Blood, Sweat & Tears from 1968-1973, was born in 1943.

Larry Tamblyn, lead vocalist, keyboard player, and founding member of The Standells, was born in Los Angeles, CA in 1943.

Al Kooper, singer, songwriter, session man, founding member of the Blues Project and Blood, Sweat & Tears, and a solo artist, was born Roosevelt Gook in Brooklyn, NY in 1944.

J.R. Cobb, guitarist, songwriter, and member of the Classics IV and the Atlanta Rhythm Section, was born James Barney Cobb Jr. in Birmingham, AL in 1944.

David Denny, guitarist, founding member of Frumious Bandersnatch, and member of the Steve Miller Band from 1976-1978, was born in Berkeley, CA in 1948.

Duff McKagan, multi-instrumentalist, singer, songwriter, and bassist for Guns N’ Roses, was born Michael Andrew McKagan in Seattle, WA in 1964.

Chris Barron, singer, songwriter, and lead singer for Spin Doctors, was born Christopher Gross in Honolulu, HI in 1968.