Today in Rock & Roll History: March 24th

1956: The first regularly scheduled, nationally broadcast rock & roll show, Rock ‘n Roll Dance Party, hosted by disc jockey Alan Freed, premiered on the CBS Radio Network.

1962: Sam Cooke scored his third #1 on Billboard’s R&B chart with “Twistin’ the Night Away.”

1966: Simon & Garfunkel made their debut on the UK singles chart with “Homeward Bound” after the single’s initial release in the US in January. Simon is said to have written the song at Farnworth railway station in Widnes, England while stranded overnight waiting for a train.

1966: The Easybeats released their second studio album, It’s 2 Easy. It became the band’s highest charting full-length album on the Australian chart, peaking at #3.

1967: “Little Games,” the title track from the Yardbirds’ fourth American album, was released in the US.

1967: Albums that debuted on the Billboard pop chart included Jefferson Airplane’s second album, Surrealistic Pillow, the Left Banke’s debut studio album, Walk Away Renée/Pretty Ballerina, the Youngbloods’ self-titled debut album, the Doors’ self-titled first album, the Spencer Davis Group’s first US album, Gimme Some Lovin’, Eric Burdon’s, Eric Is Here, the Buckingham’s first album, Kind of a Drag, and 5 by 5 by the Dave Clark Five.

1973: After entering the US top 40 the same day as the signing of the Paris Peace Accords that ended the Vietnam War, The O’Jays went to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Love Train.” The record, which had recently topped the R&B chart, was the group’s only #1 on the pop charts as well as their only single to make the top 10 in the UK, where it reached #9.

1975: Chicago released their seventh studio album, Chicago VIII.

1975: Grand Funk Railroad released “Bad Time,” the second single from their ninth studio album, All the Girls in the World Beware!!!.

1977: “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac was released as the second American single from their eleventh studio album, Rumours. In June, it was issued in the UK as the album’s third single. It is the band’s only single to reach #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US.

1979: “The Logical Song,” the first single from Supertramp’s sixth studio album, Breakfast in America, entered the Billboard Hot 100. It became the band’s highest reaching single on the chart, peaking at #6.

1980: The Beach Boys released their twenty-fourth studio album, Keepin’ the Summer Alive. It included new material along with previously unreleased older songs and was the band’s last album recorded with member Dennis Wilson.

1982: Talking Heads released The Name of This Band Is Talking Heads, a double live album that features the group’s original quartet in recordings from 1977 and 1979 and a second LP that features an expanded ten-piece lineup that toured in 1980 and 1981.

1986: English synth-pop duo Pet Shop Boys released their debut album, Please.

1986: The Rolling Stones released their eighteenth British and twentieth American studio album, Dirty Work. The LP was recorded during a turbulent time for the band, and all five members were rarely together for recording sessions. As a result, number of guest musicians appeared on the album, including Jimmy Page, Bobby Womack, Ivan Neville, and Chuck Leavell. It was also the last album to feature former member and frequent piano contributor Ian Stewart, who died shortly before the album’s release.

1990: Sinéad O’Connor achieved her first #1 album when her second studio LP, I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got, topped the UK chart. It became an international hit and reached the top of the Billboard pop chart in the US by the end of April.

1992: They Might Be Giants released their fourth studio album, Apollo 18.

1997: Supertramp released their tenth album, Some Things Never Change.

1998: The Specials released Guilty ‘til Proved Innocent!, their first studio album since 1984.

2009: Indigo Girls released their eleventh studio album, Poseidon and the Bitter Bug.

2015: Van Morrison released his thirty-fifth studio album, Duets: Re-working the Catalogue, which features duet versions of songs previously released by Morrison with artists that include Bobby Womack, Steve Winwood, Mark Knopfler, Taj Mahal, Mavis Staples, George Benson, and Georgie Fame.

2018: After making his solo debut on the Billboard 200 chart in 1981, David Byrne’s eleventh studio album American Utopia became his first top 10 LP, entering the chart at #3.

Birthdays Today

Carol Kaye, one of the most prolific bass guitarists in rock and pop music, who played on an estimated 10,000 recordings, many of which as a member of Los Angeles session group The Wrecking Crew, in a career that spanned over fifty years, was born Carol Smith in Everett, WA in 1935.

Don Convay, singer and songwriter who wrote hit songs such as “Mercy, Mercy,” “See-Saw,” “Pony Time,” and “Chain of Fools,” was born Donald James Randolph in Orangeburg, SC in 1936.

Billy Stewart, rhythm and blues singer and pianist, was born in Washington, D.C. in 1937.

Michael Masser, songwriter, composer, and producer who co-wrote songs recorded by artists such as Diana Ross, Whitney Houston, Natalie Cole, George Benson, Roberta Flack, and Gladys Knight, was born in Chicago, IL in 1941.

Colin Petersen, drummer, record producer, and actor who was a member of Steve and the Board, the Bee Gees, and Humpy Bong, was born in Kingaroy, Queensland, Australia in 1946.

Klaus Dinger, new wave guitarist, drummer, keyboardist, vocalist, and member of Neu!, La Düsseldorf, and Kraftwerk, was born in Scherfede, Westphalia, Germany in 1946.

Mike Kellie, vocalist, drummer for Spooky Tooth, and prolific session musician, was born in Birmingham, England in 1947.

Lee Oskar, harmonica player and original member of War who later co-founded the LowRider Band, was born in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1948.

Nick Lowe, singer-songwriter, musician, producer, co-founder of Brinsley Schwarz, a solo artist, and half of the duo Rockpile with Dave Edmunds, was born Nicholas Drain Lowe in Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, England in 1949.

Douglas “Dougie” Thomson, bassist for Supertramp from 1972-1988, was born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1951.

Nena, songwriter and lead singer for Nena, best known for their 1983 hit “99 Luftballons,” was born Gabriele Susanne Kerner in Hagen, North Rhine-Westphalia, West Germany in 1960.

Patterson Hood, singer-songwriter and co-founder and frontman of Drive-By Truckers, was born in Muscle Shoals, AL in 1964.

Sharon Corr, singer-songwriter, violinist, pianist, guitarist, and co-founder of the Corrs, was born in Dundalk, Louth, Ireland in 1970.