Today in Rock & Roll History: March 29th

1968: Fleetwood Mac released “Black Magic Woman.” The single, written by Peter Green, was later included on the 1969 compilations English Rose and The Pious Bird of Goom Omen.

1968: Glen Campbell got his big break when he was offered to host a summer replacement for the The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour on CBS. The program, however, was ultimately an unsuccessful attempt at recapturing the look and feel of the original comedy-variety series without the controversy.

1969: Quicksilver Messenger Service released their second studio album, Happy Trails. Most of the album was recorded from two performances at the Fillmore East in New York City and the Fillmore West in San Francisco.

1969: Blood, Sweat & Tears’ self-titled second studio album became the group’s first #1 on the Billboard pop chart. The LP yielded three successive top 5 singles and won a Grammy award for Album of the Year in 1970. Producer Jim Guercio, who had previously worked with the Buckinghams, later went on to produce Chicago’s early albums.

1971: Director Pierre Adidge’s documentary film Mad Dogs & Englishmen, depicting Joe Cocker’s 1970 US tour was released.

1973: The Jackson 5 released their seventh studio album, Skywriter.

1973: Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show were featured on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine, just a month after their recording of Shel Silverstein’s “Cover of the ‘Rolling Stone’” entered the US singles charts. Just like the song’s lyrics, the band members each bought five copies of the magazine to give to their mothers.

1974: Mott the Hoople released their seventh studio album, The Hoople. It was their last with singer and musician Ian Hunter, their only album with guitarist Ariel Bender, and their last release before changing their name to simply “Mott.” It became the band’s highest charting LP in the US, peaking at #28.

1975: LaBelle, the group originally known as Patti LaBelle and the Blue Belles, had their only chart topping hit in the US with “Lady Marmalade,” a song originally written and recorded the year before by disco group The Eleventh Hour. After The Eleventh Hour’s album failed to chart, the song was shown to New Orleans musician Allen Toussaint, who then decided to record the song with LaBelle.

1975: Following the dissolution of Beck, Bogert & Appice and a period of time spent as a session musician, Jeff Beck released his first solo album, Blow by Blow. The all-instrumental album was produced by George Martin and includes two songs given to Beck by Stevie Wonder, whose playing of the clavinet is uncredited on the track “Thelonius.” It became Beck’s only top 10 album in the US, peaking at #4.

1975: Led Zeppelin had all six of their albums on the Billboard pop chart in the same week that their latest album, Physical Graffiti, spent its second week at #1.

1978: David Bowie kicked off his “Low / Heroes” 77-date World Tour at San Diego Sports Arena in San Diego, California.

1979: Supertramp released their sixth studio album, Breakfast in America. The LP produced four hit singles and is the band’s only #1 in the US in addition to also being an international success.

1980: Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon album spent its 303rd week on the album chart, breaking the record set by Carole King’s Tapestry. The album remained on the chart for 741 discontinuous weeks from 1973 to 1988longer than any other album in the chart’s history.

1982: “Ebony and Ivory” by Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder was released as the lead single from McCartney’s third solo studio album, Tug of War. The single marked the first time that McCartney had released a duet with another major artist.

1986: Austrian singer Falco started three weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with his international hit and only top 10 record in the US, “Rock Me Amadeus,” making him the first German speaking artist to achieve a chart-topping single in the US.

1993: Peter Gabriel released “Blood of Eden,” the third single from his sixth studio album, Us. It features backing vocals from Sinéad O’Connor.

1993: The Kinks released their twenty-fourth studio album, Phobia. It is the band’s only album that does not feature drummer Mick Avory and their last before disbanding three years later.

1994: Phish released their fifth studio album, Hoist. It remains the group’s best-selling studio release.

2001: Brian Wilson was honored at a three-hour tribute at New York’s Radio City Music Hall. Guest performances included Billy Joel, Paul Simon, The Go-Gos, and the trio of Carly Simon, David Crosby, and Jimmy Webb. Also singing Beach Boy songs were Ann and Nancy Wilson, Elton John, and Aimee Mann. Wilson himself took the stage for the final three songs, “Barbara Ann,” “Surfin’ U.S.A.,” and “Fun, Fun, Fun.”

2005: Judy Collins released the album Portrait of an American Girl.

Birthdays Today

Donny Conn, drummer and lyricist for The Playmates, was born Donald Claps in Waterbury, CT in 1930.

Raymond “Ray” Davis, original bass singer and founding member of The Parliaments, and subsequently Parliament and Funkadelic, was born in Sumter, SC in 1940.

Eden Kane, pop rock singer, actor, record producer, and teen idol, was born in New Dehli, British India in 1940.

Astrud Gilberto, samba and bossa nova singer, was born Astrud Weinert in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil in 1940.

Vangelis, electronic composer, musician, and former member of Aphrodite’s Child, was born Evángelos Odysséas Papathanassíou in Agria, Greece in 1943.

Chad Allan, founding member and original lead singer of the Chad Allan and the Expressions, which later became The Guess Who, was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada in 1943.

Eric Idle, comedian, actor, singer, songwriter, composer, member of Monty Python, and co-founder Beatles parody group The Rutles, was born in South Shields, County Durham, England in 1943.

Terry Jacks, singer and songwriter, was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada in 1944.

Speedy Keen, songwriter, vocalist, drummer, and keyboard player best known as a member of Thunderclap Newman, who wrote their 1969 hit “Something in the Air,” was born John David Percy Keen in Ealing, London, England in 1945.

Robert Gordon, lead singer for Tuff Darts before before transitioning to rockabilly revival and collaborating with arists like Link Wray and Chris Spedding, was born in Bethesda, MD in 1947.

Bobby Kimball, singer and frontman for Toto, was born in Orange, TX in 1947.

Dave Greenfield, keyboardist, singer, songwriter, and member of rock band The Stranglers, was born in Brighton, England in 1949.

Michael Brecker, jazz saxophonist and composer who worked as a leader and sideman on albums by James Taylor, Paul Simon, Steey Dan, Bruce Springsteen, Lou Reed, Dire Straits, Joni Mitchel, Eric Clapton, Billy Joel, Chaka Khan, and countless others, was born in Cheltenham, PA in 1949.

Patty Donahue, lead singer for the Waitresses, was born in Akron, OH in 1956.

Perry Farrell, singer-songwriter and lead vocalist for Jane’s Addiction, was born in Queens, NY in 1959.

John Popper, musician, songwriter, and frontman for Blues Traveler, was born in Chardon, OH in 1967.