Today in Rock & Roll History: May 3rd

1958: Cliff Richard played his first concert with the band that later became known as The Shadows, who at the time were known as the Drifters.

1964: Gerry and the Pacemakers made their US television debut on The Ed Sullivan Show a month before their first appearance on the Billboard chart performing “Don’t Let the Sun Catch You Crying” and “I’m the One.”

1966: “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” by the The Temptations was released. The single later peaked at #13 on Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on R&B chart. As per Motown Records’ policy, Norman Whitefield replaced Smokey Robinson as the Temptation’s main producer due to the single’s success.

1968: The Beach Boys began a tour of the US with Indian meditation guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi at the Washington Coliseum in Washington, D.C.. Shows were split between performances by the Beach Boys and a lecture on transcendental meditation by the Maharishi. The tour was originally intended to span nearly thirty shows at primarily college venues across the country, but after three days and five concerts, the venture was abandoned after poor ticket sales, poor sound systems, under-rehearsed backing musicians, the Beach Boys’ out-of-tune singing, audiences’ hostile reaction to the Maharishi’s segment, and the Maharishi’s preoccupation with making a documentary film about himself.

1969: Sly and the Family Stone released their fourth studio album, Stand!. Considered the group’s artistic high-point, it was issued just before their performance at the Woodstock Festival and became the band’s most commercially successful LP.

1969: English folk musician Nick Drake released his debut album, Five Leaves Left. Backing musicians on the album include Richard Thompson of Fairport Convention and Danny Thompson of Pentangle.

1969: Three Dog Night’s second single, a cover of Harry Nilsson’s “One,” entered the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It became their first top 10 hit, reaching #5 in the US and #4 in Canada.

1969: “In the Ghetto” by Elvis Presley entered the Billboard Hot 100, where it later reached #3. The record was Presley’s first US top 10 hit in four years and first in three years in the UK.

1969: The first single from Creedence Clearwater Revival’s third studio album, Green River, “Bad Moon Rising” backed with “Lodi,” entered the Billboard Hot 100 chart. “Bad Moon Rising” later reached #2 in June and became the group’s first UK #1 in September, while “Lodi” peaked at #52 on the Billboard chart.

1973: Diana Ross released “Touch Me in the Morning,” the lead single and title track from her fourth studio album.

1974: UK band The First Class released, “Beach Baby.” The single became their only major hit, reaching #13 in the UK and #4 in the US.

1975: Chicago started two weeks at #1 on the Billboard pop chart with their third LP to top the chart, Chicago VIII.

1976: Paul McCartney made his first concert appearance in the US in almost ten years when Wings kicked off their 31-date Wings Over America tour at the Tarrant County Convention Center in Fort Worth, TX. The best performances from the tour were overdubbed and compiled, for release as the triple album Wings Over America. In 1980, footage from the Seattle, New York, and Los Angeles shows was released in theaters as the concert film Rockshow.

1976: A benefit concert organized by Paul Simon for the New York Public Library raised $30,000. Participants at the Madison Square Garden show included Jimmy Cliff, Phoebe Snow, and the Brecker Brothers.

1977: The Eagles released “Life in the Fast Lane,” the third single from their fifth studio album, Hotel California.

1980: Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band started six weeks at #1 on the Billboard pop chart with Seger’s eleventh studio LP and only album to top the chart in the US, Against the Wind.

1980: “Little Jeanie” by Elton John entered the Billboard Hot 100. The song became Elton’s biggest hit since “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” in 1976, reaching #3 on the chart.

1982: The second album by Modern England, After the Snow, was released. Featuring the worldwide hit single “I Melt with You,” the album was the group’s first to chart in the US, where it reached #70.

1982: Frank Zappa released Ship Arriving Too Late to Save a Drowning Witch, an album consisting half of studio material and half live recordings from Zappa’s 1981 US tour with studio overdubs.

1983: “Not Now John” by Pink Floyd from their twelfth studio album, The Final Cut, was released in the US.

1986: On its way to selling a million copies worldwide, Robert Palmer’s “Addicted To Love” became his first and only #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was originally recorded as a duet with Chaka Khan, but Khan’s record company refused to allow her to release work on Palmer’s label, Island Records.

1988: Bruce Hornsby and the Range released their second studio album, Scenes from the Southside.

1988: A-ha released their third studio album, Stay on These Roads.

1989: The Doobie Brothers released “The Doctor” from their tenth studio album, Cycles. It became the band’s last hit, reaching #9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on the mainstream rock chart.

1993: New Order released their sixth studio album, Republic. It was the group’s first album following the demise of their former label, Factory Records, as well as their last studio album for eight years until Get Ready in 2001.

1994: The Allman Brothers Band released Where It All Begins, the group’s eleventh studio album and last with original guitarist Dickey Betts.

1994: Traffic released their eighth and final studio album, Far From Home. The project started out as the revival of the writing collaboration between Steve Winwood and Jim Capaldi, but soon became the first Traffic project since 1974.

2004: Cyndi Lauper’s eighth studio album, Shine, was released exclusively in Japan. The album was finished in 2001, but the label it was to be released on closed. After leaked tracks began to circulate the internet, Lauper released two EPs titled Shine and Shine Remixes in the US in 2002.

Birthdays Today

Bing Crosby, singer and actor, was born Harry Lillis Crosby, Jr. in Tacoma, WA in 1903.

Pete Seeger, folk singer, songwriter, activist, member of the Weavers, and a solo performer, was born in Manhattan, NY in 1919.

James Brown, R&B, funk, and soul singer, songwriter, and record producer known as the “Godfather of Soul,” was born in Barnwell, SC in 1933.

Franki Valli, singer, actor, and frontman for the Four Seasons, was born Francesco Stephen Castelluccio in Newark, NJ in 1934.

Napoleon XIV, singer, songwriter, and record producer known for his 1966 hit single “They’re Coming to Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa!,” was born Jerrold Samuels in 1938.

Pete Staples, bassist for The Troggs, was born in Anodver, Hampshire, England in 1944.

Mary Hopkin, singer and songwriter, was born in Pontardawe, Wales in 1950.

Christopher Cross, singer-songwriter, was born Christoper Geppert in San Antonio, TX in 1951.

David Ball, instrumentalist for Soft Cell, was born in Leeds, England in 1959.

Sterling Campbell, drummer and songwriter who has worked with numerous acts including The B-52s, Soul Asylum, Cyndi Lauper, Nena, Spandau Ballet, and David Bowie, was born in New York City in 1964.

Jay Darlington, keyboardist, member of Kula Shaker, and touring member of Oasis, was born in Sidcup, London, England in 1968.

Joe Gooch, lead vocalist and guitarist for Ten Years After from 2003-2014, was born in Highbury, London, England in 1977.