Today in Rock & Roll History: November 15th

1956: Elvis Presley made his acting debut in Love Me Tender, which had its premiere at the Paramount Theatre in New York City, followed a week later by the film’s national release.

1965: The Rolling Stones made their first appearance on NBC TV’s rock variety show Hullabaloo, performing “She Said Yeah!” and “Get Off of My Cloud.”

1965: The Yardbirds released Having a Rave Up with The Yardbirds, the band’s second American album. Released eight months after Jeff Beck had replaced Eric Clapton, the LP includes songs featuring both guitarists and reflects the group’s blues rock roots and experimentation with psychedelic and hard rock. The album also contains some of the earliest live recordings of Clapton, which had been included on group’s debut UK album, Five Live Yardbirds. Critics have since cited the influential album as a “bridge between beat groups and psychedelia.”

1968: Janis Joplin performed her last gig with Big Brother and the Holding Company at New York’s Hunter College.

1969: “Jam Up and Jelly Tight” by Tommy Roe entered the Billboard Hot 100, where it later became his last top 20 hit in the US, peaking at #8.

1969: The Jackson 5 debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 chart with their first single, “I Want You Back.” In early January the follow year, the record went to the top of both the Hot 100 and R&B charts.

1971: The spaghetti western film Blindman, starring Ringo Starr as the brother of a notorious bandit, debuted in Rome. The theme for the movie was written by Starr and was the B-side of his 1972 single “Back Off Boogaloo.” The track was produced by Klaus Voorman with additional assistance from Badfinger’s Pete Ham.

1972: America released their second LP, Homecoming.

1974: The Doobie Brothers’ single “Black Water” was released, eventually becoming their first US #1.

1974: Faces released their last official single, “You Can Make Me Dance, Sing or Anything (Even Take the Dog for a Walk, Mend a Fuse, Fold Away the Ironing Board, or Any Other Domestic Shortcomings).” The song reached #12 in the UK over Christmas and still holds the record for the longest song-title ever to hit the British chart.

1975: The J. Geils Band began recording their second live album, Blow Your Face Out, at a show in the band’s hometown of Boston Garden. Four nights later, the second recording for the album took place at Cobo Hall in Detroit, Michigan.

1975: “Take It to the Limit” by the Eagles was released. The single reached #4 on the Billboard chart and was the last Eagles song to feature founding member Bernie Leadon before he was replaced by guitarist Joe Walsh.

1975: “Evil Woman,” the first single from Electric Light Orchestra’s Face the Music LP, entered the Billboard Hot 100. It became the band’s first worldwide hit and reached #10 on both the US and UK charts. According to the song’s writer, Jeff Lynne, “Evil Woman,” was originally intended to simply be filler for the album, and was written in just thirty minutes—the quickest Lynne had ever written a song.

1978: Echo & the Bunnymen made their debut at Liverpool’s Eric’s Club, appearing as the opening act for The Teardrop Explodes. The band played one song, a 20-minute version of “Monkeys” which was entitled “I Bagsy Yours” at the time.

1978: The Grateful Dead released their tenth studio album, “Shakedown Street,” co-produced by Little Feat’s Lowell George and Jerry Garcia collaborator John Kahn. It was the band’s final album with keyboardist Keith Godchaux and backing vocalist Donna Godchaux, spouses who left the band a few months after the LP’s release.

Birthdays Today

Clyde McPhatter, original lead vocalist for the Drifters and a key figure in the shaping of doo-wop and R&B, was born in Durham, NC in 1932.

Petula Clark, singer, actress, and composer, was born in Epsom, Surrey, England in 1932.

Little Willie John, R&B singer, was born William Edward John in Cullendale, AK in 1937.

Rick Kemp, bass player, guitarist, songwriter, vocalist, and member of Steeleye Span, was born in Little Hanford, Dorset in 1941.

Anni-Frid Lyngstad, one of the lead singers of Swedish pop band ABBA, commonly known as Frida Lyngstad, was born in Bjørkåsen, Ballangen, Norway in 1945.

Steve Fossen, co-founder and original bassist for Heart, was born in Seattle, WA in 1949.

Joe Puerta, bassist, vocalist, co-founder of Ambrosia, and member of Bruce Hornsby and the Range, was born in Lomita, CA in 1951.

Frank Infante, bassist and guitarist for Blondie from 1977-1982, was born in New York City in 1951.

Tony Thompson, session musician and drummer for The Power Station and Chic, was born in New York City in 1954.

Joe Leeway, multi-instrumentalist and member of Thompson Twins from 1981-1986, was born in Islington, London, England in 1957.