Today in Rock & Roll History: November 19th

1964: The Supremes became the first all-female group to reach #1 on the UK singles chart with “Baby Love.”

1965: “Till the End of the Day” by the Kinks was released in the UK. The single reached #8 on the British chart and In early March the next year, it was issued in America, where it rose to #50.

1966: The Supremes had their eighth #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “You Keep Me Hangin’ On.” A week later the record topped the R&B chart and a week after that it also went to the top of the Cash Box pop chart. In the UK, the record made it to #8. Several other groups later had their own cover versions make the charts, including Vanilla Fudge, whose version reached #6 a year later, and British singer Kim Wilde, whose 1986 cover went to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, making it one of only six songs to reach #1 by two different musical acts in America.

1966: While on a flight back to London after a vacation in Africa, Paul McCartney got the idea for the Beatles to create new personas for an “alter ego band” in order to free themselves from the predictable “Beatles” image and to allow them to explore a different approach to their music. Less than a week later, the group began sessions for their next album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

1966: Eddie Floyd was at #1 on Billboard’s R&B chart with his first charting single and biggest hit, “Knock On Wood.” The record peaked at #28 on the Hot 100 and was his highest-charting UK single, reaching #19.

1968: Mr. Fantasy, the debut album by Traffic, entered the Billboard pop chart, where it later peaked at #88. Originally released in America by United Artists Records as Heaven Is in Your Mind, the US version of the LP had a significantly different track list from its original British release. The title of the US album was quickly changed back to Mr. Fantasy, but the track list remained until United Artists went out of business and Island Records released the original UK version in America in 1980.

1973: After Bob Dylan’s departure from Columbia Records to sign with Asylum Records, Columbia released Dylan, an album of outtakes Dylan had recorded for his previous releases Self Portrait and New Morning that was compiled without Dylan’s input. In Europe the album was released with the title A Fool Such as I.

1974: The first single from Linda Ronstadt’s fifth solo album, Heart Like a Wheel, “You’re No Good,” was released. Written by Clint Ballard, Jr. and originally recorded by Dee Dee Warwick in 1963, Ronstadt had had begun performing the song to close her live shows early in 1973 after it had been suggested to her by band member Kenny Edwards. The song had been a last-minute choice for the album, and after completion, Capitol Records was initially unsure whether to release it as a single. Ronstadt’s version became the song’s most successful cover as well as her first #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in February of 1975. It also set a precedent for Ronstadt’s single releases over the next five years, which were virtually all remakes of classic rock songs.

1976: Electric Light Orchestra’s sixth studio album, A New World Record, was released in the US following its release in the UK earlier in September. The album marked the band’s shift toward shorter pop songs and it proved to be their breakthrough in the UK, becoming the group’s first album to reach the top 10, peaking at #6. In the US, the LP was their second top 10, reaching #5.

1976: George Harrison released Thirty Three & 1/3, his seventh studio album and first on his own Dark Horse record label.

1979: Frank Zappa released Joe’s Garage, Acts II & III, the follow-up to Joe’s Garage, Act I which was released in September. The project was later remastered and reissued as a triple album box set.

1980: Blondie released their fifth studio album, Autoamerican.

1982: The Kinks released “Come Dancing,” the first single from their twentieth studio album, State of Confusion. The song initially failed to chart in the UK, and Arista Records head Clive Davis had reservations about releasing it in America due to the English subject matter of dance halls. It was issued in US in April of 1983 and managed to reach #6 on the Hot 100, becoming the band’s highest US charting single in over a decade and tying with “Tired of Waiting for You” as the band’s highest charting single ever. The single’s success was largely due to a music video directed by Julien Temple, which aired frequently on MTV. Afterward, the single was re-released in Britain and this time reached #12.

1982: Led Zeppelin released Coda, a compilation of unused tracks from various sessions during the band’s twelve-year career.

1982: Phil Collins released his version of “You Can’t Hurry Love,” a song first recorded by The Supremes in 1966, as the second single from his second solo studio album, Hello, I Must Be Going!.

1982: Culture Club released the single “Time (Clock of the Heart)” in the UK. It was later issued in the US at the end of March in 1983 as the second single from the North American version of their debut album, Kissing to Be Clever.

1983: Tina Turner began her 1980s comeback when her version of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” hit the UK singles chart. It later entered the US charts in January of 1984, peaking at #26 in March.

1984: Don Henley released his second solo studio album, Building the Perfect Beast. Henley collaborated with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers members Mike Campbell, Benmont Tench, and Stan Lynch, and guests on the album include Lindsey Buckingham, Belinda Carlisle, Randy Newman, Jim Keltner, Waddy Wachtel, Pino Palladino, Steve Porcaro, and Ian Wallace.

1984: The Kinks released their twenty-first studio album, Word of Mouth.

1984: Tears for Fears released “Shout,” the second single from their second studio album, Songs from the Big Chair. It became their fourth top 5 hit in the UK and first #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US.

1984: Nik Kershaw released his second studio album, The Riddle.

1985: Thompson Twins released “Revolution,” the fifth and final single from their fifth studio album, Here’s to Future Days.

1992: R.E.M. played a benefit show for Greenpeace at the 40 Watt Club in their hometown of Athens, Georgia a month after the release of their eighth album, Automatic for the People. Recorded using a mobile solar-powered recording studio, it was the band’s only concert in support of the album and went on to be one of their most widely bootlegged shows.

1993: Tina Turner released her solo version of “Proud Mary,” a Tom Fogerty song that she had originally recorded with her then-husband Ike Turner in 1971.

2001: U2 released “Walk On,” the fourth single from their tenth studio album, All That You Can’t Leave Behind.

2001: R.E.M. released “I’ll Take the Rain,” the third and final single from their twelfth studio album, Reveal.

2002: Joni Mitchell released Travelogue, her eighteenth studio album which features orchestral re-recordings of songs from throughout her career.

Birthdays Today

Tommy Dorsey, jazz trombonist, composer, conductor, and bandleader of the big band era known as the “Sentimental Gentleman of Swing,” was born in Shenandoah, PA in 1905.

Joe Hunter, musician and keyboardist known for his session work with and as an original member of Motown Records’ in-house studio band, the Funk Brothers, was born in Jackson, TN in 1927.

Robert White, soul musician and one of the guitarists for Motown house band, The Funk Brothers, was born in Billmeyer, PA in 1936.

Ray Collins, vocalist, percussionist, and original member of the Soul Giants who, after the addition of Frank Zappa, became the Mothers of Invention, was born in Pomona, CA in 1936.

Geoff Goddard, songwriter, singer and instrumentalist who wrote hits for artists such as Heinz Burt, Mike Berry, The Tornados, The Outlaws, and Screaming Lord Sutch, was born in Reading, Berkshire, England in 1937.

Hank Medress, singer and record producer who started out as a member of doo-wop group the Linc-Tones, who became the Tokens after the departure of member Neil Sedaka, was born in Brooklyn, NY in 1938.

Warren “Pete” Moore, singer-songwriter, record producer, and bass singer and original member of The Miracles, was born in Detroit, MI in 1939.

Fred Lipsius, saxophonist, arranger, and original member of Blood, Sweat & Tears who also performed with Simon & Garfunkel, Janis Joplin, and others, was born in the Bronx, NY in 1943.

Joe Correro, Jr., session musician and drummer with Paul Revere and the Raiders, was born in 1946.

Tom Evans, vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter for Badfinger, was born in Liverpool, England in 1947.

Eddie Rayner, musician and keyboardist for Split Enz who also played in Crowded House, Orb, Space Waltz, The Makers and 801, was born in New Zealand in 1952.

Alice Peacock, folk singer-songwriter, was born in White Bear Lake, MN in 1969.