Today in Rock & Roll History: November 6th

1961: Lee Dorsey achieved his first and only #1 hit with “Ya Ya” when it topped the Billboard R&B chart. It was also his first and highest-reaching record on the Hot 100 chart, where It peaked at #7.

1964: During their first promotional visit to Britain, the Beach Boys appeared live on ITV’s Ready Steady Go!, performing “I Get Around” and “When I Grow Up (to Be a Man).”

1965: Jefferson Airplane, then a relatively unknown band, performed at the San Francisco Mime Troupe Appeal Party at the Calliope Ballroom, the first concert organized by promoter Bill Graham. Graham had been hired to manage the troupe, whose fourth performance of the Italian play Il Candelaio in San Franciso park had been banned when the parks commission revoked their permit, citing their production as “indecent, obscene, and offensive.” The troupe’s founder, Ronald Davis, however, claimed the reason the city banned the play was that it was “critical of bourgeois society.” Graham alerted the press to the impending confrontation and drew a crowd of 1,000 who witnessed Davis’ arrest. The following year, a San Francisco judge ruled that the parks commission could not censor performances in the park. The benefit that Graham had organized raised $4,000 for the Mime Troupe and a few months later, Graham leased a venue called the Fillmore and started hiring local bands to perform there.

1965: After the success of “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” The Rolling Stones topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the second time with “Get Off of My Cloud.”

1965: “It’s My Life” by the Animals entered the Billboard Hot 100, eventually peaking at #23. The song had been written for the group by Brill Building songwriters Roger Atkins and Carl D’Errico.

1966: The Beach Boys’ 1966 UK tour started at Finsbury Park, Astoria in London.

1968: The Monkees’ $750,000 feature film Head premiered in New York City. The satirical musical adventure features appearances by Frank Zappa, Dennis Hopper, boxer Sonny Liston, as well as the film’s co-writers: director Bob Rafelson and co-producer Jack Nicholson.

1968: Joe Cocker topped the UK chart with his first #1 single, a cover of the Beatles’ “With a Little Help From My Friends.”

1970: “Lonely Days” by The Bee Gees was released. The song became their first top five hit in the US, peaking at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100, and reached #1 on the Cash Box and Record World charts. The song had been written during the trio’s reunion sessions, after Robin Gibb had left the group early the same year.

1970: “No Matter What,” the lead single from Badfinger’s No Dice album, was released.

1971: Marvin Gaye went to #1 on Billboard’s R&B chart with “Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler),” the third single from his What’s Going On album.

1976: The Steve Miller Band scored their second US #1 hit, “Rock’n Me.” The single achieved lasting commercial and critical success, reaching #1 in Canada and #11 in the UK.

1980: At London’s Hammersmith Odeon, Paul Simon kicked off a tour of the UK by buying a drink for each member of the audience, amounting to a $2,000 tab.

1982: Marvin Gaye started ten weeks at #1 on the Billboard R&B chart with “Sexual Healing.”

1995: Queen released Made in Heaven, the group’s fifteenth and final studio album, as well as the group’s first release after the death of lead singer Freddie Mercury. The remaining members worked with vocal and piano recordings by Mercury before his death, adding new instrumentation. The album later debuted at #1 on the UK chart and reached #58 in the US.

2004: Rod Stewart scored his first #1 album in the US in 25 years with Stardust: The Great American Songbook Volume III.

Birthdays Today

Joseph Pope, co-founder of R&B and soul group The Tams, was born in Atlanta, GA in 1933.

Eugene Pitt, co-founder of doo wop and soul group The Jive Five, was born in Brooklyn, New York City in 1937.

P.J. Proby, singer, songwriter, and actor, was born James Marcus Smith in Houston, TX in 1938.

Doug Sahm, songwriter, guitarist, and band leader of the Sir Douglas Quintet, was born in San Antonio, TX in 1941.

George Young, founding member of The Easybeats and Flash and the Pan, and one-half of the songwriting and production duo Vanda & Young, was born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1946.

Glenn Frey, guitarist, vocalist, pianist, songwriter, solo artist, and original member of the Eagles, was born in Detroit, MI in 1948.