1957: “Oh, Boy!” by Buddy Holly and the Crickets, with additional backing vocals by the Picks, was released by Brunswick Records. The song made it to #10 in US.
1960: Ben E. King recorded “Spanish Harlem,” “First Taste of Love,” “Young Boy Blues,” as well as “Stand By Me,” a song written by King along with songwriting and producing partners Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. Released by ATCO Records the following spring, “Stand By Me” topped the Billboard R&B chart and reached #4 on the Hot 100. Since then, over four hundred recorded versions of the song have been performed by numerous artists.
1962: The first single by Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass, “The Lonely Bull (El Solo Toro),” entered the Billboard Hot 100. The record was also the first released by A&M Records, which Alpert had co-founded with Jerry Moss.
1964: The Supremes released “Come See About Me,” the final single from their second studio album, Where Did Our Love Go. It reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in December and peaked at #2 on the R&B chart.
1970: The original LP recording of Jesus Christ Superstar was unveiled to the press at St. Peters Lutheran church in New York City. While the record played, composers Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice interpreted the music for the gathered audience.
1972: Elton John released “Crocodile Rock,” the lead single from his sixth studio album, Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player, in the UK. The record was issued in the US near the end of November.
1973: The Who released “Love Reign o’er Me,” the second single from band’s sixth studio album and second rock opera, Quadrophenia.
1975: Paul McCartney and Wings released “Venus and Mars”/”Rock Show,” the third and final single from their fourth studio album, Venus and Mars, in the US. It was issued in the UK a month later.
1975: Bobby Womack released his eighth studio album, Safety Zone.
1979: Six weeks after Led Zeppelin’s last studio album, In Through the Out Door, hit #1 on the Billboard pop chart, all nine of the band’s albums were in the top 200.
1981: Ringo Starr released his eighth studio album, Stop and Smell the Roses.
1982: Prince released 1999, his fifth studio album and first to feature his band the Revolution. The LP became Prince’s first to enter the top 10, peaking at #9, and after his death in 2016, reached #7.
1983: Bob Dylan released his twenty-second studio album, Infidels. Co-produced by Mark Knopfler, the album was seen as a return to secular music following three evangelical records.
1984: Big Country had their only #1 on the UK chart with their second studio album, Steeltown. In the US it reached #70 on the Billboard chart.
1986: John Lennon’s second posthumous album, Menlove Ave., was released in the US a week before it was issued in the UK. It comprises unfinished recordings created during sessions for his Walls and Bridges and Rock ‘n’ Roll albums.
1986: XTC released their ninth studio album, Skylarking. Produced by Todd Rundgren, it has since been regarded as one of the group’s best albums.
1987: Robbie Robertson, co-founder of The Band, released his self-titled debut solo studio album.
1988: U2’s rockumentary film Rattle and Hum premiered at the Savoy Cinema in the band’s hometown of Dublin, Ireland.
1990: Paul Simon topped the UK chart with his eighth solo album, The Rhythm of the Saints.
1990: A-ha released their fourth studio album, East of the Sun, West of the Moon.
1998: R.E.M. released Up, their eleventh studio album and first without original drummer Bill Berry.
1998: Phish released their seventh studio album, The Story of the Ghost.
1998: Cyndi Lauper released his sixth studio album and first Christmas album, Merry Christmas … Have a Nice Life.
2009: Carly Simon released her twenty-third studio album, Never Been Gone, which largely consists of new acoustic versions of many of Simon’s past hits.
2009: Sting released If on a Winter’s Night…, his ninth studio album and a collection of Christmas and winter-themed songs mostly written by others.
2009: Gov’t Mule released By a Thread, their ninth studio album and first with bassist Jorgen Carlsson.
Bonnie Lou, one of the first female rock and roll singers and one of the first artists to gain crossover success from country music to rock and roll, was born Mary Joan Kath in Towanda, IL in 1924.
Gary Chester, session drummer and teacher who worked with The Coasters, The Monkees, Dionne Warwick, Country Joe McDonald, Van Morrison, and many others on thousands of songs, was born Cesario Gurciullo in 1924.
Floyd Cramer, session pianist and one of the architects of the Nashville sound, known for his “slip note” piano style, was born in Shreveport, LA in 1933.
Dick Dodd, actor, drummer for the Bel-Airs, and lead singer and drummer for the Standells, was born in Hermosa Beach, CA in 1945.
Mark Ryan, Quicksilver Messenger Service bassist from 1971-72, was born in Jacksonville, FL in 1945.
Byron Allred, keyboardist with the Steve Miller Band, was born in Logan, UT in 1948.
Garry Tallent, bassist and founding member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band who has also recorded with and produced numerous other artists, was born in Detroit, MI in 1949.
Simon Le Bon, lead singer, lyricist, and musician of Duran Duran, was born in Bushey, Hertfordshire, England in 1958.