Today In Oldies Music History: October 20--
Births1890: Jelly Roll Morton
1937: Wanda Jackson
1939: Jay Siegel (The Tokens)
1939: Ray Jones (The Dakotas)
1942: John Carter (Ivy League)
1945: Ric Lee (Ten Years After)
Deaths1983: Merle Travis
1997: Henry Vestine (Canned Heat)
2008: Dee Dee Warwick
Events1955: Brooklyn High School in Cleveland, OH, is host to a rock and roll concert featuring Bill Haley, LaVern Baker, Roy Hamilton, Johnnie Ray, the up-and-coming artist Elvis Presley, and also, improbably, Pat Boone and The Four Lads. The concert is filmed for a documentary of local DJ Bill Randle, entitled The Pied Piper of Cleveland: A Day in the Life of a Famous Disc Jockey, but the film, which includes the very first known footage of Elvis, has never been released.
1964: A riot predictably breaks out during the Rolling Stones first-ever Paris gig, leading to the arrest of 150 concertgoers at the Olympia Theatre.
1966: The Yardbirds (featuring Jimmy Page) record a version of their hit "Over Under Sideways Down" as a jingle for General Foods' Great Shakes beverages.
1968: The Yardbirds end their stage career with a gig at Liverpool University.
1969: The Who begin a six-night run at the Fillmore East in New York, performing their new rock opera "Tommy" in its entirety.
1974: Former Animals lead singer Eric Burdon and his wife Rose celebrate the birth of their first daughter, which they name Mirage. (They will later think better of it and rename her Alexandria.)
1976: Marking time while lead singer Robert Plant recovers from a debilitating car accident, Led Zeppelin release the concert documentary The Song Remains The Same, a document of three 1973 shows at Madison Square Garden interspersed with several slightly ridiculous "fantasy" sequences. Though critical reaction is not kind, it goes on to be a success, as does the obligatory soundtrack album.
1977: Guitarist Steve Gaines, lead singer Ronnie Van Zandt, and backup singer Cassie Gaines of Lynyrd Skynyrd are all killed when the band's small Convair plane runs out of fuel and does down en route from Greenville, SC, to their next gig in Baton Rouge, LA. Crash landing in a forest near Gillsburg, MS, the accident also takes the lives of the band's assistant road manager as well as the two pilots, not to mention severely injuring the rest of the band and most of the other two dozen passengers. The remaining members would not reunite for another decade.
1979: Bob Dylan appears on tonight's episode of NBC's Saturday Night Live to perform three new religious songs from his upcoming album Slow Train Coming, shocking listeners with his new fundamentalist Christian direction.
1994: In a surprise appearance, Bruce Springsteen and Neil Young take the stage during Bob Dylan's concert at New York's Roseland Ballroom and perform "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" and "Highway 61 Revisited" with the legend himself.
1996: Carly Simon cancels a planned show aboard the famous cruise liner Queen Elizabeth II, docked in New York, after she comes down with a bad case of stage fright.
2001: The Concert For New York City, a benefit show for victims of the recent 9/11 terrorist attacks, is staged at Madison Square Garden, featuring (among others) The Who, Elton John, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Billy Joel, James Taylor, and David Bowie.
2003: Jimmy Cliff is awarded Jamaica's prestigious Order of Merit for his contributions to the world of music and movies.
Releases1962: The Four Seasons, "Big Girls Don't Cry"
1969: John Lennon, "Cold Turkey"
Recording1939: Tommy Dorsey, "All The Things You Are"
1954: LaVern Baker, "Tweedle Dee"
1955: Harry Belafonte, "The Banana Boat Song (Day-O)"
1965: The Beatles, "We Can Work It Out"
1967: The Beatles: "The Fool On The Hill," "Hello Goodbye"
Charts1962: Bobby "Boris" Pickett and the Crypt Kickers' "Monster Mash" hits #1
1962: Peter Paul and Mary's LP Peter, Paul and Mary hits #1
1973: The Rolling Stones' "Angie" hits #1
1979: Herb Alpert's "Rise" hits #1
1979: The Eagles' LP The Long Run hits #1