Saturday, January 28, 2017

This Date in Rock Music History: January 29

1955:  The Penguins had the first #1 R&B song of the year, "Earth Angel", and it remained in that spot for the third straight week.

R.E.M., Destiny's Child and Roy Orbison

We're just a little over one week away from the fanfare of The Top 100 Artists of the Rock Era*, which is, like The Top 500 Songs of the Rock Era*, one of our signature music specials.

The Top 100 Artists of the Rock Era* gets underway a week from Monday, February 6.  It's easy to remember because it starts the day after the Super Bowl.

We'll keep pointing this out during the special, but keep in mind that the artists in several parts of The Top 100* and just outside are very close to each other.  The difference between making the elite list and being on the outside looking in is about 2-3 big hits, or another 5 million albums sold or just a little more airplay.  I call this the error rate.

In the range from #95 to about #120, that little extra success is the difference, so for the artists in that range, the error rate is + or - 12.5.  The error rate represents the difference in how one weighs the factors that go into the rankings.  If you think hit songs are the most important thing, one artist might do better than they would have done in these rankings.  If you believe that album sales are about the only thing that matters, another artist might be placed above.

Again, we'll point that out throughout the special.  We factored in album sales, hit songs, other solid Top Tracks* on each album, concert sales, radio airplay and awards won.  We believe that by factoring in all of those categories, it fairly ranks each artist, whether they had "hit songs" or not.

In these last few weeks, we've been revealing some of the great artists just outside of The Top 100*.  R.E.M. certainly have had an amazing career--they are just shy of making the list.  As we get closer to next Monday, the artists are even closer to making the elite list.

Destiny's Child may have launched the solo career of BeyoncĂ©, but they were big stars in their own right.  They too are just outside of The Top 100*.

Roy Orbison was one of the stars early in the Rock Era and his solo work is also highly commendable.

Don't miss a day of The Top 100 Artists of the Rock Era*, one of the cream of the crop of music specials, brought to you exclusively by Inside The Rock Era beginning February 6!

Friday, January 27, 2017

This Date in Rock Music History: January 28

1956:  Elvis Presley appeared on national television for the first time on The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show on CBS, performing "Shake, Rattle And Roll," "Flip, Flop And Fly" and "I Got A Woman".  Comedian and Stage Show producer Jackie Gleason said afterward, "He can't last. I tell you flatly, he can't last."

Johnny Cash, James Brown and Sheryl Crow

Although Johnny Cash, James Brown and Sheryl Crow have never been ranked in The Top 100 Artists of the Rock Era*, we want to recognize them for their great work.  All three are close to making the elite list--another three or four big hits would have done it.

The music spectacular kicks off Monday, February 6, the day after the Super Bowl, exclusively on Inside The Rock Era!

Thursday, January 26, 2017

This Date in Rock Music History: January 27

1956:  One of the most historic days of the Rock Era--Elvis Presley released the single "Heartbreak Hotel".  RCA had just purchased Elvis's contract from Sun Records for $35,000.  It seems the investment paid off.
1958:  Little Richard entered Oakwood Theological College in Huntsville, Alabama, where he was ordained as a Seventh Day Adventist Minister.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

This Date in Rock Music History: January 26

1956:  Buddy Holly recorded at Decca Records for the first time, using the name Buddy and the Two Tones, laying down "Blue Days, Black Nights", "Don't Come Back Knockin'", "Love Me" and "Midnight Shift" at Owen Bradley's Barn Studio in Nashville, Tennessee.
1957:  "Blue Monday" by Fats Domino was #1 on the R&B chart.
1960:  Frankie Avalon appeared on The Arthur Murray Party on NBC-TV as a dancer.
1961:  Elvis Presley had his sixth #1 song in the U.K. with "Are You Lonesome Tonight".
1963:  The hard-working Beatles performed two concerts, one at the El Rio Club and Dance Hall in Macclesfield, Cheshire, England with Wayne Fontana and the Jets opening.  The group then drove 20 miles to King's Hall, Stoke-on-Trent in Staffordshire for a night concert.
1963:  The Rooftop Singers moved to #1 on the Easy Listening chart with "Walk Right In".

Butch Trucks Has Died

Butch Trucks, drummer for the Allman Brothers Band and the uncle of guitarist Derek Trucks, who joined the group in 1999, died yesterday in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Trucks, a co-founder of the group, was 69.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

This Date in Rock Music History: January 25

1958:  "Jailhouse Rock" by Elvis Presley became the first single to debut on the U.K. chart at #1.
1960:  Sam Cooke recorded "Chain Gang" at the RCA Recording Studios in New York City.

Monday, January 23, 2017

This Date in Rock Music History: January 24

1958:  The Quarrymen performed at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, England, the group's first and last performance there until they changed their name to the Beatles.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

This Date in Rock Music History: January 23

1957:  The movie Don't Knock the Rock, starring Bill Haley & the Comets and Little Richard, premiered in Australia.  Haley & his group, who were touring in Australia, attended the opening.  The movie had premiered in New York City on December 12.
1961:  All signs were that Connie Francis had a big hit.  "Where the Boys Are" moved from 90 to 42.