Rock 'n' Roll History for
March 8






1959 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Just four weeks after being released, Frankie Avalon's "Venus" tops the US singles chart. Al Martino was offered the song first, but turned it down.

1962 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
The Beatles, with Pete Best on drums, make their television debut when they play Roy Orbison's "Dream Baby" on the BBC program Teenager's Turn. It was reportedly the first time they wore suits on stage.

1963 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
25,000 people attended the funeral for Country singer Patsy Cline, killed three days earlier in a plane crash near Camden, Tennessee.

March 8
The Four Tops ink a deal with Berry Gordy's Motown label and receive a $400 signing bonus.

1964 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
The Dave Clark Five make their first of thirteen appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show where they perform their current #20 hit, "Glad All Over". The song would peak at #6 in America one month later.

1966 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Lulu became the first British female singer to appear behind the Iron Curtain when she toured Poland with The Hollies.

1968 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Bill Graham opens The Fillmore East in an abandoned movie theater in New York City. The opening acts are Albert King and Tim Buckley along with Big Brother And The Holding Company.

1973 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Paul McCartney pleads guilty to charges of growing marijuana outside his Scottish countryside farm and is fined $240. Paul says that a fan gave him the seeds and he didn't know what they would grow.

March 8
Ron "Pigpen" McKernan of The Grateful Dead, died of a stomach hemorrhage and liver failure, brought on by alcohol poisoning. He was just 27 years old.

1975 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Olivia Newton-John's "Have You Never Been Mellow" becomes her second Billboard number one record. She would go on to have three more.

March 8
The New Musical Express announces that The Rolling Stones have chosen Wayne Perkins to replace the recently departed Mick Taylor. Two weeks later, The Stones themselves will issue a statement saying that Ron Wood will fill the position. Mick Jagger would say, "No matter how great Wayne Perkins is...he plays very similar to Mick Taylor."

March 8
Actor Telly Savalas topped the UK chart with a spoken word rendition of Bread's 1971 hit "If".

1976 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Former Spooky Tooth singer Gary Wright is awarded a Gold record for "Dream Weaver".

1990 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Rolling Stone magazine let Jefferson Airplane know exactly how they felt about the group's reforming when they named their new album as the Most Unwanted Comeback of the Year. The L.P. featured all of the main members from the band's glory days, but little has been heard from the Airplane since this embarrassment.

2003 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Adam Faith suffered a fatal heart attack at the age of 62. He was one of England's major Pop stars in the early 1960s and enjoyed a run of eleven British Top 20 hits prior to the arrival of The Beatles.

2006 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Boy George pleaded guilty in Manhattan criminal court to a misdemeanor charge of filing a false police report over a burglary. Judge Anthony Ferrara returned a sentence of a conditional discharge that required George to undergo a drug treatment program in Salisbury, England and to perform five days of community service in Manhattan.

2007 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Roy Head's son, 28 year-old Jason "Sundance" Head, was voted off the American Idol TV program in a move that shocked even the judges. "Sundance, you've been one of our finest. I'm speechless," said Paula Abdul. Sundance received a further blow after the show was over when he was told his cousin, Burl Head, died in a house fire in Houston. Burl had reportedly given Sundance $1,500 for his stay in Los Angeles during the competition. Sundance's father Roy reached the Billboard Top 40 three times in 1965, including the #2 hit "Treat Her Right".

2011 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Bernard St. Clair Lee, a baritone singer and original member of The Hues Corporation, who had an early Disco hit in 1974 with "Rock the Boat", died of natural causes at the age of 66.

2013 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Peter Banks, who co-founded Yes with Chris Squire in 1968, passed away at the the age of 65. Banks played on the band's first two albums, 1969's "Yes" and 1970's "Time and a Word" before being dismissed over disagreements about the group's direction.

2015 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
Lew Soloff, the trumpeter who played the memorable solo on the album version of Blood, Sweat & Tears' "Spinning Wheel", died following a heart attack at the age of 71.

2016 - ClassicBands.com

March 8
George Martin, who signed The Beatles to EMI in 1962 and went on to produce most of their catalog, passed away at the age of 90. In total, Martin produced 23 number ones on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, 19 of which were by The Beatles. He also produced chart topping hits for Paul McCartney ("Say Say Say" with Michael Jackson and "Ebony and Ivory" with Stevie Wonder), Elton John ("Candle in the Wind 1997") and America ("Sister Golden Hair"). In a statement to the press, McCartney said, "From the day that he gave The Beatles our first recording contract, to the last time I saw him, he was the most generous, intelligent and musical person I've ever had the pleasure to know."






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