Rock 'n' Roll History for
May 14






1955 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Bo Diddley's tune "Bo Diddley" debuts on the US R&B chart, where it will stay for 18 weeks, climbing to #1. The song will become his most successful record and introduces what will be known as the Bo Diddley beat.

1956 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Buddy Holly is fitted with contact lenses for his 20 / 800 eyes by Lubbock optometrist Dr. J. Davis Armistead. Although they cost him $125, Holly can't get used to them and will revert to his trademark glasses.

1957 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Elvis Presley inhales a cap from one of his teeth and has to be taken to a Los Angeles hospital to have it removed from his lung. He was released the next day.

1962 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
15 year old Helen Shapiro becomes the youngest entertainer to headline at the London Palladium.

1964 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Jan And Dean record "Little Old Lady From Pasadena", which will enter the Billboard Pop chart in July and top out at #3 by the first of August.

1966 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
The Kingsmen's "Louie Louie" enters the Billboard Hot 100 for the ninth time. This time it only stayed on the charts for two weeks, going to #97. When it was first released in 1963, it made it to #2 during a thirteen week run.

1968 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
John Lennon and Paul McCartney appear on NBC-TV's Tonight Show with guest-host Joe Garagiola sitting in for Johnny Carson. The conversation included some light hearted banter about meditation, the forming of Apple Corps. and song writing.

May 14
The Rascals record "People Got To Be Free", a song written by the group because of the assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy. It will become their fourth and final million-selling single.

1976 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
33 year old Keith Relf, former lead singer for The Yardbirds, was electrocuted while tuning a guitar which was not properly grounded. The accident happened in his West London home where he was found by his eight year old son, still holding the plugged-in electric guitar. His voice can be heard on such British Invasion classics as "For Your Love", "Heart Full of Soul", "I Ain't Got You", and "Shapes of Things".

1977 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
"When I Need You" becomes Leo Sayer's second straight Billboard number one single, following last January's "You Make Me Feel Like Dancing". It was also #1 in the UK.

1983 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Spandau Ballet topped the UK album chart with their third studio LP, "True". The title track spent four weeks at #1 on the UK singles charts, and went to #4 in America.

1985 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Michael Jackson receives a humanitarian award from US President Ronald Reagan at the White House.

1988 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Atlantic Records celebrates its 40th anniversary with a star-studded bash at New York's Madison Square Garden. The show features reunions of Led Zeppelin, The Bee Gees, The Rascals, Genesis, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Wilson Pickett, The Coasters, Yes, Foreigner, and many others.

1993 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
The acoustic guitar that Elvis Presley used to make his first recordings, "That's All Right Mama" and "Blue Moon of Kentucky" in 1954, sold for $152,000 at an auction in London, England.

1995 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
The Rolling Stones sold out two New York-area stadium shows in 81 minutes, an average of 1400 tickets every 60 seconds.

1998 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Frank Sinatra died at the age of 82 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Beverly Hills. He enjoyed his first hit record in April, 1940 with "Polka Dots and Moonbeams" and went on to have over 30 US and 40 UK Top 40 singles, selling over 150 million records worldwide. His final entry on the Hot 100 had come in 1980 with "Theme From New York, New York". He would be buried at Desert Memorial Park in Cathedral City, California on May 20th with a tombstone that reads The Best Is Yet To Come.

May 14
George Michael plead no contest to charges of lewd behavior in Beverly Hills Municipal Court. He was fined $810, sentenced to 80 hours of community service and ordered to undergo psychological counseling.

2000 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Tom Jones' album "Reload" was at the top of the UK album chart, making him the oldest artist (60) to ever score a UK #1 album with new material.

2002 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley and Little Richard were presented with the Icon Award as part of the fiftieth annual BMI Pop Awards at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills.

2004 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Phil Spector was arrested after getting into a scuffle with his chauffeur at his California mansion. The 64 year old record producer was taken into custody and later released after a June 14 court date was set.

2009 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Britain's The Sun newspaper printed a story that claimed that Michael Jackson had been diagnosed with skin cancer after doctors spotted pre-cancerous cells on his face and neck.

May 14
Two weeks after he appeared on American Idol, Neil Diamond topped the Billboard Hot 200 album chart for the first time in his career when "Home Before Dark" went to number one. The closest he came before was with the 1973 soundtrack to "Jonathan Livingston Seagull", which reached #2.

2012 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Ringo Starr revealed that he has lost his personal Beatle photographs. "I don't know where they are," he said with a sigh. "I wish I did. There's been several moves and things happen."

2013 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
The Massachusetts Appeals Court reinstated a defamation lawsuit filed by Boston founder Tom Scholz against the ex-wife of the band's late lead singer, Brad Delp. Delp committed suicide in 2007 and Scholz claimed that remarks Micki Delp made to the Boston Herald could be construed as blaming Scholz for his death. Lower courts had ruled that Micki was stating her opinions, and were therefore considered protected speech under the First Amendment. In November, 2015, The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court also ruled against Scholz.

2015 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Blues legend B.B. King passed away at the age of 89. In a career that spanned over 60 years, he won 15 Grammy Awards and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

May 14
Exam board AQA, which sets and marks papers for about half of all GCSE exams taken by 16-year-old British high-school students, announced plans to introduce questions about three songs from The Beatles' album "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" into their music curriculum in September 2016. The songs included "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds", "Within You, Without You", and "With A Little Help From My Friends".

2016 - ClassicBands.com

May 14
Tony Barrow, the Beatles press officer who coined the term "Fab Four," died at his home in Morecambe, England, just three days after his 80th birthday.






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