Rock 'n' Roll History for
May 17






1958 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Ferriday, Louisiana celebrates Jerry Lee Lewis Day with a parade honoring their home town boy who was just about to leave on his fateful tour of England.

1958 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Connie Francis topped the UK chart for the first of six weeks with "Who's Sorry Now", a song that was first recorded by Isham Jones And His Orchestra in 1923. It also reached #4 on the Billboard charts and earned a Gold record for sales of one million copies.

1963 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Pete Seeger, The Weavers and Peter, Paul And Mary were the featured acts at the very first Monterey Folk Festival in Monterey, California.

1969 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
A band calling themselves The Chicago Transit Authority releases their self-titled, debut album, which would eventually peak at number 17. By the end of 1972 the LP had amassed 148 weeks on the chart, making it the longest running album by a Rock group up to that time. The band was later sued by the real Chicago Transit Authority and was forced to shorten their name to Chicago.

May 17
Britain's music magazine, The New Musical Express announces that for the first time ever, LP sales and production have outstripped those of singles in Great Britain.

May 17
For just 35 cents, you could pick up a copy of this month's Rolling Stone magazine with Joni Mitchell on the cover.

1973 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Yes receive Gold records for both "Yessongs" their triple-record live set and "The Yes Album".

1975 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Elton John was awarded a Platinum record for his album "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy". It was the first L.P. to sell one million copies on its first day of release.

May 17
Mick Jagger tripped and in an attempt to break his fall, put his fist through the window of a restaurant in Long Island, New York. Jagger required 20 stitches but the Rolling Stones' North American tour proceeded in two weeks as planned.

May 17
Earth Wind And Fire started a three-week run at the top of the Billboard Hot 200 album chart with the soundtrack to That's The Way Of The World, a motion picture which featured several of the band members in cameo roles.

1980 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Peter Criss dropped out of Kiss and was replaced by drummer Eric Carr. Carr was first heard on the concept album, "The Elder" in 1981. Both Ace Frehley and Criss had been opposed to the idea of "The Elder" and when it bombed, Frehley also quit the band. Criss had co-written Kiss' biggest hit single, "Beth", and the band had to wait until 1990 to return to the US Top 10 when "Forever" made it to number 8.

May 17
Paul and Linda McCartney are the guest hosts of NBC's Saturday Night Live, where they perform their new single, "Coming Up", a recent Billboard number one.

1987 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
A fire destroys Tom Petty's Los Angeles home and causes $800,000 worth of damage. It was later discovered to be the work of an arsonist.

1989 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Promoters in Montreal announced the cancellation of a July 5th reunion concert by The Who because of poor ticket sales. There was heavy demand for tickets for the other 25 dates on the tour.

1992 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Champagne music maker Lawrence Welk died at his home in Santa Monica, California at the age of 89. Our generation laughed at his corny music, but The Lawrence Welk Show was on TV for 30 years.

1993 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Barry Manilow appears on CBS-TV's Murphy Brown, where he sang "I Am Your Child".

1995 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
After all these years, Chuck Berry, Fats Domino and Little Richard appear together for the first time at a concert in Sheffield, England.

2001 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Music publishers Helios Music Corporation sues the band Garbage for plagiarism, saying the song "I Think I'm Paranoid" too closely resembles "Bend Me, Shape Me", a 1968, number 5 hit for The American Breed.

2002 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Songwriter Sharon Sheeley died in a Los Angeles hospital from complications following a cerebral hemorrhage. She was 62. Sheeley wrote "Poor Little Fool" for Ricky Nelson as well as "Dum Dum", a hit for Brenda Lee. Sharon was the girlfriend of Eddie Cochran and was in the London car accident that took Eddie's life on April 17th, 1960.

May 17
The Barry Manilow special, Ultimate Manilow aired on CBS-TV.

2012 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
Donna Summer, often called The Queen Of Disco, died of cancer at the age of 63. During a career that peaked in the '70s, she won five Grammys and sold more than 130 million records worldwide.

2014 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
A 1963 Rickenbacker 425 guitar once owned and played in the studio by George Harrison went up for auction at Manhattan's Hard Rock Cafe. Harrison's axe sold for $657,000.

2015 - ClassicBands.com

May 17
George Harrison's Maton Mastersound guitar, used during the Beatles' live performances in the summer of 1963, sold for $485,000 by Julien's Auctions in New York. Also purchased were a black sequined glove worn by Michael Jackson, a stage-worn tank top that belonged to Madonna and Elvis Presley's tour bus and marriage certificate.






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