Rock 'n' Roll History for
May 26






1956 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Two months after missing the program because of a devastating car accident, Carl Perkins finally appears on The Perry Como Show. Unfortunately by this time his hit "Blue Suede Shoes" had already peaked in popularity and much of Perkins' career momentum was lost.

1958 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Just four days into Jerry Lee Lewis' tour of England, theatre owners bowed to pressure from the UK press and canceled the thirty-three remaining dates. After headlines that said, "Clear Out This Gang," "Baby Snatcher Go Home", "We Hate Jerry Shout Ex-Fans", and "Lewis: Bigamist", Jerry Lee and his entourage packed their bags for home.

1962 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
The Isley Brothers' "Twist and Shout" is released on Wand Records. It will rise to #17 on the US Pop chart and will be covered two years later by The Beatles, whose version rose to #2.

May 26
Mr. Aker Bilk became the first British artist to have a number one record in America when his clarinet laden instrumental "Stranger On The Shore" topped the Hot 100. It made #2 in the UK.

1963 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Elvis Presley records "(You're The) Devil In Disguise", which will peak at #3 on the Billboard chart and #1 in the UK by next August and be certified Gold by the RIAA for sales in excess of 500,000 units in the US.

1965 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
The Rolling Stones appear on TV's Rock 'n' Roll show, Shindig! along with Jackie De Shannon, Sonny And Cher and Jimmie Rodgers.

1967 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
The Beatles masterpiece, "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" was released in the UK, one week before its American debut. The album took over 700 hours to record under the direction of George Martin and cost $75,000 to produce. A then state-of-the-art four track recorder was used to build each song layer by layer. The LP spent 22 weeks at the top of the UK albums chart and 15 weeks at number one in the US. The iconic album cover, depicting the band posing in front of a collage of celebrities and historical figures, was designed by English pop artists Peter Blake and Jann Haworth based on a sketch by Paul McCartney. "Sgt. Pepper" has now sold over 30 million copies worldwide.

1969 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
John Lennon recorded "Give Peace a Chance" in a room at Hotel La Reine Elizabeth in Montreal, Canada. The voices of Tommy Smothers and Petula Clark can be heard on the chorus. The song was credited to Lennon / McCartney, even though Paul had nothing to do with the record. Lennon may have been showing his appreciation for McCartney's help on "The Ballad of John and Yoko" single, which the two of them recorded without George and Ringo.

1970 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
George Harrison begins recording his landmark album "All Things Must Pass" at EMI's Abby Road studios. The results will produce his biggest hit single, "My Sweet Lord".

1971 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Don McLean records "American Pie". Although he never actually mentions their names, most music lovers assume he is singing about February 3rd, 1959, when Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J. P. Richardson were killed in a plane crash, as 'the day the music died.' When asked about the meaning of the song, McLean responded, "You will find many interpretations of my lyrics, but none of them by me ..."

1973 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Deep Purple's "Smoke On The Water" is released. The song is based on the true story of how someone had fired a flare gun into the ceiling of the Casino in Montreux, Switzerland, during a concert by Frank Zappa And The Mothers Of Invention. The resulting fire destroyed the building where Deep Purple was set to record a live album the next day. The single will reach #5 in the US and #21 in the UK.

May 26
The Edgar Winter Group held down Billboard's top spot with an instrumental track that had been over-dubbed and patched so many times in the studio, the band ended up calling it "Frankenstein". It reached #18 in the UK.

1974 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
14-year old Bernadette Whelan is crushed by the crowd at a London concert of teen idol David Cassidy. She would die four days later. Cassidy is so shaken by the incident, he wouldn't tour again for 11 years.

1976 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page and Robert Plant launch into a drunken verbal assault of first class passengers on a transatlantic British Airways flight. Among those on board were actors Telly Savalas and Dudley Moore.

1977 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
William Powell, an original member of The O'Jays, died in Canton, Ohio after a long bout with cancer. Powell sang with the group until he was forced to quit in 1976 because of ill-health. He was just 35 years old.

1989 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
To demonstrate the power of radio, over 8,000 stations in the US go silent for 30 seconds at 7:42am.

1994 - ClassicBands.com
May 26
Music fans around the world were stunned to learn that 37-year-old Michael Jackson married 27-year-old Lisa Marie Presley in the Dominican Republic. It was his first marriage, her second. Both the bride and groom wore black. Lisa Marie would file for divorce in January of 1996, citing irreconcilable differences.

1997 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Bob Dylan was admitted to a Malibu hospital with chest pains, causing all of his Summer tour to be canceled.

2006 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Desmond Dekker, a Jamaican reggae pioneer famed for his worldwide hit "The Israelites", died of a heart attack at his home in England. He was 64.

2008 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
65 year old Paul McCartney was awarded an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Yale University. University President Richard Levin told McCartney "Here, there and everywhere, you have pushed the boundaries of the familiar to create new classics. We admire your musical genius and your generous support of worthy causes."

2009 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
A US judge ended a bitter two-year battle over the late Soul singer James Brown's estate. Judge Jack Early ruled half of his assets will go to a charitable trust, a quarter to his wife and young son, and the rest to his six adult children. Brown's family and wife Tomi Rae Hynie Brown had fought over his fortune since he died of heart failure in 2006

2010 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
The Season 9 final of TV's American Idol featured guest appearances by Alice Cooper, Barry and Robin Gibb, Hall And Oates, Joe Cocker, Janet Jackson and The Doobie Brothers' Michael McDonald.

2011 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Roger Daltrey, former lead singer of The Who, was forced to cancel three Summer shows in his native Britain due to poor ticket sales.

May 26
Phil Spector had his latest attempt to overturn his murder conviction rejected by California court officials. The 71-year-old record producer was found guilty of the murder of actress Lana Clarkson and sentenced to 19 years to life behind bars in 2009.

May 26
Alice Cooper was forced to cancel his first concert in 30 years when he became too ill to perform at a scheduled concert in Santiago, Chile. The rest of the tour went on without incident.

2013 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Paul McCartney visited Graceland and dropped a personal guitar pick on Elvis Presley's grave, saying it was "So Elvis can play in heaven."

May 26
Clarence Burke, lead singer of The Five Stairsteps, who had a Billboard #8 hit with "O-o-h Child" in 1970, died one day after his 64th birthday.

2014 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
Canadian police charged original Bachman-Turner Overdrive rhythm guitarist Tim Bachman with several sexual offenses that allegedly took place during the 1990s. His arrest came just a year after he was acquitted of similar charges.

2015 - ClassicBands.com

May 26
A Los Angeles Superior Court judge dismissed a choreographer's claim that Michael Jackson had molested him as a child after determining he waited too long to file it in court. Wade Robson had previously denied the Pop superstar molested him and testified in Jackson's defense in a criminal trial in 2005.






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