Here’s what happened today in Rock History:
Gibson Mandolin Company is formed. Gibson’s first electric guitar the ES-150 was produced in 1936, and in 1946 Gibson introduced the P-90 single-coil pickup, which was eventually used on the first Les Paul model made in 1952.
The real Eleanor Rigby died in her sleep of unknown causes at the age of 44. The 1966 Beatles’ song that featured her name wasn’t really written about her, as Paul McCartney’s first draft of the song named the character Miss Daisy Hawkins. Eleanor Rigby’s tombstone was noticed in the 1980s in the graveyard of St. Peter’s Parish Church in Woolton, Liverpool, a few feet from where McCartney and Lennon had met for the first time in 1957.
David Lee Roth is born.
Elvis Presley’s “Love Me Tender” entered the Billboard chart for a nineteen-week stay. It was #1 for five of those weeks. The song, from Presley’s first film of the same name, was adapted from the tune “Aura Lee”, written in 1861.
Neil Diamond went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Cracklin’ Rosie’, his first No.1 as an artist. Diamond who had spent his early career as a songwriter in the Brill Building wrote the 1966 No.1 hit ‘I’m A Believer’ for The Monkees.
Joe Perry and Steve Tyler from Aerosmith were injured after a cherry bomb was thrown on stage during a gig in Philadelphia. The group performed behind a safety fence for the rest of the tour.
The funeral took place of Led Zeppelin’s drummer John Bonham ‘Bonzo’ was found dead at guitarists Jimmy Page’s house of what was described as asphyxiation, after inhaling his own vomit after excessive vodka consumption, (40 shots in 4 hours) aged 32.
The three members of ZZ Top made advance bookings for seats on the first passenger flight to the Moon.
Whitesnake went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Here I Go Again’, a No.9 hit in the UK in 1987.
Sting topped a list of the worst lyricists ever, for name-dropping Russian novelist Vladimir Nabokov in The Police tune “Don’t Stand So Close to Me,” quoting a Volvo bumper sticker (“If You Love Someone Set Them Free”), and co-opting the works of Chaucer, St. Augustine and Shakespeare. The survey in Blender magazine placed Rush drummer Neil Peart at No. 2, Creed frontman Scott Stapp at No. 3 and Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher at No. 4 saying Gallagher “seemed incapable of following a metaphor through a single line, let alone a whole verse.”