ON THIS DAY IN MUSIC HISTORY: 2.18.21


964 - The Beatles meet Muhammad Ali (known at the time as Cassius Clay) when they are visiting Miami. He was preparing for his 25 February fight against heavyweight champion Sonny Liston. "I sparred with Cassius Clay, as he was called then – I taught him everything he knew. That was a thrill, of course, and I was putting my money on Liston, so I really knew what was happening!"-Ringo Starr

1966 - Beach Boy Brian Wilson recorded the future classic song 'Good Vibrations', which went on to become the band's third US number-one hit. The making of "Good Vibrations" was unprecedented for any kind of recording. Building upon his approach for Pet Sounds, Wilson recorded a surplus of short, interchangeable musical fragments with his bandmates and a host of session musicians at four different Hollywood studios from February to September 1966, a process reflected in the song's several dramatic shifts in key, texture, instrumentation and mood. Over 90 hours of tape was consumed in the sessions, with the total cost of production estimated to be in the tens of thousands of dollars. Band publicist Derek Taylor dubbed the unusual work a "pocket symphony". It helped develop the use of the studio as an instrument and heralded a wave of pop experimentation and the onset of psychedelic and progressive rock. The track featured a novel mix of instruments, including jaw harp and Electro-Theremin, and although the latter is not a true theremin, the song's success led to a renewed interest and sales of theremins and synthesizers. As a child, his mother told him that dogs could pick up "vibrations" from people, so that the dog would bark at "bad vibrations" Wilson turned this into the general idea for the song. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Getty Images)

1968 - Syd Barrett, one of the founding members of Pink Floyd, left the band and checked into a psychiatric hospital before going into complete seclusion for the rest of his life.

In 1965, as the foursome that became Pink Floyd were finding their musical footing, Barrett had discovered the mind-altering effects of LSD. The turn to psychedelics had a massive impact on the group's direction. Taking their cues from their frontman, Pink Floyd began doing away with the R&B covers that were being imitated by countless other bands from the era and embracing original sounds. And the highly intelligent Barrett, already known for marching to his own peculiar beat, began heavily ingesting LSD and producing song lyrics that were seemingly pulled from unknown realms of the cosmos. But heavy use had a debilitating affect. Syd would refuse to exit the tour bus or if he made it to the stage, instead of playing he would detune his guitar. During interviews he would stare catatonically at the hosts. He was replaced by David Gilmour.

1995 - Guitarist Bob Stinson, a founding member of the Replacements, passed away on this date in 1995. With his brother Tommy on bass and Chris Mars on drums, Stinson formed a group called Dogbreath in 1978, which changed its name to the Replacements shortly after Paul Westerberg joined the band. I helped produce a show with the Replacements in the early 80's. Bob played the show in a t-shirt, black Chuck Taylor high tops and a diaper. Nothing else. He was a wild man on stage. But after the show, sitting around drinking a beer, he was a sweet and quiet guy. RIP.

1998 - Robert Smith of The Cure battles Barbra Streisand on the show South Park. Read about the episode here, it was a classic: Robert Smith fought Mecha-Streisand 20 years ago today! — Post-Punk.com (post-punk.com)

Birthdays:

Skip Battin, of The Byrds and the Flying Burrito Brothers, was born today in 1934.

Yoko Ono is 88.

Bobby Hart (who had the 1968 U.S. No. 8 single with Tommy Boyce, 'I Wonder What She's Doing Tonite', also wrote 'Last Train To Clarksville', 'I'm Not Your Stepping Stone' and 'Scooby Doo Where Are You') is 82.

Juice Newton is 69.

Robbie Bachman from Bachman Turner Overdrive is 68.

John Travolta is 67.

Brian James of The Damned is 66.

Dr. Dre is 56.

On This Day In Music History is sourced from This Day in Music, Paul Shaffer's Day in Rock, Song Facts, Beatles Bible, Biography and Wikipedia.