1959 - Mercury Records released 'White Lightning' by George Jones, which became the first No.1 single of his career. In his 1997 autobiography, I Lived To Tell It All, Jones mentions the fact that the recording process of 'White Lightning' was extremely lengthy after he arrived for the recording session under the influence of a great deal of alcohol and it took him approximately 80 takes just to record his vocals.
1964 - The Beatles made their live U.S. television debut on CBS-TV's The Ed Sullivan Show. They performed five songs, including their No. 1 hit at the time, "I Want To Hold Your Hand." An estimated 73 million people watched the program. Prior to the broadcast, CBS received more than 50,000 applications for the 728 seats in the TV studio. (Photo by Getty Images)
And it sent many viewers on completely new paths in their lives.
Among those watching is 13-year-old Tom Petty, who becomes motivated to form a band.
Bob Weir credited The Beatles as one of the reasons Mother McCree’s Uptown Jug Champions ( a precursor to the Grateful Dead) decided to drop traditional folk music and go electric.
Toto guitarist Steve Lukather said for him, “Life went from black and white to color. There was life pre-Beatles and life post-Beatles, and nothing was ever the same.
E Street band member Steven Van Zandt said, “On February 8th, there were no bands in America. On February 10th, everybody had a band in their garage.”
1970 - The Doors release their fifth studio album, Morrison Hotel. Often dubbed the Doors' blues album, due to raucous opener "Roadhouse Blues," one of the band's most enduring tunes. "You Make Me Feel" and "Maggie M'ill" follow the blues vein. There's the boogie of "Peace Frog" and Ship of Fools" crosses jazz, R&B, and pop. "Waiting for the Sun" was a psychedelic holdover from the 1968 album bearing the same title. Blues and R&B were foundational to the Doors' musical vocabulary. They employed them to some degree on all of their albums, but never as consistently, adeptly, or provocatively as they did on Morrison Hotel
1993 - Dinosaur Jr. release their fifth studio album, Where You Been. Occasionally moody and dark but otherwise is more rough fun from the band. It's a puréed blast of punk, classic rock, and more.
Ernest Tubb, the Texas Troubadour, was born on this day in 1914. Tubb is country music personified. He was among the first of the honky tonk singers and the first to achieve national recognition. Starting in 1944 and for 15 years only 4 of his 54 singles failed to crack the Top Ten. When he joined the Grand Ole Opry he became the first musician to use an electric guitar in the Opry.
Carole King is 82. Since penning her first number one hit at age 17, Carole King became one of the brightest musical talents of all time, first as a songwriter for other acts and then as a groundbreaking and history-changing solo artist. King started out as a songwriter in the legendary Brill Building in the late '50s, composing hits like Little Eva's "The Loco-Motion," the Drifters' "Up on the Roof," "Will You Love Me Tomorrow," which the Shirelles scored a number one hit with.
King eventually applied her gift for songcraft to her own albums, reaching new levels of artistry and commercial success with 1971's landmark Tapestry. The album's flawless confluence of melodic hooks and soft rock textures would help define the entire era it soundtracked, going on to sell over 25 million units and consistently staying on the charts for over five years.
Joe Ely is 77. Ely started out as a rebel in Texas music and eventually became one of the Lone Star State's most respected elder statesmen of music, weaving effortlessly from acoustic balladry to high-energy blues, rockabilly, and honky tonk swing.
Interesting note, The Clash were big fans of Ely's Honky Tonk Masquerade album and that lead not only to a friendship, but they toured together as well. Joe helped them with the Spanish on "Should I Stay Or Should I Go".
"I'm singing all the Spanish verses on that, and I even helped translate them. I translated them into Tex-Mex and Strummer kind of knew Castilian Spanish, because he grew up in Spain in his early life. And a Puerto Rican engineer (Eddie Garcia) kind of added a little flavor to it. So it's taking the verse and then repeating it in Spanish."
Bill Haley died in 1981. The neglected hero of early rock & roll. He was playing rock & roll before it even had a name, and selling it in sufficient quantities, pre-dating Elvis and many other pioneers.
His classic, "Rock Around the Clock" topped the charts for eight weeks in the spring and summer of 1955, an event that most music historians identify as the dawn of the rock & roll era.
On This Day In Music History was sourced, copied, pasted, edited, and occasionally woven together with my own crude prose, from This Day in Music, Song Facts, Salon, Allmusic and Wikipedia.