This week in music: higher education from the music geek

Musically speaking, many exciting things happened this week in history.  Here are a few of my favorites:

Story of the Week:

Patricia Anne Boyd – Rock Muse

This week in 1966, George Harrison married Patricia Anne Boyd.  Unlike Jenny (867-5309), L-O-L-A Lola, or Eleanor Rigby, Patricia’s name doesn’t show up in any song, but she was the inspiration for more than her share.

Harrison wrote “Something,” “I Need You,” and “Isn’t it a Pity” about her.  That alone would be pretty impressive, but her story doesn’t end there.

She left Harrison for fellow rock god Eric Clapton, who wrote three of his own chart-topping odes to the former model: “Layla,” “Wonderful Tonight,” and “Bell Bottom Blues.”

Not bad for a girl who started out washing people’s hair in a salon.

Jazz’s Coming Out Party

1944 – The Metropolitan Opera House in New York City hosts its first jazz concert with an all-star lineup – Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton, and Artie Shaw all played to a packed house.   If you want to hear a star-studded, historic recording, check out “Esquire Jazz Concert – Metropolitan Opera”.

Ozzy Gets Hungry

1982 – During a concert in Des Moines, Iowa, singer and notorious madman Ozzy Osborne was playing a preconcert game with the audience when he got the surprise of a lifetime.  After throwing raw meat at his loyal fans (as per usual), the crowd responded by throwing all sorts of debris back at him, including a live bat, which Ozzy mistook for a plastic one, and bit the head off of it (as anyone would).  Ozzy spent the rest of the night in the hospital being tested for rabies.  I wonder if he had a tox screen?

Say it ain’t so!

1996 – In a story that surprised absolutely nobody, Lisa Marie Presley, the daughter of the King of Rock and Roll, filed for divorce from Michael Jackson, the King of Pop.

The marriage had lasted a robust 20 months, which is equal to 15 years when adjusted for celebrity time.

Born this week:

Janis Joplin – 60’s scratchy voiced rock star.

Dolly Parton – country star with two famously large assets.

Sam Cooke – Soul god.

Robert Palmer – he’s “Addicted to Love.”

Kid Rock – contributed to haute couture style by bringing back the wifebeater.

Aaliyah – promising young singer who died too soon in a plane crash in 2001.

Gene Krupa – the most well known drummer of the big band era – look up “Gene Krupa – Sing, Sing, Sing” on Youtube.  He was pretty fabulous, without being too showy.

Died this week:

Jester Hairston – composer and performer of great spiritual music.  Also acted and conducted.

Carl Perkins – a member of three halls of fame: Rock and Roll, Nashville Songwriters, and Rockabilly.  Not too shabby.

Wilson Pickett – “wicked, wicked, Wilson Pickett” – in a decades-long career, had over 50 songs on the U.S. R&B charts.  “Mustang Sally” is my favorite.

“Colonel” Tom Parker – rewrote the book on managing and promoting talent while helping Elvis become the King.  Also reportedly took up to half of Elvis’ money during that time.


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