Happy Friday! Time for another edition of This Week in Rock History! On November 8, 2008, a classic rock band found themselves with the #1 album on the Billboard Charts: AC/DC. Black Ice was the band’s 15th album and released on October 17 of that year. The album was produced by the outstanding Brendan O’Brien, and represented the first set of original recordings by the band since 2000. O’Brien’s goal was to aid the band in recapturing their original hard rock sound after they had veered off in a more blues-oriented direction with previous albums Ballbreaker and Stiff Upper Lip. The album featured very little overdubbing, creating a natural, authentic live-type sound for the band. Black Ice became the second best-selling album of 2008, behind the album Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends by the adult-oriented rock band Coldplay. The song “War Machine” won the band the Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock Performance. Sadly, Black Ice was the final studio album by AC/DC to feature the original rhythm guitarist, Malcolm Young, due to his battle with dementia.
And here’s what else happened this week in rock history:
Born This Week in Rock History:
Art Garfunkel: November 5, 1941 (vocals, Simon & Garfunkel)
Gram Parsons: November 5, 1946 (guitar and vocals, The Flying Burrito Brothers)
Glenn Frey: November 6, 1948 (vocals, guitar, and keyboards, The Eagles)
Joni Mitchell: November 7, 1943 (singer-songwriter)
Bonnie Raitt: November 8, 1949 (blues vocalist and guitarist)
Tom Fogerty: November 9, 1941 (guitar, Creedence Clearwater Revival)
Joe Bauchard: November 9, 1948 (bass, Blue Öyster Cult)
Glen Buxton: November 10, 1947 (guitar, Alice Cooper Band)
Greg Lake: November 10, 1947 (bass, guitar, vocals, King Crimson and Emerson, Lake & Palmer)
Died This Week in Rock History:
Billy Murcia: November 6, 1972 (drums, New York Dolls)
Music Releases and Top of the Charts:
The Rolling Stones’ “Get Off of My Cloud” hits #1: November 6, 1965
Bruce Springsteen hits #1 with Tunnel of Love: November 7, 1987
Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin IV was released on November 8, 1971
AC/DC hits #1 with Black Ice: November 8, 2008
Billy Joel, Piano Man was released: November 9, 1973
Elton John’s LP Goodbye Yellow Brick Road hits #1: November 10, 1973
This Week in Rock History:
- A young Bob Dylan, who you may have heard won the Nobel Prize just recently, appeared at Carnegie Hall for the first time on November 4, 1961. Dylan had received some positive press and was able to secure the Carnegie gig. The gig was held in a small auditorium in the building called the Carnegie Chapter Hall. Tickets were priced at $2 and about 50 people attended the show, and most of them were Dylan’s friends. The setlist consisted of the following songs:
- Aerosmith played their first show ever at Nipmuc Regional High School, in Mendon, Massachusettes on November 6, 1970. Aerosmith was able to get the gig because the mother of Joe Perry, guitarist for Aerosmith, who worked at a nearby school, had an “in.” The show’s tickets were priced at $1. Rumor has it that the band may have sneaked a little bit of booze into the show.
“In the Pines”
“A Long Time a-Growin'”
“Fixin’ To Die”
- AC/DC drummer Phil Rudd is charged with attempting a murder-for-hire transaction on November 6, 2014. The alleged hit was on two men, but the charge was dropped the next day. Rudd served as AC/DC’s drummer from 1975 – 1983, and 1994 – 2015.
- The surviving members of Led Zeppelin met to decide on the course of the band after the tragic death of drummer John Bonham on November 6, 1980. Ultimately they decided to dissolve the band.
- On November 7, 1967, musician Elton John and lyricist Bernie Taupin signed their first major publishing deal. This probably made them feel very adult. However, their parents had to be there to witness the signing of the contract since both of the songwriters were still legally minors.
- Bruce Springsteen auctioned off a lasagna dinner at his house to raise money for charity on November 7, 2014. Two fans paid $300,000 for the honor of supping with The Boss at his abode. Not only did they get to partake in his lasagna feast, but they also got to ride around the block in the sidecar of his motorcycle, and they also got the shirt off of his back. Literally. We have no details on how good the lasagna was.
- Paul McCartney launched his new band, Wings, with a party at the Empire Ballroom in London on November 8, 1971.
- John Lennon met his future wife, Yoko Ono, on November 9, 1966 for the first time at the Indica Gallery. Ono would remain a controversial figure throughout the duration of Lennon’s life.
- Guitarist & vocalist David Crosby is fired from his band, the folk -rock group The Byrds, known for hit songs like “Mr. Tambourine Man” and “Turn! Turn! Turn!” The firing occurred on November 9, 1967, when lead guitarist Roger McGuinn and bassist Chris Hillman pulled up to David Crosby’s home in their Porsches and fired him. McGuinn and Hillman told Crosby that he was a) impossible to work with b) not very good anyway and c) that the band would be better off without him. Crosby went on to have enormous success with the band Crosby, Stills & Nash. After all, when one door closes…
- Ahmet Ertegun, the legendary co-founder of Atlantic Records, and Bobby “Blue” Bland received lifetime achievement awards from The Blues Foundation on November 9, 1998.
And that’s a rock and roll wrap!
– Brian M. Reiser,
J&R Adventures / Tribut Apparel