This Day in Music History – November 16

Queen live in 1978
Nov 16, 2016

Born on this day 1873: W. C. Handy, American composer and musician known as the “Father of the Blues” (Memphis Blues, St Louis Blues), born in Florence, Alabama He died in 1958. In 1916 Herb Abramson, producer, songwriter and co-founder of Atlantic records was born. He produced Tommy Tucker’s 1964 hit ‘High Heeled Sneakers.’ He died on 9th November 1999.

In 1960 “Stay” by Maurice Williams & The Zodiacs hit No. 1 Billboard Pop chart. The song would regain popularity in 1987 when it was released on the soundtrack to Dirty Dancing.

Also in 1960, Patsy Cline recorded “I Fall To Pieces” during an afternoon session at the Bradley Film & Recording Studio in Nashville

In 1962, The Beatles recorded their second appearance on Radio Luxembourg, for the program The Friday Spectacular. The Beatles were interviewed and then they played in front of a live audience both sides of their latest single, “Love Me Do” and “P.S. I Love You”.

Born on this day in 1964: Diana Krall, Canadian singer, songwriter. She has become one of the best selling jazz artists of all-time. She was nominated for Album of the Year at the 2000 Grammy Awards. She won three Juno awards in 2002: Artist of the Year, Album of the Year and Best Vocal Jazz Album of the Year.

Diana Krall at the Melody Tent 2015

Born in 1966, Christian Lorenz, German keyboardist of Rammstein, was born in East Berlin, East Germany.
In 1968, The Jimi Hendrix Experience went to No.1 on the US album chart with Electric Ladyland. The double album included “Crosstown Traffic,” “Voodoo Chile” and “All Along the Watchtower” and featured guest appearances by Dave Mason, Steve Winwood and Al Kooper. Barry Ryan was at No.1 on the Disc & Echo UK singles chart with “Elosie”. Led Zeppelin played their first ever show in the North of England when they appeared at Manchester College of Science & Technology. Zeppelin was paid £225 for the gig.

In 1971, Frank Zappa appeared on this week’s UK TV music show the Old Grey Whistle Test, playing live and showing clips from his 200 Motels film. On the same show in 1976,  Beach Boy Brian Wilson, came out of an eight-year seclusion to give an interview to the BBC 2 music show.

On November 16, 1973 David Bowie hosted a special edition of the ABC show Midnight Special. His show was called “1980 Floor Show”, which featured Bowie doing a duet of “I Got You Babe” with Marianne Faithfull, who wore a nun’s habit with an open back.


In 1977, Rush’s LPs 2112, All The World’s A Stage, and A Farewell To Kings are certified gold.


In 1978,  Replicating their infamous promo stunt for the single, Queen are joined onstage at Madison Square Garden by several dozen nude, semi-overweight women during their performance of Bicycle Race. (Overweight because the single mentions Fat Bottomed Girls, the title of the other half of the A-side.) On this day in 2006, the band’s Greatest Hits album was declared the Best Selling UK album of all time by The Official UK Charts Company. The chart which was made up of sales figures from the last fifty years showed Queen’s Greatest Hits compilation had sold 5,407,587 copies. The Beatles occupied second place with Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band.

In 1985, Starship started a two week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with “We Built This City”, it made No.12 in the UK. U2 launched their own record label ‘Mother Records.’ The intent was ‘to unearth fresh musical talent in Ireland’ and the label released several one-off single releases for The Hothouse Flowers, In Tua Nua and Cactus World News among others.

Twenty-nine years later in 2014, U2 singer Bono was involved in what doctors called a “high energy bicycle accident.” The singer was rushed to New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center’s emergency department and underwent five hours of surgery. The injury forced the group to postpone a planned week-long residency on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon.

In 1987, Former Clash drummer Topper Headon was jailed for 15 months at Maidstone Crown Court, England for supplying heroin to a man who later died.

November 16 was a big day for Garth Brooks. In 1991 his interpretation of the Billy Joel song “Shameless” rose to #1 on the Billboard country chart and in 1994, his album Ropin’ The Wind was certified for shipments of 10 million copies, making him the first country artist to reach that plateau with two different releases.


On November 16, 1998, Spice Girl Emma “Baby Spice” Bunting announced that she will appear in a new musical version of The Sleeping Beauty for the BBC.

In 2001, the city of Palm Springs, California unveiled a statue in its downtown area honoring the late Sonny Bono, of Sonny And Cher fame and mayor of the city for a time in the ’80s.

In 2002, Texan multi-billionaire David Bonderman hired The Rolling Stones to play at his 60th birthday party held at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. The bands fee was £4.4m. ($8.4m)


In 2005 , Pink Floyd, The Kinks and Eurythmics were inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame. The second annual show, which took place in a ceremony at London’s Alexandra Palace, featured some momentous reunions, including the gathering of the original Kinks and a performance by the classic line-up of Black Sabbath, featuring Ozzy Osbourne.

Also on this day in 2005, I Walk the Line: A Night for Johnny Cash aired on CBS. U2, Kris Kristofferson, Jerry Lee Lewis, Brad Paisley, Martina McBride, Dwight Yoakam, Norah Jones, Sheryl Crow, Kid Rock, Reese Witherspoon, Joaquin Phoenix and Alison Krauss all paid tribute to the singer.
In 2010, singer-songwriter Avril Lavigne divorced Sum 41 lead singer and guitarist Deryck Whibley due to irreconcilable differences after 3 years of marriage

In 2012, Curb released Lee Brice’s “I Drive Your Truck” to radio. Lee Brice 2015 South Shore Music Circus