Classic Rock Almanac October 3, 2016


2002-U2 singer Bono is named the most powerful man in music by England’s Q magazine.

2000-Ex-Cars singer-bassist Ben Orr dies of pancreatic cancer at his home in Atlanta.

1996-Van Halen and David Lee Roth part ways for the second time, after the singer had recorded two songs for Van Halen’s Greatest Hits. Roth complains that his M-T-V Awards appearance with the band was a publicity stunt and that they never intended to let him rejoin.

1994-Eric Clapton kicks off his Nothing but the Blues tour in Montreal.

1989-David Bowie‘s Sound + Vision box set is released.

1988-Imagine, a John Lennon documentary film, has its premiere.

1981-The Kinks play New York’s Madison Square Garden for the first time.

1980-Bruce Springsteen‘s tour-launching show in Ann Arbor, Michigan gets off to an inauspicious start when he forgets the words to his opening number, “Born to Run.” Things get better when local hero Bob Seger joins him to sing “Thunder Road.”

1977-Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, Wreckless Eric and Ian Dury kick off the Live Stiffs tour in England.

1970-“Lookin’ Out My Back Door” becomes Creedence Clearwater Revival‘s fifth and final single to peak at number-two on Billboard‘s singles chart. (Despite 10 gold and platinum 45s, the band never had a number-one single.)

1969-Blues singer-guitarist Skip James, who influenced Eric Clapton and others, dies at age 67.

1967-Folksinger Woody Guthrie dies of Huntington’s chorea at age 55.


Tommy Lee (Thomas Bass) – 54 years old
Motley Crue/Methods of Mayhem/ex-Rock Star Supernova drummer. He was married to Pamela Anderson (with whom he made a notorious sex video) and starred in a 2005 reality show (Tommy Lee Goes to College). Born in 1962.

Stevie Ray Vaughan – Died in 1990
The Texas guitar great died in a helicopter crash near East Troy, Wisconsin August 27th, 1990. He was 35. born in 1954.

Lindsey Buckingham – 69 years old
The singer-guitarist, along with then-girlfriend Stevie Nicks, joined Fleetwood Mac in the mid-’70s. His “Go Your Own Way” helped the former British blues band complete its metamorphosis to American pop-rock. He helped produce and sang backup on Walter Egan‘s Top 10 hit “Magnet and Steel” and hit the Top 10 on his own with the 1981 single “Trouble.” Born in 1947.

Chubby Checker (Ernest Evans) – 75 years old
The South Carolina native grew up in Philadelphia, where, helped by American Bandstand‘s Dick Clark, he launched the biggest dance craze ever. His cover of Hank Ballard‘s “The Twist” is still the only 45 ever to top the national charts twice more than a year apart. But Chubby was no one-trick pony. His 34 hits spent a total of 373 weeks — more than six years — on the charts! Born in 1941.

Eddie Cochran – Died in 1960
The gifted ’50s singer-guitarist was one of rock’s early casualties. A Minnesota native who grew up in California, he co-wrote, played and sang such hits as “Summertime Blues,” “Somethin’ Else” and “C’mon Everybody.” His songs became staples of ’60s and ’70s rock, covered by The Who, Blue Cheer, Humble Pie, The Sex Pistols and many other acts. Cochran appeared in the films The Girl Can’t Help It, Go Johnny Go and Untamed Youth. He died in an April 17th, 1960 car wreck en route to London’s Heathrow Airport at the end of a hugely successful British tour. He was 21. Born in 1938.


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