Historic Events In Music – The Week of November 17
1954: The first pocket-sized transistor radio, the Regency TR-1, is mass-marketed for $49.95. That’s about $430 adjusted for inflation.
1955: RCA buys Elvis’s contract from Sun Records for $35,000—not a bad deal in retrospect.
1956: Fats Domino appears on the Ed Sullivan Show performing ‘Blueberry Hill.’ Before the song became a rock and roll standard it had been recorded by various artists including Louis Armstrong, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, Gene Autry and Jimmy Dorsey. The version by Fats Domino has been ranked No.82 in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.
1960: U.S. patent #2,960,900 is granted to Fender for the “offset waist” design of its Jazzmaster and Jaguar guitars. Gibson’s introduction of the Firebird with its asymmetrical reverse body shape touches off a dispute between the two guitar makers. Avoiding a court battle, Gibson will redesign the Firebird in 1965 with a non-reverse body style.
1976: Jerry Lee Lewis is busted for drunk driving after plunging his Rolls Royce into a ditch at 9 am. The Killer’s on a roll when he’s arrested the next day at Graceland where he’s brandishing a Derringer while insisting on seeing Elvis.
1987: Adopting the guise of a country-rock band called The Dalton Brothers, U2 opens for themselves at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. U2 developed the collective alter ego during the third leg of the Joshua Tree tour. The Daltons consist of Betty Dalton (Adam Clayton), Luke Dalton (Edge), Alton Dalton (Bono), and Duke Dalton (Larry Mullen, Jr.). Wearing wigs, sunglasses, and C&W-style clothing, they play just a few songs and go unrecognized by most fans.
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