Aug 13, 2020
By Gene Stevens
There’s never a week that’s short of music news as we look back every Sunday to ‘This Week in Zoomer Music‘ – but this particular week is especially packed with monumental events – worth remembering and saluting. Sunday (16th) marks the anniversary of two legends’ passing: Elvis Presley in 1977 and Aretha Franklin in 2018. It’s also Madonna’s birthday, and one of the 3 days during which Woodstock was held in 1969. That’s just for starters.
This week has several key moments in Elvis’ life and career including his release of his career’s biggest hit single: ‘Don’t Be Cruel‘ and ‘Hound Dog’ in 1956. That was one year after he signed Colonel Tom Parker as a ‘special adviser’. It’s also the sad anniversary of his mother’s death in 1958 – a day that forever changed Elvis’ life, and an event that haunted him – some say – till his own death in the same week 19 years later.
It’s also a notable week for Beatles’ fans. It was 60 years ago this week, Pete Best was auditioned and hired to join ‘Silver Beatles’ as they were heading off to Hamburg for the first time. Just two years later – in this same week – the band gave ‘the Beatle Boot’ to Pete, replacing his with Ringo Starr. Things then happened very fast, as just two years later, their first film ‘A Hard Day’s NIght’ premiered this week in 1964. It was an ‘instant classic’, loved by critics and fans. Just a year later the Beatles sold out Shea Stadium in New York and set a then-record of 55,600 fans to see a rock concert; by far the most to that date. Roll ahead to 1985, and it was this week that Paul’s one-time friend, Michael Jackson, beat out a bid by Paul to buy the publishing rights to 250 Beatles songs.
I’m looking forward to telling you more about all these – and other – stories of a simply fascinating week in music history. But ‘the main event’ will be our feature on Elvis Presley’s live performances: from his breakthrough at The Louisiana Hayride and those first TV appearances in the mid-50s, to his amazing comeback special in 1968, and his return to the touring stages across America, right up to his final shows. I suppose it’s appropriate it should be such an event-packed week – for us to celebrate my 700th edition of ‘Vintage Favourites‘ Yes, this is #700 – in a long string of Sunday afternoon shows since the launch back in March 2007. So, please join me Sunday at 1, on Zoomer Radio. Cheers.