Saturday, March 3, 2012

A rare glimpse of the music scene in 1970

JANUARY 3, 1970 - Viv Stanshall announces that the Bonzo Dog Band are splitting up, Steve Ellis leaves the Love Affair and Ian McDonald and Mike Giles quit King Crimson. The Moody Blues are tipped as the group of the 70s. Two Little Boys by Rolf Harris is the top single, with Sugar Sugar by the Archies at No.2. The Who's Tommy is hailed as the pop album of 1969. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young arrive in the UK for their first appearance, at the Royal Albert Hall.  'Let It Be' is announced as the Beatles' next single.
JUNE 13 - 'In The  Summertime' by Mungo Jerry storms up the charts. The Who are announced for the bill at the Isle of Wight Festival. Dylan's 'Self Portrait' album is set for release. Eric Clapton forms a new band with Bobby Whitlock, Jim Keltner and Carl Radle. Led Zeppelin say no to a $200,000 fee for two dates in the US, saying they are keeping faith with their booking at the Bath Festival on 28th June. 'Harrison in supersession' as Clapton, Ringo and Phil Spector gather for George's first solo album.
JULY 4 - Jefferson Airplane have to cut short their set at the Bath Festival due to heavy rain, but promise to put on a free show in London to compensate their fans. No such problems for Led Zeppelin, who play five encores to the 150,000 strong crowd. Controversy over the inferior recording quality of the new Jimi Hendrix album 'Band of Gypsies. Jimi's manager says the UK release was not taken from the original master tape.
AUGUST 1 - Aretha Franklin arrives for concerts at the Hammersmith Odeon. Jethro Tull and Ten Years After are added to the IOW Festival bill. Having been sacked by the BBC, DJ Kenny Everett gets widespread support, with one colleague describing him as "the Spike Milligan of our generation". His Saturday morning show is taken over by 21 year old Noel Edmunds. ELP record their first album.
SEPTEMBER 5 - Joni Mitchell gets credit for sticking it out after a stage invasion during her set at the IOW festival. Neil Young had planned to appear as well but didn't like the festival vibe. At the other end of the decade, Joni would collaborate with jazz legend Charles Mingus (confirmed for his first dates in Britain) but at this stage in her career nothing can have been further from her mind.
OCTOBER 10 - Three weeks after the death of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin becomes the latest victim of the rock and roll lifestyle. The BBC refuses to show what it considers an inferior performance by Bob Dylan on the Johnny Cash Show. Freda Payne is at No. 1 with Band of Gold, about to be overtaken by Deep Purple's Black Night. Melody Maker's Chris Welch says the new Led Zeppelin (III) album "spans as many moods as a widescreen epic". Meanwhile Deep Purple's Ian Gillan plays the son of God in 'Jesus Christ - Superstar'.
NOVEMBER 7 - The success of 'Woodstock' by Matthews Southern Comfort  boosts the group's stock. Mick Jagger says he won't be promoting the single 'Memo from Turner' from the film Performance. The song features Ry Cooder on guitar. Buddy Rich lays into rock musicians, avant-garde jazzers and the forthcoming drum dual between Ginger Baker and Elvin Jones. "Guitar smashing Ritchie Blackmore" is pictured in a report saying Deep Purple have cancelled their French tour because of worries there might be another incident of fans dying in a blazing dance hall. This was way before the incident that inspired Smoke On The Water.

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