Today in Music History: A call out for The Monkees

Peter Tork of the Monkees
Promotional portrait of the Monkees, dressing in tuxedos and they as they sit in folding chair and look over their shoulders, early 1970s. From left, British musician and actor Davy Jones, and American musician and actors Mickey Dolenz, Peter Tork, and Michael Nesmith. (NBC Television/Getty Images)

History Highlight:

Today in 1965, The Hollywood Reporter ran the following advertisement: "Madness folk & roll musicians, singers wanted for acting roles in new TV show. Parts for 4 insane boys." From that advertisement, The Monkees were eventually born. The band was active between 1966 and 1971, with reunion albums and tours in the decades that followed. Band member Micky Dolenz described The Monkees as initially being "a TV show about an imaginary band...that wanted to be the Beatles that was never successful", however the band was one of the most successful bands of the 1960s and to date has sold more than 75 million records worldwide, making them one of the biggest selling groups of all time with international hits including "Last Train to Clarksville", "Pleasant Valley Sunday", "Daydream Believer", and "I'm a Believer".

Also, Today In:

1956 - On his first of three appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show on CBS, Elvis created a sensation performing "Love Me Tender," "Hound Dog," "Don't Be Cruel," and "Ready Teddy."

1967 - The Sam & Dave classic "Soul Man" was released. It was later successfully revived by the Blues Brothers.

1971 - Imagine by John Lennon was released. Lennon's second solo album after the dissolution of The Beatles, Imagine is considered more commercial and less "primal" than his previous album, John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band. The title track is probably Lennon's best-known song as a solo artist, but the album also contains such familiar Lennon songs as "Oh Yoko!", "Jealous Guy" and "Gimme Some Truth."

1978 - A Taste Of Honey started a three-week run at No. 1 on the U.S. singles chart with "Boogie Oogie Oogie."

1989 - New Kids On The Block hit No. 1 in the U.S. album chart with Hangin' Tough; the title track hit No. 1 in the singles chart the same day.

1992 - Nirvana's Krist Novoselic cut his forehead during the MTV music and video awards after being hit by his own bass after throwing it in the air. As paramedics bandaged the wound backstage, Queen's Brian May offered Novoselic a chilled glass of champagne, which Novoselic gladly accepted.

1995 - Coolio scored his first U.S. No. 1 single with "Gangsta's Paradise." The song, which sampled the chorus of the 1976 Stevie Wonder song "Pastime Paradise," was used in the 1995 movie Dangerous Minds (starring Michelle Pfeiffer). Coolio was awarded a Grammy Award for the song.

1999 - Fatboy Slim scored a hat trick at the MTV Video Music Awards in New York when he won awards for best direction, breakthrough artist and choreography.

2004 - Guitar maker Ernie Ball died after a long illness. In the late 1950s in Tarzana, Calif., Ball opened a guitars-only music store — unusual for the time. Ball developed the guitar strings called "Slinkys," which are specifically designed for rock 'n' roll electric guitar.

2014 - Scottish guitarist Robert "Throb" Young died at the age of 49. Young founded Primal Scream with school friend and singer Bobby Gillespie in Glasgow in 1984. As a member of Primal Scream, Young performed on all of the group's records up to 2006's Riot City Blues, and including their most famous album, Screamadelica.


Otis Redding was born today in 1941.

Iron Butterfly lead vocalist Doug Ingle is 74.

Buffalo Springfield bassist Bruce Palmer was born today in 1946.

John McFee of The Doobie Brothers is 69.

Crooner Michael Buble is 44.

Happy Birthday, Eric Mayson.

Highlights for Today in Music History are gathered from This Day in Music, Paul Shaffer's Day in Rock, Song Facts and Wikipedia.