On this day in 1955: Pérez Prado had a #1 hit with “Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White”. While almost no one knows his name today, or the name of his biggest hit, this tune is immediately recognizable. As the Wiki is quick to tell us: Dámaso Pérez Prado (Spanish pronunciation:  He became known and professionally billed as Pérez Prado, his paternal and maternal surnames respectively. Crank it up ...
    Read more

    Celebrating his 81st birthday today is the Grandfather of Reggae and the father of Dub Reggae, Rainford Hugh Perry, aka Lee “Scratch” Perry. Back in the days before the word Reggae even existed — when it was still called Ska, or Bluebeat, or One Drop — Perry apprenticed at Kingston’s Studio One. There he performed a number of chores for owner Coxone Dodd, including selling records. During his short time there he managed to record some 30 songs for the label. However, Perry and Dodd didn’t get along, so Perry moved on to Joe Gibbs and Amalgamated Records. That relationship, rocky ...
    Read more

    This video is dedicated to — Oh, hell. Just watch. I miss Pops every day. At the same time I was fighting the The Hair Wars, I lived 4 houses south of David Palmer, original drummer for The Amboy Dukes, which would practice in his garage on Gilchrist Street in northwest Detroit. David and I went to the same school, of course. When I was getting kicked out for having long hair — and then no hair — David also had a run-ins with the administration of Coffey Jr. High over the issue of his hair length. To see the current condition of Coffey Jr. High, ...
    Read more

    On this day in 1961 Frank Sinatra launched Reprise Records, the first record company owned by an artist. Sinatra started his recording career at Columbia Records, but eventually moved to Capitol. However, after 7 years Sinatra was dissatisfied with his latest contract negotiations with Capitol Records. The sticking point wasn’t money. Sinatra wanted to own his masters and Capitol was not having it. That’s when he decided to look for a new deal. At first he tried to buy Verve Records, where Frank Zappa later started his recording career. However, Norman Granz wasn’t selling. It wasn’t a total loss. Sinatra was able ...
    Read more

    He was born Robert Nesta Marley in 1945. By the time of his 1981 death of melanoma, he was known worldwide as the Honourable Bob Marley, OM, and given a state funeral by the Jamaican government. Starting in relative obscurity in Trenchtown, Jamaica, with The Wailers, Marley’s career lasted less than 20 years. By the time he died of cancer as a solo artist — at the far-too-young age of 36 — there were few places in the world where Bob Marley‘s name was not known, especially by people of colour and the downtrodden. This tribute song makes the point far better ...
    Read more