February 22, 2024

This Day in History: 2023-12-06

DECEMBER 6th

The Rolling Stones issue “Beggar’s Banquet.” The album contains “Sympathy For The Devil” and “Stray Cat Blues.” 1968

Having missed out on Woodstock, the Rolling Stones wanted to create what they hoped would be “Woodstock of the West” in San Francisco. But the City by the Bay declined to host the event (police, sanitation, traffic and crowd control were too expensive). So the event was moved to the Altamont Speedway – a long way from San Francisco.

The biggest flaw was hiring the Hells Angels (a motorcycle gang) to provide ‘security’. The Stones’ Mick Jagger is punched in the face by an Angel within moments of his arrival, while the Grateful Dead flee before their set. In addition to the Stones – Santana, Jefferson Airplane and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young perform.

The festival ends in violence with the murder of 18-year-old Meredith Hunter, stabbed to death by a Hells Angels. 1969 

One year later, “Gimme Shelter” is released. The film captures the Rolling Stones’ ’69 U.S. tour, including stark images of confusion and violence at Altamont. 1970

After being released on vinyl two weeks earlier, Pearl Jam’s third album “Vitalogy,” is available on CD and cassette.  1994

 

MORE TODAY IN ROCK…

R.E.M.’s Peter Buck (a native of Berkeley, CA) begins his life. 1956

Guitar great Randy Rhoads (Ozzy Osbourne, Quiet Riot) is born in Santa Monica, CA. 1956

French authorities confirm that they have issued arrest warrants for Rolling Stones’ guitarist Keith Richards and his girlfriend Anita Pallenberg for violating the country’s drug laws. Richards claims he first he learned of the charges when he read about them in the morning newspaper. 1972

Rock music: The new fertility drug. A Tallahassee preacher conducts an unscientific survey of 1,000 unwed mothers and finds that 984 conceived while listening to Rock music. The preacher goes on to claim that the Rolling Stones are “sinful” (might have a point there) and has his congregation burn Stones (and Elton John) records in a bonfire. 1975

The Sex Pistols’ Sid Vicious, out on bail after being charged with murdering his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen, gets into an altercation at a New York club smashing a glass into another club-goer’s face. 1978

Roy Orbison (“{Oh} Pretty Woman”) suffers a fatal heart attack and dies within minutes. 1988

Metallica’s “Re-Load” sits atop the Billboard 200.  The album is the follow-up to “Load” which dropped in ’96 and also went to #1. 1997

Green Day are awarded a total of six trophies, including Rock Artist of the Year and Pop Group of the Year, at the Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas. The group opens the show with “Holiday” from “American Idiot.” 2005

Nickelback’s “Dark Horse” is the #2 album in the U.S. (behind Beyonce). The set sells 326,000 units during its first week of release. 2008

Bruce Springsteen is among the honorees at Kennedy Center Honors Gala fundraiser in Washington D.C. Actor Robert DeNiro, comedy director Mel Brooks and Jazz pianist Dave Brubeck are also honored. Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder uses the occasion to propose to longtime girlfriend Jill McCormick. 2009

The Black Keys issue their seventh studio album “El Camino.” Like ‘10’s “Brothers,” the set was produced by Danger Mouse. “Lonely Boy” is the lead single. 2011

Metallica signs with Spotify, the music streaming service, offering digitally restricted streaming of selected music. Sean Parker, the founder of Napster, is a Spotify exec. The signing is seen as a reversal for Metallica since they famously sued Napster in ‘00. 2012

Ed “Cass” Cassidy, the drummer and co-founder of the legendary Psychedelic Rock band Spirit, passes away at the age of 89. In ‘64, Cassidy formed the Rising Sons with Taj Mahal and Ry Cooder. That was followed by the Red Roosters who morphed into Spirit in ’67. 2012

Bob Dylan’s sunburst Fender Stratocaster, played at the ’65 Newport Folk Festival, is sold at auction for a record-breaking $965,000. The previous record holder was Eric Clapton’s “Blackie,” which went for $959,500 in ’04. 2013

Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler Steven officially opens Janie’s House near Atlanta. The shelter for abused girls is in partnership with Youth Villages. 2017

Mötley Crüe singer Vince Neil is sued by his own lawyers over $187,000 in unpaid bills in an ongoing assault case stemming from an alleged ‘16 incident in Las Vegas that resulted in Kelly Guerrero suing Neil over an alleged assault outside the Aria Hotel. Guerrero claimed severe injuries to the tune of 150,000 while Neil’s team argued the case should be thrown out. Now they have a case of their own. 2018

Pete Shelley, lead singer for The Buzzcocks, dies at age 63 in Estonia, where he was living. A heart attack is suspected as the cause of death. 2018

The book “Evenings With Led Zeppelin: The Complete Concert Chronicle” charts the 500-plus appearances Led Zeppelin made throughout its career. 2021

Guitarist Brian “Head” Welch (KoЯn) and his longtime personal manager, David W. Williams, announce the launch of XOVR Records (pronounced Crossover Records).  2023