Tuesday, November 08, 2005

One Day in Your Life

November 8, 1975, was a Saturday. Actress/party girl Tara Reid and pro basketball player Brevin Knight were born. In pro wrestling, golden bad-boy Nick Bockwinkle defeated perennial champion Verne Gagne to win the heavyweight championship. Serial killer Ted Bundy committed two more murders. Fighter planes from Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana were scrambled to chase UFOs, and two people in France claimed to have seen space creatures who were picked up by mysterious cars. The United States opened an embassy in Mozambique. In football, Iowa beat Wisconsin, 45-28.

On TV that night, David Bowie appeared on Cher's TV variety show and sang "Fame." Candice Bergen hosted Saturday Night Live. (The musical guest was singer Esther Phillips. Trivia question--she had a hit song at that very moment. What was its title? Answer below.)

Oh--and it was a pretty good day for Elton John. On November 8, 1975, his Rock of the Westies debuted at Number One on the Billboard album chart. It was only the second album in history to do so--and the second time Elton had done it in 1975 alone. On the singles charts, Neil Sedaka's duet with Elton, "Bad Blood," was Number One at WLS in Chicago. Elton's "Island Girl" was Number 2. (Rock of the Westies debuted at Number 8 on their album chart--unable to dislodge John Denver's Windsong from the top spot.)

Elton was not quite so dominant at other major Top 40 stations across the country. At WABC in New York, "Fly Robin Fly" by Silver Convention topped the singles chart. KHJ in Los Angeles placed War's "Low Rider" at Number One. At WAKY in Louisville, the number one song was "I'll Go to My Grave Loving You" by the Statler Brothers, despite the fact that WAKY was a Top 40 station also playing Elton, Neil Sedaka, Silver Convention, and War, among others. Clearly, they didn't call themselves "wacky" for nothing.

Trivia answer: Esther Phillips started as an R&B singer known as Little Esther. In 1962, she scored a huge hit with the original version of the country/soul standard "Release Me." Jazz was her next field, and eventually, disco: In 1975, her disco version of Dinah Washington's "What a Difference a Day Makes" got her on the fourth episode of Saturday Night Live.


At 1:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wasn't that just two days before the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald in Lake Michigan?


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