Today in Music History: Carole King had two mainstream pop hits

Carole King, 'Tapestry'
Carole King, 'Tapestry'. The cat in the photo is King's own, and his name is Telemachus. (Sony Records.)

History Highlight:

Today in 1971, Carole King started a five-week run at No. 1 on the U.S. singles chart with "It's Too Late / I Feel The Earth Move." Both songs were from her Tapestry album. "I Feel The Earth Move" is one half of the double A-sided single; the flip side which was "It's Too Late". Together, both became among the biggest mainstream pop hits of 1971. Since Billboard had declared the record a double A-side and their chart gradually became seen by many as the "official" singles chart, it is generally listed in books and articles that both "I Feel the Earth Move" and "It's Too Late" reached No. 1. Together with "It's Too Late", "I Feel the Earth Move" was named by the Recording Industry Association of America as No. 213 of 365 "Songs of the Century".

Also, Today In:

1965 - The Four Tops went to No. 1 on the U.S. singles chart with "I Can't Help Myself."

1973 - The stage version of The Rocky Horror Picture Show opened in London. The production starred Tim Curry, who also later appeared in the film version, released two years later.

1974 - The Delinquents, a band featuring Mick Jones (later of The Clash), made their debut at the Students union bar at Queen Elizabeth College in Kensington, London.

1976 - Future Smiths singer Steven Morrissey had a letter published in the music magazine Record Mirror and Disc, asking the editor why the paper had not included any stories on The Sex Pistols.

1980 - Donna Summer became the first act to be signed by David Geffen to his new Geffen record label.

1990 - Prince played the first of 12 sold-out nights at Wembley Arena in London.

2013 - Slim Whitman, country music singer/songwriter and instrumentalist died at age 90. Known for his yodeling abilities and his smooth high octave falsetto, he sold more than 120 million records during his career. Michael Jackson cited Whitman as one of his ten favorite vocalists and George Harrison cited Whitman as an early influence.

2014 - Gerry Goffin, who wrote chart-topping songs with his then-wife Carole King died at the age of 75 in Los Angeles. He wrote dozens of hits over two decades, including "The Loco-Motion", "Will You Love Me Tomorrow" and "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman". After their divorce in 1968, Goffin continued writing songs, including Whitney Houston's "Saving All My Love for You" in 1985.

2015 - Blues musician Wendell Holmes died at age 71. He released 12 albums as part of The Holmes Brothers, a family band that included his siblings Sherman and Willie. During their career, the brothers played with many artists including Van Morrison, Peter Gabriel, Rosanne Cash, Levon Helm and Willie Nelson.

2016 - Artists including Taylor Swift, Maroon 5, Pearl Jam, U2 and Paul McCartney called for online copyright laws to be reformed. More than 180 artists signed an open letter criticising the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). They claimed the law benefits companies that "exploit music for their financial enrichment", but not artists.

Birthdays:

Tommy DeVito of the Four Seasons is 89.

Nick Drake was born on this day in 1948.

Ann Wilson of Heart is 67.

Paula Abdul is 55.

Scott Avett of the Avett Brothers is 41.

Ben Haggerty — better known as Macklemore — is 34.

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


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