Music

Tommy album

History of The Who’s Tommy: 51 Years Ago

By billpetro / May 23, 2020 /

HISTORY OF THE WHO’s TOMMY Fifty-one years ago today, on May 23, 1969, the British rock group The Who released the double-album rock opera, Tommy. Commercially the record went Gold in the UK and Double Platinum in the US. Several of the songs were released as singles that charted in the Top 20 in both…

Read More
Beatles JFK

History of The Beatles

By billpetro / February 7, 2020 /

HISTORY OF THE BEATLES On February 7, 1964, The Beatles landed at JFK Airport in New York. The airport had recently been renamed by a mourning country in honor of the President, who had been assassinated just 77 days earlier. The airport was now full of 4,000 greeters. Not realizing who they were for, Paul…

Read More
Peter Pan poster

History of Peter Pan: the Disney Classic

By billpetro / February 5, 2020 /

HISTORY OF PETER PAN All of this has happened before, and it will all happen again. So begins my favorite Walt Disney animated movie, Peter Pan, which debuted 67 years ago today on February 5, 1953. The original movie poster said: “It will live in your heart forever” …and indeed it has. Why was this…

Read More
AmericanPie

History of The Day The Music Died

By billpetro / February 3, 2020 /

HISTORY OF THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED On February 3, 1959, a plane crash occurred in Iowa during a snow storm shortly after 1 am which killed three young rock and roll singers who would go down in history: Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson. Their story would later be captured…

Read More
Covent Garden Theatre inside

History of A Sacred Oratorio: How was popular Christmas music considered scandalous and profane?

By billpetro / December 8, 2019 /

HISTORY OF A SACRED ORATORIO The genteel reception accorded the original debut performance stood in marked contrast to the savage hostility which greeted the work less than a year later in the Royal Opera House, at Covent Garden, London. The English aristocracy and churchmen began an unrelenting campaign against the work and its creator. They…

Read More
carols 730409

History of Christmas Music: More than just Carols?

By billpetro / December 5, 2019 /

HISTORY OF CHRISTMAS MUSIC Music early became a marked feature of the Christmas season. But the first chants, litanies, and hymns were in Latin and deemed too theological for popular use. Under the influence of Francis of Assisi in the 13th century, we began to see the rise of the carol written in the vernacular. The word…

Read More
Woodstock poster 1

History of Woodstock: 50 Years Ago

By billpetro / August 15, 2019 /

HISTORY OF WOODSTOCK August 15 marks the 50th anniversary of the “3-days of Peace & Music” held in 1969 at Max Yasgur’s 600-acre dairy farm in the rural town of Bethel, New York, southwest of the village of Woodstock. I’d like to share with you what it was like to be there — the music,…

Read More
All You Need Is Love (Beatles single   cover art)

History of The Beatles All You Need Is Love

By billpetro / June 25, 2019 /

HISTORY OF ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE On June 25, 1967, The Beatles released the song “All You Need Is Love.” At that time they participated in the Our World TV show which used the recently constructed satellite system and broadcast their performance across the globe. Beatles drummer Ringo Starr said later, “It was the…

Read More
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

History of the Summer of Love — 1967: Part 4, Rock & Roll

By billpetro / June 2, 2017 /

HISTORY OF THE SUMMER OF LOVE — 1967: PART 4, ROCK & ROLL It was fifty years ago today Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play They’ve been going in and out of style But they’re guaranteed to raise a smile It was indeed 50 years ago today that The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts…

Read More