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This Week In Classic Rock History

Historic events this week from The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Beatles, Bob Dylan and Gregg Allman

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MAY 22, 1971: ROLLING STONES’ STICKY FINGERS IS #1
The Stones’ 9th album was only their second to go to #1 in the US.

Featuring “Brown Sugar” and “Wild Horses”, Sticky Fingers immediately went Gold and spent four straight weeks at #1.

The landmark album started a streak of eight straight Stones albums to reach #1 in the US.

• • •
MAY 23, 1969: THE WHO RELEASE TOMMY
When you think “rock opera”, The Who’s Tommy likely comes to mind.

One of the first “rock operas”, Tommy is about a “deaf, dumb and blind kid” who “sure plays a mean pinball” (lyrics: “Pinball Wizard”).

Peaking at #4 on the Billboard Pop Albums chart, Tommy is one of The Who’s biggest albums with over 20 million sold worldwide.

• • •
MAY 26, 1967: BEATLES RELEASE SGT. PEPPER’S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND
Deriving inspiration from The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds, The Beatles’ psychedelic masterpiece (Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band) is one of the greatest albums ever recorded.

With over 32 million copies sold worldwide it’s one of the biggest-selling albums ever.

Critics generally rank it the 2nd best album of all time behind Pet Sounds.

• • •
MAY 27, 1963: BOB DYLAN’S FREEWHEELIN’ BOB DYLAN

Dylan came into his own as a songwriter with his second album, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan.

Dylan’s debut was dominated by trad. folk songs; a trend he reversed for his follow up.

Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan contained 11 Dylan originals which featured humor and a more direct sociopolitical emphasis.

• • •

MAY 27, 2017: GREGG ALLMAN DIES

The Southern rock pioneer was plagued with health issues in the final years of his life.

He’d battled hepatitis C and liver cancer (twice).

In May 2016, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee succumbed to liver cancer at age 69.

The posthumous Southern Blood was released in September 2017, to universal critical acclaim.

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