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This Week In Classic Rock History

Historic events this week from Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, John Lennon, Dennis Wilson, Neil Young, George Harrison and Bruce Springsteen

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This Week In Classic Rock History

DECEMBER 26, 1968: LED ZEPPELIN’S FIRST US TOUR
Thanks to a cancellation by the Jeff Beck Group, Led Zeppelin began their first North American tour in Denver, as the opening act for Vanilla Fudge.

• • •
DECEMBER 26, 1981: AC/DC’S FIRST US #1 ALBUM
Believe it or not, AC/DC’s Back In Black, didn’t make it to #1 in the US. It peaked at #4.

For Those About to Rock (We Salute You) unseated Foreigner’s 4 for three weeks, before 4 regained the top spot.

For Those About to Rock would remain their only US #1 album until Black Ice in 2008 and Power Up in 2020.

DECEMBER 27, 1980: “(JUST LIKE) STARTING OVER” IS #1
Lennon had his first US #1 single when “Whatever Gets You thru the Night” topped the charts for one week.

Three weeks after his murder, the last single released in his lifetime sat atop the Billboard Hot 100.

“(Just Like) Starting Over” would spend 5 consecutive weeks at #1.

• • •
DECEMBER 28, 1983: DENNIS WILSON DIES
With a BAC of 0.26, the Beach Boy dove from his yacht into the marina and began retrieving his ex-wife’s items he’d thrown overboard 3 years prior.

After several dives, he experienced shallow water blackout, and never resurfaced.

He was 39.

DECEMBER 29, 1982: NEIL YOUNG RELEASES TRANS
The vocoder vocal effect had fans scratching their heads with the release of Trans.

“My son’s severely handicapped & was trying to find a way to communicate. That’s what Trans is all about. On that record, you know I’m saying something but you can’t understand what it is. That’s the exact feeling I was getting from my son.” – Neil Young

• • •
DECEMBER 30, 1999: GEORGE HARRISON ATTACKED
A paranoid schizophrenic broke into the Harrison home and stabbed the Beatle with a knife.

He survived the attack but suffered a collapsed lung and over 40 stab wounds.

• • •
DECEMBER 31, 1980: BRUCE’S 4½ HOUR CONCERT
Springsteen’s Long Island New Years Eve Show consisted of 38 songs and 2 encores which included 12 from his masterpiece, The River, and a cover of CCR’s “Who’ll Stop the Rain?”

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