Friday, March 14, 2014

Was I Born on the Worst Day in Music History?

Posted by on Fri, Mar 14, 2014 at 12:11 PM

So I turn 42 tomorrow. Please hold your applause until I am dead.

This isn’t a post about getting older. This is about disappointment, for I was born on the single worst day in music history. Let’s look at the facts:

Sharing my birthday, we have:

— Phil Lesh from the Grateful Fucking Dead. I could close up shop right here, but why ruin a good thing?

— Mike Love, the guy from the Beach Boys who wears a captain’s hat because of a 73 year old case of early onset dementia.

— Dee Snider from Twisted Sister. They weren’t a terrible band, but let’s not kid ourselves, folks. This fact isn’t railroading the narrative.

Sly Stone, who… well, ok. I can’t complain, but Albert Brooks did, in print, to Playboy Magazine in 1999:

"I opened for Sly and the Family Stone in '73. At that time, Sly was known to snort large cities... We were in Tacoma, Washington, and it was 7 pm and the show was supposed to start at 7:30. His manager came to my dressing room and said, 'How long [a routine] do you do? I said, 'With this crowd, maybe 15 minutes.' He said, 'What's the longest you can do?' I said, 'Why?' He said, 'Sly is in Ohio.'"

"I was off in eight minutes. I swear to God, somebody threw the top of a beer can and it cut me. I was so upset, right before I left the stage, I actually said to the crowd, 'I'm going on Johnny Carson and telling everybody how bad you are.' As if all these people would immediately stop and go, uh-oh."

Not cool, Sly. Also born on this day:

— The lead singer of Dead Or Alive. You know, the guy that got spun.

Terrence Trent D’arby and Rockwell. That pairing has the makings of a terrible Freaky Friday reboot. I mean, would you even be able to tell if they switched places?

— Poison’s Bret Michaels and Sugar Ray’s Mark McGrath. Ditto.

Mark Hoppus of Blink 182, who shares both birth and date year with me, so if I ever meet him and ask “What’s My Age Again?”—KILL ME.

Will.I.Am, taking this musical March 15 curse into a new generation. It almost makes me shudder to think what future bad rock star is being born tomorrow. And there’s nothing we can do about it unless we develop some kind of Terminator-type, you know… terminator. Hurry up, science!

But it’s not just births that make this a bad day. On this date in 1975, Olivia Newton John’s “Have You Ever Been Mellow” tops the charts.

Starship accomplished the same feat in 1986 with "Sara". Yes, it's a terrible song. More importantly, the momentum started by the loathsome "We Built This City" gains some steam with this follow-up. Next stop: the theme from Mannequin.

That song got nominated for an Oscar and netted the songwriters millions of dollars. Meanwhile, you thought about donating plasma 15 minutes ago.

In other music news on this date in 1979, Elvis Costello throws a fit at a party and refers to Ray Charles as the n-word. Which is funny because on March 15, 1956, the original Elvis signs on with his new manager, the greedy and garish Col Tom Parker.

Anyhow, is your birthday worse than mine when it comes to the history of music? I’m gonna need some proof in the comments. Winner gets a funny hat, if they happen to find one on the street.


Comments (24) RSS

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Dougsf 1
Birthsongs can get real ugly for us born in the first half of the 70's. I'm stuck with Paper Lace's "The Night Chicago Died." Had my parents realized, they'd probably just have thrown me in a ditch.
Posted by Dougsf on March 14, 2014 at 12:19 PM · Report this
dnt trust me 2
Chill out, and avoid writing Slog posts tomorrow.

Am I allowed to be so Bossy?
Posted by dnt trust me on March 14, 2014 at 12:24 PM · Report this
emma's bee 3
Sorry, I'm no competition. I get:

-Mary J. Blige
-Clarence Clemons
-Lee Ritenour
-Robert Earl Keen

And a bunch of other fascinating-sounding jazz and blues musicians. (Well, Naomi Judd, too. Can't win 'em all).
Posted by emma's bee on March 14, 2014 at 12:30 PM · Report this
The #1 song on the day I was born was "Footprints in the Sand" by Pat Boone.

I win by losing!
Posted by LMcGuff on March 14, 2014 at 12:39 PM · Report this
'Physical' by ON-J was #1 when I jumped out, so we share that kind of connection.....

"For those about to rock we salute you" by AC/DC was released just before I was born.

In more depressing news I just found out I was born on EXACTLY THE SAME DAY as Jenna and Barbara Jr Bush.
Posted by Foonken2 on March 14, 2014 at 12:45 PM · Report this
blip 6
Whoa whoa whoa. Pete Burns (aka that, uh, guy from Dead or Alive) is kind of legendary. Grante he's basically a B-grade Genesis P-Orridge but that's still something.
Posted by blip on March 14, 2014 at 12:54 PM · Report this
stinkbug 7
Have You Ever Been Mellow is a great song. Don't be a hater.
Posted by stinkbug on March 14, 2014 at 1:07 PM · Report this
Anne18 8
Ha ha. My birthday rocks. David Bowie and Elvis. Most importantly, David Bowie. AND Elvis.
Posted by Anne18 on March 14, 2014 at 1:12 PM · Report this
Jason Josephes 9
6: If hes so legendary, how come no one knows who he is?

(To be fair, that's also gonna be the title of my biography.)
Posted by Jason Josephes on March 14, 2014 at 1:23 PM · Report this
Fnarf 10
Sly Stone makes up for all those other tossers. He's magnificent.

Number One in the US the day I was born was "Bird Dog" by the Everly Brothers, so I'm happy with that. In the UK, it was "When" by the Kalin Twins, who are I dunno either. In Australia, it was "A Pub With No Beer" by Slim Dusty, which sounds like the saddest song ever written (even sadder than "Who Drank My Beer While I Was In The Rear by Tommy Duncan from around the same time).

The number one album was the cast album (Broadway, not movie) for "My Fair Lady" in the UK; in the US it was Van Cliburn's recording of Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1, the first classical album to ever go platinum.

On my birthday, I've got Kitty Carlisle, the great Hank Thompson ("Smoke, Smoke, Smoke That Cigarette"), Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols, Al Jardine (a slightly better Beach Boy than Mike Love), Blues guitarist Freddie King, a hip hop singer named August Alsina, and Jonathan Segel from Camper van Beethoven. Oh, and Tomo Milicevic from 30 Seconds to Mars. It's OK, I'll take it. The only musical sort born on my exact birthday is apparently Radoslav Lorkovic, a "Croatian blues and folk musician known for his enthusiastic renditions of "The Jolly Banker" and other folk songs." So, uh, there you go. At least it's not Dr. Drew, who was born two days later.
Posted by Fnarf on March 14, 2014 at 1:30 PM · Report this
My birthday #1 was Ballad of the Green Berets, by that military dude

Sharing my birthday is Shirley Jones (Mama Partridge), Lefty Frizzell, Herb Alpert, Angus Young from AC/DC and Christopher Walken from the best music video ever.
Posted by magic1 on March 14, 2014 at 1:45 PM · Report this
john t 12
Wikipedia tells me I share a birthday with the drummer from the Allman Brothers Band named Butch Trucks. BUTCH TRUCKS.

Also, Irving Berlin.
Posted by john t on March 14, 2014 at 2:35 PM · Report this
Jackson Hathorn 13
On the subject of Bret Michaels, the #1 song on my birthdate was "Every Rose Has Its Thorn" by Poison.

I like plenty of musicians who are also born on December 25th, like Dido, Shane MacGowan, Annie Lennox, and Noel Redding, but are they talented enough to overcome the musical crimes of fellow Christmas baby Jimmy Buffett? I also hate (most) Christmas songs, so it's overall a pretty awful day, music-wise.

Posted by Jackson Hathorn on March 14, 2014 at 2:38 PM · Report this
Oh my god, my dad opened for Sly in 1973 in Ohio!
Posted by No Excuses on March 14, 2014 at 2:38 PM · Report this
Man, all you fuckers are crabs. Grow a pair. Who cares who you share your birthday with? Grow up!
Posted by hey on March 14, 2014 at 2:54 PM · Report this
Dougsf 16
@8 - My Omega to your alpha—Elvis died on my birthday.
Posted by Dougsf on March 14, 2014 at 3:37 PM · Report this
How sad that there is so little that inspires you from the present time that you are constantly comparing yourself to the musical world of 40 years ago!

And why all the Dead hate? The Dead were just a reasonably talented blue grass/rock band who loved their work and gathered a lot of fans. No one was forced to go to any of their concerts and I don't think they had any airplay after the late 70s. Seems like the only thing they ever did where they actually tried to engage with the cutting edge was teaming up with some genius pioneers of live sound amplification and live recording in the late 60s and early 70s. I'm not sure why anyone should be offended by that.
Posted by cracked on March 14, 2014 at 4:08 PM · Report this
DickDave 18
Shared birthdays: Alice Cooper, Kansas drummer Phil Ehart, The Offspring's Noodles (same year), and Natalie Imbruglia. Yeah, not so impressive, I know, but Karen Carpenter died on my birthday. (And later, Liberace. Hm. Didn't know that one.)
Posted by DickDave on March 14, 2014 at 4:18 PM · Report this
disintegrator 19
Really? You are a dick. Please fuck off. Thanks for being an elitist douchebag.

Everyone who wants to hear about what music writers like, not what they hate on.
Posted by disintegrator on March 14, 2014 at 5:19 PM · Report this
TVDinner 20
@10: Overachiever.
Posted by TVDinner http:// on March 14, 2014 at 5:59 PM · Report this
For me, the good news: ?uestlove. The bad news: Paul Stanley.
Posted by Prettybetsy on March 15, 2014 at 11:05 AM · Report this
beatgrl 22
@17: "I don't think (The Greatful Dead) had any airplay after the late 70s" ?????? If only that were true in Bellingham....

Yes, Jason, you were born on the worst day in music history.

I drew a lucky birthday straw, sharing it with John Coltrane, Ray Charles, Julio Iglesias, Bruce Springsteen and Ani DiFranco. Not bad!
"Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Diana Ross was #1 when I was born.

Celebrate Bisexuality Day was celebrated for the first time on my birthday in 1999. Woot!
Posted by beatgrl on March 15, 2014 at 11:56 AM · Report this
John Lennon was murdered on my 21st birthday, December 8, 1980. All my birthdays are now so bittersweet.
Posted by elaineinballard on March 15, 2014 at 9:51 PM · Report this
Hmmm, shared birthdays (musical): Wilbert Harrison ("Kansas City"), Phil Ramone (co-founder of A&R Records), Athol Guy, bass player for the Seekers ("Georgy Girl"), Chris Stein of Blondie, Phil Thornalley of The Cure and Johnny Hates Jazz, Iris DeMent, Grant Young of Soul Asylum, Kate Schellenbach, early drummer for the Beastie Boys and also Luscious Jackson, and Marilyn Manson. Probably the latter is the one I'd recognize in a photo. Aside from him, not a lot of star power.

The #1 song in the US was Melanie's "Brand New Key". The one before was "Family Affair" by Sly & the Family Stone; the next was "American Pie" by Don McLean.
Posted by clashfan on March 17, 2014 at 11:49 AM · Report this

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