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JEWDAYO Rocks! Jewish Rock and Roll Dates for March

February 27, 2014
Research by Lawrence Bush and Bennett Muraskin March 2: Lou Reed, one of rock and roll’s great storytellers and heavy guitarists, was born on this date in 1943. See him playing “Sweet Jane” below. . . . French musical idol Serge Gainsbourg died on this date in 1991. March 4: Howard Greenfield, songwriting partner to Neil Sedaka whose hits included “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do,” “Love Will Keep Us Together,” “Foolish Little Girl,” “Happy Birthday, Sweet Sixteen,” and many others, died at 50 on this date in 1986. King-Rock-n-Roll-coverMarch 5: Syd Nathan, founder of King Records in Cincinnati and the first producer to record James Brown, among many other musical greats, died on this date in 1968. March 7: Peter Wolf (Blankfield), lead singer for the J. Geils Band, was born on this date in 1946. To see him shaking his booty in Boston, look below. . . . Bob Dylan asked, “Where are you tonight, Sweet Marie?” in a recording studio on this date in 1966. March 8: Carole Bayer Sager, who collaborated with dozens of other songwriters and performers, including Melissa Manchester, Dolly Parton, Neil Diamond, and her husband Burt Bacharach, to write such dozens of hits (including the Mindbenders’ “Groovy Kind of Love”) was born on this date in 1946. . . . Bill Graham opened the Fillmore East on this date in 1968. March 9: Sid Bernstein produced a benefit for George McGovern’s presidential campaign that drew 22,000 to Madison Square Garden on this date in 1972. Performers included Simon and Garfunkel, Barbra Streisand, Carole King, Mama Cass Elliot, and Carly Simon. . . . The Songwriters Hall of Fame inducted Carole King and Gerry Goffen, as well as Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, alongside John Lennon and Paul McCartney, on this date in 1987. March 10: Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel explored the “Sounds of Silence” in a recording studio on this date in 1964. March 11: Mark Stein, lead vocalist and keyboard player for Vanilla Fudge, was born in Bayonne, NJ on this date in 1947. . . . Leonard Cohen was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on this date in 2008. To see him singing his gorgeous “Hallelujah,” look below. March 12: Leonard Chess, founder of Chess Records and producer of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, and many other blues greats, was born on this date in 1917. leiber-stoller-bwMarch 13: Mike Stoller of the outstanding songwriting team (pictured at right) of Leiber and Stoller (“All Shook Up,” “Kansas City,” “Jailhouse Rock,” “Poison Ivy,” and countless more hits) was born on this date in 1933. . . . Songwriter and performer Neil Sedaka was born on this date in 1939. March 14: Jac Holzman, founder of Elektra and Nonesuch Records, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on this date in 2011. March 15: Marshall Leib, an original member, with Phil Spector, of the Teddy Bears (“To Know Him Is To Love Him”), died on this date in 2002. March 18: The Ramones were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on this date in 2002. To see them playing “Rock and Roll High School” surrounded by disapproving adults, look below. March 21: Alan (“Moondog”) Freed, the disk jockey who popularized the phrase “rock and roll,” produced a concert in Cleveland on this date in 1952 that is widely considered the first true rock and roll show. The “Moondog Coronation Ball” featured Billy Ward and the Dominoes, Tiny Grimes, and Paul Williams and the Hucklebuckers. Attendance was overwhelming — 10,000 inside the arena, another 10,000 more outside — causing the local cops shut the concert down for fire code violations, which nearly caused a riot. To watch the strange Bill Haley scene, featuring an interracial team of very young girl dancers, look below. March 23: Richard BrooksBlackboard Jungle, which he wrote and directed, premiered in American movie houses on this date in 1955. The film featured Bill Haley and His Comets’ “Rock Around The Clock,” which became a #1hit and kicked off the mass popularity of rock and roll. rock-and-rollMarch 28: Alan (“Moondog”) Freed produced the first of 43 “Big Beat” shows at the Brookyn Paramount Theater on this date in 1958, featuring Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry, Danny and the Juniors, Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers, The Chantels, The Diamonds, and Screaming Jay Hawkins. To see a short video about Freed’s career, look below. March 30: High school junior Lesley Gore recorded “It’s My Party” on this date in 1963.