| || || |
| || || |
| || || |
| || || |
| || || || |
On October 22nd, in 1936, political activist and co-founder of the Black Panther Party-Robert George Seale AKA Bobby Seale was born in Liberty, Texas. Seale was the middle child (older brother-Jon, younger sister-Betty). They grew up in poverty around Dallas, Port Arthur and San Antonio, eventually relocating to Oakland, California where Seale attended Berkeley High School. In 1955, he dropped out and enlisted in the US Air Force.
In 1958, his revolutionary stance towards authority figures, blossomed into him being ‘dishonorably discharged’ for fighting with a commanding officer at Ellsworth Air Force base in South Dakota. Seale went to night school to get his diploma, while working as a sheet metal mechanic on planes. He eventually enrolled at Merritt Community College where he became a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc., majoring in engineering and Poli-Sci until 1962.
He was a member of the African American Association on campus and met Huey P. Newton through it (1966). While in college, he became directly involved with seeking the equal and just treatment of Black people in America. The timing was ripe for a new Black movement. Seale & Huey P. Newton formed the Black Panther Panther Party for Self-Defense in October of 1966. This is a key point-The original name of the Party had ‘for Self-Defense’ in it.
However, to make them appear less justified and more menacing, the public and CONTELPRO, would commonly call them The Black Panther Party, leaving off the Self-Defense portion. Thus, taking away the major sticking point that they wanted to communicate to the greater public: Black people were being oppressed or bullied by the power structure…the Brothers had guns to defend their people against the brutal attacks they endured daily, both mentally and physically by the new plantation overseers AKA the police. They didn’t pick up arms to be the perpetrators of violence against others. Seale turns 82 today.
…’You out there…yeah…louder!...Yeah!...Well clap ya hands to what he’s doin…on tempo jack!’…On October 22nd, in 1945, guitarist, songwriter, singer and co-founding member of the Rock band Mountain-Leslie West (Leslie Weinstein) was born in New York City, New York. In the early 60s to the mid-60s, Leslie started performing and recording with a blue-eyed-soul garage band called the Vagrants. They were not affiliated with the chic acts that came out of Greenwich Village (Velvet Underground, The Fugs). The Vagrants were straight up New York City. The band had some minor success in 1966 with a cover of Otis Redding’s Respect.
However, their producer-Felix Pappalardi (worked with Cream), and West, decided to form their own band-Mountain during the late 60s. Their first self-titled LP dropped in 1969. They played at Woodstock (2nd day), and were more of a Hard Rock, Heavy Metal meets the Blues band. In fact, they’re considered pioneers of Heavy Metal, with big beats played by drummer Corky Laing, thick basslines played by former Cream bassist Jack Bruce, and hard guitar played by West. Pappalardi would eventually leave the band around the early 70s, but West & company continued to record, releasing 2 more LPs and a Live album that has the seminal breakbeat cut Long Red. This song is a staple break in Hip Hop culture, and it’s one of the original Breakbeats that spawned its birth. S.O. to Leslie West for keeping it funky. He’s 73 today!
…‘I spell it M…A child…N’…On October 22nd, in 1966, Blues Guitarist, singer, songwriter and Blues Icon that influenced many Rock ‘n’ Rollers-Muddy Waters (McKinley Morganfield)-The Undisputed King of the Blues, had a concert in Europe at the Hammer-Smith Odeon Theater in London, England for the 1966 Jazz Expo. He had been recording and performing since the early 40s, so he was a well-seasoned vet that knew the game. He was experiencing a resurgence in the demand for his music due to the British Rock group, and Icons-The Rolling Stones covering his music and mentioning him during interviews as being one of the major influences on their overall sound.
There was a British invasion happening in the states, and simultaneously, a Blues invasion was taking place in Europe, spearheaded by Muddy Waters. This wasn’t his first trip across the pond. He toured England in the late 50s, but they weren’t ready for his electric sound and Rock tinged rhythms. The crowd was expecting more of an acoustic or folk Blues sound. At any rate, while he was at the Jazz Expo in 1966, he was asked by reporters what he thought about Mick Jagger, who’d cover some of his songs with his band The Rolling Stones, Mud said: He took my music, but he gave me my name. Simply meaning: S.O. to Mick for making me a household name again.
On October 22nd, in 1969 Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin would finally see his creation come to fruition. Page had been working painstakingly for six months on the self-produced Led Zeppelin II LP (German pressing). His workaholic tendencies can be seen in the fact that he recorded the album while his band had downtime between their 4 European and 3 US tours. I assume he probably didn’t sleep but a few hours during this time, if that. Led Zeppelin II LP was released today on the Atlantic imprint. It’s hard to believe that their sophomore LP would go 12 times platinum before 2000 (certified 1999 over 12 million copies sold).
It was number one in the UK and the US, and stayed on the charts for nearly 3 years (138 weeks). Page not only produced the LP, he also played a lot of instruments on it (Theremin, steel guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar), and did the remastering of it. John Bonham (drums), John Paul Jones (bass & keys), & Robert Plant (lead vocals, harp) round out the personnel. The album is hailed as one of the 500 Greatest LPs of All Time by Rolling Stones Magazine. Several music critics regard it as one of the best Rock LPs ever cut. They won a Grammy for it 1970 (Best Recording Package), and have been winning awards for it ever since (from 1970 to 2008-the LP got over a dozen awards from four different countries). I got a Whole Lotta Love for this LP…
On October 22nd, in 1974, th people of Kinishasa, Ziare had the pleasure of seeing the Godfather of Soul-Mr. Dynamite-The Minister of Super Heavy Funk-James Brown perform live as a precursor the the main event, Muhammad Ali vs George Foreman in the Rumble in the Jungle fight that took place October 30th in 1974 (I’ll build more on the fight on the TOV post for the 30th). There’s footage that shows James’ performance in the 2008 film Soul Power. It was directed by Jeff Levy-Hinte and shows the in-depth backstage scene at the Ziare ’74 Music Festival.
James wasn’t the only act that performed. Manu Dibango, B.B. King, The Fania All-Stars, The Crusaders, Mariam Makeba, Bill Withers and the Spinners also appeared. Sources vary on the exact date of the performances (September 22nd-24th vs October 22nd-24th), due to the fight being pushed back a day and the bad record keeping. However, the mostly American stars had some good local competition. There’s a 2017 reissue of some of the local acts that performed at Zaire ’74. It highlights the Funk and Rock roots of African bands at the time like: Franco and T.P. O.K. Jazz, Ambumba Masekini, Orchestre Stukas, Tabu Ley Rochereau and Afrisa and Abeti. The breaks and samples on this LP are plentiful and well worth the buy. It’s a gatefold-double LP with liners notes and all. It’ll get you for about $20-$25…don’t pay over $25...
Honorable Mention: On October 22nd, in 1946, original blue-eyed-soul vocalist and member of the Young Rascals-Eddie Brigati Jr. was born in Garfield, New Jersey. The Rascals were one of the first White vocal groups to be signed to Atlantic. He got his start singing with his brother David’s former Garfield High School vocal group-Joey Dee & the Starlites. Brigati co-wrote the majority of the Rascals’ material with Felix Cavaliere. He left the band in 1970 to pursue a solo career. He’s been inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame (1997), and turns 73 today.
On October 22nd, in 1983, the son of a preacher man, Chicago Native, Disco-early 80s Boogie singer and songwriter-Keith Barrow passed away from complications with AIDS. He was 29 years-old at the time of his death. Barrow’s father was the infamous Civil Rights Activist and Baptist Minister-Reverend Willie Taplin Barrow (Rainbow Coalition). Keith made his own name singing and writing songs for bands like Blue Magic. He released 3 LPs from 1977 to 1980, but fell ill shortly after and died 3 years later in Chicago, Illinois.
On October 22nd, in 1986, another aircraft holding someone directly involved with music, went down. Former member of the Tubes and Leila & the Snakes-Jane Dornacker died in a helicopter crash that was broadcast live. She was working for New York’s WNBC radio at the time, and they were flying over the City relaying the traffic report. Before the helicopter went down, listeners could hear Jane screaming: Hit the water, hit the water…Bill Pate, was flying the copter when it crashed into the Hudson River. She was 39.
On October 22nd, in 2007, dancer, choreographer and director of the Kennedy Center Dance Project and the Dance Theater of Harlem-Lowell (Dennis) Smith passed away in Los Angeles, California from complications with cancer. He is most known for adding facial expressions to classical ballet. He became somewhat of an actor through his dance, influencing a lot of the youth to begin to incorporate more overtly expressive ways of communicating their emotions through dance. He was 56 years-old when he died.
For more information on any musician or event reviewed in posts, or for additional information on the Wandering Eyes Blog overall, use the search bar and search the artist or event using keywords. It’s like a Google search for the site. A Plethora of information, covering several topics exists on this site going back to 2013 when it was created. PEACE!