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On March 19th, 1946, singer, dancer, actress, former spouse of The Temptations' singer Dennis Edwards and member of The Pointer Sisters-Ruth (Esther-inset: r) Pointer was born in Oakland, California. Ruth is the eldest sister of the group. She and her siblings started off singing in church and at local talent shows during their late teens and early 20s. They sung in nightclubs, recording sessions, and as backup vocalists for local and traveling acts (before they got their big break). In 1972 she joined The Pointer Sisters with Anita, Bonnie & June (the latter being the only member that has died), and in 1973, they released a self-titled debut-featuring the hit single Yes We Can Can. They also had a country hit, called Fairytale, which landed them a spot at The Grand Ole Opry (becoming the first Black female group to do so) in 1974.
Ruth and her sisters invented the term ‘side chick’ way back in 1975, when they released the single How Long (Betcha Got A Chick On The Side). This is one of my favorite songs by them, for the obvious vocals, but the beat?! The beat is extra funky as well. My father said I scratched up his copy of this song trying to play it as a kid (I was 3 or 4 years old). In 1976 they appeared in the film Car Wash alongside, Richard Pryor (as Daddy Rich & The Wilson Sisters). They sang the infamous funk number You Gotta Believe. In 1977 Bonnie went solo, and the quartet became a trio of just June, Anita, and Ruth. They had their biggest commercial success as a trio in the 1980s; but the rare groove and funky stuff came from them in the 70s is their best! Ruth Pointer is 73 today.
On March 19th, 1982, a tragic event transpired near Leesburg, Florida. Rock musician, guitarist, songwriter, music teacher, member of Ozzy Osbourne’s band and co-founder of Quiet Riot-Randy Rhoads (Randall William Rhoads) was killed in a plane crash. Rhoads started learning classical guitar, and singing folk, at his mother’s school when he was just seven years old. He learned so swiftly, that he surpassed the skills of his teacher Scott Shelly. When he was 16, he and Kelly Garnia formed the band Little Women-which later morphed into Quiet Riot.
Rhoads left Quiet Riot in 1980, and joined Ozzy’s band-acting as guitarist on his Blizzard Of Ozz, Mr. Crowley Live, and Diary Of A Madman releases. The plane crash, which took his life, occurred when keyboardist Andrew Aycock took Randy and Rachel Youngblood joyriding in a 55-foot Beechcraft Bonanza airplane. Aycock decided to fly close to the tour bus, and the left wing clipped the bus, causing the plane to spin out of control. They crashed into a house, and the plane went up in flames. Rhoads, Aycock, and the Youngbloods were all killed. Their bodies were burned so badly that dental records had to be used to identify them. Rhoads was just 25 years old.
On March 19th, 2007, we lost seminal soul/blues vocalist, songwriter, and Stax recording artist-Luther (Thomas) Ingram. TOV covered his birthday in the November 30th post. Please refer to it for more information. Ingram is most known for his 1972 #1 R&B single If Loving You Is Wrong (I Don’t Want To Be Right). The song was penned by Carl Hampton, Homer Banks, and Raymond Jackson. Several artists have made successful cover versions over the years, including Millie Jackson, Barbara Mandrell, Rod Stewart, Bobby Blue Bland, Isaac Hayes, and David Ruffin. Luther is a Jackson, TN, Native (the midpoint between Nashville & Memphis, off I-40); and got started in the music business during the mid 1960s. He was also a prolific songwriter (co-writing The Staple Singers hit Respect Yourself, among others).
His I’ve Been Here All The Time (Stax Records 1972) album was one of his best, and features a cover of Sam Cooke's You Were Made For Me (also sampled by Madlib for his Beat Konducta Vol. I series). Other notable songs include Missing You, To The Other Man, and Ain’t That Loving You (For More Reasons Than One). He released six LPs between 1972 & 1986, and has over 350 releases related to his songwriting, producing, or singing. He was one of the major artists of our time that utilized soul, funk, jazz, and the Stax rhythm section to create a sound that has yet to be duplicated. Ingram’s musical legacy lives on to this day, through through the many songs that sample, cover, and interpolate his songs. He was 69 when he passed away.
HONORABLE MENTION: On March 19th, 1894, vaudeville performer, stand-up comedy innovator, film, television and stage actress-Moms Mabley (Loretta Mary Aiken) was born in Brevard, North Carolina. Moms was one of the first female comedians, of any ethnicity, to appear on The Ed Sullivan Show. She was a groundbreaking artist that released several recordings of her live performances. She joined a touring vaudeville minstrel show, in her early teens, and made audiences laugh for decades. Her style of conversational comedy, stands as the blueprint for contemporary comedians. She was 81 when she passed away in 1975.
On March 19th, 1959 one of the most sought after session keyboardists, composer, drummer, producer, pianist, arranger, conductor, and the man that laid the synthesizer licks on Michael Jackson’s song Thriller-Anthony Marinelli was born in Burbank, California. He’s recorded with Quincy Jones, Dr. John, Lionel Richie, James Brown, Kenny Loggins, Supertramp, Lamont Dozier, and many others. He has also scored several films and co-founded Sonar Productions (1983-1993). He’s 59 today.
On March 19th, 1975, The Who made their film debut in the rock musical (fantasy/drama) Tommy-based off the rock opera LP they released in 1969 of the same name. The First Annual Rock Music Awards honored the film as Rock Movie Of The Year. Pete Townshend was also nominated for an Oscar for the score. Ann Margaret won a Golden Globe for her role, and it also featured Elton John (as The Pinball Wizard), Jack Nicholson (as The Specialist), Tina Turner as (The Acid Queen), Keith Moon (as Uncle Ernie), Roger Daltrey in the lead role, Tommy Walker, and Eric Clapton (as The Preacher). Tommy was released, in The UK, a week later (March 26th, 1975).
On March 19th, 2001, The Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall Of Fame hosted it's 16th Annual Ceremony. That year’s inductees included 'The King Of Pop' Michael Jackson (previously inducted with The Jackson 5), Aerosmith, Solomon Burke, Ritchie Valens, Queen, Paul Simon (previously inducted as part of Simon & Garfunkel), Steely Dan, and The Flamingos. Mary J. Blige gave the opening speech, and presented Solomon Burke with his award.
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 myriad of information, covering several topics exists on this site going back to 2013 when it was created. PEACE