EVENTS THAT HAPPENED ON THIS DAY MAY 18 IN MUSIC HISTORY
On this day May 18 in 1959 – With his rendition of the Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller song ‘Kansas City’, Wilbert Harrison topped the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. Interestingly, over three hundred music acts have covered the song including James Brown and The Beatles, but Wilbert‘s version is the most successful one.
1961 – American pianist Floyd Cramer reached the top spot on the UK Singles chart with the instrumental song ‘On The Rebound’.
1963 – Roy Orbison and The Beatles kicked off a concert tour as the co-headline acts on this day May 18 in music history with a show in Slough, England. Gerry and the Pacemakers, David MacBeth and Louise Cordet among others were the supporting acts.
1963 – With ‘If You Wanna Be Happy’, Jimmy Soul went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the first of two weeks straight.
1964 – The Animals recorded their version of the traditional folk song ‘House of the Rising Sun’ on this day May 18. It was released as a single a few months later and it became a big international hit topping the charts in the US, UK, Canada, Finland, and Spain.
1967 – With their rendition of ‘Silence Is Golden’, The Tremeloes hit number one on the UK Singles chart for the first of three consecutive weeks. Also a chart topper in Ireland, South Africa, Norway and New Zealand that year.
1968 – Art pop singer and songwriter Scott Walker scored his first and only chart-topper in the UK with his second solo album ‘Scott 2’ on this day May 18 in music history.
1968 – With ‘Tighten Up’, vocal group Archie Bell & the Drells topped both the US Billboard Pop and R&B singles charts. It’s one of the first funk hits in music history.
1974 – Country and pop singer-songwriter Ray Stevens started a three-week stint at No.1 in the US on this day May 18 with the novelty song ‘The Streak’. Also a chart-topper in the UK, Canada, and New Zealand that year.
1974 – Pop/glam rock band The Rubettes started a four-week stint at number one in the UK with their debut single ‘Sugar Baby Love’.
1980 – Drummer and founding member of the rock group Kiss, Peter Criss left the band to pursue a solo career. He returned to the band in 1996 and in 2014 he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Kiss.
1980 – Frontman and founding member of Joy Division, Ian Curtis committed suicide on this day May 18 in music history, aged 23. The young musician struggled with depression and epilepsy throughout his life.
1985 – Scottish rock band Simple Minds scored their first and only No.1 single in the United States with ‘Don’t You (Forget About Me)’.The song featured in the popular teen comedy-drama film ‘The Breakfast Club’.
1991 – The number one single in the United States on this day May 18 was ‘I Like the Way (The Kissing Game)’ by the R&B quintet Hi-Five.
1991 – Alternative rock band R.E.M. went to number one in the US with their seventh studio album ‘Out of Time’. The album features one of the band’s most famous songs – ‘Losing My Religion’.
1996 – With their debut studio album ‘1977’, Northern Irish rock band Ash reached number one in the UK on this day May 18.
1996 – Hip hop group Bone Thungs-n-Harmony hit No.1 on the US Billboard Hot 100 with ‘Tha Crossroads’ for the first of eight consecutive weeks.
1999 – Jamaican roots reggae and dub multi-instrumentalist and record producer Augustus Pablo died on this day May 18 in music history, aged 45 of a collapsed lung.
2002 – With their fourth studio album ‘Hood Rich’, hip hop dup Big Tymers scored their first and only chart-topper on the US Billboard 200.
2002 – The number one single in the United Kingdom on this day May 18 was a cover of ‘If Tomorrow Never Comes’ by the Irish singer Ronan Keating. The original is by country music singer-songwriter Garth Brooks.
2004 – English bassist Albert Eccles also known professionally as Clint Warwick died at the age of 63 of hepatitis. Best remembered as a founding member of The Moody Blues.
2013 – Dutch pop and jazz music singer Caro Emerald topped the UK Albums chart with her second studio LP ‘The Shocking Miss Emerald’ on this day May 18.
2013 – Hip hop duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring singer Ray Dalton started a five-week stint at No.1 in the US with ‘Can’t Hold Us’. This was the duo’s second chart-topper of the year. They previously topped the Hot 100 with ‘Thrift Shop’.
2013 – The number one album in the United States on this day May 18 in music history was ‘Life on a Rock’ by the country music singer Kenny Chesney.
2014 – American singer, songwriter and actor Genaro Vitaliano also known professionally as Jerry Vale died on this day at the age of 83.
2017 – Rock band Kasabian scored their fifth consecutive chart-topper on the UK Albums chart with ‘For Crying Out Loud’ on this day May 18.
2017 – With ‘Despacito’, Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee ft. Justin Bieber hit number one on the UK Singles chart for the first of six consecutive weeks.
2017 – American singer, songwriter and guitarist Chris Cornell committed suicide on this day May 18, at the age of 52. Best remembered as the co-founder and frontman of the bands Soundgarden and Audioslave
2019 – With their fourth studio album ‘Father of the Bride’, indie rock band Vampire Weekend reached number one on the US Billboard 200 chart.
BORN ON THIS DAY MAY 18 IN MUSIC HISTORY
1911 – American singer Joseph Vernon “Big Joe” Turner was born in Kansas City, Missouri on this day May 18 in music history. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017.
1912 – Singer, actor and TV personality Pierino “Perry” Como was born on this day in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. Best known or hit songs such as ‘Till the End of Time’, ‘Prisoner of Love’, ‘Surrender’, and ‘Don’t Let The Stars Get in Your Eyes’ among many others.
1944 – Gibraltarian singer, songwriter, instrumentalist and producer Albert Hammond was born on this day May 18 in London, England.
1946 – Guitarist and founding member of the experimental punk rock band Wire, Bruce Gilbert was born on this day in Watford, England.
1949 – Canadian musician William “Bill” Wallace was born on this day May 18 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Best known for playing bass guitar with The Guess Who.
1949 – English keyboardist, songwriter, composer and producer Richard “Rick” Wakeman was born in Perivale. He rose to fame as a member of the progressive rock band Yes.
1950 – Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer Mark Mothersbaugh was born in Akron, Ohio on this day May 18 in music history. Best known as the co-founder of the new wave band Devo.
1952 – The “King of Country” music – George Strait was born in Poteet, Texas. He is one of the best-selling artists of all time with over 120 million records sold worldwide. Strait has scored 60 No.1 hits on the Billboard Country songs chart.
1954 – New wave singer-songwriter Eric Goulden better known professionally as Wreckless Eric was born on this day May 18 in Newhaven, England.
1957 – Romanian-German singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer Michael Cretu was born on this day in Bucharest, Romania. Best known as the founder of the musical project Enigma.
1969 – American pop music singer and actress Marta Marrero also known by her stage name Martika was born on this day May 18 in Whittier, California.
1975 – Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Jack Johnson was born in Oahu, Hawaii on this day May 18 in music history. He is also a filmmaker and professional surfer.Share