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Tommy’s Coffee Break Calendar for August 25th

Today you got The Beatles playing to a half-empty arena, a country-crossover classic that generated mucho controversy, and a birthday for one of Britain’s best singer-songwriters

Bobbie Gentry
Way more talented than you think; Bobbie Gentry, May 1968. (Photo: Bob Aylott/Keystone/Getty Images)

8/25/1966 (49 years ago today) – File under: “You have got to be kidding, right?” – It’s The Beatles final U.S. tour and they’re playing two shows at the Coliseum in Seattle. The arena holds 15,000 and while the evening performance was a sell-out, the first show at 3 pm was attended by only 8,000 fans! Aaaaarrrgghhh….

8/25/1967 (48 years ago today) – For months, all everybody wanted to know was what did Billie Joe and his girlfriend throw off the Tallahatchie Bridge? Southern Goth didn’t get much better (or smokier…or sexier…) than with the classic “Ode To Billie Joe”, written and performed by Bobbie Gentry. It begins a four-week run at No. 1 on this date, earns eight Grammy noms (winning three), and ends up with the Number Three spot on Billboard’s year-end most-played list, surpassed only by The Box Tops “The Letter” at No. 2, and Lulu‘s “To Sir, With Love” (mmm, is it just me or was this a great year for AM Top 40 singles?). Bobbie Gentry was one of the first country (and female) artists to actually write and produce her own material, but she decided to pretty much discard her new-found status as a “star”, and simply continued to churn out some of country’s best albums in an era when nobody took the C&W scene seriously. A mistake — Bobbie’s albums are four-star-fantastic and well worth searching out. Yeah, we love her. Seriously.

8/25/1954Declan Patrick McManus turns 61 years old today: Happy Birthday to Elvis Costello, who has definitely got one of the sharpest and coolest resumes in rock — his first three LP’s are all on Rolling Stone’s Top 500 Greatest Albums Of All Time; he’s in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame with his band The Attractions; has won multiple awards over the years (including a Grammy); has collaborated with Paul McCartney, Tony Bennett, Lucinda Williams, Nick Lowe, Brian Eno, to name a few. Deep lyrics featuring clever word play and an ability to play in just about any kind of style…let’s give it up for Elvis C. – we need more artists who have absolutely no fear! Yes we do…

Comments on The Calendar? Go for it here on our web site and on the WBLM Facebook and Twitter pages with the hashtag #TommysCoffeeBreak.

“Don’t act like you’re above me/Just look at your shoes…”, xoxo!

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