Historically speaking, this week in rock music has been marked by a trove of memorable events. A legendary British band launched its first-ever American tour, an iconic “concert TV” show made its debut, and rock and roll’s most renowned festival was staged. An abundance of classic albums was released as well, including landmark records by Oasis, Eric Clapton, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Read on for a look back at other significant moments that shaped rock and roll during this historically eventful week.


1962 -- Drummer Pete Best is fired from The Beatles by manager Brian Epstein. Best had been a member of the band for two years and four days. He is replaced by Rory Storm and the Hurricanes’ drummer Ringo Starr.


1964 -- The Beatles begin their first American tour, performing a 33-minute show at the Cow Palace in San Francisco.

1965 -- The Beatles kick off their third North American tour, performing at Shea Stadium in front of 55,000 fans. A total of 2,000 security guards are employed to maintain order at the event.

1968 – A trio called Earth, who play blues and rock, makes their performance debut in a coffee house in a small town in New Jersey. The guitarist and singer is an 18-year-old named Bruce Springsteen.

1968 -- The final episode of the TV show “The Monkees” airs on NBC. The series had won two Emmy Awards the previous year: one for Outstanding Comedy Series, and the other for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy.

1969 -- The Woodstock Music and Art Festival is staged at a 600-acre farm in Bethel, New York. More than 500,000 people attend the three-day festival.

1969 -- The Beatles gather for the last time at EMI Studios in London. They wrap up the mixes for “I Want You,” and discuss the song sequence for the Abbey Road album.

1972 -- “The Midnight Special,” hosted by Wolfman Jack, makes its debut on NBC. The show features War performing their current million-seller, “Slippin’ into Darkness.”

1974 -- Keyboardist Patrick Moraz replaces Rick Wakeman in Yes. Moraz remains with the band for three years, before Wakeman returns.

1975 -- Peter Gabriel announces he is leaving the prog-rock band, Genesis. During the next year and a half, the group auditions more than 400 singers before deciding that Phil Collins, their drummer since 1970, will step into the frontman spot left by Gabriel.

1977 -- Elvis Presley is found dead at his Graceland Mansion in Memphis, Tennessee. The rock and roll icon was just 42 years old. At the time of his death, Presley’s estate was valued at $4.9 million. By 1993, its value is more than $50 million.

1979 -- Led Zeppelin releases their final studio album, In Through the Out Door.

1980 -- John Lennon begins recording the Double Fantasy album. The record will later be awarded a Grammy for “Album of the Year.”

1987 -- Lindsey Buckingham leaves Fleetwood Mac, after refusing to tour behind the band’s latest album, Tango in the Night.

1991 -- Nirvana performs a concert at The Roxy in Los Angeles, where they invite fans to attend the shoot for the video for “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” When filming begins two days later, the response is so massive that hundreds of fans have to be turned away.

1997 -- The Rolling Stones announce plans for their “Bridges to Babylon” tour by driving up to the Brooklyn Bridge in New York in a red ’55 Cadillac, with Mick Jagger at the wheel.

Rolling Stones

2005 -- Sly Stone makes a rare public appearance, when he shows up the Knitting Factory in Hollywood to watch his little sister, Vet, perform with a Sly and the Family Stone tribute band.


1970 -- The Band: Stage Fright

1974 -- Harry Nilsson: Pussy Cats

1975 -- Rod Stewart: Atlantic Crossing

1976 -- Burning Spear: Man in the Hills

1977 -- Doobie Brothers: Livin’ on the Fault Line

1977 -- Motorhead: Motorhead

1978 -- The Who: Who Are You


1979 -- Led Zeppelin: In Through the Out Door

1979 -- Bob Dylan: Slow Train Coming

1979 -- XTC: Drums and Wires

1980 -- The Cars: Panorama

1980 -- Yes: Drama

1981 -- The Pretenders: Pretenders II

1983 -- Cheap Trick: Next Position Please

1983 -- Heart: Passionworks

1983 -- AC/DC: Flick of the Switch

1984 -- Red Hot Chili Peppers: The Red Hot Chili Peppers

1985 -- John Cougar Mellencamp: Scarecrow

1989 -- Red Hot Chili Peppers: Mother’s Milk

1990 -- Prince: Graffiti Bridge

1991 -- Joan Jett and the Blackhearts: Notorious

1991 -- Julian Lennon: Help Yourself

1992 -- Eric Clapton: Unplugged

1997 -- Oasis: Be Here Now


2002 -- Black Sabbath: Past Lives

2003 -- Neil Young: Greendale

2003 -- Kings of Leon: Youth and Young Manhood


Robert Johnson -- Aug. 16, 1938

Elvis Presley -- Aug. 16, 1977

Norman Petty (producer) -- Aug. 15, 1984

Betty Everett -- Aug. 19, 2001

Vassar Clements -- Aug. 16, 2005

Robert Moog -- Aug. 21, 2005

Jerry Wexler (producer) -- Aug. 15, 2008

LeRoi Moore (Dave Matthews Band) -- Aug. 19, 2008

Jim Dickinson -- Aug. 15, 2009

Scott McKenzie -- Aug. 18, 2012


Ginger Baker -- Aug. 19, 1939

Johnny Nash -- Aug. 19, 1940

Isaac Hayes -- Aug. 20, 1942

Ian Gillan -- Aug. 19, 1945

Jimmy Webb -- Aug. 15, 1946

Ralf Hutter (Kraftwerk) -- Aug. 20, 1946

James Pankow (Chicago) -- Aug. 20, 1947

Tom Johnston (Doobie Brothers) -- Aug. 15, 1948

Robert Plant -- Aug. 20, 1948

Scott Asheton (The Stooges) -- Aug. 16, 1949

Phil Lynott -- Aug. 20, 1949

John Deacon -- Aug. 19, 1951

John Hiatt -- Aug. 20, 1952

Glenn Hughes -- Aug. 21, 1952

Joe Stummer -- Aug. 21, 1952

Colin Moulding (XTC) -- Aug. 17, 1955

Tim Farris (INXS) -- Aug. 16, 1957

Belinda Carlisle -- Aug. 16, 1958

Gilby Clarke -- Aug. 17, 1962

Dimebag Darrell -- Aug. 20, 1966

Fred Durst -- Aug. 20, 1970

Emily Robison (Dixie Chicks) -- Aug. 16, 1972

Kacey Musgraves -- Aug. 21, 1988