May 12, 1967 – Pink Floyd perform what may have been the first concert in quadraphonic sound when they place loudspeakers at the back of the concert hall at “Games for May,” a swanky affair at London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall. Adding to the otherworldly experience, Roger Waters throws potatoes at a gong, Nick Mason mic’s up a saw to cut through a log, Richard Wright creates huge soap bubbles to waft over the crowd, and the band’s roadies toss daffodils into the crowd. Aaaah, the 60’s. We can smell it now.
May 12, 1971 – Mick Jagger marries Bianca Macias in a Catholic ceremony in Saint-Tropez, France. Guests include the Stones, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Stephen Stills and Paul McCartney. Daughter Jade is born 5 months later.
May 12, 2008 – Neil Young has a trapdoor spider named after him by a professor at East Carolina University, who is a big fan. Myrmekiaphila neilyoungi joins East African isopod cirolana mercury (Freddie Mercury), and wood roach cryptocercus garciai (Jerry Garcia).
May 12, 1968 – The Rolling Stones release Exile on Main St., their first double album. Hits include “Tumbling Dice” and a rare lead vocal from Keith Richards on “Happy”.
May 12, 1967 – Jimi Hendrix releases his debut album, Are You Experienced, in the UK. It is later released in August in the U.S. The album versions differ significantly, with top hits “Purple Haze”, “Hey Joe”, and “The Wind Cries Mary” added to the U.S. version. It becomes one of the most acclaimed rock albums of all time.
Classic Rock Birthdays
May 12, 1961 – Billy Duffy, guitar (The Cult)
May 12, 1959 – Ray Gillen, vocals (Black Sabbath, Badlands) (d. 1993)
May 12, 1958 – Eric Singer (born Eric Doyle Mensinger), drums (Kiss)
May 12, 1950 – Billy Squier, vocals, guitar
May 12, 1948 – Steve Winwood, vocals, keyboards (The Spencer Davis Group, Traffic, Blind Faith)
May 12, 1946 – Ian McLagan, keyboards (Small Faces, Faces, Rolling Stones) (d. 2014)
May 12, 1942 – Ian Dury, vocals (Ian Dury and the Blockheads) (d. 2000)
May 12, 1954 – Barry Borden, drums (Molly Hatchet)
May 12, 2020 – Astrid Kirchherr, German photographer known for her early work with the Beatles, dies in Hamburg, Germany after a short illness. She was 81. Kirchherr became very close with all of the Beatles, eventually even becoming engaged to Stuart Sutcliffe, who sadly died in her arms at the age of 21 from a brain aneurysm. Many credit Kirchherr with the Beatles’ moptop hairstyle and “mod” clothes. She later published three limited-edition books of photographs.