The telephone was patented this week in 1876 by none other than Canadian innovator Alexander Graham Bell.
Thanks to this nifty little invention, music fans have been able to do so much more. Things like calling our loved ones about new records being released, order concert tickets remotely, and even take our music on-the-go with us… it’s been an incredible 141 years since!
Bell’s contribution to society has also affected the way musicians write songs: once distant lovers can now be reached on a whim (or they can ignore voicemails much easier…)
Even as phones have become smaller, more portable, and closer to our hip than ever, it still continues to be a focal point in many lyrics.
Phones have inspired many countless hits, and we’re counting down our Top 20 landline anthems!
John Lennon and Yoko Ono made the American album chart no fewer than three times during the course of 1969. Then they began the new decade by placing a name on that survey that had been in the singles charts around the world the previous summer with ‘Give Peace A Chance’: the Plastic Ono Band.
John and Yoko’s two Unfinished Music albums on Apple, Two Virgins and Life With The Lions, had reached modest US peaks of No. 124 and 174 respectively. Their Wedding Album spent just three weeks on that chart at the end of 1969, for a No. 178 peak. But then came the album recorded at the Toronto Rock and Roll Festival in September and released in the December. Live Peace In Toronto, credited not to Lennon and Ono but solely to the Plastic Ono Band, entered the American chart on 10 January, 1970.
Live albums often underperform by comparison to their studio predecessors, but this time it was the other way around, with some good reasons. The headline-making performance in Toronto by a current Beatle was aided by a guest appearance with the Plastic Ono Band of one Eric Clapton on lead guitar, not to mention Beatles alumnus Klaus Voorman on bass and future Yes drummer Alan White.
Furthermore, the set was largely comprised of familiar material. They performed ‘Yer Blues,’ Lennon’s song (officially written with Paul McCartney) from the Beatles’ self-titled but so-called White Album, as well as John’s harrowing drug song ‘Cold Turkey,’ which was a hit around the time of the live album’s release. They also did the anthemic ‘Give Peace A Chance’ (the melody of which is still heard as a chant at football matches around the UK more than 45 years later).