August 23 – Paul Whiteman, American Graffiti, Singing Revolution, Orbital


Whiteman, 1926

Paul Whiteman and the Ambassador Orchestra, recently relocated to NYC from San Francisco, record what will become, when released in November, the first million-selling record, ‘Whispering‘ backed with ‘Japanese Sandman’ (Victor 18690). Whispering 

Whiteman (who had nearly as many hits as Bing Crosby(*)) called Sandman (written by Richard Whiting/Raymond Egan, lyrics) ‘one of the two greatest dance melodies ever composed.’ Sandman 
▷Whiteman discography▹


Release of classic rock-n-roll teen film American Graffiti, directed by George Lucas (4 years before Star Wars) .

It stars Harrison Ford, Charles Martin Riley, Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Wolfman Jack, many more. A couple of high school grads spend one final night cruising the strip with their buddies before they go off to college. Wolfman Jack clip  The film is nominated for 5 Oscars, wins 2 Golden Globes.

The feeling of the early rock era is nicely portrayed. The 41-track soundtrack album (US#10) is extremely popular, certified triple platinum. Licensing so many tracks was difficult, with the result that Elvis is missing.

The first cut of the film was 210 minutes; the released cut is 112. Where’s the rest?

 ( Website ▷Filmsite▹


2,000,000 people hold hands in a 600km line, called the ‘Baltic way’, protesting for freedom from Soviet Russia.

The Singing Revolution lasts 4 years. In January 1991 in Lithuania, the Soviets kill 14 and injure hundreds for linking arms and singing.

In August, after the failed coup in Moscow, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are free.


UK electronic music duo Orbital release 3rd album Snivilisation.

It reaches UK#4 and in 1997 is named one of the 25 Best Dance Albums Ever by Q magazine. 1997 also sees the release of UK#1 sci-fi film Event Horizon, for which Orbital did their first soundtrack album. Their next 3 studio albums make the UK top-20.

On April 2, 2012 the Hartnoll brothers release their first new album in 8 years, Wonky (UK#22), as well as a soundtrack for the film Pusher.

 ( Website  2012 interview