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The NME's annual popularity poll is topped by Dickie Valentine (Male Vocalist), Lita Roza (Female Vocalist), Ted Heath and his Music (Big Band) and Ronnie Scott's Band (Small Band).
The NME's annual popularity poll is topped by Dickie Valentine (Male Vocalist), Lita Roza (Female Vocalist), Ted Heath and his Music (Big Band) and Ronnie Scott's Band (Small Band).
UK music paper The Melody Maker reports that trumpeter Eddie Calvert, aka The Man With The Golden Trumpet, has signed a contract to appear in the summer season at Blackpool for a fee of £7000.
Elvis Presley and his girlfriend Dixie Locke attend an all-night Gospel singing show in Ellis Auditorium, Memphis, Tennessee.
I See The Moon by The Stargazers reaches No1 on the Popular Singles Chart in the UK.
Billie Holiday plays at The Flamingo Club, London. Fred Dellar (journalist) : In such a tiny club, she was absolutely hypnotic. Being at the end of her career, her voice was very cracked but she used that to wring extra emotion out of every word. I ended up standing on a chair with my arms round two girls to keep them from falling off.
William Clay Robinson is born in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA. After moving to Los Angeles, California, USA, he will carve out a career as guitarist Electric Willy, working with bands including Smegma, The Hurtin' Brothers and The Electric Willy Trio.
Louis Armstrong records The Whiffenpoof Song, Spooks, Trees and Bye And Bye, in New York City, USA.
Big Joe Turner releases his original, uncensored, version of Shake Rattle and Roll on Atlantic Records in the USA. A cleaned-up white cover version by Bill Haley And His Comets will become a much bigger hit.
Junior Wells records So All Alone for States Records in Chicago, Illinois, USA. The band is Junior Wells [vocals and harmonica] Otis Spann [piano], Muddy Waters and Louis Myers [guitars], Willie Dixon [bass] and Fred Below [drums].
Music trade magazine Billboard in the USA notes the coming trend in music with the headline, 'Teenagers Demand Music with a Beat - Spur Rhythm and Blues.'
Kenny Graham's Afro Cubists record The Continental, Cottontail, Fascinating Rhythm and Blues In The Night, for Esquire Records in London, UK.
The Johnny Dankworth Orchestra records Bugle Call Rag, Four Of A Kind, Perdido and You Go To My Head for Parlophone Records in London, UK.
Jazz pianist Bud Powell records Moonlight In Vermont, Spring Is Here, Buttercup and Fantasy In Blue for Norgran Records in Fine Sound Studio, New York City, USA. The tracks will be released on the album Bud Powell's Moods.
Robert Walter Donaldson is born in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. He will find success as leader of 70s hitmakers Bo Donaldson And The Heywoods.
Memphis-based gospel music group The Blackwood Brothers perform their latest recording, Have You Talked to the Man Upstairs, on the nationally televised Arthur Godfrey Talent Scouts program in New York City, USA. They win.
Garrick Roberts is born in Dublin, Ireland. He will find success as Garry Roberts, guitarist of The Boomtown Rats.
The first edition of pop music weekly Record Mirror is published in the UK.
The El Dorados record My Loving Baby and Baby I Need You at Universal Recording, Chicago, Illinois, USA, for Vee-Jay Records.
Rosco Euanes plays at Springbrook Gardens, Lima, Ohio, USA.
The Drifters play the last night in a week of appearances at Apollo Theater, Harlem, New York City, USA.
The Robins, later to become The Coasters, play at The Savoy Ballroom in Los Angeles, California, USA, with Richard Lewis and his Band.
Clyde McPhatter And The Drifters reach No1 in the Billboard R'n'B Singles Chart in the USA, with Honey Love despite having been banned by several stations, including Memphis radio WDIA, for having 'overtly sexual' lyrics.
Little Things Mean A Lot reaches No1 in the Sheet Music Sales Chart in the UK. The position is achieved by amalgamating sales of versions of the song by Kitty Kallen and Alma Cogan.
R'n'b/doo-wop group The Castelles release a new single, Over A Cup Of Coffee, on Grand Records in the USA.
In St. Anne's Catholic Church, San Antonio, Texas, USA, door-to-door salesman Johnny Cash marries his girlfriend Vivian Liberto, just over a month after his return from Air Force duty in Europe.
R'n'B vocal group The Chords appear on The Colgate Summer Comedy Hour tv show at The NBC Century Theatre, Seventh Avenue, New York City, USA. They sing their major hit, Sh-Boom, and also also perform Say Hey, Willie, with baseball star Willie Mays.
An Alan Freed-promoted package tour, called The Biggest Rhythm'n'Blues Show, plays in Charlotte, South Carolina, USA. Acts on the bill include The Drifters, Roy Hamilton, LaVern Baker, King Pleasure, The Spaniels and more.
RCA Records in the USA announces that the 78rpm record format is shortly to be scrapped, due to the success of the more convenient and durable 45rpm discs.
A survey of American ballroom operators shows that business in the first half of 1954 was down by 54% compared to the first half of 1953. Blame is placed on the increasing popularity of record hops where teenagers dance to records rather than live performers.
Memphis Slim releases a new single, Four Years Of Torment, in the USA on United Records.
T-Bone Walker plays the eighth night of a two-week stay at The Flame Show Bar, Detroit, Michigan, USA.
Frankie Vaughan plays at The Empire, Finsbury Park, London, UK.
Blues guitar maestro Stevie Ray Vaughan is born in Dallas, Texas, USA.
Successful Cincinnati-based R'n'B group Otis Williams and the Charms make their Billboard US chart debut with Hearts Of Stone.
Johnny Otis plays the sixth night of two weeks at The Club Oasis, Los Angeles, California, USA.
Nolan Strong And The Diablos play the sixth night of three weeks at The Madison Ballroom, Detroit, Michigan, USA.
Nolan Strong And The Diablos play the ninth night of three weeks at The Madison Ballroom, Detroit, Michigan, USA.
Mitch Easter, musician/producer with Let's Active and R.E.M., is born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA.
The Drifters and Erskine Hawkins play the fourth night of a week at The Howard Theater, Washington, DC, USA.
Elvis Presley plays the second of two nights at the Palladium Club, Houston, Texas, USA.
The Clovers, The Joe Morris Orchestra and Al Savage play the first night of a week at The Howard Theater, Washington, DC, USA.
The Clovers, The Joe Morris Orchestra and Al Savage play the second night of a week at The Howard Theater, Washington, DC, USA.
Earl Bostic plays the second night of a week at The Colonial Tavern, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
The Chris Barber Jazz Band plays a live session in London, UK, for the BBC Radio broadcast British Jazz. Songs performed in the session include After You've Gone.
The Ballad Of Davy Crockett is broadcast for the first time, as the theme to the US tv series Davy Crockett. The song will result in three Billboard top ten hit versions, one by the star of the tv show, actor Fess Parker, one by Tennessee Ernie Ford and one by Bill Hayes.
Country music star Ray Price And His Band play at The Lyric Ballroom, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (1954)/
Annie Lennox, later to found Eurythmics is born in Summerfield Maternity Hospital, Aberdeen, Scotland.
A Starr is born when thirteen-year-old Richard Starkey of 10 Admiral Grove, Dingle, Liverpool, UK, is given his first drum kit as a Christmas present from his stepfather, Harry Graves. As Ringo Starr he will become the drummer for The Beatles.
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