Procol Harum originally began as a rhythm and blues band known as The Paramounts in 1963. The London group came together in 1966 as Procol Harum (loosely translated from Latin to mean "beyond these things") with members Gary Brooker (piano & vocals), Keith Reid (lyrics). Matthew Fischer (organ), Ray Royer (guitar), Dave Knights (bass) & Bobby Harrison (drums). The 1967 hit 'Whiter Shade of Pale' sold over six million copies. Robin Trower and B. J. Wilson replaced Royer and Harrison in 1968. Trower left in 1971 and other personnel changes continued. 'Conquistador', recorded live with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and De Camera Singers, became a success for the group in 1972. The group disbanded in the mid-1970s. However, Brooker, Fisher, Reid, and Trower reunited Procol Harum in 1991 to record the album The Prodigal Stranger.
Born in Tucson, Arizona, Linda Ronstadt grew up singing songs of Hank Williams, Elvis Presley, and folk songs of Mexico. As a university student and singer performing in Tucson, she met guitarist Bob Kimmel. In 1964 Ronstadt left Tucson to join Kimmel and the Stone Poneys in Los Angeles. When the Stone Poneys later split up, Ronstadt signed a management contract with Herb Cohen. Ronstadt struggled as a soloist for a number of years until Peter Asher, formerly of the British duo Peter and Gorden, began to manage her career. In late 1974, her album Heart Like a Wheel reached #1. "You're No Good" became a #1 single, and throughout the remainder of the decade, Ronstadt's career was highly succssful. From the 1980s until today, Ronstadt's recordings have turned more romantic and stylistic. Several Grammy Award winning songs and 17 gold or platinum albums have followed.
Formed mostly from former members of Alexis Korner's Blues, Inc, the Rolling Stones' lineup was complete when drummer Charlie Watts joined guitarists Brian Jones and Keith Richards, bassist Bill Wyman, and vocalist Mick Jagger in January 1963. After releasing their first single in June 1963, the band headlined a January 1964 British tour with the Ronettes and reached the British #3 slot with their single "Not Fade Away". Upon releasing their first UK and American albums in the spring of 1964, the band gained their first #1 song, "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" in early January 1965. Through the various changes in the band, including the death of Brian Jones in 1969, addition of Ron Wood at lead guitar in 1976, a brief estrangemnt of Jagger and Richards in the mid-1980s, and the retirement of Bill Wyman in 1992, Jagger and Richards continued to write chart-topping songs and produce album after album. The group was inducting into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989 and won a Grammy in 1994 for Voodoo Lounge as Best Rock Album. The Rolling Stones continue to tour and record.
Formed in Birmingham, England in 1963 as a rhythm-and-blues-style band, members included Spencer Davis (vocals & rhythm guitar), Muff Winwood (bass), Steve Winwood (vocals, lead guitar, keyboards), and Pete York (Drums). Davis and York were college mates playing music together when they met the Winwood brothers. The four teamed and became the Rhythm and Blues Quartet. Later, Chris Blackwell, owner of Island Records, developed the name Spencer Davis Group and signed the band to record for his Fontana label. The hit song 'Gimme Some Loving', composed at London's Marquie Club, skyrocketed the group to worldwide fame, and the song was soon followed by 'I'm A Man'. Steve Winwood left the group in 1967 to form Traffic and eventually pursued a solo career. The Spencer Davis Group continued to perform.