Today we feature the music of 1956
January 26 – Buddy Holly’s first recording sessions for Decca Records take place in Nashville, Tennessee. Roy Orbison signs with Sun Records.
January 27 – Elvis Presley’s single “Heartbreak Hotel” / “I Was the One” is released. It goes on to be Elvis’s first #1 hit.
January 28 – Elvis Presley makes his national television debut on The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show.
March – The Coasters’ recording career begins, with “Turtle Dovin'”.
March 10 – Carl Perkins’ single “Blue Suede Shoes” enters the R&B charts, the first time a country music artist has made it on the R&B charts.
March 22 – Carl Perkins is injured in a car accident near Wilmington, Delaware, on his way to New York City to make an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. He spends several months in hospital.
March 24 – The first regularly scheduled nationally broadcast rock & roll show, Rock ‘n Roll Dance Party, with Alan Freed as host, premières on the CBS Radio Network.
March 26 – Colonel Tom Parker formally becomes Elvis Presley’s manager.
March 31 – Elvis Presley films a screen test for Paramount Pictures.
April 3 – Elvis Presley makes his first appearance on The Milton Berle Show.
April 6 – Paramount Pictures signs Elvis Presley to a three-picture deal.
May 2 – For the first time in Billboard magazine history, five singles appear in both the pop and R&B Top Ten charts. They are Elvis Presley’s “Heartbreak Hotel” (#1 pop, #6 R&B), Carl Perkins’ “Blue Suede Shoes” (#4 pop, #3 R&B), Little Richard’s “Long Tall Sally” (#9 pop, #1 R&B), the Platters’ “(You’ve Got) The Magic Touch” (#10 pop, #7 R&B) and Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers’ “Why Do Fools Fall in Love” (#7 pop, #4 R&B). Presley’s and Perkins’ singles also appeared on the country and western Top Ten chart at #1 and #2 respectively.
May 6 – Elvis Presley appears on the Milton Berle show.
In Paris, Heitor Villa-Lobos records his Bachiana Brasileira No. 9 with the strings of the Orchestre National de la Radiodiffusion Française, for EMI.
May 24 – First-ever Eurovision Song Contest from the Kursaal Theatre, Lugano, Switzerland. Seven countries participate, each with two songs. Switzerland is declared the winner, with Lys Assia singing “Refrain”.
June 3 – Fred Diodati replaces Al Alberts as lead singer of The Four Aces.
June 5 – Elvis Presley introduces his new single, “Hound Dog”, on The Milton Berle Show, scandalizing the audience with his suggestive hip movements.
July 9 – Dick Clark hosts American Bandstand for the first time
July 22 – The first UK Albums Chart is published, in Record Mirror; Frank Sinatra’s Songs for Swingin’ Lovers! tops it for the first two weeks.
Summer – John Lennon forms a skiffle group, The Quarrymen, with friends from Quarry Bank High School in Liverpool, England, originally Eric Griffiths and Pete Shotton.
September 9 – Elvis Presley appears on The Ed Sullivan Show.
November 5 – Nat King Cole becomes the first major black performer to host a variety show on national television, when The Nat King Cole Show is broadcast.
November 28 – Yoko Ono, recently divorced from Japanese composer Toshi Ichiyanagi, marries Anthony Cox.
December 4 – Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash record together at Sun Studios in Memphis, Tennessee. The sessions are later released under the name “the Million Dollar Quartet”
December 19 – Breaking the record for the highest number of concurrent singles by a single artist, Elvis Presley holds 9 positions on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Presley would hold the record until 1964 when the Beatles hold 14 positions on the chart. Gene Vincent signs a publishing contract with Bill Lowery. Cameo-Parkway Records is formed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, by Kal Mann and Bernie Lowe. – Wikipedia