Cover of The Rolling Stone – Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show

THIS DAY IN MUSIC……………………………….on March 29th of 1973 Dr. Hook And The Medicine Show got their picture on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine after their hit, “The Cover of Rolling Stone” reached number 6 on the US singles chart. According to members of the group, they really did buy five copies for their mothers, just like the song said. Written by Shel Silverstein, a best-selling author of children’s poems who was also a contributor to Playboy magazine and writer of many Country hits, including A Boy Named Sue. His books include Where The Sidewalk Ends, Giraffeand The Giving Tree. Silverstein also wrote Dr. Hook’s first hit, “Sylvia’s Mother.” This is a parody of the rock and roll lifestyle. It pokes fun at all the things that rock stars indulge in when they’re successful: groupies, shady characters hanging around, limo rides, etc. The group had a funny side and a serious side, but it was the funny side that came out on stage and framed their image. The pirate theme added to the novelty of the group: originally known as the Chocolate Papers, they took the name Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show after the character in Peter Pan, which also played up the eye patch worn by their singer Ray Sawyer, who many people assumed was “Dr. Hook.” Sawyer wore the eye patch as a result of a car accident. The group made the cover of Rolling Stone magazine on March 29, 1973, 3 months after this song was released. The text next to their picture read: “What’s Their Names Make The Cover.” The song was great publicity for Rolling Stone magazine, which was only five years old. For the story, reporter Jim Cahill followed the band on tour, portraying them (accurately) as a ragtag band of misfits who were making it up as they went along. Early stage shows for the band were a bawdy affair, with a lot of improvisation and revelry. The song never charted in the UK because The BBC refused to play this because it violated their rule stating that songs could not mention trademarked products by brand name (the Kinks had to change “Coca-Cola” to “Cherry Cola” in their song “Lola” to get around the rule).