Say It's Your Birthday: T. Rex's Marc Bolan

Today is the birthday of the late Marc Bolan, leader of T.

Rex, who was born Marc Feld in 1947. Though T. Rex scored hits in the early

'70s, the group remain a major influence on such contemporary British bands as

Oasis and London Suede, and they were certainly listened to by Guided By

Voices' leader Robert Polard and Spacehog. Marc Bolan began his career in the

spotlight as a teenage male model in London, and was a noted member of the '60s

mod scene. He then embarked on a solo career, which lasted three years before

he formed the ill-fated group John's Children. The Children never grew up or

produced anything of note, and the band broke up in 1967, leaving Bolan free to

form the acoustic duo Tyrannosaurus Rex with Steve Took. Various personnel and

name changes ensued, and in 1970 T. Rex was born, this time as a quartet. In

Oct. of 1970, the single "Ride A White Swan" went to #2 on UK charts. T. Rex

then scored their one and only major U. S. hit, with "Bang A Gong (Get It On),"

which reached #10 on the Billboard Top 100 chart. " In mid-Sept., 1977

Bolan was killed when his girlfriend, Gloria Jones, drove their car into a tree

following a late night at the London clubs.