Bill Haley was born July 6, 1925 in Michigan, as William John Clifton Haley. Died February 9, 1981 (aged 55) Harlingen, Texas.
In 1952, the Saddlemen were renamed Bill Haley with Haley’s Comets (inspired by the supposedly official pronunciation of Halley’s Comet, a name suggested by WPWA radio station program.
In 1953, a song called “Rock Around the Clock” was recorded by Haley. Initially, it was relatively successful, peaking at no. 23 on the Billboard pop singles chart . A month later it became a #1 Hit Song.
Haley soon had another worldwide hit with “Shake, Rattle and Roll”, which went on to sell a million copies and was the first ever rock ‘n’ roll song to enter the British singles charts in December 1954, becoming a Gold Record. He retained elements of the original (which was slow blues), but sped it up with some country music aspects into the song (specifically, Western swing) and changed up the lyrics. Haley and his band were important in launching the music known as “Rock and Roll” to a wider audience after a period of it being considered an underground genre.