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Rock n roll
Transcript of Rock n roll
The History of Rock n Roll
Roots of Rock n' Roll
The early roots of Rock n' Roll can be traced back to Africa. Music with a hard driving rhythm played an important part in daily tribal life. Songs were used during work and for entertainment. Songs also kept a kind of vocal history instead of a history written in books. When slaves were taken to America in the 1600s, they brought their music with them. African music supplies the rhythm or beat, which eventually developed into Rock n' Roll.
"The Blues ain't nothin but an achin'
broken heart's disease." Robert Johnson
1. Slow and Sad music
2. Instruments used are guitar
(often with a slide), harmonica
3. Lyrics are very simple and
repetitive (Twelve Bar Blues)
Slavery ended in 1865 but newly freed Blacks continued to lead hard lives as share croppers. This newfound sense of isolation and hardship was the basis of the blues. The first Blues singers wandered around the South with guitars singing about their lives and hardships. The musical form used in the Blues was called Twelve Bar Blues. This style combined European structure with African rhythm and vocal techniques. Throughout the 1920s and 1930s Black musicians such as Robert Johnson sang the blues in roadhouses and juke joints.
"The Heart of Rock n' Roll
is the beat!" Huey Lewis
Twelve Bar Blues
I woke up this morning, I fell right on my head,
I woke up this morning, I fell right on my head,
and I ain't going to school today,
Think I'll crawl right back into bed.
The Twelve Bar Blues is a common chord progression or pattern found in many types of Rock n' Roll. The simple and repetitive nature of the Twelve Bar Blues makes it easy to play and sing.
The Blues Song
Line 1 - makes a statement
Line 2 - repeat of line one
Lines 3 & 4 - draw a conclusion
| CCCC | CCCC | CCCC | CCCC |
| FFFF | FFFF | CCCC | CCCC |
| GGGG | FFFF | CCCC | GGGG |
"The Blues had a baby and they called it
Rock n' Roll" Chuck Berry
Rhythm and Blues
The fifties began with Rhythm and Blues which was music played by, and listened to, by Black Americans. Rhythm and blues used the twelve bar blues chord progression but had an electric sound. It was also fast, cheerful and easy to dance to, which made it different from the slow, sad blues. Fats Domino and Chuck Berry made Rhythm and blues records but they were listened to mainly by Black Americans. These records did not receive wide air-play until Buddy Holly and the Crickets started to make inroads into white listening audiences.
In 1955, a white disc jockey named Alan Freed introduced Rhythm and Blues to the large white radio audience in Cincinnati. He changed the name from Rhythm and Blues to Rock n' Roll. Record sales boomed with young people and Bill Hailey's "Rock Around the Clock" was the first giant hit. Later, Freed was disgraced for taking bribes to play certain records on his radio show. This scandal which became known as Payola shook the recording industry and ruined Freed's disc-jockey career.
Also in 1955, a man named Sam Phillips discovered Elvis. Elvis was a "white boy who sang Black music." Even though many parents claimed Rock n' Roll was an evil influence on youth, Elvis was an instant success, especially with teenagers. His good looks and gyrating hips vaulted Rock n' Roll into every household in America. Elvis had become the first Rock superstar with remakes of old rhythm and blues songs.
5 Characteristics of Rock n' Roll
1. Easy to Sing Melodies
2. Amplification and use of Electrical Equipment
4. Songs are about the Cares and
Wants of Young People
5. Rock Songs have repeated words and music
The English Invasion
In the sixties, British rock groups such as the Beatles and The Rolling Stones began to remake old rhythm blues songs (cover versions) using more amplification. The Beatles became the first super group and had a very large impact on rock music. However, The Beatles had an even larger impact on young people and society in general. A fad towards long hair started a "rebellion" against the ways of the older generation. This idea of using music to express frustration with the ways of the older generation can still be seen today.
Influences of the Beatles
1. Use of studio for recording double tracking
2. Use of classical instruments in songs
3. Long hair, different clothes (hippies)
4. One of the first groups to combine different styles of music - crossover music
Styles of Rock Music
- Surfer music of the 1960s
- High pitched voices
- Beach Boys, Jan & Dean
- many unique sounds
- music made in a studio so it can not be reproduced live
- extensive use of electronic instruments
- double tracking (overdubbing) is used a great deal
- made popular by the Beatles
- A blend of modern country music and rock n' roll
Smokey Robinson said of Motown's cultural impact:
Into the '60s, I was still not of a frame of mind that we were not only making music, we were making history. But I did recognize the impact because acts were going all over the world at that time. I recognized the bridges that we crossed, the racial problems and the barriers that we broke down with music. I recognized that because I lived it. I would come to the South in the early days of Motown and the audiences would be segregated. Then they started to get the Motown music and we would go back and the audiences were integrated and the kids were dancing together and holding hands.
Motown played an important role in the racial integration of popular music by achieving a crossover success. In the 1960s, Motown and its soul-based subsidiaries were the most successful proponents of what came to be known as "The Motown Sound", a style of soul music with a distinct pop influence.
From 1961 to 1971, Motown had 110 top 10 hits.
Top artists on the Motown label during that period included Diana Ross & The Supremes, The Four Tops, and The Jackson 5, while Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, The Marvelettes, and The Miracles released hits on the Tamla label.
The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. They became the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed act in the rock music era
John Lennon was murdered in New York City December 8, 1980
George Harrison died from lung cancer November 29, 2001
The Beatles recorded 304 songs .... 229 of which were written by at least one of the Beatles
Rock and Roll in it's truest form continued until the late 1960s at which time it began to break into many differentiated branches of rock music. Music written and performed in this decade became tied up into causes, opposing certain ideas, influenced by the sexual revolution, feminism, Black Power and environmentalism. This trend took place in a period of massive public unrest in the United States which consisted of the Cold War, Vietnam War, and Civil Rights Movement.
Styles of Rock Music
- music inspired by drugs
- groups in the 1960s experimented with
strange lyrics and music
- Jimmy Hendrix, Jefferson Airplane
- clear vocal harmonies
- relatively "clean"
(effects- and distortion-free)
- epitomized by the jangly 12-string guitar
- use of synthesized sounds
- use of improvisation in solos
- loud, fast music with lots of amplification
- music is written to create controversy with
very aggressive lyrics
- influenced strongly by Jimmy Hendrix, Led Zepplin, Kiss
The first mention of the term "Heavy Metal" is in a song by Steppenwolf "Born to be Wild" - 1973
- music aimed at large listening audiences
- the week's forty most popular songs
are repeated over and over
- often called "middle of the road" music
- music for smaller listening audiences
- songs are often longer and less well known
- "alternative" music
The End of Radio
In the 50's, 60's and 70's, young people would listen to the latest rock n' roll songs on the radio. Beginning in the 80's, young people began to watch the latest music on TV video networks. While some radio stations remained, this switch caused many radio stations to change their music to classic rock aimed at the parents.
The 1970s saw various forms of pop music dominating the charts. Often characterized as being shallow, 70s pop took many forms and could be seen as a reaction against the high-energy and activist pop of the previous decade. New York City saw a period of great innovation; hip hop, punk rock and salsa were invented in 70s New York, which was also a center for electronic music, techno and disco.
McLean's 1971 song "American Pie," inspired by the death of Buddy Holly, became one of popular music's most-recognized songs of the 20th century, thanks to its abstract and vivid storytelling, which center around "The Day the Music Died" and popular music of the rock era.
The 1970s saw the beginning of hard rock as one of the most prominent subgenres of rock music. Bands like Alice Cooper and Deep Purple were highly popular by 1972. The guitar sounds became heavier and the riffs faster. By the second half of the decade, several bands had achieved stardom, namely, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Aerosmith and Kiss.
Heavy metal music (though not recognized as a separate genre from hard rock at the time) gained a cult following in the 1970s, led by Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple, with their styles later influencing other bands like Judas Priest, which eventually started the New Wave of British Heavy Metal in the 1980s.
Psychedelic rock declined in popularity after the deaths of Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison and the breakup of The Beatles.
Along with disco, funk was one of the most popular genres of music in the '70s. Primarily an African-American genre, it was characterized by the heavy use of bass and "wah-wah" pedals. Rhythm was emphasized over melody. Artists such as James Brown, The Meters, Parliament-Funkadelic and Sly And The Family Stone pioneered the genre.
The Jackson 5 became one of the biggest pop-music phenomena of the 1970s, playing from a repertoire of rhythm and blues, soul, pop and later disco. They were the first act in recording history to have their first four major label singles: "I Want You Back", "ABC", "The Love You Save", and "I'll Be There" reach the top of the Billboard Hot 100. The band served as the launching pad for the solo careers of their lead singers Jermaine and Michael, and while Jermaine had some success, it was Michael who would transform his early fame into greater success as an adult artist, with songs such as "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" and "Rock with You." Stevie Wonder was another young artist who became one of the most popular R&B artists during the 1970s.
The 1980s saw the reinvention of Michael Jackson and the emergence of Madonna, which arguably were the most powerful musicians during the time. Their videos became a permanent fixture on MTV and gained a worldwide mass audience. Michael Jackson's Thriller album from 1982 is considered to be the best-selling album of all time. Despite all the controversy surrounding Jackson during that period, he was indisputably the biggest star of the 1980s. In the second half of the 1980s teen pop has its first wave. Bands and artists include New Kids on the Block, Debbie Gibson, Tiffany, Tommy Page, New Edition, Stacey Q, The Bangles, and others. Peaking in success in 1986-1989, the decade saw the resurgence of hard rock music and the emergence of its pop metal subgenre. Bands such as Queen, Def Leppard, Mötley Crüe, Bon Jovi, and Twisted Sister were among the most popular acts of the decade. The success of hard rock act Van Halen spanned throughout the entire decade, first with singer David Lee Roth and later with Sammy Hagar.
Tom Sawyer 1984
The Rolling Stones Time is on my Side - 1964
The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London in 1962. At that time they "were being perceived by the youth of Britain, and then the world, as the antidote to a class-bound, authoritarian culture." After a short period of musical experimentation that culminated with the poorly received and largely psychedelic album Their Satanic Majesties Request (1967), The group returned to its bluesy roots and this is generally considered to be the band's best work, and is considered the Rolling Stones' "Golden Age". In the 1980s, a feud between Mick Jagger and Keith Richards about the band's musical direction almost caused the band to split but they managed to patch their relationship and had a big comeback with Steel Wheels (1989) which was followed by a big stadium and arena tour. Since the 1990s, new recorded material from the group has been both increasingly less well-received and less frequent. Despite this, the Stones have continued to be a huge attraction on the live circuit with big stadium tours continuing through the 1990s and 2000s. The Rolling Stones were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989. They have released twenty-nine studio albums, eighteen live albums and numerous compilations.
Michael Jackson began his career with the Jackson 5 at age 7.
He was 11 when they gave their first performance on the Ed Sullivan Show.
New Kids on the Block
The Right Stuff
The Third Wave of Rock
The 1990s are often labelled the third wave of rock and roll because the trends and genres that began in the 1970s simply continued to develop in the 90s. Teen pop and dance-p0op trends were still popular and additionally hip hop grew and continued to be highly successful.
With the breakthrough of bands such as Nirvana, REM and The Red Hot Chili Peppers, the grunge/alternative rock the crossed over into some of the mainstream listening audience. The post-grunge movement began after the death of Pearl Jam's lead singer Kurt Cobain, and Foofighters became one of the most commercially successful bands of the 1990s. The post-grunge sound was a little less edgy and more radio friendly.
When I Come Around
Female Pop Rock
Female pop rock and singer-songwriters of the 1990s became very successful due to the third wave feminism movement. Artists like Norah Jones, Sarah McLaclan, Tori Amos and Sheryl Crow became very popular. Most important female albums were Alanis Morissette with Jagged Little Pill and Sheryl Crow with Tuesday Night Music Club.
Hard Rock Artists such as Guns N' Roses, Van Halen, Def Leppard, Ozzy Osbourne and the Black Crowes remained successful through the first half of the decade with Bon Jovi and Metallica managing to edge out the competition by the second half of the 1990s.
The lead male pop artist of the decade was Michael Jackson who achieved continued critical and commercial success with this albums Dangerous and HiStory. The teen-pop acts Spice Girls, Backstreet Boys, "NSYNC, Hanson, Destiny's Child, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears were targeting the new generation and had huge successes with their hit singles "Mmm Bop" "Baby One More Time" and "Genie in a Bottle".
Pop Rock of the 90s