Sunday, November 29, 2015

Rock 'n' Roll : Back to the Origins by Mark Begelman

As you scroll down the list of records on your iPod, you may have notice at least a couple of Rock 'n' Roll ones. Ever wondered how and when this popular genre came about? Lets trace it back to its birth.

You may be surprised to know that this popular music genre originated way back in the late 1940s to early 1950s in the United States. It emerged from a wide variety of music genres that were highly popular in the United States in the early twentieth century. It mostly draws from rhythm and blues music of 1940s, which was hugely influenced by other genres such as jazz, gospel, country and western.
This music has been influenced by different ethnic and social groups prevalent in those times, but the greatest contribution of all came from African American-population, with its distinctive story telling and stylistic rhythmic patterns. The initial practitioners of this music were young African-Americans. The music mostly centered around the themes of excitement, increasing social freedom, dancing etc. Steadily white teenagers also developed fascination for it. Much of the later adulation and white audience that came in for the music, was garnered by White Americans such as Presley, Haley, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis

The phrase 'rocking and rolling' is believed to have been used to describe a ship's movement in the ocean. In the later period of the it was also used to describe spiritual fervor. Although this phrase was used quite frequently earlier as well, It was in 1951 that Disk Jockey Alan Freed began playing this music, using Rock and Roll to refer to the genre, thereby popularizing the use of the term.

The famous 1951 song "Rocket88", recorded by Ike Turner and his band is often said to be among the earliest recorded songs from the genre. 'Rock Around the Clock' by Bill Haley, is believed to have been the first Rock and Roll record to have significant commercial success. By 1955, there were quite a number of other records that pioneered the genre.

Give Rocket88 a listen
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