The History of Rock & Roll, Volume 1: 1920-1963 by Ed WardEd Ward covers the first half of the social history of rock & roll in this definitive book. Beginning in the 1920s when blues, country, and black popular music played over the air waves and the first independent record labels were born, this first volume of a two-part series finishes in December 1963, just as an immense sea-change begins to take hold and the Beatles prepare for their first American tour. Ward introduces you to the musicians, DJs, record executives, and producers who were at the forefront of the genre. Sharing story after story of some of the most unforgettable and groundbreaking moments in rock history, Ward reveals how different sounds, harmonies, and trends came together to create the music we all know and love today.
Ed Ward has been NPR’s Fresh Air rock & roll historian for the last thirty-five years reaching 14 million listeners. In these pages he shares his endless depth of knowledge and through engrossing storytelling hops seamlessly from Memphis to Chicago, Detroit, England, New York, and everywhere in between covering all the big-name acts everyone is already familiar with, from Elvis and Buddy Holly to Chuck Berry, while filling in gaps of knowledge with the more obscure and forgotten names of music’s past like T-Bone Walker and The Ventures.
For all music lovers and rock & roll fans, this sweeping history will shine a light on the corners of the genre to reveal some of the less well-known yet hugely influential artists who changed the musical landscape forever.
Chuck Berry & Etta James - Rock and Roll Music (1986)
When was rock and roll born? Some scholars of popular music would say in , the year Elvis Aron Presley entered the world, or earlier in the s, when hillbilly fiddle tunes met African American country blues in the music popular entertainers such as Jimmie Rodgers. To judge by the charts, belongs to the big band and swing eras.
Origins of rock and roll
Rock and roll emerged as a defined musical style in the United States in the early to mids. It derived most directly from the rhythm and blues music of the s, which itself developed from earlier blues , boogie woogie , jazz and swing music , and was also influenced by gospel , country and western , and traditional folk music. Rock and roll in turn provided the main basis for the music that, since the mids, has been generally known simply as rock music. The phrase "rocking and rolling" originally described the movement of a ship on the ocean, but it was used by the early 20th century, both to describe a spiritual fervor and as a sexual analogy. Various gospel, blues and swing recordings used the phrase before it became used more frequently — but still intermittently — in the late s and s, principally on recordings and in reviews of what became known as "rhythm and blues" music aimed at black audiences. In , Cleveland-based disc jockey Alan Freed began playing this music style while popularizing the term "rock and roll" to describe it. Various recordings that date back to the s have been named as the first rock and roll record.
According to Greg Kot , "rock and roll" refers to a style of popular music originating in the U. In the earliest rock and roll styles, either the piano or saxophone was typically the lead instrument, but these instruments were generally replaced or supplemented by guitar in the middle to late s. Beyond simply a musical style, rock and roll, as seen in movies, in fan magazines, and on television, influenced lifestyles, fashion, attitudes, and language. In addition, rock and roll may have contributed to the civil rights movement because both African-American and white American teenagers enjoyed the music. The phrase "rocking and rolling" originally described the movement of a ship on the ocean,  but was used by the early twentieth century, both to describe the spiritual fervor of black church rituals  and as a sexual analogy. Various gospel, blues and swing recordings used the phrase before it became used more frequently — but still intermittently — in the s, on recordings and in reviews of what became known as "rhythm and blues" music aimed at a black audience. In , Billboard magazine columnist Maurie Orodenker started to use the term "rock-and-roll" to describe upbeat recordings such as "Rock Me" by Sister Rosetta Tharpe.
is for Students.
It's one of those questions that there's no answer for. It would be nice for me to tell you that the first rock'n' roll record ever made was by Fred Bloggs, but it's an impossible thing to do. You're never going to get a definitive answer. So it would appear. I have spent the past few weeks in search of the first rock'n'roll record and I am more confused than ever. I have spoken to expert journalists, septuagenarian former record company bosses and, in one notable case, a British rock'n' roll DJ so old he can clearly remember when teddy boys were forced to beat up other teddy boys because no one had invented mods yet.