writing question and need guidance to help me learn.
I will attach two more chapters and an example on the chat and example
The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 12 CHAPTER 2 POP-ROCK OF THE 50S AND 60S INTRODUCTION Softer “pop” music styles have played important roles in the development of rock, especially from c1953 to 1966 and in the early 70s. Various pop-related styles in the 50s and early 60s include: • Doo-Wop (1950s and early ‘60s; combined Pop, Gospel and soft R & B elements) • Teen Idol “Crooners” (late ‘50s/early ‘60s; Dick Clark early rock era; soft R & B) • Surf Music (late ‘50s/early ‘60s) • Brill Building/Aldon Music (‘60s pop; extension of “Tin Pan Alley” tradition) • Early Motown (early 1960s; “Soul-pop” music) I. THE CHANGING OF THE GUARD IN 50s ROCK During the years 1957 to 1961, Rock & Roll lost the impact of at least ten of its most prominent trendsetters. • March 1956: While on his way to perform for The Perry Como Show in New York City, Carl Perkins was involved in a car crash in which he suffered a fractured shoulder and skull. Perkins lost his chance for major fame, and was soon overshadowed by the rise of Elvis Presley. • October 1957: Little Richard renounced Rock and Roll for the ministry of the Seventh Day Adventist Church. • November 1957: Jerry Lee Lewis married his 13-year-old third cousin (while “forgetting” to divorce his first wife.) The scandal that followed destroyed his career. • March 1958: Elvis Presley was drafted into the army, serving in Germany until 1960. • February 1959: a small-plane crash near Fargo, North Dakota killed Buddy Holly, J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson (“Chantilly Lace”) and the Latino rocker Richie Valens (“La Bamba”). • April 1960: a limousine crash outside of London, England killed Eddie Cochran (“Summertime Blues”) and destroyed the career of Gene Vincent (although he survived the crash). • October 1961: Chuck Berry was sentenced to two years in jail for transporting a 14-year-old girl (an alleged prostitute) across state lines for immoral purposes. Without the hard-edged sounds of these ’50s giants, Rock & Roll was transformed by the conservative tastes of major record companies and rock promoters who sought to make rock more attractive to general audiences. The softer side of Rock & Roll was a direct descendent of light R & B and the “crooning” traditions of the 1930s-50s—trends that had already made their mark with Pat Boone’s “covers” of Little Richard/Fats Domino songs. * * *
Chapter 2: Pop-Rock of the 50s and 60s 13 II. SOFT ROCK OF THE 1950s R & B “Doo Wop” Vocal Groups In the 1940s and early 1950s, black vocal groups like the Mills Brothers and the Ink Spots promoted a smooth “crooning” ensemble style that blended jazz and pop. By the mid/late 1950s, a new generation of black “doo-wop” vocal groups such as The Orioles, The Penguins, The Platters, The Coasters, Frankie Lymon and The Teenagers, The Silhouettes, The Drifters added a more pronounced R&B and gospel feel.1 In the early years of rock and roll (late 50s/early 60s), the style was widely imitated by white Doo-Wop groups such as Danny and The Juniors, Dion and the Belmonts, and The Four Seasons (featuring the high “falsetto” voice of Frankie Valli). Selected Examples of 1950s/60s DOO-WOP Vocal Groups • The Orioles: “Crying in the Chapel” (1953) • The Penguins: “Earth Angel” (1954) • The Platters: “The Great Pretender” (1955) • Frankie Lymon and The Teenagers: “Why Do Fools Fall in Love?” (1956) • The Coasters: “Searchin’” (1956) • Danny and the Juniors: “At The Hop” (1957) • The Silhouettes: “Get a Job” (1958) • The Drifters: “There Goes My Baby” (1959) • Dion and the Belmonts: “Teenager in Love” (1959), [solo hits for Dion=“Runaround Sue” (1962); “The Wanderer” (1962)] • The Four Seasons: “Sherry” (1962) R & B “Crooners” Following the trend of R & B/pop singers such as Nat “King” Cole, Sam Cooke (1931-64), Ben E. King (1948-2015), and other young black R & B singers enjoyed crossover successes with their soulful “crooning” styles. Selected Examples of 1950s R & B “Crooners” • Sam Cooke: “You Send Me” (1953) • Ben E. King: “Stand By Me” (1961) * * * III. Dick Clark and the Rising Teen Market American Bandstand In July 1956, Dick Clark (1929-2012) became replacement host for a daily locally-televised Rock & Roll dance show called Philadelphia Bandstand. Though Clark initially understood little about up-and-coming Rock & Roll, he worked hard, and within a year his show had become the nationally-syndicated ABC-TV hit, American Bandstand. In the wake of the scandals and controversy surrounding late-50s Rock & Roll, Clark performed 1 The somewhat humorous term “doo-wop” refers to the unusual sounds that are sung by background singers in this style, which originated on the streets of New York City.
Chapter 2 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 14 a minor miracle by infusing rock music with a “clean cut” image. In 1964, Bandstand was relocated to L.A., and converted from a daily to a Saturday afternoon/weekly format that stayed popular through the 1980s with teens and their parents.2 In the late 50s/early 60s, Clark promoted—and in many cases manufactured—a stable of mostly Italian-American/Philadelphia-based teen idol “crooners,” including Paul Anka (b. 1941), Frankie Avalon (Francis Avallone, b. 1939), Bobby Rydell (Robert Ridarelli, b. 1940), Bobby Darin (1936-73) and Fabian (Fabian Forte, b. 1943), who essentially updated the ’50s Italian pop-crooner tradition of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Perry Como. Perhaps Clark’s greatest manufactured success was Chubby Checker (Ernest Evans, b. 1941), who got teens as well as the majority of adults dancing to Rock & Roll with his famous rendition of Hank Ballard’s “The Twist.”3 Such mass promotion of Rock & Roll by Clark and others helped U.S. record sales to triple between 1950 and 1960.4 Selected Examples of 1950s American Bandstand Teen Idols • Bobby Darin: “Splish, Splash” (1958) • Paul Anka: “Lonely Boy” (1959) • Fabian: “Turn Me Loose” (1959) • Chubby Checker: “The Twist” (1960) The Payola Scandal As Dick Clark’s wealth rose with his success, he purchased the copyrights of over 150 Rock & Roll hits, as well as controlling interests in the record companies that recorded his artists. These potential conflicts of interest made Clark the target of a federal investigation during the so-called “Payola Scandal” of 1959-60. The subsequent Congressional hearings looked at fraud on TV game shows, 5 and “pay-for-play” (“payola”) corruption between record promoters and disc jockeys. Clark survived the hearings with his reputation intact; however, Alan Freed’s career was destroyed when he was convicted of two counts of “payola” bribery in December 1962 and income tax evasion (relating to “payola” income) in March 1964.6 * * * 2 Dick Clark went on to become one of America’s wealthiest and most beloved entrepreneurs. His career as a TV host reached another generation and millions of new fans through his New Year’s Rockin’ Eve (on ABC-TV from 1973 until his stroke in 2004). In November 2016, his Dick Clark Productions company was bought by China’s Dalian Wanda Group for $1 billion, including the broadcast rights to the New Year’s Countdown, the Golden Globe Awards, and the Academy of Country Music Awards. Wanda also owns AMC Theatres. 3 When Hank Ballard recorded “The Twist” in 1959, it received little interest. The following year, Dick Clark—after noticing a black couple dancing in a twisting motion during his show—enlisted Evans (a schoolmate of Fabian’s and Rydell’s) to record a “cover” version of the song. Clark’s massive promotion on American Bandstand led “The Twist” to become a national sensation both in 1960 and during its re-release in 1962. 4 Record sales in 1950 were approximately $190 million vs. over $600 million in 1960. Three-fourths of this market was controlled by four major record companies: RCA Victor, Columbia, Decca, Capitol. 5 Several TV quiz shows, including “The Price is Right” and “The $64,000 Question” were taken off the air after it was discovered that some contestants on NBCs “Twenty One” had been given answers in advance. 6 While Freed admitted to accepting over $30,000 in bribes, Clark stated that he “never agreed to play a record for payment,” and that he “did not consciously favor” artists who recorded for companies in which he owned an interest. A year after his tax-evasion conviction, Freed died of complications from alcoholism.
Chapter 2: Pop-Rock of the 50s and 60s 15 IV. Songwriters Take Control of the Rock & Roll Industry As a direct result of the payola hearings, professional songwriters were in a position to make a calculated take-over of the Rock & Roll industry. From 1960-63, established composers in New York City’s “Tin Pan Alley”—led by music publisher Don Kirshner (1934-2011)—masterminded a new type of sophisticated pop-rock, that soon outshined Dick Clark’s Italian teen idols. Aldon Music’s Songwriting Duos In 1958, Kirshner and Al Nevins established Aldon Music in New York City across from the famous Brill Building (home of the music’s major publishing firms). Aldon Music quickly rose to prominence by assembling a team of great songwriting duos, including: • Carole King (Klein) and Gerry Goffin • Neil Sedaka and Howie Greenfield • Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil • Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry In addition to his songwriting talents, Neil Sedaka (a singer and classical pianist; b. 1939) was also promoted as a teen idol by RCA, with such hits as “Calendar Girl,” “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do,” and “Happy Birthday, Sweet Sixteen” (all c1960). 60s Girl Groups The primary vehicles for Kirshner’s success, were a series of pop-gospel black girl groups of the early 60s, including The Shirelles, The Ronettes, The Crystals and The Chiffons. This tradition reached its height in the mid-60s with early Motown-based soul-pop groups including The Marvelettes, Martha and the Vandellas, and The Supremes (see Section VI, below), and was copied by the emergence of white girl groups such as The Angels, and The Shangri-Las. Selected Examples of early 60s Girl Groups • The Shirelles: “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” (1961) • The Ronettes: “Be My Baby” (1963) • The Crystals: “Da Doo Run Run” (1963) • The Chiffons: “He’s So Fine” (1963) • The Angels: “My Boyfriend’s Back” (1963) • The Shangri-Las: “Leader of the Pack” (1964) Phil Spector’s “Wall of Sound” Producer, Phil Spector (b. 1940), revolutionized 60s pop-rock with his “Wall of Sound” (a sound-thickening recording technique created by employing thick echos, multi-layered percussion, and a rich orchestration with two or three of the same instruments on a part).7 Spector’s unique sound and autocratic production style resulted in a long string of hits 7 Spector was a great admirer of the German Romantic operatic composer, Richard Wagner (1813-83), who used massive orchestral doublings, powerful brass and percussion in his theatrical scores. In addition to his work in the 1960s, Spector also produced The Beatles’ final album Let It Be (1970), and The Ramones’ album End of the Century (1979). In 2009, Spector was convicted of second-degree murder in the 2003 shooting death of actress Lana Clarkson in his home.
Chapter 2 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 16 from the Aldon Music songwriting teams as performed by The Ronettes, The Crystals, and The Righteous Brothers (white “pop-Soul” music) in the early-mid 60s, as well as Ike & Tina Turner and The Beatles in the late 60s/early 70s. Selected Example of Phil Spector’s “Wall of Sound” • The Righteous Brothers: “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’” (1965) Kirshner Goes West In 1963, Don Kirshner sold Aldon Music and moved to Hollywood to take a job at the Screen Gems Television division of Columbia, where he supervised its recording and music publishing aspects. In 1966-67, he masterminded the enormous commercial success of The Monkees, but left over salary and artistic-control disputes with them. Kirshner subsequently dreamed up The Archies (a comic book based cartoon rock band, that could not argue over their song rights!). In the 1970s, his syndicated ABC television show Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert, played a major role in promoting new talent during that decade. * * * V. The California Surf Sound In the late 50s/early 60s, Hollywood films such as Gidget (1959) and dozens of follow-up beach-theme movies starring Frankie Avalon/Annette Funicello, Elvis Presley and others, glamourized the Southern California lifestyle. Surfing (and its associated Hot-Rods) became a West-Coast craze and a fantasy for teens across America.8 Instrumental Surf Bands In the late 50s, Duane Eddy (b. 1938) created a unique electric guitar style that became the surf sound.9 Following Eddy’s lead came other instrumental surf bands including The Ventures, Dick Dale and His Del-Tones,10 The Chantays, and The Surfaris. Selected Examples of Instrumental Surf Bands (late 50s/early 60s) • Duane Eddy: “Rebel-Rouser” (1959) • The Ventures: “Walk Don’t Run” (1960) • Dick Dale and His Del-Tones: “Miserlou” (1962) • The Chantays: “Pipeline” (1963) • The Surfaris: “Wipe Out” (1963) The Beach Boys Surf Music rose to its greatest heights with The Beach Boys (formed in 1961; comprised of Brian, Carl and Dennis Wilson (brothers), Mike Love (cousin), and Al Jardine. Their characteristic sound featured rich vocal harmonies modeled after The Four Freshmen and the Hi-Lo’s (spectacular 50s/60s jazz-pop vocal quartets), with a surf-guitar style influenced by Chuck Berry, Duane Eddy and Dick Dale. The mastermind of The Beach Boys was singer-pianist-songwriter-arranger-producer Brian Wilson (b. 1942), who 8 Surfing (”The sport of Kings”) was first introduced from Hawaii around 1900. 9 Eddy used a flatpick next to the bridge of the guitar (where the strings are tightest) to produce a twangy sound. 10 Dick Dale (who worked with Leo Fender to improve the reverb of the Showman amp), used dense reverb with tremolo (rapid repeated notes) and glissando (sliding) effects— sounds more commonly used on Middle Eastern plucked string instruments such as the Sitar.
Chapter 2: Pop-Rock of the 50s and 60s 17 wrote several early hits when still a teenager. In 1962, the group signed with Capitol Records (which had previously signed Dick Dale and His Del-Tones). Soon after, Brian Wilson also teamed up with hot-rod lyricist Roger Christian (an LA disc jockey) to write car songs such as “Shut Down,” “Little Deuce Coupe,” and “Fun, Fun, Fun.” From 1962 to early 1966, The Beach Boys scored nearly twenty Top-40 hits,11 but the pace of this success eventually took its toll on Brian Wilson, who suffered two nervous breakdowns and physical and mental problems stemming from manic-depression and severe drug-addiction. Because of these problems, Brian stopped touring with the group, which left him free to experiment in the recording studio. Through his efforts, in 1966, The Beach Boys made several major technological breakthroughs that established them as the major American rival to The Beatles.12 In 1967, Brian’s personal problems and new musical directions caused the band to split up. Soon after, Dennis Wilson began to emerge as a talented songwriter, but he was led into financial and personal ruin through a songwriting collaboration with Charles Manson (who became a notorious cult leader and mass murder in the 70s). In 1974, Mike Love compiled a double album of past Beach Boy hits entitled Endless Summer, which put the group back high on the charts for much of 1974-75 and led to various reunion tours (without Brian). When Dennis died in a boating accident in 1983, Brian was shaken out of his mental stupor and eventually returned to the stage. Despite the many legal battles between band members over their musical rights and profits, The Beach Boys remained one of the most popular live rock acts until the death of Carl in early 1998. Jan and Dean Another successful surf-style group of the early 60s was Jan and Dean, featuring Jan Berry and Dean Torrence, who began singing soft pop-rock in 1959 with hits such as “Baby Talk,” “Heart and Soul,” and “Sunday Kind of Love.” The duo switched to surf music in 1962 after performing in concert with The Beach Boys. From 1963-64, Jan and Dean—in collaboration with Brian Wilson/Roger Christian and The Beach Boys—had several surf/hot rod hits, including those listed below: Selected Examples of 60s Surf/Hot Rod Hits The Beach Boys • “Surfin’ Safari” (1962) • “Surfin’ USA” (1963) • “Warmth of the Sun” (’63) • “Surfer Girl” (1964) • “I Get Around” (1964) • “Fun, Fun. Fun” (1964) • “California Girls” (1965) • “God Only Knows” (1966) from Pet Sounds • “Good Vibrations” (1966) Jan and Dean • “Surf City” (1963) • “Drag City” (1963)• “Dead Man’s Curve” (1963)13 • “Ride the Wild Surf” (1964) • “Sidewalk Surfin’” (1964—skateboarding) * * * 11 See chart of The Beach Boys’ early hits in the “Annotated Outline” of The Time-Life History of Rock and Roll, Volume 4) 12 For more information on The Beach Boys accomplishments in 1966, see Chapter 3, Section VI, below. 13 Ironically, in an accident similar to the one described in this song, Jan Berry suffered severe brain damage when he slammed his Stingray into a parked truck, while speeding at over 60 MPH on an LA surface street.
Chapter 2 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 18 VI. Motown’s Early Years (1960-65; “Soul-pop”) In 1959, the songwriter-producer Berry Gordy, Jr.14 founded Motown Records in Detroit. Gordy—like Sam Phillips of Sun Records—began his venture solely as a recording studio that sent its tapes to be disc-pressed and distributed by other labels (such as Tamla and Chess). In 1960, the singer/songwriter William “Smokey” Robinson (b. 1940) convinced Gordy to establish his own record label. That year, “Shop Around” by Smokey Robinson and The Miracles was Motown’s first hit. In the early/mid 60s, Gordy assembled, mentored and polished top-notch black pop-Soul performers,15 including Mary Wells, The Marvelettes, The Supremes (featuring Diana Ross), The Temptations (with David Ruffin), Marvin Gaye, as well as the deeper soul-oriented artists in the late ’60s/early ’70s such as The Four Tops (with Abdul Fakir), Gladys Knight and the Pips, Stevie Wonder, and The Jackson 5.16 Much of their success was due to the famous songwriting team Holland—Dozier—Holland (Brian Holland, Eddie Holland and Lamont Dozier)—the famous songwriting team that wrote dozens of Motown hits between 1963-68.17 As a reflection of its cross-racial success, Motown became known as “The Sound of Young America,” and its studio was nicknamed “Hitsville U.S.A.” In particular, The Supremes emerged as the most popular rock-related act in America, standing second behind The Beatles during the critical years of The British Invasion (1964-66).18 Selected Examples of Early 1960s Motown Artists • Smokey Robinson and The Miracles: “Shop Around” (1960), “Ooh, Baby, Baby” (1965), “The Tracks of My Tears” (1965) • Martha and the Vandellas: “Heat Wave” (1963), “Dancing in the Streets” (1964) • The Marvelettes: “Please, Mr. Postman” (1964) • Mary Wells: “My Guy” (1964) • The Temptations: “The Way You Do The Things You Do” (1963), “My Girl” (1965) • The Supremes: “Come See About Me” (1964), “Can’t Hurry Love” (1965), “Where Did Our Love Go?” (1965) • Marvin Gaye: “How Sweet it Is (To Be Loved By You)” (1964), “Ain’t That Peculiar” (1965) * * * VII. Black Pop-Rock and Its Relationship to Social Integration in the 1960s The Civil Rights Movement in the early 1960s In February 1960, four black college students in Greensboro, North Carolina staged a “sit-in” at a local variety store when they were refused meal service at a “white-only” counter. Anti-violent sit-ins, marches and boycotts spread throughout the South, but ultimately led 14 Gordy (a former Detroit auto assembly worker) began Motown with $800 that he borrowed from his family. 15 Gordy strictly controlled the finances, appearance and the personal lives of all his acts, and he hired Maxine Powell (a modeling/finishing school director) and Cholly Atkins (choreographer/dancer) to refine them. 16 These later Motown artists are discussed in the larger context of “Soul Music” in Chapter 4. 17 Holland—Dozier—Holland left Motown in 1968 because of a royalty dispute with Berry Gordy. 18 See chart of “Top Groups in the U.S.—1964-66” (on p. 60 of the Workbook/Resource Guide)
Chapter 2: Pop-Rock of the 50s and 60s 19 to arrests and violence against the protesters. Anti-segregation laws were passed, but the violence increased. In 1962 and 1963, President John F. Kennedy—a vigorous supporter of the equal rights movement—sent in federal troops to the University of Mississippi and the University of Alabama so Blacks could enroll and attend classes. Violence against civil rights activists increased markedly in 1963 (the 100th anniversary of the enactment of Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation). In response, on August 28, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led over 200,000 Black and White civil rights supporters in a march to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C., where he delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Three months later, when President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas on November 22, 1963, Vice-President Lyndon Baines Johnson assumed the Presidency.19 From then until January 1969, Johnson guided the U.S. through many of its most turbulent years, making great strides for equal rights and the battle against poverty, but also angering many Americans for his escalation of U.S. involvement in the undeclared “war” in Vietnam. In 1964, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act, which established anti-discrimination laws, voting rights20, and equal-opportunity employment for all Americans. In 1965, Johnson led the fight to establishing Medicare, the Youth Corp, VISTA, Head Start, and other education and social programs for the disadvantaged. In Alabama, narrow-minded whites responded with violence at election polling sites. In response, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led the 50-mile Freedom March from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. At this critical time in America’s social development, the popular Black girl-groups and Motown artists of the early- and mid-1960s helped bring a new cross-cultural awareness to the younger generation. After 1965, however, Black music began to take on a more intense edge, as “Soul” music became the artistic mouthpiece of Afro-American pride, tradition, and rising dissatisfaction with the status quo.21 * * * FEATURED SONGS FOR CHAPTER 2 [w] = Audio and/or lyrics available on the class website [Time-Life Video] = Time-Life History of Rock and Roll Series DOO-WOP GROUPS/ R & B CROONERS (late 50s/early 60s): • THE ORIOLES: “Crying in the Chapel” [w] (1953) • THE PENGUINS: “Earth Angel” [w] (1954) • THE PLATTERS: “The Great Pretender” (1955) • FRANKIE LYMON & THE TEENAGERS: “Why Do Fools Fall in Love?” [w] (1956) • THE COASTERS: “Searchin’” (1957); “Yakety Yak” [w] (1958) • DANNY AND THE JUNIORS: “At The Hop” [w] (1957; Time-Life DVD 1b) • THE SILHOUETTES: “Get a Job” [w] (1958) • THE DRIFTERS: “There Goes My Baby” [w] (1959) • DION AND THE BELMONTS: “Teenager in Love” (1959), [doo-wop solo hits for Dion: “Runaround Sue” [w] and “The Wanderer” [w]—(1962)] • THE FOUR SEASONS: “Sherry” [w] (1962) 19 In November 1964, Johnson was elected to a full term (his first). In 1968, he withdrew from the election race. 20 In 1964, Congress also passed the 24th Amendment, which outlaws Poll Taxes in federal elections. 21 “Soul Music” is the focus of Chapter 4, below.
Chapter 2 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 20 • SAM COOKE: “You Send Me” [w] (1957; Time-Life DVD 1b) • BEN E. KING: “Stand By Me” [w] (1961; Time-Life DVD 1b) TEEN IDOLS (late 50s/early 60s): • NEIL SEDAKA: “Calendar Girl” (c1959) • PAUL ANKA: “Lonely Boy” [w] (1959; Dick Clark American Bandstand DVD) • CHUBBY CHECKER: “The Twist” (1960; written by Hank Ballard) EARLY 60s GIRL GROUPS • THE SHIRELLES: “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” (1961) • THE CHIFFONS: “He’s So Fine” [w] (1963) • THE RONETTES: “Be My Baby” [w] (1963; Time-Life DVD 1b) • THE ANGELS: “My Boyfriend’s Back” [w] (1963) • THE SHANGRI-LAS: “Leader of the Pack” [w] (1964) SURF MUSIC • DUANE EDDY: “Rebel-Rouser” [w] (1959) • THE VENTURES: “Walk, Don’t Run” [w] (1960) • DICK DALE AND HIS DEL-TONES: “Miserlou” [w] (1962) • THE CHANTAYS: “Pipeline” [w] (1963) • THE SURFARIS: “Wipe Out” [w] (1963) • JAN AND DEAN: “Surf City” [w] (1963) • THE BEACH BOYS: “Surfin’ USA” [w] (1963), “Surfer Girl” [w] (’63; Time-Life DVD 3a), “Warmth of the Sun” [w] (1963), “I Get Around” [w] (1964; Time-Life DVD 2a), “God Only Knows” from the Pet Sounds album [w] (1966), “Good Vibrations” [w] (1966) EARLY 60s MOTOWN • SMOKEY ROBINSON AND THE MIRACLES: “Shop Around” [w] (1960), “Tracks of My Tears” [w] (1965), “Ooh Baby Baby” (1965; Time-Life DVD 2b) • MARTHA AND THE VANDELLAS: “Heat Wave” [w] (‘63), “Dancing in the Street” [w] (‘64) • THE MARVELETTES: “Please, Mr. Postman” [w] (1964) • MARY WELLS: “My Guy” [w] (1964) • THE TEMPTATIONS: “The Way You Do The Things You Do” [w] (1963; Time-Life DVD 2a) “My Girl” [w] (1965; Time-Life DVD 2b) • THE SUPREMES: “Come See About Me” [w] (1964; Time-Life DVD 2b) • MARVIN GAYE: “How Sweet It Is” [w] (1964), “Ain’t That Peculiar” [w] (1965) * * *
The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 21 CHAPTER 3 1962-66: AMERICAN FOLK-ROCK VS. THE BRITISH INVASION INTRODUCTION In the late 50s/early 60s, while American Rock was turning towards soft pop-rock, a grass-roots folk music revival was also being initiated. Carrying on the protest tradition of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, this new generation of folk-singers, led by Bob Dylan, played a major role in the American social rebellion of the early 60s. At this same time, British bands came strongly under the influence of U.S. blues masters who found themselves more popular in the U.K. than in their American homeland. In 1963, a blues-infused style of Rock & Roll hit Britain as “The Beat Boom,” and, the following year, took the U.S. by storm as “The British Invasion.” When these very different worlds of Dylan vs. Lennon & McCartney collided on U.S. soil in 1964, the face of Rock & Roll was changed forever. I. THE AMERICAN FOLK REVIVAL AND THE PROTEST MOVEMENT Since the 17th-century, American folk music has been a melting pot of traditional songs from Europe (primarily the British Isles) and Africa. Most American folk songs developed in the South, and were passed on through oral tradition, usually by singers with a basic stringed accompaniment.1 Around 1900, folk music became closely associated with the International Workers of the World (IWW) equality protest movement. In the 1940s and 50s, the most prominent protest-folksingers were Woody Guthrie (1912-67) and Pete Seeger (1919-2014). While valuable for its social consciousness, this music did not gain widespread appeal, primarily because hard-line purists feared that over-commercialization would degrade the folk tradition. Selected Examples of Early U.S. Folk-Protest Music • Woody Guthrie: “This Land is Your Land” (c1950s) • Pete Seeger: “Where Have All the Flowers Gone” (c1950s) The U.S. Folk Revival (late 50s/early 60s) In 1956, the Jamaican-style “calypso” music of Harry Belafonte (b. 1927) awakened interest in folk-pop music in America.2 By the end of the 50s, The Kingston Trio (Bob Shane, Nick Reynolds and Dave Guard) took the style back to its grass roots with hits like “Tom Dooley,” and their rendition of Seeger’s “Where Have All The Flowers Gone?,” which became a rallying cry against the escalation of the Vietnam War.3 Their successes gave rise in the early 60s to other folk-pop artists such as The Chad Mitchell Trio (featuring the young singer/guitarist John Denver), Joan Baez (b. 1941), Peter, Paul and Mary, The New Christy Minstrels, The Limelighters, Phil Ochs (1940-76), 1 Many of the best-known early American folk songs were composed by Stephen Foster (1826-64) during the Civil War era: (“Oh! Susanna,” “Beautiful Dreamer,” “Old Folks at Home”). 2 Belafonte recorded hits such as “Jamaican Farewell” and “The Banana Boat Song” with RCA Records. His Calypso album is the fourth most-popular album of all-time (was #1 for 37 weeks in 1956). 3 The Kingston Trio recorded with Capitol Records. Their The Kingston Trio At Large album is No. 24 of the Top 100 albums of all time (was #1 for 15 weeks in 1959).
Chapter 3 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 22 Tom Paxton (b. 1937), and Bob Dylan (b. 1941), as well as acoustic folk-pop artists such as Simon and Garfunkel (featuring Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel), and cross-cultural stars such as Trini Lopez (1937-2020).4 Many of these artists rose to prominence through exposure at the Newport Folk Festival (Newport, Rhode Island), which was initiated in 1959 by George Wein and Albert Grossman. The 60s Folk-Protest Movement In the early ’60s, folk music was the primary voice for a variety of socio-economic and religious issues, especially civil rights and anti-Vietnam War sentiment. While almost every folksinger of the 60s had some type of social agenda, the most outspoken and influential folk-protest activists were Joan Baez, Phil Ochs, and—the most revolutionary of them all—Bob Dylan. Selected Examples of early 60s U.S. Acoustic Folk-Protest Music • Joan Baez: “All My Trials” (1960), “We Shall Overcome” (1960) • Phil Ochs: “Talkin’ Vietnam” (1964), “I Ain’t Marchin’ Anymore” (1965) • Bob Dylan: (see below) Bob Dylan—The Poet Laureate of the Early ’60s Bob Dylan (birthname Robert Allen Zimmerman) was born in Duluth, Minnesota in 1941. His early musical influences were from R & B (Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Howlin’ Wolf), country music (Hank Williams), and early rock ‘n roll (Elvis, Little Richard, and Buddy Holly). After graduating from high school in 1959, Zimmerman traveled to Minneapolis, where he first encounted the blues, as well as the folk-protest music of Woody Guthrie and The Kingston Trio. Around this time, Zimmerman changed his name to honor of poet Dylan Thomas, and began singing folk songs in beatnik coffehouses around the Minneapolis area. In mid-1960, Dylan visited Denver, Colorado, where he took on his famous “talkin’ blues”/“Okie-twang” singing style, adopted a hobo-like persona,5 and began to play harmonica (on a neck-style harp rack) along with his guitar.6 In 1961, Dylan heard that Guthrie was dying, so he moved to New York to be near his idol. In March 1962, Dylan released his first album, Bob Dylan, comprised primarily of rural folksongs and musical tributes to Guthrie. At the end of 1962, Dylan went to London to act in the BBC made-for-television play The Madhouse On Castle Street. While there, he absorbed and adapted English folksongs, some of which became models for his subsequent songs. Dylan and Early-60s Protest Music In 1963, Dylan began writing protest songs, largely through the influence of his then-girlfriend Suze Rotolo, a secretary for the CORE civil rights group. His second album, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (released in May 1963) featured self-composed hits such as the anti-war classics “Blowin’ In The Wind” (which first brought Dylan to national 4 Lopez is best-known for his up-beat Latinized rendition of Guthrie’s “If I Had a Hammer” (1963), which outsold Peter, Paul and Mary’s more passive version from the year before. 5 According to The Guiness Encyclopedia of Popular Music, Dylan’s romanticized hobo persona was modeled after a character in Woody Guthrie’s film Bound For Glory. 6 Dylan adopted this technique from a Denver-based blues performer named Jesse Fuller.
Chapter 3: American Folk-Rock vs. The British Invasion 23 attention in 1963 via a cover recording by Peter, Paul and Mary), “Masters of War,” and “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall” (a commentary on the Cuban missle crisis). That same month, Dylan appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show, giving mass exposure to his growing anti-establishment image.7 During this time, the renowned folk-protest singer, Joan Baez began to “cover” Dylan’s songs and profess his genius to her audiences. On 28 August 1963, Dylan marched to Washington with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., singing “Only a Pawn in Their Game” to the amassed crowd at the Lincoln Memorial. Just as Dylan’s social activism was kicking into high gear came the JFK assassination, which left the Dylan devastated and politically disenchanted. In mid-January 1964, Dylan released his third album, The Times They Are A-Changin’, which was full of hard-edged protest songs. The prophetic words of the title song came true later that year, for though commercial success and critical acclaim were heaped upon Dylan in 19648, he gradually withdrew from the political foreground. In August, came his fourth album, Another Side of Bob Dylan—which featured introspective apolitical songs such as “It Ain’t Me Babe,” and “My Back Pages.” In October 1964, Dylan pronounced “I’m not part of no Movement . . . I can’t sit around and have people make rules for me.” 1964 was also the year that the so-called “British Invasion” took American by storm. Intrigued by The Beatles’ amazing success, Dylan returned to London in May, where he performed one concert at the Royal Festival Hall. During this trip, he met The Beatles— who had just returned from their smash first U.S. tour, and shocked John Lennon (a big admirer of Dylan) by stating that The Beatles’ were wasting their fame because their songs basically had nothing to say. As a result, The Beatles transformed their style, and by 1965 both Lennon and McCartney were writing songs with deeper lyrical and social significance. (See Section IV, below) At the time, no one knew that Bob Dylan was destined to have an equal or greater impact on Rock music than even The Beatles.9 Selected Examples of Acoustic Folk-Protest Music by Bob Dylan 1963: • “Blowin’ In The Wind” • “Masters of War” • “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall” • “Mr. Tambourine Man” 1964: • “The Times They Are A-Changin’” • “It Ain’t Me Babe” • “My Back Pages” * * * II. BRITISH ROCK BEFORE THE BEATLES Although it may come as a surprise to many, British Rock did not begin with The Beatles. In the late 1950s and early 60s, British popular music was a blend of U.S. Rockabilly, Blues, R & B/Blues-influenced Rock & Roll, as well as certain types of British folk music. 7 On this occasion, Sullivan did not allow Dylan to sing his newly-composed “Talking John Birch Society Blues,” which was later omitted from his Freewheelin’ album of 1964. 8 The rise in Dylan’s popularity came largely through Peter, Paul and Mary’s recording of “Blowin’ In The Wind,” which was widely promoted in late 1963/early 1964. 9 Dylan’s impact from 1965 will be discussed later in this chapter.
Chapter 3 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 24 British “Copy-cat” Rock Artists When American Rock & Roll exploded in the mid-to-late 1950s, Britain followed suit, but under its own set of circumstances. Rockabilly stars such as Bill Haley and His Comets and Elvis Presley had tremendous followings in the U.K., spawning British pop-rock 50s-style teen idols such as Tommy Steele and Cliff Richard (a British clone of Elvis Presley/Gene Vincent). Skiffle In the mid/late 50s, an indigenous British folk-pop style known as Skiffle (a blend of British Dixieland jazz/folk songs sung to a simple accompaniment of guitar/banjo chords, homemade bass and washboard/whisk broom percussion) was widely popularized by Lonnie Donegan.10 Though skiffle seems a far cry from rock, it offered many young Brits an easy way to start performing popular music, and as the more-talented ones shifted their interest to the electric guitar and drums, a different kind of rock emerged that could not have developed in the U.S. In the early 60s, out of these skiffle bands and copy-cats arose a new British sound that first took root in Liverpool, was honed and perfected by British rockers working in Germany, and then mass-marketed in the U.S. The earliest performer in this style was Tony Sheridan (modeled somewhat after Gene Vincent) and Johnny Kidd & The Pirates (a cross between Jerry Lee Lewis and Gene Vincent). The style was destined to have its greatest influence, however, through The Quarrymen, a skiffle/50s Rock & Roll-band that featured three teenaged schoolchums named John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison. * * * III. THE EARLY BEATLES (1957-65) and THE MERSEY BEAT The Formation of the Beatles11 After the smash success of Lonnie Donegan’s “Rock Island Line” in 1956, 15-year old John Lennon (1940-80) organized a skiffle/Rock & Roll band called The Blackjacks but which was quickly renamed The Quarrymen.12 In July 1957, while playing at a garden party in Woolton, John was introduced to Paul McCartney (b. 1942), a 15-year old left-handed guitar player, who was soon invited to join the band. In late 1957, George Harrison (1943-2001)—a 14-year old friend of Paul’s started hanging around the band, sitting in with them as a novice guitarist whenever John allowed him to. At the time, two rival street gangs—The Mods and The Rockers—were attracting British middle-class teens. In May 1964, 800 Mods and 200 Rockers had a gang-style war in the streets of London—just when the Beatles were making their big breakthrough in the US: 10 In 1956, Donegan’s skiffle version of Leadbelly’s “Rock Island Line” was a big hit in the U.S. 11 The unusual “twists-of-fate” that propelled The Beatles to become the most successful and influential group in Rock history will be chronicled in more detail than for other artists discussed in this book, in order to demonstrate that it is possible to triumph over seemingly hopeless circumstances through hard work, proper timing and some good “luck”. 12 Lennon attended Quarry Bank High School in Liverpool, where there were many rock quarries.
Chapter 3: American Folk-Rock vs. The British Invasion 25 • The Mods (Modernists) wore flashy clothes, were good dancers, took lots of pills and rode motor scooters. • The Rockers took on the rough look of ’50s “Teddy Boys” (Gene Vincent/Cliff Richard style)—leather coats, tight pants, pointed boots, greased-back hair, etc. The rebellious Lennon and the shy but impressionable Harrison took on the “rocker” look, but McCartney, who was more polite and conservative, did not.13 By the end of 1957, John had flunked out of school, and enrolled in Liverpool’s Art College. There, he met Stu Sutcliffe (1940-62), a talented artist with a rebel attitude. Though he could not play a note, Sutcliffe bought a bass guitar and eventually was added to the group—primarily because of his strong rocker image. When the group became marginally proficient at doing imitations of Presley, Haley, Chuck Berry and Little Richard tunes, a local club owner Alan Williams began to get them paying “gigs” in low-class venues. The band performed under a variety of humorous names including Johnny and the Moondogs, The Rainbows and The Nurk Twins. Eventually, Sutcliffe suggested the name “Beetles” (akin to Buddy Holly’s “Crickets”), but the band expanded it to The Silver Beetles.14 It was Lennon who suggested the musical pun-misspelling of Silver Beatles that when shortened in the summer of 1960 became a household name. But a catchy name was just about all they had going for them, for only Paul and George could play very well by then, and they still did not have a drummer. Apprenticeship in Germany Alan Williams became their agent, and secured a two-month booking for the group at the Indra club—a “dive” at the bad end of the entertainment strip in Hamburg, Germany. Shortly before the band departed for Germany, McCartney secured the services of a local drummer named Pete Best. The demands of performing over four hour per night/every night/for many weeks helped The Beatles to gel, develop a solid repertoire of rockabilly, country & western, and R & B songs, and work on their stage act. Soon, The Beatles were deemed good enough to play the higher-class Kaiserkeller club at the other end of the strip. After defecting to the rival Top Ten Club, and some run-ins with the German authorities, The Beatles returned to Liverpool, where they were booked to play luncheon shows at The Cavern Club—a converted warehouse cellar that had been a jazz club for several years. There, they secured a loyal following. In mid-1961, they returned to the Top Ten Club, where they traded sets with Tony Sheridan (1940-2013). When the unmusical Sutcliffe was encouraged to leave the band, McCartney took take over as bassist. Then, Sheridan with The Beatles as his back-up band (called “The Beat Brothers”), recorded an album that included a rock & roll version of “My Bonnie Lies Over The Ocean.” Brian Epstein Upon their return to The Cavern Club in Fall 1961, a local disc jockey named Bob Wooler began to promote “My Bonnie” to Liverpool teens. After receiving numerous requests for this obscure record, Brian Epstein (the manager of the hi-fi/record department in a prominent furniture store) decided to take a visit to The Cavern Club to ask the band for 13 Pete Townshend of The Who (see below) was influenced by the “Mods.” 14 At times, they even used the name “Long John and the Silver Beetles.”
Chapter 3 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 26 some of their records. Though Epstein’s taste was for classical music, he was instantly impressed by the personal charm and on-stage manner of The Beatles. A few months later, Epstein convinced The Beatles to come under his management15, assuring them that even though he had no previous experience in this regard, his connections in the record business would bring them great success. Epstein began by replacing the band’s tough “rocker” image with the famous Beatle haircuts and standardized suits. In early 1962, Epstein failed in his attempt to secure a record contract with Decca, so The Beatles left for Germany, only to learn that Stu Sutcliffe had died of a brain tumor. George Martin In June 1962, The Beatles returned to London, and were given an audition with Parlophone Records—the lowest subsidiary of the EMI family of record companies, which normally dealt with spoken comedy and light pop. The knowledgeable head of Parlophone, George Martin (1926-2016), had long sought to raise the stature of his label, and felt the new “beat” sound might be the way. Somehow sensing the band’s potential, Martin signed The Beatles to the minimum EMI contract—a move that ultimately made him the most famous producer in rock history. Soon after, Martin decided to replace Pete Best with a well-known drummer Richard Starkey (b. 1940—known in club circles as Ringo Starr). The Beatles’ Rapid Rise to Stardom In September 1962, The Beatles recorded “Love Me Do,” which reached No. 7 in the U.K. In November, they recorded “Please, Please Me,” which Martin immediately knew would be their first No. 1 hit. At Martin’s urging, The Beatles followed with a full album by the same title16, comprised mostly of new songs written by Lennon and McCartney, including “I Saw Her Standing There” and their cover version of the Isley Brothers’ R & B hit “Twist and Shout.” Even at this early juncture, The Beatles had turned the tables on the Tin Pan Alley composers by proving that performers could be equally capable of writing intelligent and artistic songs. Epstein put into motion an exhaustive series of radio/TV interviews and tour appearances. In April 1963, the single “From Me To You” also hit No. 1. Later that year, Epstein linked the band up with Tony Barrow, a publicity genius from Decca Records, who hence completed the mechanism that led The Beatles to the top. In October 1963, The Beatles’ London Palladium concert was seen by an estimated 15 million British viewers. On November 4, the band performed for the Queen and her family at the Royal Variety Performance.17 A week later, they were seen by an estimated TV audience of 26 million viewers. By the end of 1963, The Beatles had sold 11 million records and $18 million in merchandise, but the success was beginning to take a toll on their personal lives. * * * IV. THE BRITISH INVASION OF 1964 The Mersey Beat 15 Epstein’s contract gave him 25% of the band’s net profits. 16 The Beatles’ first album, Please, Please Me, was released in the U.K. in March 1963. 17 During this performance, Lennon wittingly encouraged the common audience to clap their hands, and the wealthy ones in the upper boxes to “shake their jewelry.”
Chapter 3: American Folk-Rock vs. The British Invasion 27 Riding on the coattails of The Beatles’ increasing success, other Liverpool bands such as Gerry and The Pacemakers and Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas began to hit the charts in Spring 1963, establishing the so-called “Mersey Beat” 18 that took the U.S. by storm a year later. Other British-beat groups soon followed, including the Dave Clark Five, Herman’s Hermits, Peter and Gordon, Freddie and the Dreamers and The Hollies (named in honor of Buddy Holly).19 Selected Examples of Other “British-Beat” Groups (mid-1960s) • Gerry and the Pacemakers: “Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Crying” (1964); Ferry Cross the Mersey” (1965) • Herman’s Hermits: (featuring singer Peter Noone) “I’m Into Something Good” (1964); “I’m Henry VIII, I Am” (1965); “Mrs. Brown You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter” (1965); • Peter and Gordon: “A World Without Love” (1964; written by Paul McCartney) • Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas: “Little Children” (1964) • The Searchers: “Needles and Pins” (1964) • Dave Clark Five: “Over and Over” (1965) • Freddy and The Dreamers: “I’m Telling You Now” (1965) • The Hollies: (featuring Graham Nash)—“Carrie-Anne” (1965); “Bus Stop” (’66) Capitol Records and Beatle Mania When Capitol Records (EMI affiliate in US) refused to promote The Beatles’ songs in America, George Martin turned to small independent U.S. record labels such as Vee Jay and Swan. After some successes in this manner, Capitol released “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” in December 1963. Finally, Capitol signed the group, and Epstein convinced the label to spend $50,000 on a crash publicity program (with the slogan “The Beatles Are Coming!”). Almost overnight, America was flooded with posters, articles in Time, Newsweek, Life; and major tabloids, and massive radio hype featuring promotional interview records that were sent to virtually every radio station in the country—leaving many millions of fans holding their breath in anticipation. The Beatles’ First U.S. Tour On February 1, 1964, The Beatles’ “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” became their first No. 1 song in America. Less than a week later, on February 7, 50,000 screaming fans greeted the band as they landed at New York City’s Laguardia Airport. On February 9, they made their first appearance on the top-rated The Ed Sullivan Show before 73 million viewers (60% of the total U.S. viewing audience). Although they immediately captured the hearts of teens around the country, The Beatles also elicited a negative response from many adults. Through the adoring support of the media, the “Fab Four” soon won over the majority of Americans. By early April, The Beatles simultaneously held the top five spots in the Billboard Hot 100 list—a feat unmatched in the history of popular music.20 18 Named after the Mersey River, which runs through Liverpool. 19 Herman’s Hermits, Freddie and the Dreamers, and other British pop-rock bands that appealed to adolescent “teenie-boppers” ultimately gave rise to American “bubble gum” (pre-teen) rock groups such as The Monkees and The Archies in the later 60s/early 70s. For more on this, see Chapter 5, Section IV. 20 At this same time, The Beatles also had nine hits in Canada’s Top 10.
Chapter 3 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 28 TOP 5 SONGS IN US ON APRIL 4, 1964 (ALL RELEASED BY THE BEATLES) 1. “Can’t Buy Me Love” 2. “Twist and Shout” 3. “She Loves You” 4. “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” 5. “Please, Please Me” The Beatles Move In New Directions Shortly after their first tour, The Beatles released their first movie: A Hard Day’s Night, which was both highly inventive and critically acclaimed. In 1965, they followed up with Help!, which was equally successful. Their album of the same name included the hit title song, as well as McCartney’s classic sentimental ballad, “Yesterday” (backed only by an acoustic guitar and George Martin’s classical string quartet arrangement). In August 1965, The Beatles made their second U.S. tour, which grossed over $56 million and was highlighted by their performance before 55,000 fans in Shea Stadium. In December 1965, The Beatles released Rubber Soul—the first rock album conceived as a cohesive, self-contained artistic statement, rather than a collection of unrelated hits or “covers.” Thought-provoking songs on this album, such as Lennon’s “Nowhere Man,” “My Life,” and “Norwegian Wood” (with Harrison playing a Sitar)21, and McCartney’s “Michelle,” show the band’s introspective turn, due largely to the influence of Bob Dylan.22 As The Beatles were transforming their style and approach in 1964-65, a harder-edged style began to emerge in Britain, which soon brought Rock & Roll back to its blues roots. * * * V. AMERICA’S BLUES AND THE NEW BRITISH ROCK The Blues Hits the U.K. First-hand When the soft-rock/teen idol craze hit the U.S. during the late 50s/early 60s, America’s great electric blues artists fell into virtual oblivion. Fortunately, a highly-receptive British audience lie waiting, enticing 50s blues masters such as T-Bone Walker, Big Bill Broonzy, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, B. B. King, John Lee Hooker, and Willie Dixon to the U.K. These giants transferred the blues first-hand to the next generation of aspiring British rockers, especially Eric Clapton, Keith Richards, Mick Jagger, Pete Townshend, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant—each of whom adapted the style in combination with other influences from R & B, Country & Western, Rockabilly, and current British trends.23 From 1964-66, blues-based British rock bands such as The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, The Animals (lead singer Eric Burdon), The Yardbirds (with a succession of famous lead guitarists including Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy 21 The Sitar is a large stringed instrument from India, usually associated with Hinduism/pacifism. 22 The Beatles’ 1966-70 experimental phases are discussed in Chapter 5. 23 For more on this, see Jas Obrecht: “Transatlantic Blues,” in Guitar Player magazine (March 1998, pp. 67-73).
Chapter 3: American Folk-Rock vs. The British Invasion 29 Page24), The Spencer Davis Group (featuring the teenaged prodigy singer-guitarist Steve Winwood), The Troggs, Them (lead singer Van Morrison), and The Who, rose to popularity both in the U.K. and the U.S., and, ironically, in the process introduced the blues to the teen-idol generation of white Americans. Selected Examples of British Blues-Rock (c1964-66) • The Rolling Stones: (see below) • The Animals: “House of The Rising Sun” (1964)—remake of a New Orleans folk blues song • The Kinks: “You Really Got Me” (late 1964) • Them: “Gloria” (1965) • The Yardbirds: “For Your Love” (1965); “Over, Under, Sideways Down” (1966); “Train Kept a’Rollin’” (1966) • The Spencer Davis Group: “Keep on Running (1966) • The Who: (see below) The Rolling Stones (the early years 1964-66) Mick Jagger/lead vocals; Keith Richard(s)/lead guitar; Charlie Watts/drums; Bill Wyman/bass; 2nd Guitar: Brian Jones (‘62 to ‘68); Mick Taylor (‘68-’74); Ron Wood (‘74-now) Since their formation in 1962, The Rolling Stones (named after a well-known Muddy Waters tune) have been synonymous with pure blues-based Rock & Roll. For half-a-century, the core of this band has generally remained the same. The Rolling Stones were influenced by a combination of R & B (Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley, Fats Domino), Country & Western (Hank Williams, Hank Snow), and the 50s Rock & Roll style of Chuck Berry. In 1963, Andrew Loog Oldham became their manager and soon negotiated a contract with Decca Records. The Stones’ recordings from ‘64 were basically “covers” of Muddy Waters (“I Just Wanna Make Love To You”), Chuck Berry and Lennon/ & McCartney tunes. After The Beatles bowled over America in early 1964, The Stones tried to follow suit, but their June 1964 tour of the U.S. and Canada was disastrous.25 Soon after, they intentionally established their own identity apart from The Beatles, and quickly became known as “The Bad Boys of Rock.” During their 2nd U.S. tour, in October 1964, The Stones began to establish a following, but their disruptive behavior on The Ed Sullivan Show shocked many viewers, and led Sullivan to temporarily ban Rock & Roll groups from his show.26 At Oldham’s suggestion—and with the encouragement of Lennon & McCartney, Jagger and Richards began to write their own songs. “Time Is On My Side,” released in January 1965 was well-received. Then, in mid-’65 “[I Can’t Get No] Satisfaction”27 and “The Last Time” 24 The various tenures of lead guitarists in The Yardbirds were: Eric Clapton (1963-65), Jeff Beck (1965), Jimmy Page (1966-68). Clapton went on to star in various groups and as a solo artist; Jeff Beck formed The Jeff Beck Group; Jimmy Page became the acclaimed lead guitarist of Led Zeppelin (see Chapter 5). 25 During their appearance on Dean Martin’s Hollywood Palace TV show, they were ridiculed by the host. 26 Sullivan vowed never to have The Rolling Stones back on his show, but the following year the success of “Satisfaction” made him eat his words. 27 “Satisfaction” was released as a single and was also included on The Stones’ Out of Our Heads album.
Chapter 3 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 30 rocketed the band to the top of the charts, and led to two return invitations from Ed Sullivan and two more American tours before then end of ‘6528. About this time, Jagger and Richards began experimenting with the hallucinagenic drug, LSD. By late 1965, they began following The Beatles’ Rubber Soul experiment with more introspective music, such seen on their December’s Children album, featuring Jagger’s “As Tears Go By” (which was also popularized by his then-girlfriend, Marianne Faithfull). This milder phase was short-lived, for when The Who explosively emerged on the scene in late 1965, The Rolling Stones responded by intensifying their anti-social persona as well as their sound.29 Selected Early Songs by The Rolling Stones • 1964: “I Just Wanna Make Love To You”; “Around and Around” • 1965: “Time Is On My Side”; “Satisfaction”; “The Last Time”; “As Tears Go By” • 1966: “Paint It Black” The Who In 1964, a local London band called The Detours—featuring three young rockers named Roger Daltrey (lead vocals), Pete Townshend (lead guitar) and John Entwistle (bass)—came under the management of Peter Meadon (who worked for a time with The Rolling Stones’ manager, Andrew Logg Oldham). After making a few critical personnel changes—including the addition of Keith Moon on drums30, Meadon renamed the group The High Numbers and gave them a Mod-style image that set the band apart from both The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.31 Later that year, filmmakers Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp took over management of the band, and renamed them The Who. The band quickly became known for its anti-social persona and destructive stage act, in which members of the group routinely demolished their equipment at the end of each concert. Townshend, in particular, became legendary for his guitar-smashing and his high-powered, pinwheeling guitar style. In 1965 and 1966, “Can’t Explain” and “My Generation”—two songs about frustrated, misunderstood youth—put The Who in the U.K.’s Top Ten; however, they were unable to establish themselves in the U.S. until 1967.32 In the meantime, the way was being paved for their acceptance by an intensification of American musical expression masterminded by Bob Dylan in 1965. Selected Early Songs by The Who • “Can’t Explain” (1965) • “My Generation” (1966) * * * VI. AMERICAN ROCK INTENSIFIES Dylan Goes Electric 28 The Stones’ first four U.S. tours occurred during a span of less that 18 months. 29 The Rolling Stones’ intensification from 1966-70 is discussed in Chapter 5. 30 Moon died on 23 August 1978 from an overdose of alcoholism-treatment medication. 31 For more information on the “Mods,” see Section III, above. 32 The Who are also discussed in Chapters 5 and 7.
Chapter 3: American Folk-Rock vs. The British Invasion 31 After witnessing the mass-hysteria generated by The Beatles in 1964, Bob Dylan realized that his messages could be conveyed more powerfully through electric-rock than acoustic-folk. Thus, in March 1965, Dylan shocked the musical establishment and angered many of his loyal fans by featuring the intense electrified sound of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band on his Bringing It All Back Home album. Songs such as “Subterranean Homesick Blues” and “Maggie’s Farm” raised his “talkin’ blues” to ear-thrashing levels. By the time Dylan performed at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival on July 25, it should have been common knowledge that his style had changed; however, the amassed crowd of traditional folk-lovers became enraged and booed vehemently throughout his high-decibel performance. A month later, Dylan responded with Highway 61 Revisited—which was even more electrified. From this album, “Like a Rolling Stone” became his first electric hit, reaching No. 2 on the Billboard Top 100. This new sound quickly exerted its influence on almost all aspects of Rock music—from The Beatles and Stones, to the emerging American hippie-folk revolution, and eventually to socially-conscious “soul music.” Through Dylan’s example, anything was permissible and possible in rock music, especially since high-powered lyrics could now be conveyed in ways that were difficult to ignore. As a testament to the importance of his lyrics to humanity, Dylan was awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature—the first musician to ever receive it. Selected “Electric” Songs from 1965 by Bob Dylan • “Subterranean Homesick Blues” • “Maggie’s Farm” • “Like a Rolling Stone” The Beach Boys Make a Big Splash in the Recording Industry As stated in the previous chapter, when Brian Wilson stopped touring with The Beach Boys in 1966 he began to experiment in the recording studio. Later that year, his ingenuity resulted in two pivotal achievements: 1) The thematic-based “cyclic” album, Pet Sounds (May 1966)—which features layered instrumental tracks, unusual textures and spectacular vocal part-writing. Many Rock & Roll experts (including Paul McCartney of The Beatles, and Britain’s New Music Express ) consider this to be the most influential album in Rock history.33 2) The 45 RPM single “Good Vibrations” (October 1966)—which features a wide variety of textures and tone colors, including a keyboard-based version of a theramin (an electronic “science-fiction sounding” rod-style pitch oscillator invented in 1928 by Leon Theramin).34 33 In 1966, the UK music press voted The Beach Boys the No. 1 rock group in the world (ahead of The Beatles). 34 See the outline of this song in “The Elements of Music” (p. 114 of this textbook).
Chapter 3 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 32 This new high-tech approach and its masterful compositional style essentially put an end to the dominance of the British sound in ’60s rock. * * *
Chapter 3: American Folk-Rock vs. The British Invasion 33 FEATURED SONGS FOR CHAPTER 3 [w] = Audio and/or lyrics available on the class website [Time-Life Video] = Time-Life History of Rock and Roll Series 50s FOLK • WOODY GUTHRIE: “This Land is Your Land” [w] (c1950s); “If I Had a Hammer” [w] (c1959); “The Flood and the Storm” [w] (c1960) • PETE SEEGER: “Where Have All the Flowers Gone” [w] (c1950s) • THE KINGSTON TRIO: “Tom Dooley” [w] (1959) 60s FOLK and FOLK-PROTEST • JOAN BAEZ: “All My Trials” [w] (c1950s; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”); “We Shall Overcome” [w] (1960) • PETER, PAUL AND MARY: “Where Have All the Flowers Gone” [w] (1962); “Blowin’ In The Wind” [w] (1963; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”) • PHIL OCHS: “I Ain’t Marching Anymore” [w] (1963; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”) • BOB DYLAN: “It’s Alright Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)” [w] (1963; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”); “Blowin’ In The Wind” [w] (1963); “Mr. Tambourine Man” [w] (1963); “The Time’s They Are A’Changin’” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”); “My Back Pages” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”) MID-60s ELECTRIC FOLK-BLUES • BOB DYLAN: “Subterranean Homesick Blues” [w] (1965; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”); “Maggie’s Farm” [w] (1965; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”); “Like a Rolling Stone” [w] (1965; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”) THE BRITISH BEAT GROUPS • THE BEATLES (early examples): “Twist and Shout” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”); “She Loves You” [w] (1964); “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” [w] (1964); “Please, Please Me” [w] (1963; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”); “Help!” [w] (1965); “Nowhere Man” [w] (1965); “Norwegian Wood” [w] (1965) • GERRY AND THE PACEMAKERS: “Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Crying” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”) • HERMAN’S HERMITS: “I’m Into Something Good” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”) • PETER AND GORDON: “A World Without Love” [w] (1964—written by Paul McCartney; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”)
Chapter 3 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 34 • THE SEACHERS: “Needles and Pins” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”) • THE HOLLIES: “Carrie-Anne” [w] (1965); “Bus Stop” [w] (1966) MID-60s BRITISH BLUES-ROCK • THE ROLLING STONES: “I Just Wanna Make Love To You” [w] (1964; Time-Life DVD 1a); “Time Is On My Side” [w] (1964); “Around and Around” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”); “Satisfaction” [w] (1965; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”); “The Last Time” [w] (1965; Time-Life Video “Guitar Heroes”); “As Tears Go By” [w] (1965; also recorded by Marianne Faithfull; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”); “Paint It Black” [w] (1966; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”) • THE ANIMALS: “House of The Rising Sun” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”) • THE KINKS: “You Really Got Me” [w] (1964; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”) • THE YARDBIRDS: “For Your Love” [w] (1965 ); “Train Kept a’Rollin’” [w] (1966; Time-Life Video “Guitar Heroes”) • THE WHO: “Can’t Explain” [w] (1965; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”); “My Generation” [w] (1966; Time-Life Video “Pluggin’ In”) • THEM (featuring Van Morrison): “Gloria” [w] (1965) • SPENCER DAVIS GROUP: “Keep On Running” [w] (1966; Time-Life Video “Britain Invades, America Fights Back”)
The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 61 CHAPTER 6 THE 70S: THE CORPORATE DIVERSIFICATION OF COMMERCIAL ROCK INTRODUCTION During the 1970s—the so-called “Me” decade—commercial rock came increasingly under the control of large multi-national corporations (most non-musical in nature) that mass-marketed their mega-artists in a variety of styles—each aimed at a specific audience niche:1 • Mainstream “Corporate” Rock • Progressive “Art” Rock • Jazz Rock (“Fusion”) • Acoustic/Soft (“Pop”) Rock • Country Rock • Rock Theatre • Heavy Metal • Black Rock • Disco Because of its diversified corporate approach, 70s rock has been deemed by some as a “decade without direction” or a “decade of excess;” however, this stylistic expansion ultimately tripled the size of rock and roll’s audience, transforming rock into a highly-profitable business with wide-reaching artistic impact. This self-serving philosophy reflected the 70s mindset in general, which was a drastic reversal of the “peace/love/communal” thinking of the late 60s. Several critical events in the early 70s led to this rapid change of perspective in America’s youth: • The Kent State shootings (May 1970) signaled an end to on-campus anti-war activism.2 • In November 1972, President Richard Nixon was re-elected in a landslide victory over the student-supported Democratic candidate George McGovern.3 • In 1973, Nixon ended the draft, then agreed to a ceasefire that ended the Vietnam War.4 By the time Nixon resigned from office in August 1974, most 60s baby-boomers were in the mainstream raising families of their own, while the next generation of college students were forsaking spiritual enrichment for specific job training. Despite inflation and a massive increase in oil prices, real disposable income rose nearly 30% in the 70s, giving boomers the luxury to indulge themselves in high-tech consumer gadgets, prescription (and illicit) drugs, singles bars and “yuppie” clothing. 1 “Punk,” “Dub” (pre-Rap) and other “underground” styles also arose in the 1970s (see Chapters 8 and 9). 2 For specific information on the Kent State shootings, see Chapter 5, Section IV. 3 Nixon carried 49 out of 50 states and nearly 61% of the popular vote; however, the illegal operations used to establish this margin of victory were uncovered in the Watergate investigation (1972-74) that forced Nixon to resign from office on August 9, 1974. 4 When the last US troops/advisors returned from Vietnam in 1975, over 58,000 American soldiers had been killed in Southeast Asia. (In all, 1.1 million soldiers have died in U.S.-involved wars from the Revolutionary War to Desert Storm. By comparison, from 1973-97 there were over 31 million abortions in the U.S.)
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 62 I. Mainstream “Corporate” Rock After the massive critical and financial success of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album in 1967, most major rock artists became obsessed with creating sophisticated albums instead of 45 RPM singles. By the 1970s, technological advances in studio recording techniques/equipment—coupled with increasingly excessive artistic license—turned the production of an album into a lengthy, tedious and expensive endeavor. Because of these rising upfront costs (and the much greater potential financial rewards) the record industry of the 70s soon became monopolized by several major music affiliated corporations— Capitol, RCA, CBS (Epic/Columbia), MCA, PolyGram, (its pop-rock subsidiary is Polydor), A & M, and Warner Communications (which included Warner, Elektra, Asylum and Atlantic).5 By investing heavily in only a few “mega-platinum” artists (and refusing to take chances on unestablished “fringe” performers), these companies turned Rock/Pop into a highly-profitable international phenomenon: Selected Rock/Pop “Mega-Platinum” Artists of the 70s and Their Corporate Affiliations Corporate Rock Elton John (MCA) Fleetwood Mac (CBS/Epic) Peter Frampton (A & M) Billy Joel (CBS/Columbia) Paul McCartney & Wings (Capitol) Steve Miler Band (Capitol/Polydor) Rod Stewart (Warner) Cheap Trick (CBS/Epic) Funk/Soul Sly and The Family Stone (CBS/Epic) The Jacksons (CBS/Epic) Jazz Rock Chicago (CBS/Columbia) Progressive “Art” Rock The Moody Blues (PolyGram/Polydor) Pink Floyd (Capitol; CBS/Columbia) Yes (Warner/Atlantic) Emerson, Lake and Palmer (Warner/Atlantic) Heavy Metal Aerosmith (CBS/Columbia) Foreigner (Warner/Atlantic) Boston (MCA) Mainstream Pop The Carpenters (A & M) James Taylor (Warner) John Denver (RCA) Disco The Bee Gees (PolyGram/Polydor) 5 Stevie Wonder—the best-selling artist of the 1970s—recorded on the independent label Motown/Tamla, which was NOT affiliated with a major corporation.
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 63 In 1973, such multi-national corporations sold over $4 billion worth of records and tapes worldwide, while the top 50 rock stars each netted/invested $2 to $6 million (three times more income than the highest-paid executive in America).6 In addition to record sales, a significant part of this revenue came from lengthy concert tours at stadium-sized venues. Representative “Corporate” Rock Artists Elton John (b. 1947; birthname Reginald Dwight) Elton John, an English singer-songwriter and classically-trained pianist, was the second best-selling rock artist of the 70s (behind Stevie Wonder). Teamed up with lyricist Bernie Taupin, he scored seven No. 1 albums and five No. 1 songs from 1970-76. Although best-known for his softer ballads such as “Your Song” (1970) and “Candle in the Wind” (1973), he could also show a stronger rock side with hits like “Crocodile Rock” (1973; a 50s retrospective), “Bennie and the Jets” (1973), and “Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting” (1973). More recently, John gained critical acclaim for composing the soundtrack for Disney’s award-winning animated film The Lion King (1994), and for his touching remake of “Candle in the Wind” for the funeral of Princess Diana in 1997—which became the best-selling single of all time. Fleetwood Mac (formed in 1967) Stevie Nicks/lead vocals; Lindsay Buckingham/guitar-vocals Christie McVie/vocals-keyboards; John McVie/bass; Mick Fleetwood/drums Despite a variety of personal problems, Fleetwood Mac was the best-selling band of the 70s, and with its recent reunion tours it has remained one of the most popular concert attractions up through the late 1990s. When Buckingham and Nicks joined the band in 1975, they hit the charts with “Rhiannon” and “Say You Love Me.” Their height of popularity came in 1977 with Rumours —created/released during the well-publicized break ups of Buckingham/Nicks and the McVies. This album sold over 14 million copies and included four hit songs “Dreams” (#1 June), “Don’t Stop” (#2 Sept), “You Make Lovin’ Fun”, and “Go Your Own Way” (by Buckingham. aimed at Nicks). Peter Frampton (b. 1950) British singer-songwriter/guitarist Peter Frampton became an overnight sensation in the US in 1976 with his Frampton Comes Alive! double-album (the best-selling live album of all time; sold over 15 million copies in ’76) and its associated tour. His act was highlighted by the use of a voice-tube filter that allowed him to synthetically talk with his guitar. His most famous songs are “Do You Feel Like We Do?” and “Show Me The Way.” Frampton fell from prominence almost as fast as he rose—a prime example of the fickle impact of massive corporate promotion. Billy Joel (b. 1949) This Long Island-born classically-trained pianist/singer-songwriter has been a popular rock-pop artist throughout the 70s, 80s and 90s. Over those three decades, his music 6 According to Szatmary (Rockin’ in Time, 3rd edition, p. 219), the $2 billion grossed in 1973 from US record sales was more than the movie industry, professional sports, and Broadway musicals combined.
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 64 has ranged from acoustic piano ballads to hard-edged rock-based social commentary and even ‘80s “New Wave.” He had a relative success in 1973 with his debut album Piano Man, but his big break came in 1977 with The Stranger, featuring “Just The Way You Are” (Song of the Year for ’77). Other hits from his later albums include “My Life” (52nd Street—1978), “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me”/”You May Be Right” (Glass Houses— 1980), and “We Didn’t Start The Fire” (Storm Front—1989; a 40-year chronicle of political events from the Berlin Wall to the demise of the Soviet blok). Selected Examples of 70s Mainstream “Corporate” Rock • Elton John: “Bennie and The Jets” (1973); “Crocodile Rock” (1973) • Fleetwood Mac: “Go Your Own Way” (1977) • Peter Frampton: “Do You Feel Like We Do?” (1976) • Billy Joel: “Just The Way You Are” (1977); “You May Be Right” (1978) II. PROGRESSIVE “ART” ROCK In the late 60s and early 70s, several (primarily British) bands followed The Beatles lead by adapting orchestral instruments and techniques to rock music—hence creating the genre known as “Progressive Rock”, “Art Rock” or “Classical Rock.”7 The premier Art Rock bands also adopted elements from classical music and literature (at times with psychedelic imagery), focusing on instrumental virtuosity (both keyboard/synthesizer and guitar) and deeply philosophical perspectives. Because of their sophisticated approaches, Art-Rock songs/albums rarely made the Top 40, but were a mainstay of ’70s FM radio. The Moody Blues (formed in 1964) Denny Laine/vocals-guitar-harmonica; Mike Pinder/keyboards Ray Thomas/flute-vocals; Clint Warwick/bass; Graeme Edge/drums Britain’s The Moody Blues initiated the full-fledged “Art Rock” movement in 1967 with their Days of Future Passed album, with hits such as “Nights in White Satin” and “Tuesday Afternoon” that combined orchestral textures (by the London Symphony Orchestra) with rock instrumentation and style.8 On their subsequent albums, the orchestral parts were simulated by Pinder’s mellotron (an orchestral synthesizer). Jethro Tull (formed in 1967) Ian Anderson/vocals-flute; Martin Barre/guitar-vocals (joined 1968); Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond/bass (joined 1970); John Evan/keyboards (joined 1968); Clive Bunker/drums (original guitarist = Mick Abrahams; original bassist= Glenn Cornick) Jethro Tull rose to prominence—both for its “progressive-rock” virtuosity as well as Ian Anderson’s increasingly exaggerated theatrical stage manner (long thin hair, ragged tailcoat, one-legged performing stance). Their height of success was Aqualung (1971), which featured cryptic/gross lyrics and Anderson’s wild flute solos in such songs as 7 During this era, some of rock’s most influential artists were classically-trained musicians. 8 From 1964 to 1967, The Moody Blues were a hard-edged R & B-influenced band.
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 65 “Aqualung”9 and “Locomotive Breath.” Their next album Thick as a Brick (1972) rose to the top of the US charts; however, their subsequent efforts were not of this level of sophistication or importance. Pink Floyd (formed 1965/disbanded 1983) Roger Waters/bass-vocals; David Gilmour/guitar-vocals; Rick Wright/keyboards; Nick Mason/drums (original lead singer/songwriter/guitarist Syd Barrett left the band in 1969) Pink Floyd10 stands as one of the most highly celebrated bands in the history of rock. Out of their early R & B-influenced roots, they went through a quasi-psychedelic phase in the late 60s, then exploded onto the scene in 1973 with their epic album Dark Side of the Moon (considered to be “the Sgt. Pepper’s of the 70s.”) This album—which features the hit songs “Dark Side of the Moon,” “Money” and “Brain Damage”—has sold over 25 million copies and was on the Billboard chart of best-selling albums for over a decade. Although they subsequently had a string of successful albums, their next mega-hit came in 1979 with The Wall, which includes their only #1 song “Another Brick in the Wall” (#1 March 1980). At Water’s instigation, the band broke up in 1983; however, Gilmour, Mason and Wright reunified in the 1987, renewing interest in the band’s music. Genesis (formed in 1966; consolidated as a professional band in 1971) Original Formation: Peter Gabriel/vocals; Tony Banks/keyboards; Mike Rutherford/bass-guitar-vocals; Steve Hackett/guitar (joined 1970); Phil Collins/drums-vocals (joined 1970; took over lead vocals in 1975) (original guitarist = Anthony Philips; original drummer= Chris Stewart) Genesis first formed while its original members were still schoolboys in England. Their early efforts (on Decca Records) were not well-received; however, after some critical personnel changes (highlighted by the addition of Phil Collins) the band began to attract a following (now on the new Charisma label). In the early 70s, their reputation was staked almost entirely on Gabriel’s outrageous theatrics and costumes, but 1974, they moved to the top of the UK charts with The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. The following year, the band and their fans were stunned by Gabriel’s sudden departure and Collin’s unexpected assumption of lead vocal responsibilities. Collins’ softer voice and stage manner required the band to gradually adopt a more pop-oriented style that eventually brought them international success in the 1980s.11 Yes (formed in 1968; original band included Pete Banks/guitar and Tony Kaye/keyboards) Jon Anderson/vocals; Rick Wakeman/keyboards (joined 1970); Steve Howe/lead guitar (joined 1970); Chris Squire/bass; Bill Bruford/drums 9 For example, the initial lyrics of “Aqualung” are: “Sitting on a park bench, eyeing little girls with bad intent . . . snot running down his nose, greasy fingers smearing shabby clothes.” 10 Barrett adopted the band’s unusual name from an album by Georgia bluesmen Pink Anderson and Floyd Council. 11 For more on Genesis’ rise to stardom in the 1980s, see Chapter 8.
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 66 During art-rock’s heyday in the early 70s, the British band Yes was perhaps the most renowned representative of the style. The addition of Wakeman and Howe in 1970 brought the group to an unrivalled level of instrumental virtuosity. Their most influential and acclaimed album was Fragile (1971), which featured “Roundabout”, with its amazing web of complex polyrhythms, harmonies, and improvised synthesizer/guitar solos. Emerson, Lake and Palmer (formed 1970) Keith Emerson/keyboards; Greg Lake/guitar; Carl Palmer/drums This classically-trained supergroup first received mass exposure through its performance at the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival. ELP is primarily noted for its rock remakes of Classical compositions, such as Modest Musorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition (1971) and Aaron Copland’s “Hoe-down” from his ballet Rodeo (Trilogy, 1972). Their most successful original work was the album Brain Salad Surgery (1973), which has been called “a [virtual] soundtrack to a non-existent film.”12 Other important “art rock” artists of the early 70s include • Procol Harum “Lighter Shade of Pale” (1967)—based on J.S. Bach’s Suite No. 3 in D major • Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) featuring Roy Wood and Jeff Lynne: “Evil Woman” (1975)—Face The Music • Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention (American): Freak Out! (1966); Uncle Meat (1969); “Live” at the Fillmore East (1971) Another notable aspect of the late 60s/early 70s art-rock movement was the popularity of several rock operas and musicals, including: • Tommy (The Who, 1969) • Jesus Christ Superstar (Andrew Lloyd Webber, 1971) • Godspell (Stephen Sondheim, 1971) • Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Andrew Lloyd Webber, 1971) • The Wiz (1975; a black adaptation of The Wizard of Oz, starring Michael Jackson and Diana Ross; produced by Quincy Jones) Selected Examples of ’70s Progressive “Art” Rock • The Moody Blues: “Nights in White Satin” and “Tuesday Afternoon” (1967) • The Who: Tommy (1969—rock opera) • Jethro Tull: “Aqualung” (1971) • Yes: “Roundabout” (1971) • Pink Floyd: “Dark Side of the Moon,” “Money” and “Brain Damage” from Dark Side of the Moon (1973); “Another Brick in the Wall” from The Wall (1979) • Genesis: “The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway” (1974) 12 Stephen Thomas Erlewine, “Emerson, Lake & Palmer” in The All-Music Guide to Rock, p.277 (San Francisco: Miller Freeman Books, 1995)
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 67 III. JAZZ ROCK (“FUSION”) In the late 60s/early 70s, the art-rock movement also spurred interest in a variety of jazz-rock “fusion” artists, ranging from the psychedelic jazz-rock Santana, to brass-predominated jazz-rock “big bands” such as Blood, Sweat and Tears: Brass-predominated bands Blood, Sweat and Tears (featuring vocalist David Clayton Thomas) “Spinning Wheel”; “Go Down Gamblin’”; “And When I Die” (all 1969) Miles Davis: (the most influential figure in 70s Jazz-rock “Fusion”) Bitches Brew (1970) featuring Miles Davis/trumpet with John McLaughlin/guitar; Chick Corea/keyboard; Wayne Shorter/soprano sax Chicago: (featuring classically-trained Robert Lamm and Peter Cetera) “Beginnings” (1969); “25 or 6 to 4” (1970) “Make Me Smile” (1970) The Ides of March: “Vehicle” (1970) Tower of Power (formed 1967) This San Francisco-based “funk-fusion” band was also horn back-up for Elton John, Santana, Bonnie Raitt, Huey Lewis, Paula Abdul, and Aaron Neville. Their biggest hits include “What is Hip?,” “So Very Hard To Go,” and “Wildflower” (all 1973). Chuck Mangione (jazz flugelhornist/bandleader): “Feels So Good” (1977) Jazz-flavored “Pop-rock” Bands Steely Dan: (formed 1972/disbanded 1981) This group featured Donald Fagan/Walter Becker/vocals, Jeff Baxter/guitar and Michael McDonald/keyboard-vocals, and offered a highly sophisticated mix of R & B, jazz, rock and pop in such hits as “Reeling in the Years” (1972) and “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number” (1974). The Doobie Brothers (formed 1970) The “Doobies” began as a funk-rock band with The Captain and Me (1973), featuring their early hits “Long Train Running,” “China Grove,” and “Black Water.” In 1975, lead singer Tom Johnston left the band and Mike McDonald/lead vocals and Jeff Baxter/guitar of Steeley Dan came aboard, to create jazz-influenced hits such as “Taking It To The Streets” (1976) and “What a Fool Believes” (1979). Jazz-influenced Guitar-based Bands Santana: (formed 1966; Latin jazz-rock featuring guitarist/singer Carlos Santana) “Evil Ways” (1970); “Black Magic Woman” (1970) The Pat Metheny Group
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 68 Selected Examples of ’70s Jazz-Rock (“Fusion”) • Blood, Sweat and Tears: “Spinning Wheel” and “Go Down Gamblin’” (1969) • Chicago: “25 or 6 to 4” (1970) • Steely Dan: “Reeling in the Years” (1972) • Doobie Brothers: “What a Fool Believes” (1979) IV. 70s ACOUSTIC/SOFT ROCK SINGER-SONGWRITERS In the early 70s, a softer acoustic-pop side of rock emerged out of the 60s folk-pop style. Several of these artists were also influenced by the sophisticated trends concurrent 70s art-rock and jazz-rock styles: Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (formed 1968/disbanded 1970) Shortly after their success at Woodstock, this foursome disbanded; however, their influence on acoustic-rock was established with their cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” (Déjà-vu —1970) and the after-breakup compendium So Far (1974), which included the folk-pop song “Teach Your Children” and “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” (sung at Woodstock). Joni Mitchell (born 1943) This late 60s folk/protest singer-guitarist turned avant-garde pop artist hit the charts with her folk-pop ballad “Both Sides Now” (recorded in 1970) and the progressive pop-rock song “Help Me” (1974). Carole King (born 1942) This former “Brill Building/Monkees-Colgems” songwriter launched her solo career in 1970 with the album Tapestry , which sold 15 million copies and featured the hit soft pop-rock songs “It’s Too Late” and “So Far Away.” James Taylor (born 1948; singer/guitarist/songwriter) Taylor began as folk-acoustic guitarist, then evolved into one of the finest jazz-blues/acoustic guitarists in pop-rock. His early acoustic style is heard in songs such as “You’ve Got a Friend,” “Sweet Baby James,” and “Fire and Rain” (all 1970), but his jazzier approach is apparent in later hits such as “Your Smiling Face” (1977). Carly Simon (born 1945; married James Taylor in 1972—later divorced) James Taylor’s wife/musical collaborator had several solo pop-rock hits in the early 70s such as “Anticipation” (1971) and “You’re So Vain” (1972). Gordon Lightfoot (born 1938) Canada’s most renowned folk-pop balladeer first rose to prominence in 1970 with “If You Could Read My Mind,” and hit the charts again with the bluesier pop-rock song “Sundown” (#1 June 1974).
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 69 Don McLean (born 1945) Although McLean’s most recent leanings have been in the country-western vein, in the early 70s he was one of the premier acoustic-rock artists, known mostly for his soft-rock ballads. His greatest popularity came via the retrospective soft-rock hit “American Pie” (#1 February 1972). Jim Croce (1943-73) This singer-guitarist/songwriter rapid rise to prominence in 1973 was abruptly cut short by his death in a plane crash. Several of his songs posthumously hit the charts—most notably “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” (#1 July 1973) and “Time in a Bottle” (#1 December 1973). Harry Chapin (1942-81) Chapin was another leading folk-rock/pop singer whose career was cut short by tragedy—he died in auto accident while on his way to a benefit concert. His most important songs were “Taxi” (1972) and “Cats in the Cradle” (#1 December 1974). Other notable acoustic pop-rock artists of the 70s include Cat Stevens (singer-guitarist): “Wild World,” “Peace Train,” “Father and Son” (1971) Kansas: “Dust In The Wind” (1974) America: “Sister Golden Hair” (1975) Selected Examples of 70s Soft Pop-Rock • Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” (1969) • James Taylor: “Fire and Rain” (1970) • Don McLean: “American Pie” (1972) • Jim Croce: “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” (1973) V. COUNTRY-INFLUENCED ROCK Following the trend begun in the late 60s by The Band, Creedence Clearwater Revival, and Bob Dylan, country rock continued its rise in popularity in the 70s. By then, many “country” artists were performing “middle-of-the-road” rock. Important country-rock artists of this era included: Linda Ronstadt: (born 1946) Over a long and illustrious career that has spanned four decades, Ronstadt has recorded hits in a wide variety of styles including country-blues/pop, moderate-rock, covers of rockabilly tunes, orchestrally-accompanied remakes of 50s big-band hits, and even traditional Hispanic music. Some of her most famous songs include the love ballads “Different Drum” (1968) and “Long, Long Time” (1970), the country-rock standard “When Will I Be Loved” (1974), the rock hit “You’re No Good” (#1 February 1975), and her cover of Roy Orbison’s “Blue Bayou” (1977).
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 70 Poco (formed 1968) Richie Furay/guitar-vocals; Jim Messina/guitar-vocals Rusty Young/vocals-pedal steel guitar; George Grantham/drums-vocals Randy Meisner/bass-vocals (dropped out to help establish The Eagles) This group (created out of the recently disbanded Buffalo Springfield) first used the name Pogo, but changed it to Poco after a complaint was raised by Walt Kelly, the creator of the Pogo comic strip. Almost immediately, Meisner dropped out to join The Eagles, and the remaining four members recorded their highly-acclaimed debut album Pickin’ Up The Pieces (1969). Another well-received album was Deliverin’ (1971), but soon after it was released Jim Messina left the band to team up with Kenny Loggins (see below). Even after Furay left the band in 1973, Poco remained a viable force in country rock through the late 70s. Loggins and Messina (Kenny Loggins and Jim Messina) In 1972, a staff songwriter Kenny Loggins met Jim Messina, who agreed to produce Loggins’ first solo album. Messina’s collaboration was considerably more than first anticipated, as evident from the title Kenny Loggins with Jim Messina Sittin’ In (January 1972). The album—which included the hits “Your Mama Don’t Dance” and “House at Pooh Corner”—was so successful that Loggins and Messina became a bonafide team, and became the most important duo of the decade. The Eagles (formed 1972/disbanded 1980/reunited 1994) Original band members: Glenn Frey/guitar-vocals;; Don Henley/drums-vocals Randy Meisner/bass-vocals; Bernie Leadon/banjo-mandolin (guitarists Don Felder and Joe Walsh added in 1974 and 1976, respectively) The group first assembled as Linda Ronstadt’s studio and touring backup band, but they split off from her in August 1971, then officially formed The Eagles the following year. They quickly rose on the charts with their unique country-flavored rock sound that featured Frey’s and Henley’s lead vocals supported by sparkling four-part vocal choruses (as heard in early hits such as “Desperado” and their cover of Jackson Browne’s “Take It Easy”—both 1972). In 1974, guitarist Don Felder was added, resulting in a string of Top 10 hits including “Best of My Love,” “Lyin’ Eyes,” and “One of These Nights” (all 1975). In 1976, the band made a massive turn towards a harder blues-rock sound when Leadon left and was replaced by electric guitarist Joe Walsh. Their cyclic album Hotel California won the Grammy for best album in 1977, and included “Hotel California” (#1 May), “New Kid In Town” (#1 Feb.— Song of the Year/Grammy in ‘77), and “Life in the Fast Lane.” Jackson Browne (born 1948) Browne has had a diverse career as singer, producer and promoter of benefit concerts for his anti-nuclear political stance. His greatest hits include “Doctor My
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 71 Eyes” (1972), “Take It Easy” (co-written with Glenn Frey; recorded by The Eagles in 1972), and “Running on Empty” (1977). John Denver (1943-98; birthname Henry John Deutschendorf) John Denver began as a member of the early-60s folk group The Chad Mitchell Trio. In 1969, he embarked on a solo career, gaining his first success through Peter, Paul and Mary’s cover version of his “Leaving on a Jet Plane” (1969). In the 1970s, Denver (with RCA) became one of America’s top entertainers, bridging the gap between light country-rock, folk, and pop with such hits as “Take Me Home, Country Roads” (1971), “Rocky Mountain High” (1972), “Annie’s Song” (1974), and “Thank God I’m a Country Boy” (1975). He died in 1998 while piloting his small plane. Selected Examples of 70s Country-Rock/Pop • Loggins and Messina: “Your Mama Don’t Dance” (1972) • Linda Ronstadt: “When Will I Be Loved” (1974) • The Eagles: “Take It Easy” (1972); “One of These Nights” (1975); “Hotel California” (1977) • Jackson Browne: “Running On Empty” (1977) VI. ROCK THEATRE (Glam Rock) One of the most novel developments of 70s rock was the new experimentation with rock theatrics. While these “heavy metal theatre” acts certainly put an end to the 60s “peace/love” mindset, most (with the exception of Queen) did little to advance rock in any specifically musical respect. British Glam Rock and “The New Romantics David Bowie: (1947-2016; birthname was David Jones; collaborated with Brian Eno) Bowie (who is openly bisexual) has been a courageous and ingenious rock innovator since the late 1960s when he released Space Oddity (1969). He took this space-character imagery a step further and initiated the rock theatre-oriented British “Glam Rock” phenomenon by creating the prefabricated rock star Ziggy Stardust in 1972. In 1975, he turned to disco, then began collaborating with Brian Eno. In 1980, Bowie earned wide acclaim for his leading role in The Elephant Man. During the 80s, he was an important pioneer in the emergence of music video, and in 1997 he was the first to premiere a commercial song on the Internet. Queen (formed 1971/disbanded 1995) Freddie Mercury/vocals; Brian May/lead guitar-vocals John Deacon/bass-vocals; Roger Taylor/drums This British quartet fused hard rock, heavy metal, and art-rock with theatrical pyrotechnics, cross-dressed costuming, and tremendous musical virtuosity—both
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 72 live and in the studio. Their first major hit came in 1975 with A Night At The Opera, which featured the intricately overdubbed mega-hit “Bohemian Rhapsody.” In 1977, they made a turn towards harder-edged rock with “We Are The Champions” and “We Will Rock You” (both 1977). Queen remained a popular “live” concert draw until 1991, when Freddie Mercury died of AIDS. * * * In Britain during the mid-to-late 70s, Glam Rock was popularized and gradually transformed into an English version of disco for fashion-conscious Mods. This trend was driven by new digital synthesizer technologies and “New Romantic” artists such as Roxy Music (formed 1971/disbanded 1975) Brian Ferry/vocals; Brian Eno/synthesizer (replaced by Eddie Jobson in 1973) Andy McKay/reeds; Phil Manzanera/guitar; Paul Thompson/drums Original bassist Graham Simpson (replaced by Rik Kenton in 1973) After For Your Pleasure was released in 1973, Brian Eno left the band to research bioelectronics. With new keyboardist Eddie Jobson onboard, they recorded/released Stranded (1973), which moved to No. 1 in the UK. Their US breakthrough came in 1975 with Siren, featuring the Top 30 hit “Love Is The Drug;” however, at the height of their commercial success the group disbanded. Ultravox (formed in 1974/disbanded 1987) Midge Ure/vocals-guitar; Billy Currie/violin-keyboards; Chris Cross/bass; Stevie Shears/guitar; Warren Cann/drums When lead singer John Foxx left in 1978 (replaced by Ure in 1980), Ultravox made an abrupt turn towards the elecro-pop, and in albums such as Vienna (1980) they pioneered the sparse, synthesized sound of The New Romantic movement. Visage (formed 1979/disbanded 1982) Steve Strange/synthesizer;Midge Ure/guitar; Billy Currie/violin; with three members of Magazine: Dave Formula/keyboards; John McGeogh/guitar and Barry Adamson/bass Visage made its mark with outrageous fashion and by magnifying the Ultravox sound by adding an extra synthesizer and guitar over a mesmerizingly-repetitive drumbeat. Shortly after the release of their self-named debut album in 1980, Ure quit to take over the lead vocals of Ultravox, while violinist Billy Currie maintained membership in Visage, Ultravox and Gary Numan’s band simultaneously! Gary Numan (birthname = Gary Webb, born 1958) Numan began with the Punk band Tubeway Army, but soon went solo—abandoning his guitar for the synthesizer. Numan popularized the Ultravox/Visage sound in UK through new wave/electro-pop hits such as “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?”
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 73 (1979) and “Cars” (1979). He fused together the electronic innovations of Eno, Bowie and Kraftwerk into commercially-viable pop music, and in the process he made the synthesizer the new instrument of choice for the 80s. American Rock Theatre Alice Cooper (born 1948; birthname is Vince Furnier) Alice Cooper13 formed in Los Angeles in 1972 with the support of Frank Zappa. Furnier did more than anyone to define American Rock Theatre and advance the gross/shock level of rock with his on-stage portrayals of Alice (decapitations/live snakes/abusing toy dolls along with Broadway show-dancing and heavy metal rock). His biggest commercial success came in 1972 with School’s Out. KISS (formed in 1973; crosstown rivals of the New York Dolls/70s punk group) Gene Simmons/bass-vocals; Paul Stanley/rhythm guitar-vocals Ace Frehley/lead guitar-vocals; Peter Criss/drums-vocals Despite their outrageously sinister make-up, costumes and stage manner, KISS became a huge draw for adolescent rock fans during the mid/late 70s. The band and its related merchandise flooded the market from 1975-77, culminating in their 1977 made-for-TV special movie Kiss Meets The Phantom of The Park. Their biggest hits were “Rock and Roll All Nite” (1975) and the love ballad “Beth” (1976). Selected Examples of 70s Rock Theatre • David Bowie: “Space Oddity” (1969); “Ziggy Stardust” (1972) • Alice Cooper: “School’s Out” (1972) • Queen: “Bohemian Rhapsody” (1975); “We Will Rock You” (1977) • Kiss: “Rock and Roll All Nite” (1975) VI. HEAVY METAL Throughout the 70s, several prominent heavy-metal guitar-oriented performers rebelled against the rock theatre movement in order to focus on “good old” heavy metal, including: • Deep Purple (with guitarist Ritchie Blackmore): “Smoke on the Water” (1972)14 • Aerosmith (featuring Steven Tyler/vocals and Joe Perry/guitar): “Dream On” (1973 single); Toys In The Attic (1975)—“Sweet Emotion”; “Walk This Way”15 • Foreigner: Foreigner (1977)—“Cold As Ice”; “Feels Like The First Time” • Ted Nugent: Cat Scratch Fever (1977)—title song • Van Halen (featuring guitarist Eddie Van Halen and lead singer David Lee Roth) Van Halen (1978)—“Eruption” 13 Furnier adopted the name Alice Cooper from a 16th-century woman burned at the stake for witchcraft. 14 In 1975, Deep Purple was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as “The World’s Loudest Band.” 15 In 1986, Aerosmith and Run-D.M.C. did a landmark remake of this song that put “rap” on the commercial map. (For more rap-related information, see Chapter 9.)
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 74 • Boston: Don’t Look Back (1978) Selected Examples of 70s Heavy Metal • Deep Purple: “Smoke on the Water” (1972) • Aerosmith: “Walk This Way” (1975); “Sweet Emotion” (1975) • Van Halen: “Eruption” (1978) VII. BLACK ROCK During the 70s, Black rock focused on soul-funk styles and ultimately paved the way for disco music. 70s Funk (which grew out of James Brown’s mid-1960s innovations) served as a bridge between late-60s soul and late-70s disco. Stylistically, funk has a more polyrhythmic structure than soul, with the guitar often providing a “chicken scratch” rhythmic accompaniment (by strumming muted strings), and the back-up horn section offering percussive riffs and full-bodied harmonies. 70s Soul, carried on the classic traits of the 60s, but with a stronger rhythmic drive. The artists discussed below delved in both soul and funk styles to varying degrees: Stevie Wonder (born 1950) In the 1970s, Stevie Wonder’s career took off in a big way, ultimately positioning him as the best-selling artist of the 70s and early 80s. This ascent began in 1970 when he was contractually freed from the rigid financial and artistic guardianship of Berry Gordy at Motown. Instead of re-signing immediately with Motown, Wonder financed and produced his next two albums, writing all the songs and arrangements himself, and playing virtually all the instruments (by overdubbing). In the process, he took studio recording techniques and the use of the synthesizer to new heights, and he began to incorporate the type of socially-conscious lyrics that became his trademark. In 1972, Wonder negotiated a wide-open contract with Motown, ensuring total artistic control over his music and complete ownership of its publishing rights. His next album, Talking Book (1972), was immensely popular, featuring the funk hit “Superstition” (#1 January ’73) and the classic pop-ballad “You Are The Sunshine of My Life” (#1 May ’73). Other major hits included Innervisions (1973), which included the progressive-funk hit “Living for the City, and the double-album Songs in the Key of Life (1976), which featured the intensely rhythmic and harmonically-inventive “I Wish” (#1 January 1977) , “Sir Duke” (#1 May ’77), and “Black Man” (a powerful multi-racial celebration of America). In the 1980s, Wonder began a campaign to have Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday celebrated as a national holiday,16 and he has been involved in a variety of benefit causes including USA for Africa. 16 President Ronald Reagan eventually signed legislation that established the first Martin Luther King holiday on January 15, 1986.
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 75 Top-Selling Rock/Pop Artists From 1955-84 #1 Elvis Presley #2 The Beatles #3 Stevie Wonder #4 The Rolling Stones #5 Pat Boone #6 Elton John Parliament(s) (formed 1955)/Funkadelic (formed 1968/disbanded 1981) In 1955, George Clinton started a doo-wop vocal group named The Parliaments that was affiliated with his New Jersey barbershop. Eventually, they made their way to Detroit, signing with the Revilot label. Following the current influences of Motown, they recorded the hit “I Wanna Testify” in 1967. While on tour that year, Clinton was forced to use a rock band’s equipment, which fueled his interest in the psychedelic music of Hendrix and Cream, as well as the psychedelic funk of Sly and The Family Stone. Shortly thereafter, Clinton left Revilot—in violation of the terms of his recording contract, and in the process, he lost the rights to the “Parliamant” name for a time. In a clever manuever, Clinton began featuring his back-up band as the main act, calling them Funkadelic. In 1971, he regained control of the group’s original name, then shortened it to Parliament. For the next few years, Clinton recorded under both group-names, with Parliament offering R & B dance music and Funkadelic promoting psychedelic funk/rock. By the mid-70s (with Casablance Records), Parliament-Funkadelic represented the height of funk, including amazing “live” shows with on-stage spaceship landings and funky (almost cartoonish) jewel-studded space outfits. The most famous example of this approach is Mothership Connection (1976), featuring “Do That Stuff” and “Tear the Roof Off The Sucker (Give Up The Funk). Sly and The Family Stone (formed 1967/disbanded 1981) Sly Stone (birthname=Sylvester Stewart)/keyboard-vocals; Freddie Stone/guitar; Rosie Stone/piano; Cynthia Robinson/trumpet; Jerry Martini/saxophone; Larry Graham/bass; Greg Errico/drums Sly (a child prodigy who sang and played drums, guitar and piano) began his recording career at the age of 4 (!). His early musical endeavors included back-up harmony in church gospel groups, nightclub gigs with various bands, and a stint as a radio disc jockey. While in San Francisco at the height of the hippie/psychedelic era, Sly put together his racially-integrated band, the Family Stone—which from 1968-71 had a string of successful soul and funk hits. In 1968, they had their first hit, “Dance to The Music.” In 1969, came two more Top 10 hits— “Everyday People” (#1 February) and “I Want To Take You Higher” (which they performed at Woodstock). In 1970-71, Sly and the Family Stone topped the charts again with the double-hit single “Thank You [Falettinme Be Mice Elf Again]” (#1 February
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 76 1970)/”Everybody is a Star,” and “Family Affair” (#1 December 1971). After that, Sly’s personal problems led the the rapid decline of the group. The O’Jays (first formed in 1958) Eddie Levert/lead vocals; Walter Williams/vocals;William Powell/vocals The O’Jays began as a vocal quintet that also included Bill Isles and Bobby Massey. Their unusual name was established in honor of Cleveland disc jockey Eddie O’Jay, who had been a mentor and advisor to the group. After their so-so start in the early 60s with Imperial Records, Isles left the group. In 1968, tbe remaining quartet linked up with Hall-of-Fame songwriter/producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff of Philadelphia International, who wrote/produced for them several soul and funk hits. The O’Jays’ biggest successes came after Massey left the line-up in 1972: “Love Train” (#1 March 1973; the theme song of Soul Train—a popular black-oriented TV “dance party” show) and “For The Love of Money” (1977). Kool and The Gang (formed 1967/disbanded 1981) original members: Robert “Kool” Bell/bass; Dennis Thomas/saxophone Robert “The Captain” Bell/saxophone-keyboards Robert “Spike” Mickens/trumpet other members:Charles Smith/guitar; “Funky” George Brown/drums J.T. Taylor added as lead singer in 1979 This group began as a quartet (The Jazziacs) and then a sextet (The Soul Town Band) before settling on the name “Kool and The Gang” in 1969. From 1973-85, they had nearly 20 Top 40 soul/funk/disco hits on their self-owned De-Lite Records label, including “Jungle Boogie” (1973), “Ladies Night” (1979; disco), “Celebration” (1980) and “Cherish” (1985). Earth, Wind and Fire (formed 1970) Maurice White/drums; Verdine White/bass; Philip Bailey/vocals; Ronnie Laws/saxophone-guitar; Larry Dunn/keyboards; Roland Battista/guitar; Jessica Cleaves/vocals During the 1960s, Maurice White was a recording session drummer in Chicago for blues greats such as Etta James and Billy Stewart. In 1965, he joined the Ramsey Lewis Trio, then in 1969 he left to form the Salty Peppers—out of which Earth, Wind and Fire was eventually established. E,W & F fashioned their unique and highly-inventive sound by combining jazz, R & B, soul, funk, pop-ballad, and Latin elements. Their first major hit came in 1975 with “Shining Star” (#1 May). From 1975-83, they scored 11 gold albums, and they are still a popular live concert draw today. The Jacksons In 1976, all of The Jackson 5—except Jermaine—left Motown for CBS/Epic, adding brother Randy & sisters LaToya and Maureen to the group, and taking on
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 77 the name “The Jacksons.” Epic put the group into a highly-successful collaboration with Hall-of-Fame/Philadelphia International soul songwriters Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, who composed many funk hits for the Jacksons, including “Enjoy Yourself” (1976), and “Can You Feel It?” (1980; complete with its own Jackson-produced music video that premiered on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand). Later in 1979, Michael embarked on his remarkable solo career.17 The Commodores (formed in 1967) The Commodores, led by singer-songwriter Lionel Richie, signed with Motown in 1972, and toured with The Jackson 5 from 1972-75. Almost as soon as The Jacksons left for CBS, The Commodores emerged as Motown’s top act. Though their music ranged from hard funk to soft ballads, it was their ballads that brought The Commodores to the top of the charts, with soft hits such as “Three Times a Lady” (#1 August 1978) and “Still” (#1 November 1979). In 1980, Richie left the group to pursue a solo career, highlighted by “Endless Love” (#1 August 1981; duet with Diana Ross), and “All Night Long” (#1 November 1983). Selected Examples of 70s/early 80s Black Rock • Stevie Wonder: “Superstition” (1972); “Living For The City” (1973); “Sir Duke” (1976) • Parliament-Funkadelic: “Do That Stuff” (1976) • Sly & The Family Stone: “Dance to the Music” (‘68); “I Want To Take You Higher” (‘69) • O’Jays: “For The Love Of Money” (1973) • Earth, Wind & Fire: “Shining Star” (1975) • Kool and The Gang: “Celebration” (1980) • The Jacksons: “Can You Feel It?” (1980) VIII. THE IMPACT OF JAMAICAN MUSIC The music of the tiny Caribbean island of Jamaica has exerted a huge influence on many types of rock and pop music—particularly in the late 60s through the 70s. The most important styles of Jamaican music include: Reggae’s Forerunners c.1950-68: Calypso, Ska and Rocksteady As described in Chapter 3, Jamaican Calypso impacted American pop music during the mid-1950s. In the late 50s, a jumpier/faster type of Jamaican music called Ska emerged from a mixture of Jamaican folk music, jazz, New Orleans R & B, doo-wop and Afro-Caribbean rhythms. The popularity of Ska was further magnified by the use of “sound systems” (more powerful prototypes of the mobile disco), leading to the development of Dub in the 1970s (a forerunner of rap).18 Most ska recordings date from 1961-67. From 1966-68, a smoother, more soulfully-expressive style of Jamaican pop music known as Rocksteady was promoted by such artists as The Ethiopians, 17 For details on Michael JacksonÕs solo career in the 1980s and 90s, see Chapter 8. 18 For more on ÒDubÓ and ÒRapÓ styles, see Chapter 9.
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 78 Toots and The Maytals, Peter Tosh, and The Wailers. In 1968, Rocksteady was suddenly superceded by Reggae. Reggae In the late 60s, Reggae became the general term for all indigenous Jamaican styles; however, Reggae can be distinguished by its faster, hypnotic rhythm and bass, and its Rastafarian/socio-political lyrics. The most important Reggae groups of the late 60s/ early 70s were Toots and The Maytals, Peter Tosh, and The Wailers (featuring Hall-of-Famer Bob Marley). Marley’s “Human Rights” agenda—as seen in songs such as “Get Up, Stand Up!” (c. 1975)—earned him great reverence in the US and Britain, while his anti-establishment stance—as seen in songs such as “I Shot The Sheriff” (1976) made him very popular with British punkers—especially those involved in the “Rock Against Racism” movement.19 The influence of Reggae can also be heard in a wide array of rock-related works from the late 60s through the late 70s, including: • The Beatles: “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La, Da” (1968) • Paul Simon: “Mother and Child Reunion” (1972) • Johnny Nash: “I Can See Clearly Now” (1972) • Stevie Wonder: “Boogie On, Reggae Woman” (1974) • Eric Clapton: “I Shot The Sheriff” (1977; cover of a Bob Marley song) In the 1980s, Reggae also made its mark on the Punk and New Wave movements.20 IX. DISCO As a cost-saving measure in the early 1960s, some French nightclubs began replacing live bands with a single disc jockey—transforming their “cabarets” into “discotheques.” The concept was soon adopted in the US, with the name abbreviated to “disco.” The trend declined during late 60s psychedelia, but by the mid 70s discos made an amazing comeback, and gave rise to a new type of pop music specifically created for disco dancing. The groundwork for disco music was laid in the early 1970s by the European synthesizer group Kraftwerk (featuring Ralf Hutter and Florian Schneider). The US revival, however, began in New York City at Afro-American, Latin, and Gay dance clubs whose 24-hour disc jockeys played music with an incessant funk-thump beat. As discos became more popular, they began playing funk-oriented Philly Soul music by The O’Jays and similar-sounding Motown songs by Stevie Wonder, The Temptations, and Marvin Gaye. By 1974, artists such as the Hues Corporation and KC and the Sunshine Band began releasing commercial songs specifically designed for disco dancing. In July 1975, the disco classic “The Hustle” by Van McCoy reached #1, after which disco music began to dominate the charts. Other disco-style hits from 1975-76 were recorded by a large crossection of rock/pop artists, including: 19 For more on the “Rock Against Racism” movement, see Chapter 7. 20 For a full discussion of “Punk” and “New Wave,” see Chapters 7 and 8.
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 79 • The Captain and Tennille: “Love Will Keep Us Together” (#1 Song of 1975) • Silver Connection: “Fly, Robin, Fly” (#2 Song of 1975) • Elton John: “Island Girl” (#1 November ‘75); “Philadelphia Freedom” (#1 Apr ‘75) • KC and The Sunshine Band: “That’s The Way I Like It” (#1 November 1975) • The Bee Gees: “Jive Talkin’” (#1 Aug. ‘75); “You Should Be Dancin’ (#1 Sept ‘75) • Paul McCartney and Wings: “Silly Love Songs” (#2 Song of 1976) • Wild Cherry: “Play That Funky Music” (#1 September 1976) • The Four Seasons: “December 1963 [Oh, What a Night]” (#1 March 1976) • Walter Murphy: “A Fifth of Beethoven”21 (#1 October 1976) • Rick Dees: “Disco Duck”22 (#1 October 1976) • Ohio Players: “Love Rollercoaster” (#1 January 1976) Disco’s biggest moment came through the film Saturday Night Fever (starring John Travolta) in 1977. The huge success of this movie catapulted The Bee Gees to stardom (the double-disc soundtrack has sold over 30 million copies worldwide/over 11 million in the US): The Bee Gees (formed 1959 as young boys, began recording professionally in 1967) The Gibb Brothers: Barry, Maurice, Robin 23 The Bee Gees (the name is equivalent to “B.G.”—initials standing for the “Brothers Gibb) first established themselves on the US/UK charts in 1967 with their vibrato-predominated hit “New York Mining Disaster 1941.” Other similar songs followed such as “Massachussetts” (1967), “I’ve Got to Get a Message to You” (1968) and “I Started a Joke” (1969). At this time, the Bee Gees were viewed generally as second-rate Beatles copycats. When the disco craze hit, The Bee Gees made an incredible transition and re-emergence through this new genre, rising to a height of popularity they could never have imagined in the 60s. Their shining moment came when they (and their younger brother Andy) provided the primary music for the 1977 film Saturday Night Fever, which featured three No. 1 hits “Stayin’ Alive,” “Night Fever” (became the Song of the Year for 1978) and “How Deep Is Your Love.” Despite receiving more ridicule than accolades during their careers, The Bee Gees had the last laugh—They were voted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997. In the wake of Saturday Night Fever, spectacular disco clubs began popping up all over the US, serving as high-tech environments for the self-glorification of fashion-conscious, leisure-suited/sequined-gowned yuppies. The most notable disco was Studio 54 in New York City, with its theatre-style multi-colored lighting, accentuated by flashing strobes, mirrored walls and reflections from a mirrored ball rotating in the ceiling. In 1978 and 21 This was a disco adaptation of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 in C minor, movement 1 (1807-8). 22 Rick Dees was a well-known radio DJ, who later hosted a short-lived late night talk TV show. 23 In the late 70s, their younger brother, Andy, concurrently enjoyed a successful solo career, due largely to his older brothers’ marketing and production savvy.
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 80 1979, eight of Billboard’s Top 10 songs were in the disco style including songs by the following artists: • Chic: “Le Freak” (1978)—a very sexually-suggestive disco dance • Donna Summer: “MacArthur Park” (1978), “Bad Girls” (1979), “Hot Stuff” (1979) • The Village People: “Macho Man” (1978), “In The Navy” (1979), “YMCA” (1979) • Gloria Gaynor: “I Will Survive” (1979) • A Taste of Honey: “Boogie Oogie Oogie” (1978) • Rod Stewart: “Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?” (1979) • Sister Sledge: “We Are Family” (1979) • Blondie: “Heart of Glass” (1978; see Chapter 8) • Michael Jackson: (disco-style funk/pop) “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” (1979) In Summer 1979, the media did an about-face, and a huge anti-disco uprising resulted that quickly brought US disco to a halt. The vehemence of this rejection is best represented by the near riot that broke out at Chicago’s old Comiskey Park in July ’79 during a local radio station’s “Blow Up Your Disco Records” promotion. Within weeks, the disco craze in the US was dead; however, discos still are popular in many European cities. Certain elements of disco also continued on in the late 70s/early 80s music of Blondie, Michael Jackson—and even Eric Clapton: Selected Examples of 70s Disco Disco • KC and The Sunshine Band: “That’s The Way I Like It” (1975) • The Bee Gees: “Jive Talkin’” (1975), “Stayin’ Alive” (1977), “Night Fever” (1977) and “How Deep Is Your Love” (1977) • The Village People: “Macho Man” (1978), “YMCA” (1979) • Chic: “Le Freak” (1978) • Donna Summer: “Hot Stuff” (1979) • Gloria Gaynor: “I Will Survive” (1979) • Rod Stewart: “Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?” (1979) Disco-Influenced • Michael Jackson: “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” (1979; funk-pop) • Blondie: “Heart of Glass” (1978; New Wave) • Eric Clapton: “I Shot the Sheriff” (1979; cover of Marley’s reggae) * * *
Chapter 6: The 70s: The Corporate Diversification of Rock 81 FEATURED SONGS FOR CHAPTER 6 [w] = Audio and/or lyrics available on the class website [Time-Life Video] = Time-Life History of Rock and Roll Series ’70s MAINSTREAM CORPORATE ROCK • ELTON JOHN: “Bennie and the Jets” [w] (1973; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”); “Crocodile Rock” [w] (1973) • FLEETWOOD MAC: “Go Your Own Way” [w] (1977; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • PETER FRAMPTON: “Do You Feel Like We Do?” [w] (1976; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • BILLY JOEL: “Just The Way You Are” [w] (1977); “You May Be Right” [w] (1978) PROGRESSIVE “ART” ROCK (c. late-’60s to mid-’70s) • THE MOODY BLUES: “Nights in White Satin” and “Tuesday Afternoon” [w] (1967) • THE WHO: “Pinball Wizard” from Tommy [w] (1969) • JETHRO TULL: “Aqualung” [w] (1971) • YES: “Roundabout” [w] (1971) • PINK FLOYD: “Dark Side of the Moon,” “Money” and “Brain Damage” from Dark Side of the Moon [w] (1973); “Another Brick in the Wall” from The Wall [w] (1979) • GENESIS: “The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway” [w] (1974) JAZZ-ROCK (“FUSION”) • BLOOD, SWEAT AND TEARS: “Spinning Wheel” and “Go Down Gamblin’” [w] (1969) • CHICAGO: “25 or 6 to 4” [w] (1970) • STEELY DAN: “Reeling in the Years” [w] (1972; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • DOOBIE BROTHERS: “What a Fool Believes” [w] (1979) ’70s POP-ROCK • CROSBY, STILLS, NASH & YOUNG: “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” [w] (1969; Time-Life Video “My Generation”) • JAMES TAYLOR: “Fire and Rain” [w] (1970) • DON MCLEAN: “American Pie” [w] (1972) • JIM CROCE: “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” [w] (1973) ’70s COUNTRY ROCK/POP • LOGGINS AND MESSINA: “Your Mama Don’t Dance” [w] (1972) • LINDA RONSTADT: “When Will I Be Loved” [w] (1974) • THE EAGLES: “Take It Easy” [w] (1972); “One of These Nights” [w] (1975); “Hotel California” [w] (1977) • JACKSON BROWNE: “Running On Empty” [w] (1977) ’70s ROCK THEATRE • DAVID BOWIE: “Space Oddity” [w] (1969); “Ziggy Stardust” [w] (1972; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”)
Chapter 6 of The Development of Rock & Roll by Dr. Daniel Jacobson Ó 2020 All Rights Reserved 82 • ALICE COOPER: “School’s Out” [w] (1972; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • QUEEN: “Bohemian Rhapsody” [w] (1975; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”); “We Will Rock You” [w] (1977) • KISS: “Rock and Roll All Nite” [w] (1975; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) ’70s HEAVY METAL • DEEP PURPLE: “Smoke on the Water” [w] (1972) • AEROSMITH: “Walk This Way” [w] (1975); “Sweet Emotion” [w] (1975; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • VAN HALEN: “Eruption” [w] (1978; Time-Life DVD 4a) ’70s BLACK-ROCK STYLES • STEVIE WONDER: “Superstition” [w] (1967; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”); “Living For The City” [w] (1973); “Sir Duke” [w] (1976) • PARLIAMENT-FUNKADELIC: “Do That Stuff” [w] (1976; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • SLY AND THE FAMILY STONE: “Dance to the Music” [w] (1968); “I Want To Take You Higher” [w] (1969; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • O’JAYS: “For The Love Of Money” [w] (1973; Time-Life Video 5) • EARTH, WIND & FIRE: “Shining Star” [w] (1975) ’70s REGGAE • BOB MARLEY AND THE WAILERS: “Get Up! Stand Up!” [w] (c 1975; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”); “I Shot The Sheriff” [w] (1976) DISCO • THE BEE GEES: “Stayin’ Alive” [w] (1977) • CHIC: “La Freak” [w] (1978) • GLORIA GAYNOR: “I Will Survive” [w] (1979) • DONNA SUMMER: “Hot Stuff” [w] (1979) • THE VILLAGE PEOPLE: “Y.M.C.A.” [w] (1979; Time-Life Video “The ’70s: Have a Nice Decade”) • ROD STEWART: “Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?” [w] (1979)