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xxxx Rock and Roll of the 50s and 60s xxxx
- Me, Myself, and I
- Rockabilly bands of the 1950’s created a genre of music that formed the basis for much of what rock and roll has become today. With notable rhythms taken from blues, slapping string bass and twanging lead guitar borrowed from country, and an acoustic guitar and upright bass keeping the beat, rockabilly bands were elemental. The sound, though, was distinct.
Singers were yelping, gulping, stuttering individuals who brought rockabilly bands their fame and fortune. They sang about cars, about girls, about aliens, or about anything else that came to mind. There were no rules, and it was no holds barred for rockabilly bands in the 1950’s. They were experimental, and people like Elvis Presley (credited with the first rockabilly recordings ever) and Buddy Holly became legends for their creations
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THE BOP. When you dance the bop, you usually dance separately from your partner. It's a lot like jive or swing, but there's a lot of toe tapping involved, and you don't hold hands. Usually you alternately tape the heel and toe of either foot as you dance. The Bop is still popular in many dance clubs and events, and is especially popular in many areas of England.
THE STROLL. The Stroll was often done only by girls, but that isn't a "rule" in this classic 50s dance. The Stroll is basically two lines of dancers with a large space in the middle. Lead dancers are on one side, their partners on the other. Dancers do a step pattern to advance the line, and leaders do a solo routine though the line, joining it at the end. The dance continues this way through the music. The Stroll was one of the most popular dances of the 50s, and many nostalgic 50s movies feature a scene featuring The Stroll.
SWING. Swing was popular during the 50s, it was a holdover from the 40s jitterbug and swing. Swing is one of the few dances of the fifties that is still practiced today, and still inspires many young people to learn how to dance.
THE HAND JIVE. "Oh Can You Hand Jive?" If you danced during the 50s, chances are you still remember the Hand Jive; in fact, you probably can't get it out of your head all these years later. This is one dance you can even do sitting down, as that famous dance scene in the film "Grease" shows! Basically, the dance is a series of hand and arm movements done in a pattern. The song "Willy and the Hand Jive" came out in 1958 and stayed at the top of the charts for 16 weeks, so if you were anybody in 1958, then baby, you can hand jive.
THE MADISON. The Madison first started in the late 1950s and gained popularity in the 1960s. This dance was a little more complicated, and it was done in a group, rather than by a couple. There were several dance sequences with specific steps, and some of the sequences referred to some very popular television shows of the time, like Jackie Gleason.
THE CHA CHA. Although the Cha Cha first appeared in 1949 or so, it really hit its stride in the 1950s, when it became quite a popular nightclub dance. The Cha Cha is a blend of two Latin American dances, the Puerto Rican Danzonette and the Cuban Danzon, and evolved into many different forms of Cha Cha here in the U.S.
ROCK AND ROLL. Of course, by the end of the 50s, rock and roll was making news all over America, and dance was changing. Partners no longer danced together, but gyrated to the powerful beat on their own. Swing and The Bop gave way to 60s dance crazes like the Twist, the Mashed Potato, and the Hully Gully, but that's another story!
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1. Johnny B. Goode - Chuck Berry
2. Jailhouse Rock - Elvis Presley
3. Rock Around The Clock - Bill Haley & His Comets
4. Tutti-Frutti - Little Richard
5. Whole Lot of Shakin' Going On - Jerry Lee Lewis
6. What'd I Say - Ray Charles
7. Summertime Blues - Eddie Cochran
8. Hound Dog - Elvis Presley
9. Long Tall Sally - Little Richard
10. That'll Be The Day - Buddy Holly & the Crickets
11. Maybellene - Chuck Berry
12. Bo Diddley - Bo Diddley
13. Shake, Rattle And Roll - Joe Turner
14. Blue Suede Shoes - Carl Perkins
15. Don't Be Cruel - Elvis Presley
16. Bye Bye Love - Everly Brothers
17. Great Balls Of Fire - Jerry Lee Lewis
18. Earth Angel - Penguins
19. Why Do Fools Fall In Love - Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers
20. Good Golly Miss Molly - Little Richard
21. Be-Bop-A-Lula - Gene Vincent & the Bluecaps
22. School Day - Chuck Berry
23. Rock And Roll Music - Chuck Berry
24. Peggy Sue - Buddy Holly
25. Lawdy Miss Clawdy - Lloyd Price
26. Lucille - Little Richard
27. Roll Over Beethoven - Chuck Berry
28. In The Still Of The Nite - Five Satins
29. I Only Have Eyes For You - Flamingos
30. For Your Precious Love - Jerry Butler & the Impressions
31. Blueberry Hill - Fats Domino
32. Please, Please, Please - James Brown & the Famous Flames
33. Sh-Boom - Chords
34. Money Honey - Drifters featuring Clyde McPhatter
35. I Walk The Line - Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Two
36. Fever - Little Willie John
37. The Great Pretender - Platters
38. Ain't It A Shame - Fats Domino
39. That's All Right - Elvis Presley with Scotty and Bill
40. Your Cheatin' Heart - Hank Williams
41. Sweet Little Sixteen - Chuck Berry
42. The Train Kept-A-Rollin - Johnny Burnette Trio
43. Come Go With Me - Del-Vikings
44. Let The Good Times Roll - Shirley & Lee
45. Heartbreak Hotel - Elvis Presley
46. Rip It Up - Little Richard
47. Rocking Pneumonia & the Boogie Woogie Flu - Huey "Piano" Smith & the Clowns
48. Pledging My Love - Johnny Ace
49. Sixty Minute Man - Dominoes
50. Rocket 88 - Jackie Brenston
51. Yakety Yak - Coasters
52. All Shook Up - Elvis Presley
53. Folsom Prison Blues - Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Two
54. Searchin' - Coasters
55. You Send Me - Sam Cooke
56. Mack The Knife - Bobby Darin
57. Wake Up Little Susie - Everly Brothers
58. Susie Q - Dale Hawkins
59. La Bamba - Ritchie Valens
60. Goodnite, Sweetheart, Goodnite - Spaniels
61. I've Got A Woman - Ray Charles
62. I'm Walkin' - Fats Domino
63. There Goes My Baby - Drifters
64. Shout - Isley Brothers
65. White Christmas - Drifters featuring Clyde McPhatter
66. Keep A 'Knockin' - Little Richard
67. Kansas City - Wilbert Harrison
68. Poison Ivy - Coasters
69. Since I Don't Have You - Skyliners
70. Jambalaya (On The Bayou) - Hank Williams
71. Money - Barrett Strong
72. Speedoo - Cadillacs
73. Rumble - Link Wray
74. Lonely Teardrops - Jackie Wilson
75. Hang Up My Rock And Roll Shoes - Chuck Willis
76. Sea Cruise - Frankie Ford
77. Rave On - Buddy Holly
78. Work With Me Annie - Hank Ballard & the Midnighters
79. Shake, Rattle And Roll - Bill Haley & His Comets
80. Sincerely - Moonglows
81. Crying In The Chapel - Sonny Til & the Orioles
82. Story Untold - Nutmegs
83. My Babe - Little Walter
84. At My Front Door - El Dorados
85. Gee - Crows
86. Matchbox - Carl Perkins
87. C.C. Rider - Chuck Willis
88. Only You - Platters
89. All I Have To Do Is Dream - Everly Brothers
90. Send Me Some Lovin' - Little Richard
91. At The Hop - Danny & the Juniors
92. Little Darlin' - Diamonds
93. Rock-in Robin - Bobby Day
94. Honky Tonk - Bill Doggett
95. Blue Monday - Fats Domino
96. Jim Dandy - Lavern Baker
97. Reelin And Rocking - Chuck Berry
98. Rebel Rouser - Duane Eddy
99. Love Potion No. 9 - Clovers
100. Chantilly Lace - Big Bopper
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....Saatchi Gallery Contemporary Art in London
It is hard to believe, but there was once a time when there was no rock music. Most historians trace the beginning rock back to the year 1954, when a new type of music, then called Rock and Roll, appeared and revolutionized musical tastes, at least among young people, and pretty much changed the world.
This new music, of course did not develop in a vacuum, but resulted from the convergence of two musical styles, Rhythm and Blues and Country, as well as a series of technological developments that created a new market for music.
Like Jazz, Rhythm and Blues developed from the music called the Blues. The Blues, to review what you have already learned in the Jazz unit, "grew out of African spirituals and work songs sung by African-Americans in the South. Many of these people had been brought to the United States as slaves, and before the Civil war they labored in difficult situations on the Southern plantations. 'Call and response' was often used as a means of communication by the workers in the fields, who fooled the plantation owners into thinking that their music was the 'happy' music of hard working slaves."
Rhythm and Blues developed from the Blues, and Rock and Roll developed from Rhythm and Blues (R&B). Little Richard, one of the great innovators in 1950's rock music, has often said that "Rhythm and Blues had a baby and somebody named it rock and roll." He, of course is absolutely right, and a number of important R&B artists were part of the beginning of Rock and Roll. Among them were Muddy Waters, Willie Mae Thornton, Joe Turner and Ray Charles.Rhythm and Blues developed from the Blues, and Rock and Roll developed from Rhythm and Blues (R&B). Little Richard, one of the great innovators in 1950's rock music, has often said that "Rhythm and Blues had a baby and somebody named it rock and roll." He, of course is absolutely right, and a number of important R&B artists were part of the beginning of Rock and Roll. Among them were Muddy Waters, Willie Mae Thornton, Joe Turner and Ray Charles.
While music was developing, technology was also changing. In the late 1940's and early 1950's, phonograph records were large and heavy and easily damaged. These records played at 78 rpm's (78 revolutions per minute) and were played on rather awkward record players that were usually part of a large piece of furniture (console), which often was located in the living room. Stereo had not yet been invented. In many homes, the entire family would sit around the living room listening to bands like Glen Miller, Tommy Dorsey and Benny Goodman, and soloists like Frank Sinatra, Patti Paige, Doris Day, and Eddie Fisher. Record companies marketed music to adults and radio stations played music that would appeal to the entire family.
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