August 5, 2014

Contemporary Classics: The Roots and Heart of Rock & Roll


April 1956. "Bill Haley and the Comets and Laverne Baker performing at the Sports Arena in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Sign above says: “Spectators are warned of danger from a flying puck. Injury may result from failure to protect yourself.”


"DC, San Antone and the Liberty Town, Boston and Baton Rouge
Tulsa, Austin, Oklahoma City, Seattle, San Francisco, too
Everywhere there's music, real live music, bands with a million styles
But It's still that some old rock and roll music
That really REALLY drives 'em wild

T-T-T-T-They say the heart of rock and roll is still beating
And from what I've seen I believe 'em
Now the old boy may be barely breathing
But the heart of rock and roll, HEART OF ROCK AND ROLL is still beating"

Posted by gerardvanderleun at August 5, 2014 1:29 AM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Thanks Gerard for the blast from the past. Huey was always over-produced but he got the essence of R&R pretty good.

Roll 'em. I just ...feel somethin':
Maybe the way music has turned all warped and perverted is contributing to our nation's troubles. Even such conservative venues as Country and Western have shifted to the edges.
Um, maybe Polkas, yeah, that stuff'll never change. I never heard a polka tune about sex or drugs or divorce or any other bad juju.

If we look at music as an indicator of the society's values and morals and work ethic we can easily see that the 50s was the height of America. Not just because of the music, rather the music showed where the people were at. The big band sounds of the 40s went along with a nation at war (which we won by God).
Racism was not emphasized although there was segregation of bands and venues. Ike Turner, of Ike and Tina fame started working for Sun records, sigh you guys gotta Google it up so's I don't type my fingers off. He booked Elvis into a lot of one night stands across the south, colleges and town halls, three hundred a year.
Chuck Berry, Little Richard, some white guys like Bill Haley, Jerry Lee Lewis, they'd work the same circuit. Black was black and white was white but when they were out on stage all that mattered was the music. "The beat, the beat, the beat" , as the preacher said in Reefer Madness. A little drifting, sorry.

Some of us grew up with the old Rock & Roll. I did and I saw it ease on into the sixties and then all of a sudden BLAM mind-altering drugs and British Invasion and the famous, or should I say infamous psychedelic sounds? I don't know about the rest of youse but that kind of music sounded shitty when it first came out and it sounds even worse now. The drugs masked a lot if mediocre and downright lousy music. Good music in the 60s was like diamonds in a goat's ass.

Oh boy, don't burn me down boys. I'm just a graybeard telling it like I remember it. Uh, mostly remember it, heh heh.

Posted by: chasmatic at August 5, 2014 4:01 AM

If you ain't playin' it you shouldn't be sayin' it. Gunz, guitarz, and gurlz. I got at least 6 of each within grabbin' distance at any given moment, cept the gurlz.

You don't hear music you feel it, all the way down into the middle. Few people get to experience the *float* and even fewer ever heard of it. When I find that place it's paranormal and nothing else matters. It's a direct link between brain and fingers and all the circuitry in between disappears for those brief moments.

I just don't *get* jazz.

Posted by: ghostsniper at August 5, 2014 4:34 AM

@ghost - Thank you for reminding me. I played in bands from 1962 until 1980. first R & R then into R & B and soul music.
The best bands I was in were mixed color, around Chicago area. That lasted until the Black guys found out they weren't supposed to hang around with us White boys, shrug, their loss.
I was nothing famous, just bar bands and college get togethers. Yeah, I had the rockin' pneumonia. boogie woogie fever. Chu Berry was one of my favorites, he was cross-over, big influence on The Beatles, Rolling Stones, so forth. The cat had some moves.

Posted by: chasmatic at August 5, 2014 6:13 AM