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Rock And Roll

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Rock And Roll


Rock and roll, characterized by its pulsating drums, repetitive chord progressions, stepped up tempos, and loud guitars, provided American teens of the 1950s the perfect excuse to dance crazy new dances and wear wild new hairstyles. Like all genres of music, rock and roll has as many definitions as it does fans. It was a defying time for music, and a reckoning for teenagers. It was the time of rock and roll. Though rock and roll was a fad to many, rock and roll continued on to become one of the most popular and recognizable music forms.

The explosive events of the mid-1950s first introduced the idea of rock and roll to the world. It was the themes and artistic styles of that very special, brief time, that spawned the movement of rock and roll, and that later artists simply refined and redefined. The 1950s were rather safe and innocent, and rock and roll established a foundation for the ideals that youth could pursue in such an environment. Rock and roll was also forced to respond to the issues of race relations, war, sexuality, and drugs in the mid-fifties. Rock and roll was like a role model to people everywhere. The very first orchestrated rock and roll concert was led by Alan Freed on March 21st, 1952. The

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concert was mostly poor people and was free entry to whomever. It was held in Cleveland, Ohio; where Fred was also born. Freed was a disc jockey that began playing

rock and roll music for his mostly white audiences in the beginning of 1951. Afterwards, rock and roll became a national phenomenon which would eventually envelop the world.

The word rocking was first used by gospel singers in the South as a slang term for spiritual rapture. "So as can be seen, rock and roll was so much more vital and alive than any type of music anyone has ever heard before that it needed a new category: Rock and roll was much more than new music. It was an obsession and a way of life" (Rolling Stone: The Decades of Rock and Roll 13). "The coming of rock and roll in the mid-fifties was not merely a musical revolution but a social and generation upheaval of vast and unpredictable scope" (Rolling Stone: The Decades of Rock and Roll 14). "To many people, rock and roll meant disruption: It was the clamor of young people kicking hard against the Eisenhower era's ethos of rapid repression" (Rolling Stone: The Decades of Rock and Roll 65). As a person would believe, there are the talented and then there are the untalented. The 1950s would become the starting years of the most talented historical musicians.

Rock and roll generally refers to rock music recorded around the 1950s including mostly Southern artists like Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley; two of the most popular rockers in the 1950s. Of course when looking back at rock and roll history, everyone focuses on these two essential characters. But there were many other talented singers back then. Besides, the first rock and roll song was by Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats who recorded "Rocket 88" for the Suns Record label in 1951. During Presley's rein, he

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did set the bar by fully exposing the rock and roll era. Other than Presley's some say vulgar and sexual moves on the stage, he was one of the greatest singers of all time. This

was a small moment in history, for the effects of rock echoes to spread to other nations, to new generations, to the thrones of power and the seats of wealth, as well as the driven out and restless youth of a new era.

"During the times after Presley's record topped the music charts. There were others who would rise and bring a slight smoothness to rock and roll. From Rufus Thomas Junior's finger-snapping dance tunes to the rough blue shouts of Chester Burnett, the 1950s to the 1960s decade was making history for itself with all of the new amazing talent" ( History of Rock and Roll 19 ). The black



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