History Of Rock Music
By Rajeev Rampersad
Rock music, where did it all begin? Believe it or not a black
man who played black music, originally founded rock music in
the mid 50s, this man was Chuck Berry. Rock music became popular
almost over night, and was accepted with open arms by the younger
generations. This was largely due to younger generations who
were excited by the thought of having music that expressed their
rebellious streak and their desires to promote anti-conformism.
This style of music is a far cry from the modern rock music
of today that has evolved over the decades and branched out
into a multitude of different genres and sub-genres to create
music that is more a way of life than entertainment. However,
the still prominent fact that rock music is a form of self-
expression and non-conformist desire still remains strong
even after all this time.
Rock music grew stronger and stronger with idols such as Elvis
Presley, around this time many of the black rock and roll
artists left the rock music scene and in their place were
a host of other white rockers with a style and look all of
After Elvis Presley's famous entrance, other well known rock
idols and bands started popping up from everywhere, but something
was lost along the way, rockers started losing sight the whole
reason that rock and roll had become popular in the first place,
which was non conformist and rebellious attitudes.
During this time rock music, took a huge nosedive with the
younger generations, who were uninterested in a mixture of
country music, folk songs, and rock music. This was in the
late fifties and musicians such as Buddy Holly and the Everly
Brothers were foremost rockers in the rock music scene.
Just as things were looking bleak, Bob Dylan entered the
scene during the Vietnam War and held the heart and attention
of many youth of the era with his songs of the Vietnam War
and civil rights. Around this time, the Beach Boys changed
the rock music scene with their new style of rock music.
California had its own unique spin on rock and roll, which
contained very sophisticated and vocal harmonies; this style
of rock music was a change from the empathetic shouting that
had first been introduced by the black musicians in the mid
In the early sixties, Britain took on a whole new aspect of
rock music and created a rage with bands such as the Rolling
Stones and the Animals. During this era, the Yard birds also
debuted and although they were in the shadows of the Rolling
Stones, they were in fact the beginnings of something great,
the musicians from this band were later on to revolutionize
rock music all over again.
Nevertheless, it was the birth of the Beatles that created a
worldwide mania and the beginning of rock music as a business
was really born. Following the Beatles, the second generation
of rockers were the Kinks and the Who, the Who had changed
rock music forever with their mechanically amplified guitars
and songs dedicated to the angry frustrated youth of the 60s
The seventies saw the death of Jimmy Hendrix, and the Doors
Jim Morrison, and rock music cooled down. New bands, such as
Nirvana and the Eagles, began a more peaceful revival of country
music mixed with soft rock. The seventies were characterized by
a quieter time in rock music.
The nineties saw the age of electronic music, and this new rage
spread all over the world, and saw an era of many different genres
of rock music, blended music and dance music mixed together. The
90s were also the decade of heavy metal and bands such as Guns and
Roses and Metallica. This style of music split into a myriad of
other sub-genres such as the funk-metal of Red-Hot-Chilli-Peppers,
Rage Against the Machine and Faith No More.
It is hard to believe that today's rock music began with a single
black man, singing a hybrid type of the blues, and flourished over
the last five decades to become not only a choice, but also a way
Rock music has evolved to become an array of different styles and
sub categories, which provide enjoyment for a multitude of different
tastes in music. What the future holds for rock music may not be
known, although it is safe to say the rock music will still be
around for the next five decades.
Article written by Rajeev Rampersad.
About the Author
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