Rock and Roll and American Society (MMC1702) Week 2 Notes
Rock and Roll and American Society (MMC1702) Week 2 Notes MMC1702
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Cassandra Alamilla on Monday September 5, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to MMC1702 at University of Florida taught by Carlson,David E in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 24 views. For similar materials see Rock 'n Roll and American Society in Journalism and Mass Communications at University of Florida.
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Date Created: 09/05/16
Rock ‘n Roll and American Society (MMC1702) Week 2 Jazz – Important part of Rock and Roll - New Orleans – The City of Jazz “Dippermouth Blues” (1923) – King Oliver’s Creole Jazz Band - Louis Armstrong was part of this group when he was 22 years old Jelly Roll Morton - “Black Bottom Stomp” (1926) - Incorporated piano into jazz - Played a lot in brothels Louis Armstrong - “St. James Infirmary” (1926) Hillbilly (country) music – another important part of Rock and Roll - Music associated with the rural white South and Southwest - Early radio played a major role in popularizing hillbilly music o There are many country radio stations nowadays Musical elements of hillbilly - Clear, honest vocal style - Southern dialect (accent) - Down to earth lyric “Soldier’s Joy” (1929) – Gid Tanner and the Skillet Lickers - The first drug song (about soldiers enjoying narcotics) The Mississippi Shieks - Became one of the most influential blues artists Big Bill Bronzy - “Key to the Highway” (1941) o Covered by The Derek and The Dominos in 1971 W. Lee ‘O Daniel and his Hillbilly Boys - “Ida (Sweet as Apple Cider)” (1936) - Made its way to the Southwest (Texas and Arizona) and developed into Western Swing The Sweet Violet Boys – “Sweet Violets” (1938) - Risqué hillbilly music Jimmie Rodgers - “Father of Country Music” - “The Singing Brakeman” o Sang a lot of songs about trains - Country Superstar o Had his own TV show - Famous for his yodeling - “Blue Yodel No. 1 (T for Texas)” (1928) o “T for Texas” by Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1976 Bob Wills - Pioneered Western Swing - Took a big band and played hillbilly music - “Sittin’ on Top of the World” – written by The Mississippi Shieks Hank Williams - Popularized Hillbilly/Country Music - Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1987 - “Move It on Over” (1947) o Covered by George Thorogood and The Destroyers - There were three generations of musicians (Hank, Hank Jr. and Hank III) - “Hey Good Lookin’ “ (1951 - #8 Country) - Williams died at 29 of drug and alcohol abuse Subgenres that led to Rock and Roll Gospel - Black Gospel o Mix of spirituals, gospel and blues o Mahalia Jackson The Queen of Gospel Inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997 - White Gospel o Influenced by hillbilly music o “I’ll Fly Away” – The Humbard Family (1940) Boogie-Woogie - Came from the African-American side - Main instrument is piano and many jazz elements - “Roll ‘em Pete” (1938) – Big Joe Turner and Pete Johnson o Big Joe Turner was a jazz artist who performed with many artists Big Band Swing - White man’s jazz - Bands had 20 to 40 musicians and 1 – 3 vocalists - Descendants of the Symphony Orchestra - Big Bands were popular until WWII. Afterwards it became expensive for these bands to perform Jump Blues - Similar to Boogie Woogie, but they also had a horn section - Louis Jordan o “Father of Jump Blues” o “Choo Choo Ch’Boogie” - Wynonie Harris o “Good Rockin’ Tonight” (1948 - #1 R&B) SOME say this song was the first rock and roll record Covered by Elvis Presley in 1954 Covered by Paul McCartney in 1998 - Louis Prima o He played/wrote all of the trending music over 50 years o “Just a Gigolo/I Ain’t Got Nobody” (1956) Covered by David Lee Roth Bluegrass - A substyle of Hillbilly - Bill Monroe and The Bluegrass Boys o “Blue Moon of Kentucky” (1947) o Didn’t become famous to the general public until somebody covered this song Blue Moon of Kentucky covered by Elvis Presley in 1954 Folk - Hillbilly roots but subject matter is different o Sometimes critical to authority - Woody Guthrie o Sang a lot about The Depression “This Land is Your Land” – sarcastic song about The Depressio o His guitar had a sticker that said “This Machine Kills Facists” Protest music did not start with Rock and Roll – It existed in Folk and Jazz - Billie Holiday o Most significant jazz female artist of the times and a social activist o “Strange Fruit” Song about lynching Pop music influenced early rock and roll. A. One of the first pop stars that gained a lot of fame was Bing Crosby… who also sang about sex, despite his “boring” or “tame” appearance, like “Let’s do it, let’s fall in love.” B. Fred Astaire did some stuff. C. So did Frank Sinatra – the first rock and roll star, before there was rock and roll. In the 40s, Sinatra combined elements of jazz, Broadway, and tin-pan alley with his renderings of the American popular song genres. In the 50s, a new “mature” Sinatra emerged. a. Some people think that Sinatra created the first ever concept album, an album centered around a single idea – “Wee Small Hours” – a breakup album of sorts. In the 50s, he called RnR “the most brutal, ugly, desperate, vicious form of expression it has been my misfortune to hear.” Savage. He said Elvis’ music was “deplorable.” He eventually warmed up to Elvis. D. Nancy Sinatra – had a short, but lasting impact on RnR. a. Frank’s daughter created the song “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’” in 1964. E. Mills Brothers created music that was more popular amongst whites than blacks. “Paper Doll,” 1943. F. Ink Spots, “If I Didn’t Care,” 1939. Credited with creating the R&B genre. G. Dinah Shore, one of the popular white female musicians. “Sweet Violets,” 1951. Also sort of risqué as well. H. Patti Page, “(How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window” – historians credit music like this for alienating young people with pop music of the era. That was No. 1 for 8 weeks in 1953. It’s not good. Mississippi Delta Blues – Ghosts. Spoopy. A. Highway 61 – known as the blues highway, even the “cradle of the blues.” Music known as Mississippi Delta Blues. Music researchers call it the birthplace of RNR. Travels from New Orleans, through Memphis, St. Louis, then Minneapolis and ends in Duluth, Minnesota. Musicians would travel it, searching for inspiration. B. Bob Dylan did an entire album on it, called Highway 61 Revisited. a. His music has reflected the influences of Robert Johnson, Charley Patton, and other early blues artists. Reflects racial history of the south. C. Robert Johnson. He did some stuff and was regarded as one of the most important delta blues musicians. Inducted into RnR HoF in 1986. More on him later. D. Dockery Farms, in the midst of the delta, regarded as the place where the blues began. 20,000 acre plantation. Many aspiring African- american musicians worked the fields by day, and would music by night. E. Charley Patton, the “Father of the Delta Blues.” 1891-1934. a. One generation removed from slavery b. Famous for his showmanship… or notorious. Played his guitar behind his head, with his teeth, etc. c. 1927 flood. He wrote songs about American life. His song is one of the best ways to talk about one of the biggest disasters to hit American south. Great Mississippi River Flood covered an area 50 miles wide and 100 miles long. A lot of places had up to 30 ft. in water. One of the most destructive river floods in American history. i. Really broad political, social, economic effects. ii. Patton wrote a song called “High Water Everywhere” in 1927. iii. Stock Market crash two years later… d. Song and event continues to have effects to today on America and music. F. Memphis Minnie & Kansas Joe McCoy. “When the Levee Breaks,” 1929. a. Reprised by Led Zeppelin in 1971… they didn’t give any credit. G. Parlophone, a Victrola producer, was known for creating some of the most important blues albums of all time. H. Lead Belly and Son House. a. Both became famous after Robert Johnson’s death. b. Lead Belly (Huddie Ledbetter), 1888-1949. Inducted into RnR HoF in 1988. Known for vocal power, skill on 12-string guitar, and his songbook of traditional blues tunes he reinterpreted. i. John Lomax, who contributed mightily to American music literature as a member of the Library of Congress by traveling and finding American music, discovered Leadbelly in a prison. ii. BTW, Lead Belly went to prison a bunch of times – twice for murder. iii. Leadbelly was made famous by Lomax, but sued Lomax because he felt he wasn’t getting the royalties he deserved. iv. Influenced and covered by the likes of Credence Clearwater Revival, Abba (Sweden), Led Zeppelin (Britain) and Nirvana. v. Exam Q. on Lead Belly “Which Mississippi Bluesman had songs covered by those bands?” c. Eddie House, 1902-1988, torn between church and the barroom, faith and music. i. Known for strong, repetitive rhythms in his spiritual music. ii. A gospel music guy. Determined to become a Baptist preacher. Began his preaching career at 15, and quickly developed his musical career. iii. Also had trouble with the law, began his musical career in the 30s. 1. Clarksdale Blues, 1930. Clarksdale an economic hub of the Mississippi Delta. iv. Rediscovered in the 1960s after his musical career petered out. 1. Did some more stuff in the 60s, had “John the Revelator” covered by Depeche Mode in a really weird way. Steve Miller Band and later Eric Clapton covered “Motherless Children,” v. Inducted into Blues HoF in 1980, but not in RnR HoF. The Cool Bits – Robert Johnson A. “When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.” B. One of the most enigmatic men in modern popular music. C. Great Man Theory a. History can largely be explained by the impact of a relatively few great men, highly influential individuals. D. One of the great men of the Delta Blues. a. Mysterious – only two photos are known to exist of him. b. Born in 1911. Forced to flee his home because he got into a dispute with some white guys, moved to Memphis, and changed his name. E. His life was pretty bad. He tried to copy fellow musicians, but was run off because (as the legend goes) he was a terrible guitar player. BY the time he returned after some time, he was great. a. He had a meeting with Satan! (or so the legend goes.) b. Legend of the Crossroads, Clarksdale, Mississippi, the junction of highways 61 and 49. The devil took the guitar from him, tuned it, giving him mastery of the instrument, for the small price of his soul. That’s pretty badass. c. He had a genuine fear of Satan coming to collect his soul. F. Later known as the greatest Folk blues guitarists to ever live. a. RnR HoF said that he was one of the biggest influencers on all of Rock and Roll music. b. Martin Scorsese said he only existed on his records – the myth, the legend makes him a “great man” of RnR. c. He overshadows other Delta Blues musicians because partially of the legend. d. First member of the “27 Club”. G. Signed to record for record company Vocalion. During his lifetime, likely fewer than 1000 people knew he existed. a. Had only TWO recording sessions in his life. i. They were landmarks in their depth and importance. b. First one happened in November, 1936, in the Gunter Hotel in San Antonio, TX. i. Played facing a corner. Was he shy? Did he not want people to see how he formed chords…? Or was it just for acoustics? ii. Recorded 8 songs on Monday. iii. Recorded one song Thursday, “32-20 Blues.” 1. Legend is that he got drunk and got arrested. iv. Recorded seven more songs the next day. Did 16 songs in one week… damn. c. Second recording session took place in June, 1937. i. Brunswick Records. Saturday, June 19 , three songs. Sunday, 10 more. All of his songs have been covered by many other artists since 1961. ii. They were essentially lost after they were made, and rediscovered in 1961. H. Compilation album released by Columbia in 1961. a. Release a key moment in RnR history. b. Ranked #27 on Rolling Stone’s 2003 list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. c. Clapton covered him, Led Zep covered him, Rolling Stones covered him, Red Hot Chili Peppers, etc…. I. For Eric Clapton, Robert Johnson wasn’t just imitation – he absorbed him. a. He’s recorded Robert Johnson songs in every single band he been a part of. b. Recorded a compilation of Johnson covers in 2004. J. Death a. Legend says that he was performing at a juke joint (rural bar) in Mississippi and had been fooling around with the owner’s wife. And the owner poisoned him when he found out. b. Died an excruciating death because of the poison.
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