Popular Music in America - HCC Learning Web

POPULAR MUSIC IN AMERICA Dr. Love, professor SEPTEMBER 11, 2015: UNIT 16 C OUNTRY MUSIC IN THE ROC K ERA CHAPTER 59 - FUNK Chapter 59: Funk From African American culture, funk came into music through jazz in the mid-1950s It referred to a simpler, more blues-oriented style; a return to roots and a departure from the complexities of hard bop Over time, it came to mean hip By the 1960s, is had a more soulful connotation By the 1970s, funk had come to identify a particularly rhythmic strain of black music Funk featured a very strong, powerful groove Had a vocal, horns, and rhythm instruments By the heyday of funk groupsJames Brown, Sly and the Family Stone, and George Clintons groupsthe textures were denser and the rhythms more complex CHAPTER 59 - FUNK

From Soul to Funk: Sly and the Family Stone The path from soul to funk went through James Brown, the father of funk as well as the godfather of soul Funk musicians built their music on Browns music and many of its key features But it was Sly and the Family Stone who played the key role in the transition from soul to funk He started in Northern California (born in Dallas, though, 1944) with his siblings in the gospel group, The Stewart Four Sly played guitar and drums, as well as organ and piano His group included blacks and whites, women as well as men In 1966 he organized the Stoners, and by 1967, evolved into Sly and the Family Stone Dance to the Music (1968) album fared poorly, but the title song made it to the Top-10 Fourth album, Stand! (1969) became the first real success with 4 hit singles, including the #1, Everyday People They performed at Woodstock in 1969 The late 1971 album Theres a Riot Goin On reached #1 and certainly carried ironic implications Recorded a few more albums in his career, but not to any great success CHAPTER 59 - FUNK Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) (1970) Like Browns music, it features: A groove built up from multiple layers of riffs, played by rhythm and horns No harmonic movementonly one chord Intermittent vocal part, with long pauses between phrases

The rhythm, though, has the drummer marking a rock beat along with the backbeat, but the underlying rhythmic feel of the song is twice as fast 16-beat rhythm is what this is called It is also heard in the: Opening bass riff Guitar and horn riffs It sounds spontaneous, as if they are jamming over the basic groove It is this qualitya looseness that implores listeners to dance to the music CHAPTER 59 - FUNK Social Commentary and Seductive Grooves In spite of the contagious rhythm, many of Sly and the Family Stones songs offer a strong political and social message This is an example of a growing trend in Afro-centric music: powerful lyrics over infectious rhythms But there is an apparent contradictionthat operates at cross-purposes: The sharp social commentary in the lyrics vs. the seduction of the beat One can look at this conflict in other ways: View the music as a tool to draw in listenersexpose them to the message of the words Understand the music as a means of removing the sting of the conditions described in the lyrics lose yourself in the music Sly and the Family Stone became popular after the assassination of Martin Luther King and after the backlash of the civil rights movement had built up steam

Their lyrics speak to the prejudice and racial hatred that still existed The music provided one way to escape the pain of prejudicedrugs were another Sly was becoming very unpredictable and eccentricdue to drugs; reports said that he was very fond of cocaine Didnt show up at all for some concertspromoters stopped booking his band An appearance in Chicago spurred a riot due to his absence However, his innovations are evident in the: Art/funk jazz fusion of Herbie Hancock Film music of Curtis Mayfield Also indirectly in styles like disco But, it led most directly to funk, especially the music of George Clinton CHAPTER 59 - FUNK

George Clinton and Funk (born 1940) Clinton had two funk bands: Parliament and Funkadelic He started the Parliaments as a doo-wop group in 1955 In 1964, the Parliaments signed with Motown; they had a soul hit (I Wanna )Testify (1967) on Berry Gordys Revilot label When that didnt pan out, he left Motown but had to relinquish the Parliaments name Started Funkadelic and went to a style of music that combined funk and psychedelic Clinton then found his way to white hippies, LSD, and the music of Jimi Hendrix and added these influences to his music He regained control of the name in 1974 and used both names for the same band He is to funk what glam was to rock The new George Clinton (aka Dr. Funkenstein, Maggot Overlord, Uncle Jam) could be viewed as either a black Frank Zappa or a psychedelic James Brown Wore sequined jumpsuits and a blonde wig, he could rival any of David Bowies characters Parliament/Funkadelic had only 3 Top-30 singles: Tear the Roof off the Sucker (Give Up the Funk) [made it to #15his highest charting song] Flash Light as Parliament One Nation under a Groove as Funkadelic CHAPTER 59 - FUNK Clintons lyrics often contain a darker message that belies the humorous package set to a goodtime groove He is inviting listeners to surrender to the rhythm which offers momentary relief from the pain of daily life as a black person in the US

Tear the Roof off the Sucker (Give up the Funk) (1976) This song owes a lot to James Brown and Sly and the Family Stonebut also went beyond theirs In fact, he had some of James Browns former band members in his group Clinton could have as many as 12 musicians at a timecreating a fuller sound Clinton creates a groove over static harmonylike weve seen before in Brown and Sly Lots of dense texture going on: Riffs and sustained chords from both the horns and keyboards High obbligato lines from a synthesizer Active bass line Lots of percussion Lots of voices; both back up singers and Clintons proto-rap

Rhythm has a 16-beat feel over the 8-beat rhythm in the drums Clintons bands ran into trouble from bad money management, sloppy business practices, and drug abuse By 1981, he consolidated the two bands under one name: the P-Funk All Stars CHAPTER 59 - FUNK Earth, Wind & Fire and a Black Music Synthesis Black pop and rhythmic/bluesy R & B were mostly two discrete worlds: Doo wop and Motown vs. big beat music, electric blues, and soul Few artists have successfully fused these two streams; but two have: Ray Charles and Aretha Franklin They brought soul into pop, and vice versa Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye moved easily between funk and romantic pop CHAPTER 59 - FUNK

Earth, Wind & Fire and a Black Music Synthesis (continued) Earth, Wind & Fire would join them Founder and leader, Maurice White (b. 1941), drummer Set out in the late 1960s-early70s to form a new group Recorded for Columbia Records and rose to the top of the charts Very good live as well They were a large groupsometimes as many as 14 could be on stage EW & F could meld funklike grooves with more melodious material Shining Star (1976) This song juxtaposes funk and more melodious music within a single song Verse has a complex groove set up while the refrain has a riff-based melodic line with rapidly changing harmonies This was one key to their crossover successmelding funk-like grooves with more melodious material They were also a versatile group able to play ballads to funk grooves Funk would influence future pop music due to its active and complex rhythms Somewhat in discobut most directly into rap Indeed, with the advent of digital technology, rappers sampled Clintons music

mercilessly! CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE Chapter 60: Reggae From Jamaica, it is an island brew of Afro-Caribbean traditions, American R & B (heard on AM radio station broadcast from the southern US), folk music of the area, and ska Reggae took shape in Jamaica around 1970 and found a second home in the UK by mid-1970s It has spoken to and for Jamaicans with its powerful messages reverberating with the legacy of colonialism following political independence Jamaican Independence and Social Unrest Most Jamaicans are of African descentmost tracing their roots back to slavery British colonial rule continued into the 20th century, transferring authority and independence to Jamaicans in 1962 Economic and social issues were still a problem in spite of independence Rude Boys, disenfranchised young black Jamaicans, fomented social unrest To many they were outlawsto others, they were heroes CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE

Rastafarianism Reggae was the music of the Rastafarian religious movement and it became a vehicle for both religious and political statements They represented another arm of confrontation with white authorities To the Jamaicans, reggae meant the kings music and it referred to Haile Selassie, the emperor of Ethiopia, whose real name is Ras Tafari This religion, Rastafarianism, was based in Judeo-Christina theology, using the Bible, along with the writings of Marcus Garvey (1887-1940) who advocated blacks return to Africa Rastafarians also claim to be descendants of the twelve tribes of Israel Rastafarianism also believes that Selassie was a messiah-like prince sent by God Their beliefs have never come together as official doctrine; however, these are their efforts to promote a more positive image of Africa and Africans They were vegetarians, made sacramental use of marijuana (ganja), and didnt comb their hair Rhythm and Blues and Jamaican Popular Music American radio stations, mainly from Miami and New Orleans were heard by Jamaicans, at least after dark They heard the pop music from these stationsparticularly the R & B Mobile discossound systems mounted on truckswere available to play for parties, on the street or a well-chosen spot Between playing R & B hits DJs offered a steady stream of patter called toastinga forerunner of rap

CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE From Ska to Reggae Ska developed out of mento (a slow version of the Cuban rumba combined with African rhythms), R & B, and other Jamaican music Ska, from around 1960, is an amalgam of R & B, mento, with a full band of horns It is a 4-beat pattern based on R & B, but with some instruments playing a very strong accent on a subdivision (a crisp chunk) just after each of the four beats This was a Jamaican take on the shuffle rhythm heard in so much 1950s R & B It kept the long/short rhythm of the shuffle but reversed the pattern of emphasis within each beat In the shuffle rhythm, the note that falls on the beat gets the weight: the afterbeat is lighter. In ska it is just the opposite, at times to the extent that the note on the beat is absentthere is just the afterbeat. It remains the aural trademark of ska. CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE From Ska to Reggae (continued) In the mid-1960s, ska musicians slowed down their music and added a heavy bass line after hearing American soul music, particularly Memphis soul They also added a backbeat layer over the afterbeats That new sound was called rock steady and when it was played faster it became reggae

Bass players were free to create their own lines since they didnt have to help establish the rhythm As rock steady evolved into reggae, other rhythmic layers were added. The buoyant rhythm includes: The absence of beat marking Mid-range reggae rhythm Free-roaming bass Complex interplay among the many instruments CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE Further reggae background Skatalites was a ska group that often recorded their own and others material Had a hit that charted in England, 1967 Desmond Dekker was known as the King of the Bluebeat (The British often called ska, blue beat music)

By 1966, ska began to undergo changes in Jamaica from influences of Memphis soul music Gospel type call-and-response singing, heavier bass lines Tempos also slowed down and the result was rock steady Jamaican disc jockeys were crucial to disseminating the music to the poor people of their country They added some talking in rhythm while ska and rock steady records were playing (called toasting) They would also dub: re-record some records leaving out the vocals or even just baring it down to the bass and drumsso they could speak their patter over a steady beat CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE Jimmy Cliff and the Sound of Reggae One of reggaes first stars, Jimmy Cliff (b. James Chambers, 1948) Starred in the movie, The Harder They Come, 1972, about a musician who becomes a gangster The Harder They Come is the title song and brings the story into the present The song is about the social injustice along with police oppression and brutality There is a large rhythm section, including organ playing on the backbeat The lyrics are dark, but the music brings a smile to ones face and body movement a seeming contradiction: Does the music entice the listener to listen to the lyrics or a way to forget the moment the situation that the lyrics depict Form is similar to Motownverse/bridge/chorus Reggae contrasts hard lyrics with happy music But reggae did become known outside of Jamaica as a music with a message

calling attention to the social inequities in Jamaica Furthermore, it came at a time when rock had largely forsaken its role as a vehicle for social commentary Bob Marley would become a powerful voice on social issues CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE Bob Marley and 1970s Reggae Marley (1945-1981) began his recording career in the early 1960s He formed the Wailers in 1963 as a vocal group who were accompanied by the Skatalites Both Bob Marley and Peter Tosh belonged to the Wailers at that time Began recording in 1969, but 1972 brought a contract with Chris Blackwells Island Records which led to future international success He was a very popular act, both live and on recordings Marley was reggae!the worlds most popular reggae artist It gave him a worldwide stage for peace and brotherhood, carrying the torch of 1960s social activism and idealism into the 1970s Is This Love is a more romantic song The guitar chunk marks the slower layer and gives the reference tempo, as in most rock steady and reggae songs Vocal line implies the primacy of the slower tempo Rhythm of the song is buoyant and lazy at the same time

CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE Eric Clapton covered I Shot the Sheriff and made Marleys song with its reggae beat a huge hit: it was very popular in USA and UK but more popular in Jamaica than Marleys own! Tosh left in 1973 and Marley added more instrumentalists and a female vocal trio, one of whom was his wife, Rita Now called Bob Marley and the Wailers Very popular around the world; probably more so elsewhere than in the USA Marley died in 1981 of cancer His children, particularly Ziggy, are active in the music business Reggae as an International Music Because of the many Jamaicans in England, reggae became popular in the UK It became an at-home alternative to the blues Others incorporated reggae styles into their music as well: the Clash, Elvis Costello, UB40, and the Police The use of popular song as social commentary is not new Reggae first became known outside of Jamaica as a music with a messagemostly that of social injustice in Jamaica Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, and Jimmy Cliff would help become a voice for social change CHAPTER 60 - REGGAE In the USA, it didnt catch on until it became popular in the UK Jamaican music influenced African American music in two very different ways:

Black musicians used the rhythmic texture of reggae to further liberate the bass from a timekeeping role The bass was also free to roam since it did not have to provide the harmonic foundation or rhythmic basis The other source of Jamaican influence was the sound-system based street parties Between songs, DJs delivered a steady stream of pattermuch of it was topical, even personalthis was called toasting They would release discs in which the B side was simply the A side without the vocal track; the instrumental track would serve as the musical backdrop for the DJs toasting The DJs toasting in reggae evolved into rapping Reggae went on to become a major influence on rap Kool Herc, a Jamaican who moved to the Bronx as a teen, brought toasting from Jamaica to the streets of NYC, where it quickly evolved into hip-hop Grandmaster Flash, one of the early prominent figures in rap, described Kool Herc as his hero CHAPTER 61 - DISCO

Chapter 61: Disco Term came from the European clubs that played records, Fr. Discothque The early clubs were run like an American speakeasy From Discothques to Disco After WWII, discothques became increasingly popular in France Whiskey Gogo, in Paris, featured American liquors and dance music Around 1960s, discothques began to spring up in the US As dance fads moved out of clubs and into the mainstream, the original audience sought new dance music in different, less exclusive, and less pricey venues Style made popular at first by blacks, gays, and, to some extent, Latinosall groups that were largely ignored by the other music movements of the 1970s This music was not presented in concert muchit was club music TO BE DANCED! CHAPTER 61 - DISCO

The Mainstreaming of Disco By mid-1970s, disco had crossed over KC and the Sunshine band had a string of hits (4 #1 hits 1975-77) Featured very repetitive and simple lyrics Saturday Night Fever was a huge hit and brought the popularity of disco out of the underground to be the thing to do (for a brief while) Famous disco clubs opening up: Club 54 in NYC (1975) Many glitzy, full of light shows; estimates that there were 10,000 in North America at the height of the disco craze, with some 2-300 in NYC alone CHAPTER 61 - DISCO

Disco and Electronics Synthesizers and electronics were creating a good part of the dance tracks Kraftwerk, a popular German group Giorgio Moroder, and Italian-born producer and electronics wiz created a lot of the sounds for Donna Summers disco hits Both exemplified the growing role of the producer and of technology Producers were key to the success of disco; their songs were a testament to their ability to mix tracks in the studiomuch like Phil Spectors Wall of Sound for the girl groups of the 1960s The sound of disco belonged more to the men creating and mixing the instrumental tracks than the vocalists in the studios Electronic instruments were right along side acoustic ones Many of the DJs would play record after record without interruption Many of the labels were marked with the beats per minute (bpm) so they could line up like-tempoed songs one right after another . . . the beat never stopped Many of the disco songs were pressed on a 12 single (only one song per side)this allowed more volume Barry White started with a string of disco hits, many backed up by his 40-member Love Unlimited Orchestra The Hustle a big hit by Van McCoyalso spawned a number of new hustle type dances Many one-hit wonders among the numerous interchangeable singers Donna Summer was not one of those, however CHAPTER 61 - DISCO Donna Summer: The Queen of Disco Summer (Donna Adrian Gaines, b. 1948) grew up in the Boston area but moved to Europe to pursue a career in musical theatre and light opera She met Giorgio Moroder (b. 1940) who would collaborate with her on her big hits of the 1970s

Love to Love You Baby (1975) was her first international hit I Feel Love was her next big American hit, also explores the erotic dimension of love, as does Love to Love You Baby The background contains innovative use of electronic instruments along with traditional drum set; there are no conventional instruments Moroder creates layers of sound in repetitive patterns These dont correspond to the traditional rock guitar or bass lines The sounds are novel, but so are the lines that create the dense texture behind Summers vocals Rhythmically, the 16-beat layer is more explicit The bass drum pounds out a steady beat; percussion are equally steady CHAPTER 61 - DISCO The song is more about timekeeping than syncopationit is dance music, after all The busy rhythms contrast sharply with: The leisurely delivery of Summers vocal lines

The slow rate of harmonic change These two facets relate to two aspects of the disco scene: The activity of the dancers to the throbbing beat The endlessness of the experience, as one songs mixes into the next Donna Summer remained popular for a while Her last three albums of the decade went to No. 1 CHAPTER 61 - DISCO The Village People: Disco Out of the Closet The brainchild of Jacques Morali, a French producer living in NYC They were dressed and took on the persona of 6 macho-type guys but were really a group of gays Meanwhile, millions of straight Americans bought their records Their whole act was an inside joke YMCA (No. 2 in 1978) was their biggest hit on the singles charts It is about meeting at the YMCA, the inside joke being that it is a gay gathering place It is a true disco song with: Tempo at 120 bpmvery typical for a disco songso DJs could switch from song-to-song easily 4-beat bass drum beat 16-beat rhythmmainly from the conga (in this song) and not much syncopation Full, almost orchestral accompaniment, with electronic instruments and strings,

plus horns Catchy tunea simple verse/chorus song Repetitive harmony, similar to many disco songsvery simple and repeated many times CHAPTER 61 - DISCO Disco: Culture, Reception, and Influence Summer was the most successful star, Chic was the most successful band Disco was widely popular during the latter part of the 1970s It had strong gay associations There were also many working-class urban youth who used disco as an outlet, as see in Saturday Night Fever It also became a lifestylea culture was derived from disco Dancing was exhibitionistic; one could see: a new set of clothes, fake Afro wigs, skin-tight, revealing clothes, shoes, glitter and flamboyance Many drugs (mostly cocaine) were associated with it as well Reactions Against Disco The music and culture were often trashedperhaps a reaction against discos excesses There was also a homophobic undercurrent Disco records were destroyed at public events

People often shouted disco sucks CHAPTER 61 - DISCO Disco and Dance Fads Disco was a fad that didnt last long, much like the short life spans of the Charleston or the Twist Disco had a 16-beat style as opposed to rocks 8-beat It was more rhythmically straightforward than funk or black pop This made it accessible to a greater number of dancers but sacrificed musical interest in the process The Influence of Disco It would be influential from its beatit was the gateway for the wholesale infusion of electronica It was an underground dance-club culturewhich would continue through the 1980s and flower in the 1990s CHAPTER 62 - PUNK

Chapter 62: Punk Malcolm McLaren, English boutique owner, was instrumental in the forming of a new style of music Punk He was as interested in the aesthetic of groups standing out, being outrageous, and affronting those on the outside as he was with the music his bands played McLaren saw himself as a political provocateur He persuaded the New York Dolls, who had just been dropped by Mercury Records, to let him manage them and design their outfits He chose outrageous designs and shocking presentations However he did witness the New York scene: Heard the Ramones, and the Neon Boys (who would later become Television) Saw Richard Hells torn clothing and studded collars He returned to England and changed the name of his shop to SEX, and started carrying fetish clothing and original punk-inspired items He now attracted a clientele from which he would eventually assemble the Sex Pistols Hand in hand with the noise of punk went the hostile attitudeand the look: Spiked hair in a rainbow of colors Tattoos and body piercings Torn clothing ornamented or even held together with safety pins

Punk sought to recapture the revolutionary fervor and simplicity of early rock It was a reactionary movementrevolting against what its adherents saw as the growing commercialism of mainstream rock But it established an important and influential new direction in rock, from its reconception of those values CHAPTER 62 - PUNK The Roots of Punk Punk took shape in New York, in the small clubs The most famous of these was CBGB (country, bluegrass, and blues): a small club in NYCs Bowery section It was a beacon for the burgeoning punk movementknown for hosting a wide array

punk and alternative bands and music Among the major influences in NY were the Velvet Underground and the New York Dolls Velvet Underground Foreshadowing punks no future mentality, their sound was often abrasive and minimalistic They presented an anti-artistic approach to art, a rejection of the artistic aspirations of the Beatles and other like-minded bands Lou Reed, guitar, formed this group to experiment with new forms of expression Reed recited his poems while other members of the group played a continuous, pulsating drone Drummer even added trash-can lids to the drum set to reinforce the Dadaism They also met Andy Warhol; he added them to his traveling artwork, The Exploding Plastic Inevitable Their songs on subsequent albums dealt with drugs Their style was a repetitive drone behind his monologue; an effective way to convey the coldness and gloom Reed saw in the world Further recordings and tours into the 1990s of CHAPTER 62 - PUNK

New York Dollsfive men who donned lipstick, heavy eye makeup, and stacked heels to perform songs about bad girls, drugs, and NYC street life Formed in 1971, they featured, like the MC5 and Stooges, the heavily distorted guitar lines and a powerful pounding beatplus some R & B from the influence of the Rolling Stones They broke up in 1975 after losing most of its members Others went on to other groups: David Johansen went on to his next calling as Buster Poindexter Recordings were released in the 1980s but they were tracks that were recorded back in the 1970s Patti Smith (b. 1946), an artist and writer from Chicago but established herself professionally in NYC Rock journalist and musician Lenny Kaye joined her providing simple guitar accompaniments while she read, and later sang, her poetry Ex-Velvet Underground member John Cale produced her first album Horses (1975) She had a new version of Gloria (recorded by Them and the Shadows of Knightboth 1966) Next year she covered the Whos My Generation Married Fred Sonic Smith, ex-guitarist for the MC5 and moved to his home in Detroit Released the album Dream of Life in 1988; a book of Smiths poetry entitled Early Work: 1970- 1979 was published in 1994 She added to the androgynous fashion statements by wearing a button-down white shirt and mens tie She was punks poet laureate, a performer for whom words were primary Because of her presence, punk and new wave music were much more receptive to strong women than conventional rock CHAPTER 62 - PUNK

British lower- and middle-class teens in the mid-1970s had grown a great dislike for the lifestyles and traditional values of their parents They were caught up in an economic and class-ridden social system over which they had no control one that relegated them to a life of near-poverty with no hope of securing jobs that would earn them enough to have a better life Entertainment, even movies, was too expensive for them Extravagant rock artists and the elaborate shows meant nothing to them Stylish clothes were out of their reach Attitudes of these teens were that of anger, frustration, and violence Adopted a way of dressing in torn second-hand clothing and with large safety pins holding the pieces together Following McLarens return to England and the Ramones 1976 tour, punk took off in England as well as the US:

The Sex Pistols were popular Elvis Costello became the bard of new wave The Clash, The Pretenders, and the Buzzcocks were among other leading UK bands in the late 1970s Other mindsets were changing: The we of the 1960s gave way to the me as people looked out for themselves Various rights movements and the move toward a more democratic society eroded class distinctions rapidly There was a strong conservative backlash in both Britain and the US A prolonged recession kept the working- and middle-class humbled High interest rates and inflation created fear in economic stability Its not a stretch to understand that the nihilistic battle cry of the Sex Pistols was No Future CHAPTER 62 - PUNK The Power of Punk Its sound and music demonstrated the power of punk In a small club with a lot of people, one could get the full experienceit overwhelms Punk is concentrated; pure punk songs are: Shortthey say what they want to say quickly and get on with the next

Loudsubtlety is not in the equation NoiseLOTS of distortion Lack of vocal skillall it took was a lot of nerve Fastmuch faster than normal energetic movement But punks most compelling feature is its approach to rock rhythm CHAPTER 62 - PUNK Saturated Rock Rhythm Rock rhythm is an 8-beat rhythmthats what distinguishes it from R & B (think Chuck Berry and Little Richard) As rock progressed, musicians became comfortable with it and the basic rock beat became a springboard for rhythmic play (think Led Zeppelin and The Who) Punk restored the essence and power of rock rhythm by: Isolating it Saturating the rhythmic texture with it Speeding it up Punks saturated rock rhythmeveryone is playing an 8-beat rhythm, very repetitive in the guitar and bass riffs

Musicians could graft riffs onto this rhythm to create variety and interest, but this was an overlayhowever, the 8-beat rhythm continues through the riffs Punk strips away any of the slower rhythms, presenting rock rhythm in a pure form Punks purer form of rock rhythm stands out in two aspects: The entire rhythm section reinforced it; even the drummer could hammer it out on the cymbals and bass drum, depending on his/her level of skill CHAPTER 62 - PUNK The Sex Pistols We start with their manager, Malcolm McLaren, who was their main influence and guide McLaren found the Sex Pistols in his shop One of the members worked for him, others hung around the shop McLaren located rehearsal space, took over management, and got a lead singer Others joined the band: Johnny Rotten (John Lydon b. 1956), singer Steve Jones (b. 1955), guitar Glen Matlock (b. 1956), basslater replaced by Sid Vicious Sid Vicious (John Ritchie, 1957-1979), bass

Paul Cook (b. 1956), drums None of the four had much musical skill when they formed the band They were known more for their outrageous conduct than for musicianship CHAPTER 62 - PUNK The Sex Pistols found their direction after hearing the Ramones and learning the basics of their instruments What they capitalized on was their ability to shock, provoke, confront, and incite to riot Their attitude was more than wordsthey were ready to overthrow the ruling class This is evident in their best-known songs, God Save the Queen, and Anarchy in the UK They also did a version of it later for use in the USA, Anarchy in the USA In 1977, during the Queens Silver Jubilee, they released God Save the Queen (a single whose title was the same name as that of the English National anthem); their lyrics were so foul and insulting that the song was banned from British TV and radio It was not even allowed to printed on the chartsmerely a black line The song went to #2

CHAPTER 62 - PUNK The music of the Sex Pistols amplified the message of the lyrics It was loud, simple and had a powerful beat Punk fulfilled the controversial promise of the very first rock-and-roll records Their subversive element got the revolutionary message across loud and clear, even when the lyrics didnt Like the Ramones, the Sex Pistols distilled and intensified rock and rolls revolutionary rhythmic essence All aspects of their songs (lyrics, Rottens vocal style, absence of melody, simple power chords, the heavy distortion, and relentless, fast-paced beat) are mutually reinforcingthe power of the song comes from its stylistic coherence Being entirely caught up in anger, they wanted to repulse the establishment and provoke authorities into retaliating against them, and that attracted more fans than their music did Their follow-up album, Never Mind the Bollocks, Heres the Sex Pistols (1977) made it clear they spoke for a number of young Brits They never quite achieved the same success in the US that they did in Britain Disbanding in 1978, they felt they had achieved and said all they set out to do They embodied the essence of punk No one projected its sense of outrage and it outrageousness more baldly No group in the history of rock had more impact with such a brief career CHAPTER 63 PUNK REVERBERATIONS

Chapter 63: Punk Reverberations New Wave This was the umbrella term to identify music that emerged in small clubs during the 1970s (mainly in NYC and London) It embraced punk acts, but also other bands seeking a similar audience Among the more important:

The Talking Heads (US) Devo (US) Elvis Costello (UK) The Attractions (UK) Theyand the audienceassumed an anti-mainstream position Music was a reaction against prevailing tastes Also a reaction against the commercialization of mainstream rock As it emerged, it was labeled punk or new wave, more or less interchangeably What separated the two styles was the aim of the music Emphasis was on the words, lyrics Words and ideas were provocative, challenging, arousing, or just plain weird The music was streamlined, stripped down to a leaner sound: Most were a 3- or 4-piece group Rhythm was simple; little syncopation and much repetition of the 8-beat rhythm Not many instrumental solosfocus was on the words and singing CHAPTER 63 PUNK REVERBERATIONS The Talking Heads

Like Devo, Talking Heads was formed in NY (1974-75) by art students Singer/guitarist David Byrne (b. 1952) and drummer Chris Frantz (b. 1951), along with bassist Tina Weymouth (b. 1950) (Frantz and Weymouth later married) They added another member by the time of their 1st album, guitarist/keyboardist, Jerry Harrison (b. 1949) Playing often at CBGB, they came from an opposite concept from the Ramones and other similar punkers Whereas the Ramones sound remained consistent from song to song, the talking Heads music offered considerable variety Talking Heads 77 was their debut album Many of their early songs draw on the rock and R & B with which they heard in their formative years But they processed these sounds in their own unique way Byrnes near-monotone vocals along with simple, pounding rhythmic pulse was a feature of Psycho Killer Psycho Killer, from their first album, the song was a surprise hit: Lyrics and Byrnes singing in the forefront Varied accompaniment, some subtlety as well Rhythm and texture are simple and clean Bass line marks the beat with a repeated note Guitar and keyboard move at rock-beat speed Backdrop is sparean ideal foil for Byrnes vocal

CHAPTER 63 PUNK REVERBERATIONS Song is inflammatoryByrne announces he is crazy and ready to explode But does this in a neutral deliveryheightening the effect The song has numerous changes in accompaniment, very much in contrast to the Sex Pistols style Their sound was fueled more by imagination than craftcreating one of the most innovative sound worlds of the 1970s All this in spite of simple musical performance, or lack of virtuosity, of the band members They explored a dark and difficult theme in this song Minimalist composer Brian Eno joined them for their 2 nd album, More Songs About Buildings and Food (1978) Enos electronic sound effects added new and modern (for the time) character to the group They incorporated some soul, gospel singers, Latin influences, and African rhythms to subsequent recording projects After taking a break from recordings in the early 1980s, they came back to record Speaking in Tongues (1983) which combined lyrics expressing the new-wave alienation from emotion with complex funk rhythms and avant-garde electronic sounds They remained together until 1991, by that time Frantz and Weymouth were well established with their own band, Tom Tom Club, and Byrne had a successful solo career

CHAPTER 63 PUNK REVERBERATIONS The Clash and the Evolution of Punk One of the longest-lasting British punk groups, they were made up of experienced musicians They met out of chance encounter in 1976 beginning with guitarists Mick Jones and Joe Strummer waiting in line for an unemployment check Inflation was hitting the UK hard, as in the US at the time, and had a devastating effect on the economy An influx of people from the former British colonies also had an impact on social services as well as heightening racial tension Centuries-old class distinctions in the UK wee also breaking down The Clash:

Joe Strummer (1952-2002), guitar Mick Jones (b. 1955), guitar Paul Simonon (b. 1955), bass Terry Chimes (b. 1955), drums Topper Headon (b. 1955), drumsreplaced Chimes White Riot was their first major hit, written when Strummer and Simonon found themselves in the midst of a riot (1976) Many of their songs zeroed in on social and political injustices They also focused on some of the central causes of punk rebellion: youth unemployment, racism, and police brutality as opposed to the multi-directional anger that the Sex Pistols exhibited They took some of Jamaicas music of rebellion and added a reggae beat to it along with the familiar rhythmic throbbing CHAPTER 63 PUNK REVERBERATIONS By 1979, the Clash released their hugely successful album, London Calling By this time, they were a much more skilled and versatile band, now comfortable in a variety of styles Death or Glory Comments on a central issue for the group:

Whether money will motivate a group to sell out Musically, it is: Good rock, rather than high-energy pure punk Form is verse/chorus (chorus includes catchy melodic hooks) Rhythmic interplay among rhythm section players Texture is dense with melodic lines in both guitars and bass An array of timbres Each song on London Calling has a distinct character and musical setting They do infuse their music with the power and passion of punk However, their songs matter because of the lyrics and because the music backs up the lyrics They had 2 Top-40 US hits, Train in Vain (Stand by Me) (1980) and Rock the Casbah (1982) CHAPTER 63 PUNK REVERBERATIONS

The Reverberations of Punk Punk and new wave restored the soul of rock and roll Their music contains powerful messages: political, social, and personal However in punk, the rock can be as brutally blunt in its musical message as the lyrics Once again, this is rock music that sought to change the world Its message is primarywhich helps account of the relative simplicity of the musical materials If the musical setting was too elaborate, it would deflect attention away from the underlying intent of the song Punk served as a bridge between the significant rock of the 1960s and the significant rock of the 1980s, particularly in the work of U2 Punk sharpened the edge of much rock-era music, even the pop of Michael Jackson and Maddona It opened the door for those outside corporate rock The alternative movement that began the early 1980s continues the independent spirit typified by punk and new wavethat spirit lives on most fully in the post-punk bands that emerged since 1980 Alternatives such as grunge, neo-punk, punk hybrids, etc. are an outgrowth of the punk explosion

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