Genres

Acid House

While House is an easily identifiable musical genre which emanated from Chicago in the early 80s and is traceable back to hi-NRG, European synthpop and New York Electro, exactly what Acid House is has been a thoroughly confusing issue. The purists say it is a House rhythm spiked with the warped, wobbling, bubbling, billowing sound(...)

British Invasion

In the halcyon years of the 'British Invasion' of America - 1964 and 1965 - who were the two most successful acts? Well The Beatles were obviously the first. But who was the second? The Rolling Stones? The Animals? The Who? Guess again . . . The Who had no hits in the US until 1967, and it wasn't until 1966(...)

Britpop

The mid-90s was a golden era for British music, with several fine bands all coming good at the same time. There was, though, little camaraderie among the practitioners of what came to be called 'Britpop' - as evidenced by the 1995 chart war between the top two bands of the genre, the arty pop-oriented middle-class(...)

Bubblegum Music

On 14 September 1968, The Archie Show, a Saturday morning TV cartoon show, made its debut on CBS in America. The show was a Don Kirshner creation based around a high school rock band in a popular comic book, from which hit singles were to be spun off, following the pattern Kirshner evolved with The Monkees. Cynics(...)

Disco Music

The major new movement which began in the USA in 1975 and would spread its influence worldwide, was disco music. Originally regarded by many as a poor substitute for genuine soul music, nothing had been more capable of filling a dance floor. Disco had been building as a commercial force since 1974, when rump-shakers such(...)

Doo-wop

1955 saw the rise to prominence of several black vocal groups in the USA. Amongst them were; The Orioles (their 1948 hit It's Too Soon To Know is often cited as the first real doo-wop record), The Crows, The Clovers, The Penguins, The Harptones, The Chords ("Sh-boom, life is but a dream..."), The Spaniels, The Cadillacs, The Five Royales, The(...)

EuroPop

Folk Rock

When The Turtles entered the Billboard Top 40 on 21 August 1965 with a cover of It Ain't Me Babe that turned Bob Dylan's hip put-down into a cheery pop tune and then proceeded to go Top Ten with it, it confirmed a revolution that had been building throughout 1965: the marriage of two forms hitherto thought irreconcilable. In 1963, folk was(...)

Garage Rock

Garage rock, garage punk, garage psychedelia . . . call it what you will, but the operative word was 'garage'. It was music often literally made in suburban garages across the USA during the 1960s, in the wake of the Beatles-led British Invasion. And it birthed a renaissance that made instant heroes out of many(...)

Girl Groups

The story of the 'girl group' sound, which reached its commercial and artistic peak in the early and mid-60s, is not just the story of the performers. More than any other style in rock & roll, it was the product of partnerships between the performers, songwriters, and producers. The result was one of the most(...)

Glam Rock

Glam Rock

Glam Rock laughed in the face of the pompous pseudo-intellectualism that was becoming prevalent in the music world in the early seventies. It declared war on seriousness. You want three day weeks? We want Can The Can. You want Tales From Topographic Oceans? We want Tiger Feet. It is, of course, the sweetest of all ironies that Marc Bolan - the(...)

Goth

"Bela Lugosi's dead, undead, undead..." intoned Peter Murphy on the single that released a new genre - not to mention a fair scattering of bats - into the world. Like the vampiric film star Bauhaus (pictured at right) eulogized, Goth has never gone quietly into the ground, finding virgin blood to drink wherever the young, pale, alienated(...)

Grunge

The early 1990s was the brief era of Grunge - a rock music genre which eventually faded after the public grew bored with the I-despise-success posturings doled out by Adam Duritz, Eddie Vedder, Kurt Cobain, Lyne Staley, Chris Cornell, Zack De La Rocha et al . . . By 1993 - and still a year or two away from complete self-parody -(...)

Heavy Metal

Fine in principal, but not quite in practice; The Heavy Metal crowd consistently ruled much of the 80's, which is why there was 'alternative music' back then. The new bands took the rock posturing of KISS but left the humour behind and the ageing arena bands slunk out from under their rocks and carried on as though(...)

House Music

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