The Evolution of Popular Music

  • LP record introduced

    LP record introduced
    Columbia Records introduces the 33 rpm 'Long Play' record.
  • Origin of Rock and Roll

    Origin of Rock and Roll
    In 1951, Cleveland, Ohio, disc jockey Alan Freed began playing this music style while popularizing the term rock and roll to describe it
  • portable transistor radio

    portable transistor radio
    A transistor radio is a small portable radio receiver that uses transistor-based circuitry. Following their development in 1954 they became the most popular electronic communication device in history, with billions manufactured during the 1960s and 1970s. Their pocket size sparked a change in popular music listening habits, allowing people to listen to music anywhere they went.
  • Elvis Presley signs with Sun Records

    Elvis Presley signs with Sun Records
    One of the most popular musicians of the 20th century, he is often referred to as the "King of Rock and Roll" or simply "the King". He began his career there in 1954, working with Sun Records owner Sam Phillips, who wanted to bring the sound of African-American music to a wider audience. Accompanied by guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, Presley was the most important popularizer of rockabilly, an uptempo, backbeat-driven fusion of country and rhythm and blues.
  • First Rock and Roll song

    First Rock and Roll song
    Because the development of rock and roll was an evolutionary process, no single record can be identified officially as "the first" rock and roll record. In terms of its wide cultural impact across society in the US and elsewhere, Bill Haley's "Rock Around the Clock", recorded in April 1954 but not a commercial success until the following year, is generally recognized as an important milestone.
  • Little Richard "Tutti Frutti"

    Little Richard "Tutti Frutti"
    "Tutti Frutti" is a song co-written by Little Richard, which was recorded in 1955 and became his first major hit record. With its opening cry of "A-wop-bop-a-loo-mop-a-wop-bam-boom!" (a verbal rendition of a drum pattern that Little Richard had imagined) and its hard-driving sound and wild lyrics, it became not only a model for many future Little Richard songs, but also a model for rock and roll itself.
  • Vietnam War begins

    Vietnam War begins
    This extremely controversial war was fought for nineteen years, with no clear-cut victory or defeat. It inspired countless protest songs, exposing its every brutality, every mistake, and every misguided policy. The controversial draft system is what withdrew Elvis Presley from the music scene and sent hundreds of thousands of young men to war.
  • The Day the Music Died

    The Day the Music Died
    The Day the Music Died, dubbed so by Don McLean's song "American Pie", was an aviation accident that occurred on February 3, 1959, near Clear Lake, Iowa, killing rock and roll musicians Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J. P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson, as well as the pilot, Roger Peterson. Young rock and roll fans were crushed, because their new rock idols had all just died and the old, original rockers had all left the scene.
  • The Beach Boys Surfin USA

    The Beach Boys Surfin USA
    The beach boys release Surfin' USA, capitalizing on the california myth of beaches, Bikinis, and Hot Rods. The beach boys softened the raw surf music originated by Dick Dale. The resulting sound was very pop-sounding and led the Beach Boys to superstardom.
  • The Beatles arrive in the U.S.

    The Beatles arrive in the U.S.
    When the beach boys arrived at JFK airport, they were surprised to be greeted by thousands of screaming fans. The phenomenon of Beatlemania had reached the american market, changing it forever.
  • Woodstock music festival

    Woodstock music festival
    Woodstock was an immensely popular music festival held in the town of Bethel, New York. 32 musicians performed for 500,000 people crammed into a 600-acre field. There were so many people that ticket collection was impossible to inforce, and it became a free concert for many.
  • Altamont Music festival

    Altamont Music festival
    This infamous music festival was headlined and organized by the Rolling Stones in an attempt to replicate the success of Woodstock. It's infamy was drawn from the chaos and violence that ensued after the Hell's Angels got extremely drunk and angry when acting as security. Multiple fights broke out and one man was stabbed to death by a Hells Angel. It may have been a mistake to pay them with beer.
  • The Kent State Shootings and Niel Young's 'Ohio'

    The Kent State Shootings and Niel Young's 'Ohio'
    On this day soldiers fired on an colege students taking part in an unarmed peaceful protest. 67 bullets were fired ovwer 13 seconds, killing four and wounding nine. Niel Young then wrote a song protesting the shootings and the vietnam war, titled 'Ohio'.