You dictate to everyone in music,' Seventeen magazine told its young female readers in September 1944. 'You are the bosses of the business.' The editors of Seventeen had done their research: estimating that there was a youth market out there worth $75 million, they produced the first modern era magazine that helped to usher in the era of the teenager.
Since its full inception at the end of the Second World War, the teenage market has relied on music as one of its biggest hooks: indeed the very existence of the teenage market was predicated, to some degree, on the manic crowd scenes that greeted appearances by the Benny Goodman Orchestra and Frank Sinatra.
So, if you're going to sell music to teenagers, it seems fairly obvious that that music should contain qualities that will appeal to adolescents. In the 1920s and the 1930s, before the terms 'teenage' and 'youth culture' were coined, the sheer energy and - to adults - atonal noise of hot jazz was enough to demarcate the generation line. But that's as far it went. If there are any Charlestons about acne or swing tunes about school, I haven't found them.
As teenage marketing was more seriously pursued during the Second World War, it became to some degree self-conscious. Hence the emergence after 1945 of songs about what it is to be a teenager, with all that adolescent angst and potential purchasing power. Naming something helps to bring it into being, so all the Fifties songs about teens and teenagers reinforced the nexus between youth, music and money.
Ranging from 1940 to the present day, these 50 songs - arranged in chronological order - contain various thoughts and feelings about what it is to be adolescent. Some are shameless cash-ins, others reveal acute insights, others just celebrate peer power. The list is not supposed to be definitive, but organised around various key words: youth, teen, teenage, adolescent, generation. Any omissions are accidental.
1. Inbetween, Judy Garland (1940)
This talky show tune was recorded in the same July 1939 session as 'Over the Rainbow'. Two weeks later, Garland and her co-star in the Andy Hardy movies, Mickey Rooney, pictured, went to New York for the city's premiere of The Wizard of Oz , and caused a riot. On 14 August, Grand Central Station was swamped by a 'delirious mob' of 10,000 fans.
At the premiere three days later, 15,000 fans thronged the streets around the Capitol Theatre. Alerted by this display of peer power, reporters noted that 60 per cent of the crowd were 'minors'. By the end of the day, Garland and Rooney, who performed after each showing, had played to 37,000 fans, and the crowds continued for the rest of the run.
This was one of the events that kickstarted teenage marketing: riots around Frank Sinatra's appearances at the Paramount Theatre in New York during 1943/4 reinforced the point that here was a large, volatile social group that had money, visibility, and clout. At this time, the term denoting young consumers changed from 'sub-deb' to the more music-specific 'bobby-soxer' and the age-derived 'teenster' or 'teen-ager'.
With lyrics by Roger Edens, 'In-Between' pin-pointed that adolescent dilemma: are you a child or an adult? Garland looks forward to the day when she'll be 16 and can stop being 'an awful in-between', 'too old for toys and too young for boys'. Echoing her own confusion - a young woman of 16 strapped up to play a child - it remains a haunting document from the start of teenage culture.
2. Bobby Sox Blues, T-Bone Walker (1946)
Written by LA music industry all-rounder Dootsie Williams, this is an accurate portrait of the new youth world. 'Bobby Sox Baby, I've got to let you go,' moans T-Bone. 'You've got a head full of nothing/ But stage screen and radio.' T-Bone, pictured right, was too old for all this, and his slow blues is a defiantly mature response.
3. Seventeen, Boyd Bennett and His Rockets (1955)
In the slipstream of Bill Haley, 'Seventeen' was one of the first big rock'n'roll hits in both the US and the UK. Like Haley, Bennett was on the cusp of his thirties - a professional musician equally at home with swing, country and r'n'b. After sessions with Earl Bostic and Bill Doggett, he decided to fashion something for the teenage market.
With booting sax and vocals by the 30-stone trumpeter Jim 'Big Moe' Muzey, 'Seventeen' celebrated the girl 'young enough to dance and sing/ old enough to get that swing'. Bennett was shrewd enough to itemise all the period's teenage style signifiers: 'sloppy shirt, old blue jeans, dirty jeans ... patch of blonde, peroxide hair'. And relentless enough to record another song, 'My Boy Flat Top', that, aimed at boys, celebrated the rockabilly hairstyle.
4. Boog Woogie Teenage, Don Julian and the Meadowlarks (1956)
In the mid-Fifties, vocal groups were the currency of the day, the equivalent of modern R&B. The style that scored with the young public was the slow, unearthly ballad, such as the Penguins' 'Earth Angel' (1954) - a true teenage swoon. Its success made Dootsie Williams's Dootone label a magnet for Los Angeles groups and the Meadowlarks - led by 16-year-old Don Julian - were the smoothest.
One of their few rockers, 'Boogie Woogie Teenage' is little more than a standard boogie riff. The lyrics celebrate the new youth world - 'Well, if you're ever on jukebox street, let me tell you about the kids you'll meet' - but despite an energetic performance, the horn-based arrangement is rooted in a style that was becoming obsolete. But the buzzword was out.
5. I'm Not a Juvenile Delinquent, The Teenagers (1956)
Featuring the unbroken voice of 13-year-old Frankie Lymon, the Teenagers were one of the most popular acts in America during 1956. Entering the US pop charts before 'Heartbreak Hotel', the fresh, doo-wop of 'Why Do Fools Fall in Love' reached number six, making the group authentic adolescent deities and an inspiration to their peers.
Recorded for the film Rock, Rock, Rock , 'I'm Not a Juvenile Delinquent' was the Teenagers' fourth single, and their first flop in the US - although it went Top 20 in the UK. With its didactic lyrics - 'Listen boys and girls/ You need not be blue/ Life is what you make of it/ It all depends on you' - the song was designed to reassure adults that these teens were clean: an ironic message in the light of Lymon's death from a drug overdose at the age of 26.
6. Sweet Little Sixteen, Chuck Berry (1958)
Berry's huge hit is a peerless invocation of the young female consumer upon whom pop culture rests. It elaborates on the themes established by 'Bobby Sox Baby' and 'In-Between'. The last verse gets to the heart of the problem, sex: 'Sweet Little Sixteen, she's got the grown-up blues, tight dresses and lipstick, she's sporting high-heeled shoes/ But tomorrow morning she'll have to change her trend and be sweet sixteen and back in class again.'
7. A Teenager in Love, Dion and the Belmonts (1958)
More sweet sounds from hardened inner-city kids. Formed in the Bronx and led by 19-year-old Dion DiMucci, the Belmonts specialised in limber doo-wop. Released the month after Buddy Holly's death - the Belmonts had been on the same tour but could not afford the money for the fatal plane ride - this was their biggest hit to date. Sparse and melodic, it hit the market for adolescent self-absorption fair and square, rising to number 5 in the US. Like Frankie Lymon, Dion's innocent vocal worked against his own experience. Unlike Lymon, however, he survived and continues to record today.
8. The Eighteen Year Old Blues, Steve Carl with The Jags (1958)
After the fantasy, a slice of reality: 'I'm feeling low down, I'm 18, and I don't know what to do with my future: I've got the blues, man.'
Over a sparse, minimal backing, Steve Carl (born Steven Leuthold) ponders the options open to him as a young man in Minnesota: 'Go to school, work for Uncle Sam, get a job as a factory hand.'
9. Teenage Love, The Five Chesternuts (1958)
With a good dose of brutally simple instrumentation and yearning lyric, 'Teenage Love' marks the moment when Brits started to make decent pop records. (It was quickly followed by Cliff Richard's 'Move It'.) Real-life teens, the Five Chesternuts included future Shadows Bruce Welch and Hank Marvin, who co-wrote this rudimentary Buddy Holly knock-off that contains within its lilting energy the first-time innocence of a generation finding its voice.
10. A Teenager's Letter of Promises, Sun Ra (1959)
The word 'teenager' was such a hot branding device that Sun Ra, the jazz band leader who claimed to have been to Saturn, turned his hand to the topic. Already experienced in doo-wop, Sun R (as Mr V) put together this bizarre, spookily effective mixture of echoed recitative ('And now reminiscent of the lover's voice, I shall be the shadow lying at your feet') and yearning female vocal by Juanita Rogers.
11. Teen Angel, Mark Dinning (1960)
With its melodramatic storyline - car stalls on train line, the pair escape, the girl goes back for Mark's high school ring and dies - this ghoulish slice of kitsch went to number one in the US. In the UK, the BBC refused to play it but it hit the Top 40 nevertheless.
Dinning was a country singer in his mid-twenties when he recorded 'Teen Angel'. Its morbidity tapped into the Romantic nexus of youth and premature death that had been a staple of 20th-century culture - think of Rudy Valentino - and what Fifties teens claimed as their own with James Dean and Buddy Holly.
12. The Beat Generation, Bob McFadden and Dor (1960)
'Generation' had long been one of the keywords unlocking the key to the 20th-century youth world. In the hands of the Expressionists and the Futurists during the 1910s, it tended to take on a punkish, crudely ideological flavour - ie we're young: you're old: move over. From the lost generation to the beat generation was not too big a step: a term coined by the junkie hustler Herbert Huncke, 'I'm beat' meant 'beaten'. The beat generation became national news after Jack Kerouac's On the Road (1957). By 1959 the term had become shorthand for a new youth style.
This song was a collaboration of Bob McFadden, a voice-over artist, and Rod McKuen (Dor). Over a crude riff, McFadden slurred beat signifiers - 'I run around in sandals/ I never ever shave' - interspersed with McKuen's interjections: 'weirdsville', 'back on the road'. Sixteen years later, Richard Hell stole the riff and the lyric for his manifesto, 'Blank Generation'.
13. The Heart of a Teenage Girl, George Chakiris (1960)
Maverick producer Joe Meek (see OMM39) described himself as 'completely pop-minded'. Nowhere is his determination 'to cater to the teenage market' more apparent than on this early attempt. An American dancer and actor, Chakiris was one year away from stardom and an Oscar in West Side Story when he cut this formulaic ode to the mythical girl 'who is only 17'. Meek would soon perfect his approach.
14. Don't Treat Me Like a Child, Helen Shapiro (1961)
A real teen - 14 when she cut this record - Shapiro had confidence beyond her years. Despite a Norrie Paramor production - Light Programme strings and brass, dreadful 'ye-ye-ye' back-ups - she stamps her authority on the lyric: 'Well, just because I'm in my teens and I still go to school/ Don't think I dream childish dreams: I'm nobody's child.'
15. The Young Ones, Cliff Richard (1962)
The theme tune to the 'let's do the show right here' clean teen film and the start of Cliff's imperial period, 'The Young Ones' went in at number one in the UK in January 1962 and stayed there for six weeks. A great pop production - with the swing of the Shadows balancing producer Norrie Paramor's sweetening tendencies - the song celebrates living in the present and the transience of youth.
16. I Saw Her Standing There, The Beatles (1963)
Titled 'Seventeen' until the last moment, the lead track from the Beatles' first album acted as a manifesto for a new pop age. No pizzicato strings or shrill female back-ups here, just tough, guitar-driven rock'n'roll and sharp, colloquial lyrics ('she was just seventeen, you know what I mean') that described teenage life as it was or could be. As the B-side of 'I Want to Hold Your Hand', it hit the American Top 20 in February 1964.
17. Only 17, The Beatlettes (1964)
One of the earliest Beatle novelties, this exultant mash-up of 'I Want to Hold Your Hand', 'She Loves You' and 'I Saw Her Standing There' crackles with energy. Right from the count-off, these tough girls know what they want and know how to get it. It was put together by Shadow Morton, of Shangri-Las fame.
18. When I Grow Up (To Be a Man), The Beach Boys (1964)
A fascinating concept - a look at adolescence from the point of view of adulthood written by an adolescent - is matched by an inventive production: harpsichord, tricksy drum beat, and soaring harmonies. 'Will my kids be proud or think that their old man's really a square?' ponders Brian Wilson, while the group harmonise: '18, 19.' It went Top 10 in autumn 1964.
19. My Generation, The Who (1965)
By the mid-Sixties, the word teenage had fallen into comparative disuse. As a term that had often denoted adult exploitation, it had become obsolete. Pop groups did not discuss what it was to be young, they just hit you with the raw emotional state. However, the word generation still held power, no more so than in this blast of fury, where the manic air raid finale takes you right into the state that the lyrics are attempting to describe.
The extraordinary thing in retrospect is that this record was a hit. Many observers have stuck on the 'hope I die before I get old' lyric, but 'My Generation' goes deeper. Pete Townshend was one of pop's most psychological writers, and 'My Generation' sounds more like war damage than anything else.
20. My Degeneration, The Eyes (1966)
Tragedy replayed as farce. 'My Generation' was a huge hit in late 1965, and many London groups - like David Bowie's Mannish Boys - were in thrall to its violent, pop art sound. The Eyes offered this Who parody/ homage in early 1966 - an account of trying to get a young woman into bed. Their failure to do so was their 'degeneration', which was not how moralists would have seen it.
21. Teenage Failure, Chad and Jeremy (1966)
Stars in the US but ignored in Britain, Chad and Jeremy had moved from the Everly Brothers towards that more contemporary duo, Simon and Garfunkel. This song recast the frustration of 'Summertime Blues' within folk-rock modes but, despite a TV plug on Batman, it succumbed to the fate predicted by the lyric: 'Sometimes it seems that the world has passed me over.'
22. When I Was Young, Eric Burdon and the Animals (1967)
Burdon was only 25 when he wrote this confessional, but he had gone through some kind of rebirth. In place of the hard-drinking r'n'b singer who had made tough beat records, there was a reflective, angst-ridden man looking back at his brief life: 'I was so much older then, when I was young.' How did this happen? If the psychedelic production didn't alert you, then there was the flip: 'A Girl Named Sandoz'.
23. Excerpt from a Teenage Opera, Keith West (1967)
A huge UK hit in the autumn of 1967, this four-and-a-half minute song summarised many of that year's fads: ornate instrumentation, several themes, the return to childhood (most notably in the kids' chorus that provides the hook). However, it does not refer to adolescents at all, being a taster for producer Mark Wirtz's ambitious (and stillborn) A Teenage Opera - which is very of the period.
24. An Open Letter to My Teenage Son, Victor Lundberg (1967)
In America, Vietnam was the flashpoint for the generational war and as the conflict escalated, so the sides became more entrenched. This long recitative begins with Lundberg talking about long hair and beards on men - he can deal with them - and his willingness to judge his son 'not merely as a teenager'. Not all teenagers are 'drunken dope addicts or glue-sniffers'. Then the patriotic music swells. 'You ask my opinion of draft card burners,' Lundberg states, and then goes off on a rant: 'If you decide to burn your draft card then burn your birth certificate at the same time: from that moment on, I have no son.'
25. Pot Party, Mike Curb (1968)
Over ominous bass and guitar fret-scrapings, our gravel-voiced guide extends an invitation: 'Come over to a similar apartment in the Village, smoke a joint, burn a little grass, pot party, roach party, mainliner, skin-pop, shoot some crystal, the language of ... a large and ever increasing number of teens.'
Sounds great, but there's more on offer: 'If marijuana is the appetiser, the advent of space age technology has provided the main course, Lysergic Acid Diathylamide, LSD, the crazy acid.' It 'may be the forerunner of a new drug society ... will drugs pave the road to destruction for the NOW! generation?'
26. To Be Young, Gifted and Black
Inspired by Lorraine Hansberry's play of the same name - first performed off-Broadway in 1969 - Nina Simone wrote 'To Be Young, Gifted and Black' as an inspiring anthem to a youth that needed it: 'Young, gifted and black/ We must begin to tell our young/ There's a world waiting for you/ This is a quest that's just begun.'
Simone had long been associated with civil rights: her 1968 album Nuff Said was recorded, live, three days after Martin Luther King's assassination.
27. Sugar Mountain, Neil Young
A definitive emotional summary of adolescence. 'You can't be 20 on sugar mountain,' runs the chorus, 'though you're thinking that you're leaving there too soon.' Young runs down the developmental stages: going to the fair with your parents, getting hidden notes from a girl, your first cigarette, and then leaving home: 'Ain't it funny how you feel when you're finding out it's real.'
28. Teenage Lust, MC5
With the turn of the Seventies, a new micro-generation sought to distance itself from the hippies. From Back in the USA comes this witty tale of frustration. Unsuccessful in his quest to find 'release', singer Rob Tyner finds the 'perfect plan: I shake my ass and swing in a rock'n'roll band.'
29. I'm Eighteen, Alice Cooper (1971)
'I'm in the middle without any plans, I'm a boy and a man,' ponders Alice in this archetypal slice of teenage confusion, which was his first US hit. His doubts - 'I'm 18: I don't know what I want' - were echoed five years later by the young man who auditioned to this record. 'Don't know what I want,' Johnny Rotten sang, 'but I know how to get it.'
30. Talking the Teenage Language, The Lost Generation (1971)
Produced by Eugene Record, then having huge success with the Chi-Lites, this slow, bass-heavy meditation deals with the harsh reality that followed on from the hope of the Sixties. 'The kids today live in much anguish', so they talk in the teenage language, which here sounds like a darker version of Shirley Ellis's 'The Name Game'.
31. Teenage Head, Flamin' Groovies (1971)
Too young and too punky for the San Francisco boom of the late Sixties, the Flamin' Groovies perfected their bluesy, psych-punk on their classic third album, Teenage Head . This prime slab of male teen angst - 'I'm a monster, got a revved up teenage head/ I'm angry, and I'll mess you up for fun' - was dignified with a sociological explanation: 'I'm a child of atom bombs and rotten air and Vietnam.' Right on!
32. All The Young Dudes, Mott The Hoople (1972)
Touching several bases - stylish self-destruction, juvenile delinquency, media scapegoating - Bowie's hymn to the kids became a rock anthem. Blame it on Mott, who slowed the track down and let Ian Hunter cajole the teens with a perfect mix of sarcasm and menace.
33. Teenage Rampage, The Sweet (1974)
Announced by squalling guitar and crowd noises, this was the fourth and last in the Sweet's series of glam blockbusters. Confused in its calls for a teen takeover - 'Go join the revolution, get yourself a constitution' - it is nevertheless epic, fast, hard pop, and does contain a germ of perceptiveness in all the verbiage: 'But they don't care!'
34. Teenage Revolution, HELLO (1974)
The idea of street rock was in the air long before punk rock. Tucking into the tough glam end of things were Hello with this rather vague manifesto: 'Natural evolution - sure to blow your mind.' The public was not convinced by such sentiments, especially when uttered by a young man in appliqued denims.
35. Seventeen, The Sex Pistols (1977)
The band's first manifesto, and a fine piece of cheek by 20-year-old Johnny Rotten: 'You're only 29, got a lot to learn, but when your business dies, you will not return.' Here was the programme: 'We like noise, it's our choice, it's what we wanna do, we don't care about long hair, we don't wear flares.' The version chosen is the demo on Spunk : the opening lyric above was changed by the time it was re-recorded on Never Mind the Bollocks.
36. Teenage Lobotomy, The Ramones (1977)
The mid-Seventies were the period when adolescent mental health problems skyrocketed in the US, a serious problem underpinning the Ramones' typically mordant view on the topic. From the group's last really great album, Rocket to Russia , 'Teenage Lobotomy' thrives on its sick humour: 'Now I guess I'll have to tell 'em/ that I got no cerebellum.'
37. Bored Teenagers, The Adverts (1978)
Punk continued glam's obsession with the word teenage. It also highlighted boredom as a cosmic principle. Combining both themes, this is fast, short, articulate and skittish (part of the Adverts' appeal was the possibility that they might musically fall apart). Key line: 'Bored teenagers, seeing ourselves as strangers.'
38. Teenage Kicks, The Undertones (1978)
Before it became a cliche, this was a blast of youthful energy from an environment that encouraged neither youth nor energy. Written and driven by one of Britain's great forgotten talents, John O'Neill, 'Teenage Kicks' goes beyond a wilful refusal to acknowledge the sectarian violence that ravaged the group's hometown Derry: with its lusty evocation of teen courting rituals, it becomes an affirmation of the life force.
39. 16 Again, The Buzzcocks (1978)
A staccato manifesto from this most melodic of punk groups. From the grand old age of 21, Pete Shelley looks back at the innocence he feels he has so recently lost. His wish to be 16 again changes by the song's end into a furious denunciation of teen culture: 'And I hate modern music, disco, boogie and pop/ They go on and on and on and on and on: how I wish they would stop!'
40. Germ-Free Adolescents, X-Ray Spex (1978)
The group's fourth and most successful single (number 19 in the UK) replaces thrash with guitar reverb and a great vocal from Poly Styrene: defiantly English, and affecting in its halting cracks. The theme is how, by experimenting on youth in the name of consumerism, society takes the young away from nature and helps to create neurotic patterns.
41. I Was A Teenage Werewolf, The Cramps
'Somebody please make me stop': harking back to the archetypal 'fear of youth' B-movie, the Cramps take you right inside teen compulsiveness with a brutal fuzz guitar and sly wit. 'I have puberty rites,' yells Lux Interior, 'and I have puberty wrongs.'
42. Teenage Wildlife, David Bowie (1980)
How youth marketing uses up its raw material. Already in his thirties, Bowie had gone through most youth cult variants, and was unimpressed by the latest teenage revolution: 'Are you one of the new wave boys?/ Same old thing in brand new drag.'
43. Bad Seeds, Beat Happening (1986)
The spearhead of Washington state's K Records, Beat Happening verged on the creepy. But they really hit it on their update of William March's novel of adolescent evil, 1954's The Bad Seed . Propelled by a Sixties spy theme guitar, singer Calvin Johnson turns obnoxiousness into a new manifesto: 'A new generation for the teenage nation: this time let's do it right.'
44. Hallucination Generation, The Gruesome Twosome (1989)
A fine example of what was called Belgian new beat but what now sounds like early trance. With a growling vocal and shrieking samples offsetting spacy synths, the Two some offer a humorous commentary on contemporary acieed shock horror stories, as per the sample from the Sixties film, also called Hallucination Generation : 'Have you ever seen a psychedelic circus, and the acid heads? Pill party to pill party.'
45. Smells Like Teen Spirit, Nirvana
A revolutionary record based on a misapprehension: the title referred to a deodorant rather than any innate adolescent genius (or maybe the two had become intertwined by this point). Armed with a killer riff and a transcendent performance, this troubled song fulfilled a prophecy: Kurt Cobain was a big K Records fan, and 'Teen Spirit' initiated 'a new generation of the teenage nation'.
46. Sorrow 16, Manic Street Preachers (1992)
Proclaiming themselves 'generation terrorists', the band worked hard to distinguish themselves from their beatific, baggy peers. Illuminated by a great sliding guitar figure, the hard rocking 'Sorrow 16' (the B-side to the Top 20 'Slash'n'Burn') is their kiss-off to their own 'useless generation': 'You live stoned on obedience.'
47. Young Offender, Pet Shop Boys (1993)
An uptempo stormer examining the vexed relationship between the generations. As the young offender plays computer games, his older partner tries to deal with the boredom: 'How graceful your movements, how bitter your scorn; I've been a teenager since before you were born.'
48. Teenage Dirtbag, Girls Aloud (2006)
This live version of Wheatus's hit switches the genders but keeps the high school scenario. Quite apart from the fun of hearing the UK's premier girl group inviting you to see Iron Maiden, the feisty performance updates old girl group records: 'His girlfriend's a bitch!!!/ She has an attitude/ And she'd simply kick my ass if she knew the truth.'
49.Sound of Silver, LCD Soundsystem
James Murphy's relentlessly blank approach really suits this song's high concept. Sounding like a tranquillised Phil Oakey, he croons over artfully re-presented Eighties synth tropes: 'Sound of silver talk to me/ Makes you want to feel like a teenager/ Until you remember the feelings of/ A real life emotional teenager/ Then you think again.' Murphy is 37.
50. Fluorescent Adolescent, Arctic Monkeys (2007)
Full of Alex Turner's earthy observations - 'was it a Mecca dobber or a betting pencil?' - this mixes reggae with a bit of disco to tell the story of a rave-era adolescent facing middle-age. But this isn't a slag-off, more a meditation on the strength of teenage ideals: 'Those dreams weren't as daft as they seemed, not as daft as they seemed, my love, when you dreamed them up.'
· Jon Savage is the author of 'Teenage - the Creation of Youth 1875-1945' (Chatto)
Teenagers were also becoming more independent in the type of music they preferred to listen to, no more listening to what their parents liked, teens flocked to the new music of the decade, which was rock and roll.
Rock and roll, a new style of music which drew inspiration from African American blues music, embraced themes popular among teenagers, such as young love and rebellion against authority.
- DON'T YOU WORRYBlack Eyed Peas, Shakira, David Guetta.
- Don't Wake Me UpJonas Blue, Why Don't We.
- Evergreen (You Didn't Deserve Me At All)Omar Apollo.
- Everything But You (feat. ...
- Levitating (feat. ...
- Don't Be ShyTiësto, KAROL G.
Furthermore, the 1960s saw funk and soul music rising in popularity; rhythm and blues in general remained popular. The fusion of R&B, gospel, and original rock and roll was a success until the mid-part of the decade.
Performers including Frankie Avalon, Pat Boone, Fabian, Connie Francis, Annette Funicello, Ricky Nelson, and Dion, among many others, generally sported a neat, non-threatening appearance, often singing in a Pop style associated as much with Frank Sinatra as it was with Elvis Presley.
|1||1.Elvis Presley Don't Be Cruel / Hound Dog (1956) [Single]|
|2||2.Bill Haley and His Comets (We're Gonna) Rock Around the Clock / Thirteen Women (1954) [Single]|
|3||3.Roger Williams Autumn Leaves / Take Care (1955) [Single]|
- Drive-In Movies. The first drive-in opened in June 1933, but the concept didn't gain popular attention until nearly 20 years after. ...
- Hoola Hoops. ...
- Soda Shops. ...
- Sock Hops. ...
- Sideburns. ...
- Conical Bra. ...
- Poodle Skirts. ...
Nationwide surveys show that pop music proves to be the most popular genre of songs among the student demographic aged 16-24. Artists such as Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, and Ed Sheeran currently dominate the music industry as the biggest pop icons currently performing and make up the favorite artists of many youths.
According to nationwide surveys, genres such as pop, hip-hop, rock, jazz, rap and country prove to be the most popular genres among students.
- Pop music. Pop music is really not a musical genre. ...
- Hip Hop. Hip hop developed in the late 1970s and was created in the slums of New York City by African-American teenagers. ...
- Country music. ...
- Rock music. ...
- Rhythm and Blues (R&B)
- “Rock Around the Clock” – Bill Haley & His Comets.
- “Tutti Frutti” – Little Richard.
- “Great Balls of Fire'” – Jerry Lee Lewis.
- “Blueberry Hill” – Fats Domino.
- “Splish Splash” – Bobby Darrin.
- “Rockin' Robin – Bobby Day.
- “At the Hop” – Danny & The Juniors.
- “Bristol Stomp” – The Dovells.
- The Supremes, “Where Did Our Love Go” ...
- Chubby Checker, “The Twist” ...
- Little Stevie Wonder, “Fingertips – Part 2” ...
- The Supremes,”You Can't Hurry Love” ...
- Sly & The Family Stone, “Hot Fun In The Summertime” ...
- The Beatles, “Help!” ...
- Little Eva, “The Loco-Motion” ...
- Cream, “Sunshine of Your Love”
The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Doors, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, The Temptations, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, King Crimson, we could go on for days. It cannot be understated that the 1960s completely revolutionized music forever. It was by far the most influential musical decade in modern history.
Rudolph Valentino (1895-1926), a silent movie star, was arguably the biggest early film star. His funeral saw 1,00,000 people take to the streets and some female fans reportedly committed suicide.
School Life in the 1950's was harder than today because the facilities were few and inadequate. Teachers were stricter and corporal punishment was still in use. They had fewer subjects and wealth, discrimination, sexism and racism meant they could only do certain subjects.
In the 1950s, rock In' roll was able to do what jazz couldn't when it created a common culture amongst white and black teenagers. This was made possible by the advent of the radio, the availability of records, the television, and the population movement and societal changes of the 1950s.
This was called jitterbug, or swing, Lindy, the rock'n'roll, boogie-woogie or Bop. The word Bop was new then, so almost everything was called the Bop. But that word usually referred to a family of low swiveling Charleston-like steps danced in place, sometimes without a partner.
Immediately, the new musical style became most appealing to teenagers in the 1950s because it gave them their own special identity and voice. Also, teens were strongly attracted to the good looks and sexual appeal of the artists and the music.
What Was Expected For Women To Do For Fun? There was many fun activities around in the '50s. Woman were expected to do to these popular activities; movie theaters (drive-in), picnics, board games, spend time with kids, Sunday drives (driving around town with family), and watching T.V.
Straight stovepipe trousers, velvet-collar jackets, white shirts, colorful socks, suede creeper shoes, and carefully combed-back hair completed the look. In the United States, film stars Marlon Brando and James Dean popularized jeans, white shirts, leather jackets, and greased-back hair.
In the 1950s children often played games in the streets outside their houses. This was much safer, as fewer people owned cars and there was far less traffic. Children also played different types of games, with more simple toys. Instead of computer games, they had footballs, hula hoops, skipping ropes and cards.
It wasn't until Elvis Presley achieved superstar status--first via television appearances in 1956 (on the Steve Allen, Tommy Dorsey, and Ed Sullivan shows), followed by radio, jukebox, and cinema saturation--that the commercial preminence of rock 'n' roll was assured.
It developed from other music styles, especially African American popular music (called rhythm and blues) and country music. Chuck Berry was one of the first rock-and-roll singers and songwriters. Elvis Presley was the first rock-and-roll superstar.
Rock and roll emerged as a defined musical style in the United States in the early to mid-1950s. It derived most directly from the rhythm and blues music of the 1940s, which itself developed from earlier blues, the beat-heavy jump blues, boogie woogie, up-tempo jazz, and swing music.
|1||1.Elvis Presley Don't Be Cruel / Hound Dog (1956) [Single]|
|2||2.Bill Haley and His Comets (We're Gonna) Rock Around the Clock / Thirteen Women (1954) [Single]|
|3||3.Roger Williams Autumn Leaves / Take Care (1955) [Single]|
Bunny Hop. The Bunny Hop was a classic early 1950s party dance: it was energetic and full of jumps, but very simple and repetitive, which made it perfect for parties. Dancers formed a line (imagine a conga line) and performed a short sequence of side-steps and jumps forward and back to the music.
Artists such as Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Bill Haley and His Comets, Bo Diddley, Fats Domino, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis, Big Joe Turner, and Gene Vincent released the initial rhythm and blues-influenced early rock and roll hits.
Revolutionary blues singer Chuck Berry, often referred to as the "poet laureate" and "father" of rock 'n' roll, died Saturday, police in Missouri said. He was 90.
Among the important bands and soloists in 1950's Rock and Roll were Willie Mae Thornton, Big Joe Turner, Bill Haley and His Comets, Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis, Buddy Holly and the Crickets, Fats Domino, Bo Diddley, Gene Vincent, the Everly Brothers, and Carl Perkins.