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What was the Secret to Hip Hop that Changed the Whole Rock Music Era?

By Liam Borevius.



What was the Secret to Hip Hop that Changed the Whole Rock Music Era? Is Rock Music dead? What are the Differences Between them from Now and Then?


The 1950’s was a bit different from the previous decade. For some of the people, it began late at night time: it can be described that the bedrooms were covered with posters and ears glued to a radio giving out rock music, charged with intense emotion and propelled by a wild rhythm. Growing up as the middle class in America of the fifties, it was something no one has ever heard anything like it. It was something new and original that people knew about. Someone said “we asked our friends, maybe an older brother or sister. We found out that they called it rock & roll.” It was much more vital and alive than any music that they have ever heard about before that and got into a new category: Rock & roll was much more than new music for the people. It was an obsession, and a way of life.

For some people, it began a little later, with the first glimpse of Elvis Presley on the television. It is described that people's reactions were remarkably uniform, from those who grew up in the fifties and did not seem to matter how or where the music was heard. He was a legend which came out bursting out of nowhere, with his only power being to change peoples lives forever. It was not just Elvis Presley starting the rock-era, there were some other artists too. Like Fats Domino. He was the ‘gracious’ of the first generation of rock & roll stars. This was just the beginning of Rock & roll. All people that were born in the fifties, black and white, country born or city bred everyone were to the very core of the matter influenced by Rock & roll. The category Rock & Roll was used in all kinds of popular music of the late forties and early fifties. Rock & roll was a catchall rubric for the sound of everything from stomping (fast tempo and heavy beat) swing bands to street-corner vocal groups to scrappy blues bands. As Fats Domino believed that Rock & roll was simply just a new marketing strategy for the style of music. But what about the other fifties rock artists?

Several of the most typical and influential Rock & roll performers of the mid-fifties were making music that could not, by any stretch of the imagination. There was no clear precedent in Rock & roll for an artist the same as Chuck Berry, who combined music genres like Hillbilly, blues and swing jazz. He was a singer, songwriter and was one of the most influential figures in Rock & roll history. Also known as the father of Rock ‘n’ roll. With one of his famous works was “Sweet Little Sixteen”, “Tennessee”, “Nadine” and “Johnny B. Goode”. What made him so unique was his blend of a rhythm and blues beat, country guitar licks and the flavor of Chicago blues and telling a story. One of his famous works called “Maybellene” is also known as to be the first true Rock & roll songs. However, the mainstream of the popular music had never seen a performer whose vocal delivery and the amazing dance moves otherwise known as, *drumrolls* Elvis Presley. He is regarded as one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th century, he is often referred to as the “King of Rock & roll”. During the 1956 through the 1950 he completely dominated the best seller roll and initiated the age of Rock & roll, welcoming both white and black rock artists. In this decade he became one of the teen idols.

The coming of Rock & roll in the mid fifties was not only a musical revolution but a social and generational revolution of huge and unpredictable scope. It also had a major effect on the business of popular music. But was it only Rock & roll during the 1950s. No it was not, there were some other music genres that were very common like; RnB (rhyme and blues), gospel music, blues, ragtime (rhythmically broken melodies), Jazz (Bebop). These genres are actually very important for Rock & roll, as well. At the end of 1940s something called dissonance was used more oftenly, which played a big part in the. Bebop jazz period. Bebop marked a major shift in the role of jazz, from a popular style of music for dancing, to a “high-art,” less-accessible, cerebral “musician’s music”. The audience for both blues, gospel, and jazz. With the southern blues and gospel music, got added with a strong back beat. Which got very appreciated for teenagers who were trying to break out of the mainstream Which then lead to Elvis Presley successfully making a new hybrid popular from the fusion of Rhythm & Blue and Country Music.

On the other hand, something that was dissimilar from the 1950s with 1990s is that the beauty of the 1990s was that you could be mod, rocker, hip-hop explorer, Rock & roll fan and country fan - all at the same time. Because the notion of what music was shifting so radically. Something that was really different from the 1990s and even all of the other periods as well, was something called female-fronted rock bands. Which produced a cultural currecnty that produced a vibrant feminist-rock scene. Towards the decade’s end, a rise of feminism (and even female spending power) in 1990s music would trickle up the pop charts. This led to an explosion of multi-platinum singer and songwriters like, Sarah McLachlan, Alanis Morissette, Sheryl Crow and Lisa Leob. the 1990s could be seen as a rise of female artists.

Something that was very common and even created during the 1950s was the boy bands. These bands began to sing about love and other pop music themes, a precursor to what boy bands in the 1960s would capitalize on.

Something that was really different from the 1990s and 1950s was about the music industry development, which was above and beyond grunge. Which incredibly shifted every person's music tastes for decades. This was the decade when billboards charts were used for sales figures. Up until that point, the billboard rankings were determined by the projections and did not always reflect public consumption. Which was very useful for artists wanting to promote their own music or their music tastes. Which would end up as a good marketing and earning more money than they would have done otherwise. But it was the music in 1991 that changed it forever. It did not matter what music taste of popular music you had. Whether you were dancing to the pop sounds of “Maria Carey” or “New Kids On the Block”. Or nodding your head to DJ Quik or Nice & Smooth, or singing along to Color Me Badd or Hi-Five there was a lot of variety of musical genres and types on the radio. It was a very important year and represented a lot of things that would define the new decade in music. The late 1990s, modern pop R&B and pop was on the scene, with singles from Janet Jackson’s “Rhythm Nation 1814” which was dominating the charts and established artists like Whitney Houston. Which embraced the production style and produced the album I’m your Baby Tonight.

The 1990s hip hop had an interesting intro for this decade, because the “rap'' was continuing to cross over the world. This was the decade of Hip hop and was called Hip Hop golden year and made it into a newfound genre. With many one hit wonders like, MC Hammer and Vanilla Ice which exploded in 1990. With the songs “Ice, Ice Baby” and “U Can’t Touch This”. The subject matter in the music that these artists chose was as varied as their audience. MC Hammer, for instance, rapped about subjects including the rise of his career as well as songs about praying for the betterment of society.

What also happened at the beginning of the decade that emerged in the 1990s were bands and artists who enjoyed a type of genre in the mainstream music scene after their popularity had lowered in the decade before. Many new artists were just starting out the new decade by trying to make a huge impact on the musical scene. Following is an explanation of some of the most memorable artists that helped to define the era. The early year started with pretty much new popular music genres like techno (dance or house music). Groups like Technotric entered the billboard charts with hits like “Pump Up the Jam '' and “Get Up ''. others will undoubtedly remember the hits from CC Music Factory, including “Gonna Make You Sweat”, which is even popular today for teenagers or even dance clubs across the country.

There was also a new genre created by Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” spoke about a teen revolution in a seemingly meaningless world. Which lead to the song marked the beginning of the grunge, which remained popular throughout the middle of the 1990s. Grunge was a guitar-based music which fell into three categories of rock: alternative- classic- rock and dimming hair metal scene. What made the song “Smells Like Teen Spirit” the beginning of grunge was because their sound was not in singular scope. It drew reference to everything from punk to garage rock to indie pop to country and blues. Making another difference between the two decades.

The evolution of pop music is tremendous. At first (1950s) those who were considered as “pop” musicians started to borrow rhythms from two other music genres musicians, jazz and blues musicians. Rock & roll was created. If it wasn’t for the 1950s the pop music would not be what it is today and without the revolution. Pioneers of Rock & roll music like, Muddy Waters, Ike Turner, Louis Jordan, Little Richard and Bo Diddley. Which was like role models of later more known artists like, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, Bill Haley etc who made it big. From then on, more superstars rose through the ranks and pop music was like no other. Which later led to, The Rolling Stones, The Who, and the Beatles. Also, if it wasn’t for the evolution the pop music other genres would not be created like Techno and Disco for example.

Another similarity and evolution that we can see is through boybands. The boy bands we need to move back to the late late 1950s. Which I would say started when The Osmond Brothers preforcend. Which was an all male music group (brothers) which started to gather lots of fans and something most teenage girls liked and the teenagers buying their album like candy. And we could also say that The Beatles is a boyband, but this was in the mid 1960s. The Beatles influenced both rock artists and helped the birth of good-looking boy bands performing pop songs. Everything from Jackson 5 to New Kids on the Block to Backstreet Boys to one direction. The music genre changed: When the boys bands started it was strictly pop music. The boy bands stayed pretty stagnant with their musical style, which was between pop to dance-pop. However, the Boy band 98 Degrees used more of an R&B feel. But if you speak generally it was mainly pop. But as they’ve grown older they’ve experienced some R&B, and pop rock started to trend.

Leading on to another evolution that was very different from the 1950s. In the 1950 some musicians wrote their own song but some did not. The musicians from the category “some did not”. Was like Elvis Presley, but it is said to believe that he often took inspiration from other musicians. Which kind of puts him on the spot that he did write his own music not to 100%. But in the 1990s it got more common to write their own music and people started to see/realize that this might be something better.