Rock Music, Where Did it Come From?

‘Rock music’ today is an incredibly broad term. The amount of musical styles that this covers is vast, with more and more takes on Rock music occurring all of the time at the hands of progressive musicians. This article will have a quick look over the history of Rock music, its origins and how it got to where it is today.

Early Years

There’s no escaping the fact that ‘Rock and Roll’ is ultimately the grandparent of modern Rock. Rock and Roll began life itself originating from a combination of other musical styles that were popular around the time of its conception. Musicians were playing around, mixing up, and using these different musical styles to find a new sound. And that they did. The contributing elements included Country music, Jazz, Blues, and Gospel.

Rock and Roll has been recognised to have begun as early as the 1940’s with some elements existing in Jazz from the 1920’s. Originally Rock and Roll utilised either a Saxophone or Piano as the lead instrument in it’s make up. However in the 1950’s the guitar became the principle instrument for this musical movement. Soon the classic formation of a Rock and Roll bad took shape to incorporate a Lead Guitar and a Rhythm Guitar, as well as a Bass Guitar and Drum Kit. You will notice that this arrangement is the same one that still exists in most Rock bands today.

Boom of Rock

The boom period for Rock music was during its ‘classic’ phase, usually regarded as occuring during the mid to late 1960’s. This is the period when Rock began to diverge to create many of the sub genres of Rock that we are familiar with in today’s musical landscape. These genres include British Rock, a style which identifies itself with early groups like The Beatles and bands like The Rolling Stones, and Blues Rock which featured prominent southern bands like ZZ Top and Lynyrd Skynrd.

Throughout the years and decades that followed the classic period, Rock music diverged more and more. Notable decades include the 1970’s which saw the birth of Progressive and Glam Rock, both featuring prominent artists such as David Bowie and Elton John, and the late ’70s and ’80s which saw the birth of Punk Rock and New wave which featured artists like The Sex Pistols and Blondie respectively.

With all of the new genres of Rock music that had appeared, naturally the fans of these genres identified themselves by the clothing styles that they began to wear. Heavy Metal saw bands and fans with long hair, leather trousers, and New Rock boots, whilst Punk Rock championed denim jackets, skinny jeans, and whole or partially shaved heads.

Modern Day Scence

Today we are lucky to have such a variety of Rock music to choose from that there is really something to suit everyone’s personal tastes. Many of the genres of Rock that began life during the 1960s – ’90s remain popular today, with new bands coming in and filling the void of old bands, and taking a new stance towards their respective Rock genre, constantly pushing the music scene forward.

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