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Music 2II3 Popular Culture 7.docx

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Simon Wood

Music 2II3 Popular Culture: Post World War 2 Lecture 7 7/17/2013 2:54:00 PM Radio and Records (82-85) Crossovers and Covers (85-86) Bill Haley, Pat Boone, and the "Whitening" of Rhythm and Blues (92-94) Elvis Presley’s Visual Appeal (100-101) Adults in the Room: Brill Building and Aldon Publishing (114-115) Teen Idols for Idle Teens (115-116) Producers in the Brill Building / Phil Spector and the Wall of Sound (130-135)  Rock n roll independent labels paying bribes – wasn’t new  Independent paying more bribes than major labels Alan freed – support independent rock n roll Dick Clark (American Bandstand)  being an ideal example/model of how the music industry should be  outcomes “smelling like roses”  outcomes very different than Alan freed relating to payola  actually did more illegal things than Alan Freed  why? Because of his relationship “American bandstand” – teens dancing to records/hit songs o singer would come out and lip-sync  very popular – weekly audience of 20 million viewers by the time it was approaching in between years  huge hit during in between years  host was dick clark  basically socially acceptable behaviour  it was about how the teenagers looked? o The boys were always clean cut – wearing suits o the girls were classy – wearing dresses below the knees o never see inter racial couples o black couples would be at the back of the room o if slow dancing – very respectful o interviewing the kids – always educated, smart, get careers  key was kids will do exactly what their parents did or what their parents told them they should do  need to behave like adults and look like adults o social media message – acceptable were dresses for girls, and suits for men – suppose to dress like adults o tight pencil skirt was considered unacceptable o important because of the fear of rock n roll, integration and juvenile delinquency– what the music will do to our youth  American bandstand tied socially acceptable behaviour with the music that was being broadcasted, which was produced by the industry in the major label of the division of labour  much of the music is being produced by a new generation of style songwriters – it has to be in the right style – tin pan alley “style” – which is now a new sound of pop music  dance craze o a style of song where the lyrics told you how to dance o key strategy of American bandstand – so kids would actually watch the show in order to learn the moves of popular dances o example: chubby checkers – king of twist, not from major label company o shows how effective the whole strategy was  Twist – wrote in 1950 o Hank ballard originally wrote the Twist –wrote 3 or 4 times o Dick clark first saw black kids doing it and was interested in it o Couldn’t change it enough, so just did it again o Chubby checkers took over o old white middle class people dancing to the twist o everyone does it – if you’re in, you “do” the twist  showed that certain songs when they are presented by certain ways, if everyone likes it they become trendy, people do not appear threatened – even though its rock n roll  now its completely safe, right music  cameo records co president – dick clark – president of all of the records and companies  chubby checkers got his name from dick clarks wife – she liked fat domino  anti trust law -- very thing that payola was looking for – to earn money from other networks  key part in the in between years o dick clark made -- teen idols  primarily a whole collection of young white men, a lot named bobby o popularized by american bandstand o just had to be good looking (In a way mothers would go “awh, hes so cute”) – non threatening o they did not have to be able to sing o example: Fabian was lucky enough for no one to notice he cant sing at all o crafted and shaped by people within major labels o new medias like TV were perfect for their popularization o visual appeal was what made them famous and successful -- TV was key, it would promote them  where were these songs coming from? o Almost as if TPA had been reborn o New York was once again centre of the music industry o The Brill Building -- centre of this new TPA style production  most successful of Brill Building was – Don Krishnar/ Al Nevins – had a music publishing company called Aldon Music  how it worked?  A bunch of little rooms, in each cubby hole there were pianos, a desk and a couple of chairs  songwriters in groups of threes wrote in the small rooms for 7 to 8 hours  at the end of the day, they would come back to offices and play what they have written that day to Don and Al  pop top ten at least half of them were from Brill Building, at times all of them would be from the Brill Building  key why dick clark got off of bail  Their success was based on the new media of television  visual appeal of the artists – its not how good they sing, how good they look – did they perform well  back to payola – what happened to dick clark? o Cleared by the committee despite clear conflict of interest:  Why? – used television to link division of labour pop music with social behaviour  Big shift of technology starts in the in between years Technological Changes  step back in WW2  astonishing things about the war in Europe (1939 to 1945) – is that Nazi Germany lost – they shouldn’t have lost  reason they did lose was because of their leader .. Altdorf Hitler o constantly overruling generals  nazis invented, space light, V2 (first rocket to go in air), jet aircrafts (faster than any allies had)  magnetophone: o jack mullin: sergent in US army –needs to find it, knew the nazis had it o discovers a magnetophone in western Germany in a radio show at the end of WW2 o it was a reel to reel tape recorder -- which was invented by the nazis o TDK – corporation company of nazi germany o he demonstrated one to Bing Crosby – 1947  he was always looking for ways to play  weekly radio show  before this, the only way to record was on discs which weren’t great on sound quality o record a show live and replay it back live and have no background noise, no worries about scratches, skips o once one act is done another comes back again o editing comes into effect – you can snip sections o tape up the two sections together o leads to the invention of the laugh track, by snipping it o bing invests in the founding of Ampex  first company in the states to manufacture reel to reel tape recorders  in 1948, Bing give one of the first commercially produced reel to reel tape recorders to Les Paul  Les Paul (1915 to 2009) o Performing recording musician o Great post war TPA star o crossed a lot of different styles o jazz, pop, country o had a TV and radio show  had a show about a man obsessed with recording with his wife Mary o les hated the sound of the guitar – particula
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