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MUS111H1 Lecture Notes - Patina, Resource Interchange File Format, Country Blues

Course Code
Joshua Pilzer

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Tuesday, October 23, 2012
The British Invasion
Influence: Many performers are coming from the American South (black or white), many of
whom are the working-class making monuments of themselves, making a culture that wasn‟t
necessarily there before
R&R movies (Rock Around the Clock 1955) etc. and records
1950s/60s collecting and imitating of blues/R&B/R&R recordings
1963 Beatles visit to US
Subsequent years explosion of groups/hits
Working-class was quite large many of these kids hear all this working-class music coming out
of the US and then start to play it themselves
Example: Train Kept a-Rollin’
Yardbird‟s Version vs. Johnny Burnette Trio
Lead singers of YB‟s is playing the harmonica – influence of the African American „country
blues‟ harmonica relates it more to the blues (yet it‟s already related to the blues anyway
„Train‟ in a kind of 12-bar blues)
Idea that much of the heaviness of R&R came out of the UK
Myth of R&R in the UK is that the British rescued all this music that NA had thrown into the
„dustbins of history‟, later re-importing it into the US and Canada NOT REALLY TRUE
Fetishization of African culture in NA is happening more intensively in the UK
British Invasion cont’d
Bringing American Music to America
o Cleansed of “ethnic baggage” and class politics
o “European” style/patina/cultural capital (respectability)
Writing own songs becomes canonical; idea of “R&R composers
“Genius” idea applied to pop music
Bands everything has basically been solo artists with a backing group; now an influx of
bands, having much to do with the role of R&R in UK culture in the 50s/60s groups of
youths gathering together to make music
Beginning as a kind of „cover band‟
o i.e. Kansas City/Hey Hey Hey Hey blending lots of things about popular music with
the kinds of Af-Am. genres they‟re influenced by
o i.e. Dizzy Miss Lizzy incorporation of the 12-bar blues structure
Original songs (i.e. Eight Days a Week) also maintaining an incorporation of the 12-bar
**Idea of working-class kids coming to the US and presenting themselves with a kind of
respectability (even though they‟re breaking rules - hair too long, etc.), for example, through
dressing well here, R&R gains a certain European patina or respectability
Example: All Day and All of the Night The Kinks
Emphasizing beats 1-4
Played in a very „heavy‟ kind of way – distortion aspects
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