The History of Rock and Roll
In the 1950s and 60s, people weren't just expressing their feelings toward the government—they were singing them, too. (Think Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, not High School Musical 3.) Gotta love rock and roll.
your workout bearable. Music can inspire change, alter popular opinion,
and lead a revolution. Rock 'N Roll was the music of rebellion.
Rock gave a voice to those passionate about civil rights or outraged at the growing divide
between the haves and the have-nots.
But it also gave teeth to a rebellion against the status quo.
The 60's and 70's were a time of experimentation...
...and Rock was about kicking the old established norms and forging a new path in all aspects of life.
Before Rock came along, the lyrics of popular
American music dealt with "feel-good" subjects, like patriotism or wholesome puppy love.
But suddenly there was this new flavor of music.
The lyrics weren't so kid-friendly anymore.
They dealt with real-life, and sex was a part of that.
At the forefront of this new wave...
...was the "King" of Rock 'N Roll.
Until this time, our television shows featured
couples sleeping in separate beds. It was no longer considered scandalous for
a woman to show a little calf, but it was still a little risqué.
We didn't start tackling serious taboos until Rock and Roll put sex front and center.
Rock N Roll celebrated being different...
...and going against the establishment. It aided in the Civil Rights movement.
White kids and black kids began embracing the same music...
...realizing they weren't so different after all.
Rock N Roll was the first music to voice anti-government sentiments.
Artists like Bob Dylan began speaking out against the Vietnam War through their songs.
Clearly, Rock N Roll has been an important part of U.S. history.
Do you think Rock and other popular music today make the same impact?
Or has music lost its political influence? Rock out, and Shmoop amongst yourselves.