George Martin
was the producer for many of The Beatles’ original record albums (sometimes known as “the Fifth Beatle because he often played the piano in their tracks”). He established the Associated Independent Recording Studios in 1969.
Ex: “Eleanor Rigby” The Beatles
Rock & Roll
It’s a collection of popular music styles that arose in the US and had its heyday between 1955-1965. It’s a synthesis of rhythm and blues, jazz, and country influences. It is also characterized as a southern phenomenon that emphasized beats and rhythm, such as backbeat, and was directed at mostly teenaged audiences.
Ex: “Rock & Roll Music” Chuck Berry
It’s a collection of popular music styles that arose in both the US and Great Britain in the early 1960’s. Influenced by Rock & Roll and the British Invasion, characteristics of rock include a broader range of lyrical subjects and instrumentation as well as a greater emphasis on electrification, production techniques, and stylistic reach.
Ex: “Satisfaction” The Rolling Stones
Descending tetrachord
Since the times of ancient Greece, the descending tetrachord has been used as a symbol of lament. Usually played by strings, it is a musical scale of four notes that incrementally lower in the Baroque style.
Ex: “Eleanor Rigby” The Beatles
It’s an effect most often applied to the sound of an electric guitar that alters the timbre, usually making it heavier/rougher, and increases the substaing time of pitches played on the instrument. Like feedback, some musicians initially believed distortion was a fault; it slowly entered mainstream and was created by poking holes in the amplifiers or by using distortion pedals.
Ex: “You Really Got Me” The Kinks
– It’s a short, repeated musical phrase or chord progression. It is often played by the solo instrument, and forms the basis of the musical composition.
Ex: “Smoke on the Water” Deep Purple
Berry Gordy
He is an American record producer, who founded the Motown record label in Detroit, 1960. He built Motown on the model of the Brill Building of New York, and wanted to be able to appeal to all different demographics. He made sure the sound was polished and well-suited for radio.
Ex: “My Girl” The Temptations
Founded by Berry Gordy in 1960, Motown, aka “Hitsville USA,” quickly became a magnet for young talented locals of Detroit, Michigan. Combining styles of gospel, rhythm and blues, it’s an example of an independent record company that eventually became a distinct genre. Strings and Horns were fundamental instruments that helped create this polished sound.
Ex: “Baby Love” The Supremes
Founded by siblings, Jim Stewart and Estelle Axton, in Memphis, Tennessee, 1959, Stax Records, aka “Soulsville USA,” generated a rougher, less polished timbre than Motown. An initial close relationship between Atlantic and Stax Records abruptly ended because of a falling out between Jerry Wexler and Jim Stewart in the late 1960’s.
Ex: “In the Midnight Hour” Wilson Prickett
Soul Music is a genre that arose in the US, combining elements of African American gospel and R&B. In order to embrace soul, artists, like Ray Charles, would communicate gospel phrases in a funky, secular manner. Groovy vocables and improvisational moments of call and response are a few characteristics of soul.
Ex: “What’d I Say” Ray Charles
staggered entrances
a step by step method of introducing new instruments into a song. Different instruments come in at different times generally before vocals begin.

EXAMPLE: The Rolling Stones- “Satisfaction” (1965)

an artificially high voice; especially : an artificially produced singing voice that overlaps and extends above the range of the full voice especially of a tenor

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EXAMPLE: The Temptations- “My Girl” (1965)

a group of notes or tones sung on one syllable in a song

EXAMPLE: Little Richard- “Tutti Frutti” (1956)

word painting
when the words are sung in a way that paints picture of meaning

EXAMPLE: Ray Charles: “What’d I Say” (1959)

period of staggered instrumentation; has slight pauses in the instrumentation

EXAMPLE: Ray Charles: “What’d I Say” (1959)

call and response
a succession of two distinct phrases usually played by different musicians, where the second phrase is heard as a direct commentary on or response to the first

EXAMPLE: Ray Charles: “What’d I Say” (1959)

the character portrayed by the artist of a song

EXAMPLE: The Shirelles: “Will You Love Me Tomorrow?” (1961)

Pat Boone
Popular white cover artist. Remade songs for white listeners.

EXAMPLE: covered “Tutti Frutti” by Little Richard

Alan Freed
also known as “Moondog”; he was an American disc-jockey who became internationally known for promoting African-American rhythm and blues music on the radio in the United States and Europe under the name of rock and roll.
one of the earliest styles of rock and roll music, and emerged in the early 1950s. The term rockabilly is a portmanteau of rock (from rock ‘n’ roll) and hillbilly, the latter a reference to the country music (often called hillbilly music in the 1940s and 1950s) that contributed strongly to the style’s development.
EXAMPLE: Elvis Presley- “Blue Moon of Kentucky” (1954)
tone quality or tone color; characteristic of a sound that distinguishes it from others with the same loudness and frequency. The “Twang” in country music. Ex. Johnny B. Goode (1958) Chuck Berry, Sharp guitar timbre
• Backbeat- drum, normally a snare drum emphasis on beats 2+4. Used a timing mechanism in the song Ex. Radiohead “Creep”, snare drum backbeat on 2+4
Simple verse (strophic) form
All verses have almost all the same music and there is no full music. No contrasting music. Verses may end in refrain (usually repetition of title of song). Heavy emphasis on lyrics. AAAA. Ex. Bob Dylan “Blowin in the Wind”
Verse-Chorus Form
Most common form. Presence of chorus which alternates w/ stanza of changing text. Simple verse chorus- music for verses and chorus. Ex. Tutti Frutti-1956- Little Richard. Contrasting verse chorus- music for chorus and verses are different. Ex. Creep, Radiohead
A and B sections have contrasting music. B section act as a bridge between A sections. Ex. Will you love me Tomorrow, 1961 Shirelles
Introduction to a song that often does not have lyrics. It leads up to the first verse or chorus Ex. “Creep” Radiohead
Similar to an intro, it closes out a song by typically being different and less structured than a verse or chorus Ex. “will you still love me tomorrow” 1961 the Shirelles
Part of song that is often accompanied with a stanza of lyrics
Part of song which has its own music and is often repeated.
connects one part of a song to another and makes it less repetitive. “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” 1961 The Shirelles
A phrase, verse, or group of verses repeated at intervals throughout a song especially at the end of each stanza.
o Ex. “blowin in the wind” Bob Dylan
12 bar blues
Harmonic structure common to rock music. 4 bars of I Chord. 2 bars of IV chord followed by 2 bars of I chord. 1 bar of V chord followed by 1 bar of IV chord, ending with 2 bars of I chord. Ex. Batman theme song.
Studio Effect
any musical effect created not by performers but in the recording studio. Studio effects include techniques such as overdubbing, splicing, stereo field, and slapback. Example: Slapback aka Tape Delay found in “Heartbreak Hotel” 1956-Elvis Presley
studio effect that gives a reverberant quality to the music by running 2 copies of the same recording in very close succession (a fraction of a second). Give audio an echoey sound making it feel much fuller. This shows the growing importance of technology in the development of rock and roll. Studio now has become an instrument. Also known as tape delay. Example: “Heartbreak hotel” 1956 — Elvis Presley
Sam Phillips
Founder of Sun Records, in Memphis Tennessee 1952. Renowned record producer famous for discovering Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash and starting their careers at Sun Records. Brought these artists to the forefront during the emergence of Rock and Roll. Example “Folsom City Blues” 1956 – Johnny Cash
Sun Records (Sun Studio, Memphis
Founded in 1952 by Sam Phillips in Memphis Tennessee. Known for launching the career of notable rock and roll artists such as Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash by giving them their first recording contracts. Sun Records was also well-known for recording African-American artists for a white audience. The musicians that came out of Sun Records Studio influenced the future Rock and Roll community as well as the younger artists during this ear. Example “Folsom City Blues” 1956 Johnny Cash
Brill Building
Office building located on Broadway in Manhattan, New York intended to be a financial building, but was instead rented out to music publishers during the Great Depression as there weren’t any other options. Turned into a song-writing factory during 1959-1963 where songwriters would churn out lyrics for girl groups and teen idols and match them to the right performers. Example” “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” 1961 -Shirelles
JoJo Hermann
Current keyboardist of the popular American rock-jam band Widespread Panic from Atlanta, Georgia. Originally performing for a group called Beanland in Mississippi, he played off of his influences such as Professor Longhair, Otis Spann, and James P. Johnson on the keyboard before joining Widespread Panic in 1992. He came and spoke to our class about his rock influences.
Alfred “Uganda” Roberts
U.S. congo and percussion player from New Orleans deeply influenced by Calpyso rhythms. Roberts has played percussion since he was a teenager and by the time he was 29, he went on tour with Professor Longhair for eight years, making joint records until Professor Longhair’s passing. Roberts came and performed for our class.
Professor Longhair
New Orleans blues singer and pianist introduced to the class by JoJo Hermann. Creator of the “rhumba boogie,” a Caribbean and new Orleans rhythm with a heavy, percussive left hand, forever changed the sound of rhythm and blues piano. He is known as the “Bach of Rock” as he is revered by many as the true inventor of rock. Example: “Big Chief” 1950- Professor Longhair.
Otis Spann
Known as the nation’s best blues pianist of the 1950s and 1960s. His reputation derives from his long-time involvement and success with the blues group Muddy Waters Band. Introduced to the class by JoJo Hermann. “It must have been the Devil” –1954 –Otis Spann
British Invasion
The first wave of British bands migrating to the US 1963-1966. Reintroduced American music to Americans by taking elements of British and American music styles. Originated with widely successful blues or rock based groups; The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Who. Served as a response to the “death of rock and roll” by performing in front of thousands of screaming fans, and gaining worldwide notoriety. These British groups became the center of American pop-culture appearing on the Ed Sullivan Show and ushered in a new style of rock Example: “I Want to Hold Your Hand” 1963- Beatles.