A History Of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs

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March 23, 2020  

Episode 75: “There Goes My Baby” by the Drifters

The Ben E. King Line-up of the Drifters

Episode seventy-five of A History of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs looks at "There Goes My Baby" by the Drifters, and how a fake record label, a band sacked for drunkenness, and a kettledrum player who couldn't play led to a genre-defining hit. Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Rebel Rouser" by Duane Eddy

Tilt Araiza has assisted invaluably by doing a first-pass edit, and will hopefully be doing so from now on. Check out Tilt's irregular podcasts at http://www.podnose.com/jaffa-cakes-for-proust and http://sitcomclub.com/

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March 17, 2020  

Episode 74: “It Doesn’t Matter Any More” by Buddy Holly

The Big Bopper, Ritchie Valens, and Buddy Holly

Episode seventy-four of A History of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs looks at "It Doesn't Matter Any More" by Buddy Holly, and at the reasons he ended up on the plane that killed him. Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Chantilly Lace" by the Big Bopper.

 Tilt Araiza has assisted invaluably by doing a first-pass edit, and will hopefully be doing so from now on. Check out Tilt's irregular podcasts at http://www.podnose.com/jaffa-cakes-for-proust and http://sitcomclub.com/ Read the rest of this entry »

March 14, 2020  

Patreon Announcement

This is an announcement to do with my Patreon, so you can skip it if you have absolutely no intention of ever contributing to that. It's also to do with the coronavirus, as everything at the moment seems to be.

I am very aware that because of the economic slowdown due to the virus, and people having to not do shift work, take time off sick, and so on, people will be shorter of money than usual, so I completely understand that some people might end up cutting back on things like Patreon subscriptions. If anyone backing me has to do that, I *absolutely* understand. The podcast remains free to listen to, it hopefully always *will* remain free to listen to, and nobody is under any obligation to pay me a penny. I don't want anyone to feel bad about not being able to afford to support the podcast.

But at the same time, the podcast is my single biggest source of income, and I don't want to lose too many backers -- and ideally, I would like to continue gaining backers, as I have in recent months. I like to eat and pay my mortgage and feed my dog and so forth.

So I've decided to do something to make the Patreon better value for money, to thank those backers who will be able to stick around, and to give those of you who are on the fence a reason to sign up.

I *was* originally planning to offer these things as stretch goals for when the Patreon gets to a thousand dollars a month, but in the current circumstances I think I'll just offer them starting now.

In the middle of each month, I will put together a private Spotify playlist for backers only, with liner notes. Sometimes the music will be stuff we cover in the podcast, sometimes it'll be what I'm listening to that month, sometimes it'll be other things. Sadly to listen to that you'll need to have a Spotify account, but I don't know of any other music streaming services that allow for private playlists. Even those without a Spotify account will be able to read the liner notes and see the tracklisting, and you could listen to the songs on other services.

Then, at the end of each month, I'll also do a quick backer-only question-and-answer podcast, answering any questions backers have about music, my process, the future of the podcast, or whatever.

This will all be on top of the normal Patreon bonuses, which are a ten-minute extra podcast every week, and for higher-level backers free copies of all my self-published books as they come out. And I'll be trying to think of more ways to make the Patreon more value for your money.

Again, *NONE* of this will change the status of the podcast, which is going to remain free, and nobody should feel pressured into backing the Patreon. I value every one of my listeners, and am grateful that you take the time every week to listen to what I have to say.

And I hope that all of you, and all your loved ones, stay safe and well and get through this crisis with as little difficulty and heartbreak as possible.

I'll be back on Monday, with an episode on Buddy Holly.

March 9, 2020  

Episode 73: “La Bamba” by Ritchie Valens

Ritchie Valens in a dinner jacket, wearing a bow tie

Episode seventy-two of A History of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs looks at "La Bamba" by Ritchie Valens, and is the first of a two-part story which will conclude next week with an episode on Buddy Holly. Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Kansas City" by Wilbert Harrison.

Tilt Araiza has assisted invaluably by doing a first-pass edit, and will hopefully be doing so from now on. Check out Tilt's irregular podcasts at http://www.podnose.com/jaffa-cakes-for-proust and http://sitcomclub.com/

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March 2, 2020  

Episode 72: “Trouble” by Elvis Presley

Elvis in his army uniform with his mother, Gladys

Episode seventy-two of A History of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs looks at "Trouble" by Elvis Presley, his induction into the army, and his mother's death. Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "When" by the Kalin Twins.

Tilt Araiza has assisted invaluably by doing a first-pass edit, and will hopefully be doing so from now on. Check out Tilt's irregular podcasts at http://www.podnose.com/jaffa-cakes-for-proust and http://sitcomclub.com/ Read the rest of this entry »

February 24, 2020  

REUPLOAD Episode 71: “Willie and the Hand Jive” by Johnny Otis

Johnny Otis holding a guitar, with the Three Tons of Joy, by a street sign saying "London"

Note: This is a new version because I uploaded the wrong file originally

 

Episode seventy-one of A History of Rock Music in 500 Songs continues our look at British music TV by looking at the first time it affected American R&B, and is also our final look at Johnny Otis.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Short Shorts" by the Royal Teens, a group whose members went on to be far more important than one might expect. 

Also, this is the first of hopefully many podcasts to come where Tilt Araiza has assisted invaluably by doing a first-pass edit, and will hopefully be doing so from now on. Check out Tilt's irregular podcasts at http://www.podnose.com/jaffa-cakes-for-proust and http://sitcomclub.com/

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February 17, 2020  

Episode 70: “Move It” by Cliff Richard and the Drifters

 Cliff Richard on "Oh Boy"

Episode seventy of A History of Rock Music in 500 Songs looks at "Move It" by Cliff Richard, and the beginning of rock and roll TV in the UK. Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Poor Little Fool" by Ricky Nelson, another artist whose career was made by TV, and one who influenced Cliff Richard hugely.

 

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February 10, 2020  

Episode 69: “Fujiyama Mama” by Wanda Jackson

Wanda Jackson in Japan, with unidentified Japanese woman, both in kimonos

Episode sixty-nine of A History of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs looks at "Fujiyama Mama" by Wanda Jackson, and the first rock and roller to become "big in Japan" Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Purple People Eater" by Sheb Wooley.

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February 4, 2020  

Episode 68: “Yakety Yak” by the Coasters

The Coasters

Episode sixty-eight of A History of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs looks at "Searchin'" by The Coasters, and at the group's greatest success and split, and features discussion of racism, plagiarism, STDs and Phil Spector. Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

 

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Tears on My Pillow" by Little Anthony and the Imperials

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January 28, 2020  

Episode 67: “Johnny B. Goode”, by Chuck Berry

Chuck Berry and Alan Freed

 

Episode sixty-seven of A History of Rock Music in Five Hundred Songs looks at "Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Berry, and the decline and fall of both Berry and Alan Freed. Click the full post to read liner notes, links to more information, and a transcript of the episode.

Patreon backers also have a ten-minute bonus episode available, on "Splish Splash" by Bobby Darin.

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