Rhythm & Blues is the bedrock of much of modern rock and pop music. Basically R&B is a genre of popular African-American music that originated in the 1940s. The term was coined in the post-war years to replace “Race Music”, meaning – “a catchall term referring to any music that was made by and for black Americans”.
As the name suggests, R&B is really a hybrid of African-American music genres viz. gospel, jazz and the blues. From jazz, the ‘genre’ found its rhythm (with bass and drums following closely the jazz sub-genre “boogie-woogie” style) and from gospel and the blues, its musicality i.e. the melodies & the harmonies.
R&B morphed into rock ’n’ roll in the 1950s and exploded all over America as the pre-eminent youth culture, taking on aspects of R&B that appealed strongly to young audiences everywhere. We look at FIVE songs we feel have made a significant difference to this musical evolution.
GOOD ROCKIN’ TONIGHT – ROY BROWN (1947)
ROCK AWHILE – GOREE CARTER (1949)
COUNTRY BOY – DAVE BARTHOLOMEW (1949)
SATURDAY NIGHT FISH FRY – LOUIS JORDAN & HIS TYMPANY FIVE (1949)
ROCKET 88 – IKE TURNER AND HIS DELTA CATS FT. JACKIE BRENSTON (1951)
… still there’s more …