SoulTrainFinal

Soul Train

Ever since its debut in 1952, fans of American pop music could tune in weekly to American Bandstand and keep themselves current on all of the latest artists and trends. But it would be almost two decades later before fans of rhythm and blues were given their own weekly outlet. They would forever owe their thanks to a Chicago DJ named Don Cornelius, the creator of Soul Train, for letting their voices be heard. Soul Train showcased all of the up-and-coming artists of the genre, put a spotlight on all the current dance moves, and, very quickly, became an enduring hit. Continue reading...

LedZeppelingFinal

Led Zeppelin

It would seem that within each decade of rock and roll's colorful history, there resides a handful of artists who reinvent the genre and make it their own. In the 1950's, it was Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly. The 1960's belonged to the Beatles and Rolling Stones. And when it came to the hard rock sound (that would eventually morph into heavy metal), no band in the 70's had a more profound influence on where rock and roll was headed than the four Englishmen who called themselves "Led Zeppelin." Continue reading...

Andy Gibb

Andy Gibb

Andy Gibb was the youngest scion of the 1970s ruling music family, the Bee Gees. The Anglo-Australian clan dominated the pop charts during that decade and helped their little brother achieve rightful fame on his own. Not just another token teen idol, Andy also co-wrote the songs and played his own instruments. And then he left us too soon. Continue reading...

Eight Track Tapes

Eight-Track Tapes

By today’s standards, where the world is filled with portable music emanating from iPods, the eight-track tape seems rather (click) antiquated. Big and bulky, the endlessly-looping tape contained within also had this annoying habit of (click) interrupting songs midway through with an audible click as they moved through each of their quadrants. Furthermore, the intended order of songs was often disrupted, and occasionally (click) long periods of silence lingered between tracks. Having said that, they allowed, for the first time, the ability to bring music of one’s choice into (click) an automobile, as well as a portable listening device – something previously impossible. Continue reading...

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar

The 70s were dominated by hard rocking boys and their guitars so it was always nice to find a gal holding her own in the male-dominated music industry. Pat Benatar was not only a lone female in a sea of testosterone, but she also had one of the best voices to ever grace the charts. Continue reading...

The Supremes

The Supremes

It is impossible to discuss the impact of girl groups on popular music without mention of The Supremes. They weren’t the first, but they enjoyed a popularity that put them firmly in a league of their own. With angelic harmonies backing the immense talent of lead vocalist Diana Ross, and accentuated by highly-polished choreography, their presence was felt by way of twelve #1 hits during their brief existence in the 60s. They would help to break down the barriers that African-American artists of the day faced and their immense popularity would catapult Diana Ross into super-stardom. Continue reading...

Tiny Tim

Tiny Tim

The words “one-of-a-kind” get thrown around quite a bit, but they were perhaps never more appropriate than when used to describe a gentle soul named Tiny Tim. He captivated and amused the world with his inimitable falsetto voice, quirky wardrobe and ever-present ukulele. His appeal landed him an enormously successful Top-20 single, one that would forever be linked to the offbeat performer. Continue reading...

We Are The World

We Are the World

In the late evening on January 28, 1986, a collective group of some of the most recognized musical artists in the world left the American Music Awards festivities and congregated under a shroud of secrecy at A&M studios in Hollywood. The result of this unparalleled collaborative effort was “We Are the World,” a song written to raise money for the victims of famine in Africa. The resulting single, released on March 7th of the same year, would go on to sell 20 million copies, raising significant money for the cause and becoming one of the best remembered songs of the 80s. Continue reading...