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Rock Music Timeline:
An online chronology of rock and roll history. Experience rock & roll in the order it happened, decade by decade, year by year, and month by month. Enjoy vintage band photos, important events in music history, along with all the hit songs and albums in the first fifty years of rock music.
The 1950's - The Birth of Rock and Roll:
Rock & Roll music is born in the 1950's from a fusion of electric blues, country and gospel music. Confined to the Rhythm & Blues charts early in the decade, rock crosses over to the Pop charts from 1955 onward. R&B, Doo Wop, Rockabilly.... more 1950's
The 1960's - Expanding The Boundaries of Rock:
In the sixties rock music comes of age and dominates the popular music charts. Rock diversifies with new styles such as soul, surf, folk rock, the British Invasion, psychedelic and hard rock. Television becomes a factor as prime time variety shows feature rock... more 1960's
L to R: '50's rock n' roll pioneers The Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley, Little Richard, and Jerry Lee Lewis.
L to R: '60's rock icons The Supremes, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, and Jim Morrison of The Doors.
The 1970's - Rock Becomes Big Business:
The early seventies are marked by the deaths of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison. Pyschedelic music declines, but morphs into hard rock, progressive rock and heavy metal. Touring bands move from playing clubs and theaters, to playing sports arenas... more 1970's
L to R: '70's rock - Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, Saturday Night Fever, Bruce Springsteen, and The Sex Pistols.
The 1980's - The Influence of TV and Technology:
MTV (Music Television) is launched on 300 cable TV systems in 1981. By 1983 MTV is available on 2,000 cable systems. The prevalance of music videos as a 24/7 marketing tool is influential in bringing numerous new bands and music styles to the mainstream... more 1980's
L to R: '80's rock stars - Bono of U2, Michael Jackson, Run DMC, Madonna, and Prince.
The 1990's - Threats To The Major Record Labels:
The internet and sound compression allow for digital distribution of music both legally and through peer to peer file sharing, threatening the dominance of major record labels. Hip hop, alternative rock, and jam bands no longer play by record label rules... more 1990's
L to R: '90's stars - Kurt Cobain of Nirvana, Whitney Houston, Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam, Beck, R.E.M. and Britney Spears.
Rock Music by Decade pages provide the following info:
- Key Music Events
- Top 100 Songs
- Top 100 Albums
- Top Artists by Decade
- Popular Music Genres
Yearly Music Timelines provide the following information:
- Key Music Events by Month/Year
- Links to More Detailed Info
- Top Songs by Year
- Top Albums by Year
- Links to #1 Songs US & UK
- Links to #1 Albums US & UK
Other Pages By Year:
- The Year In Pictures Gallery
- Jukebox of Top Songs by Year
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