Monday, 18 February 2019

Crazy !

3.23am....At 6am I will be broadcasting two hours of music from the 1960's.


Crazy ?

Or is it ?

This is the top selling single of the decade.

Since recorded music entered our culture the popular
music of the day has always reflected the society around it.

During World War Two music was used to keep spirits high. You could argue it was a political tool but I would disagree, it was a reflection of the determination within society to win victory against all odds.

Britain may have won the war but the nation was left bankrupt and in ruin.

I was born in 1950, my parents had a ration book for me more than five years after the end of the war. Times were not good.

Things in America were different, it had not suffered 1% of the turmoil Britain had. Look at the panic in New York over the 9/11 attack, in the blitz this was happening several times a day, every day, in Britain.

It is not surprising that Rock and Roll was born in the USA.

My Schoolboy Autobiography recalls the life of a child in the mid to late 1950's. This is actually my best-selling book !

As the story enters the 1960's I start to listen more and more to pop music.  My Dad got a wheel to wheel tape recorder, an expensive middle-class luxury, and I began to record the charts from the radio.

Britain started to replicate the Rock and Roll music of America, Billy Fury was Britain's answer to Elvis Presley.

By the time I was a teenager British pop music was dominating the world.  I had a Saturday job working in a hardware shop with lots of money in my pocket. Teenagers were an economic force in their own right.

Pop music, however, was not only listened to and enjoyed by my generation. Our parents had not been allowed to be teenagers in their youth, they were destined to leave school and fight in the war so they enjoyed a teenage life in their twenties, thirties and forties. There was a genre within music which targeted them.

In Britain that is a myth. It never happened.

Yeh, I was drinking alcohol by the time I was fourteen and going into pubs at fifteen but drugs were not part of teenage life.

Most teenagers in Britain went to single sex schools so the opposite sex was an enigma. Rock and Roll, however, that was central to  our culture.

Look how the singers are dressed in that video. Even The Beatles wore shirts with ties. It was in Britain that long hair replaced the short back and sides of the war years but it was worn with a shirt, collar and tie !

Memories of World War Two were very much alive in Britain during the 1960's. Those memories kept Britain out of the Vietnam War.

This picture, I remember it well, appeared in the British press in the mid 1960's. The public complained of a naked child appearing on the front page.  I have here obscured part of the image but back then everything was on view. It was designed to shock and it did.

It was not a question IF World War Three would happen but WHEN it would happen. The total destruction of the planet in a nuclear war was a certainty and had an influence on music.

The Vietnam War, The Cold War, British domination of pop music were all factors in bringing about The Summer of Love.

The 1960's has gone down in history as the greatest decade
in popular music.  I would guess in one hundred years time it will still be regarded in the same way.

Strip away the myth of drugs, sex and rock and roll - strip away the myth of The Summer of Love, behind it
there is a powerful message.

What happened to the 100,000 hippies who gathered in San Francisco in 1967 ?  Where were they in the Autumn of that year - or Fall as the Americans like to call it ?  They had all gone back to High School and college ! They then went on to fight in the Vietnam War, many of them losing their lives.

That, by the way, was the first record played on Radio One.

The spirit of the 1960's continued into the 1970's with glam rock.

The 1980's saw a change. Punk Rock was something of a reaction to the changes in society.

I like a bit of punk rock but have to be careful what I play, particularly songs from The Sex Pistols.

My TEENAGE AUTOBIOGRAPHY includes my memories of the Summer of Love.

What about pop music of today ?  2019 ? 

It is certainly NOT central to culture within any generation but, I suggest, fully reflects society. A society which has everything it materially wants but with nothing of any value. At least part of that society has everything it could possibly want, the other part of our society does not matter anyway !

This is the current UK number one single.     See what I mean ?   How many of you have even heard it before ?  Will it still be played in fifty and more years time.  Don't be silly !

I rest my case.


Do listen to my show.....

6am to 8am.............

PODCAST available from around 9.30am.

Songs I will be playing this morning will still be listened to in the year 2525.  No doubt it will be me, The Geriatric DJ, who will be playing them.

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