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The Most Revolutionary Year In Music

Andrew Jackson

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1965 the year that the combined forces of TV, the civil rights movement, the antiwar movement, the Pill, and long hair gave people aheightened awareness of the ways they were being oppressed, and led to demands for freedom in all spheres of life.

In 1965 the BBC had a monopoly on Brit radio and did not play pop music. They also had no ads. But then pirate radios on ships moored outside 3 mile limit - Radio Caroline, Radio London, Radio Jackie - and TV shows like Ready Steady Go!

American blues artists a niche market bc many blacks associated their music with slavery, and didn't want to be reminded. But Rolling Stones, Yardbirds, Animals etc popularized the music for a new white audience, and revitalized careers of the American artists.

Van Morrison formed Them and had hit with Gloria, a song he wrote as a teenager. Then Here Comes The Night with Jimmy Page as session guitar.

As a teenager, Mick Jagger had got blues records by mail order from Chess Records in Chicago. He and Keith Richards had been childhood schoolmates until Jagger's family moved towns. They bumped into each other on a train while MJ was carrying Muddy Waters and Chuck Berry records under his arm. Richards was surprised since hardly no-one else in England knew who Muddy Waters was.

Widespread opposition to unmarried women being able to get contraceptive pill - usually had to wear a fake ring. Had to wait for 1972 Supreme Court decision before right to access for everyone.

Contrast between Pete Seeger et al complaining about 'little boxes' homogeniety, and Andy Warhol's Factory mass producing art.

Cherilyn ("Cher") Sarkisian's parents married and divorced each other 3 times. She lost her virginity to Warren Beatty at 16 after he'd bumped into her car.

The Supremes led the breakthrough to end era when black single could only rise so high on the charts before it was expropriated by a white performer who had a bigger hit with it.

Before the British Invasion, American pop dominated by Italian style crooners. But the Brits loved the 'linen ripping' (George Martin's phrase) sound of American blues artists.

Song writing team of Isaac Hayes and David Porter figured out ideal structure of soul song: they were all sung in first person, they all had an opening scenario, followed by a bit of action, and then some sort of denouement.

Yesterday became most covered song of the 60's, with at least 2500 versions recorded.

Mamas and Papas, Lovin' Spoonful playing "folk-rock", which was supposedly anti-commercial. So ironic that most of the backing on actual records came frome the Wrecking Crew. Carole Kaye the only female, and one of best bass guitarists ever. (It's her playing bass on TV theme to Addams Family)

But 60's marked beginning of end for Brill Bldg songsmiths, as groups increasingly demanded to use only self-penned material.

Brill Bldg singwriters Gerry Goffin and Carole King thoroughly intimidated by the song writing of Bob Dylan and to a lesser extent, the Beatles. Felt they were just writing inconsequential lightweights. So they came up with anticonformist "Pleasant Valley Sunday", "Wasn't Born To Follow" and "You make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman". Then King divorced Goffin and went on to become one of the era's most successful singer/songwriters with Tapestry.

Andy Warhol got Bob Dylan to come to the Factory for a 'screen test', which involved him being filmed sitting absolutely still for 15 minutes. As he left, Dylan helped himself to a Double Elvis (Ferris Type) as 'payment'. Dylan later swapped the artwork with his manager for a couch. Then in 2012 it sold for $37 million.

One of Lou Reed's first jobs was for budget label Pickwick Records, which put out imitation surf rock or Beatle type songs. LR and 4 other guys were literally locked in a room and told to "write ten California songs, or ten Detroit songs. We'd then go down to the studio for an hour or two and cut a couple of albums really quickly."

Dylan played his "4th time around" track to John Lennon, and got upset when JL appropriated ,ost of it for Norwegian Wood. Ironic, bc Dylan had appropriated melodies for most of his early hits like Blowin' In The Wind, Hard Rain, The Times They Are A-changing and It Ain't Me Babe, direct from traditional folk singers.

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