1960s Music Facts That All Musicians Will Absolutely Adore | Kidadl


1960s Music Facts That All Musicians Will Absolutely Adore

Arts & Crafts
Learn more
Reading & Writing
Learn more
Math & Logic
Learn more
Sports & Active
Learn more
Music & Dance
Learn more
Social & Community
Learn more
Mindful & Reflective
Learn more
Outdoor & Nature
Learn more
Read these Tokyo facts to learn all about the Japanese capital.

Music in the '60s not only presented an electrifying melange but also represented youth rebellion against the ongoing Vietnam war and the fight for civil rights.

The never-ending political enigma of this era led to the growth of revolutionized genres of music besides the rock and roll of the 1950s. Pop, folk music, jazz, and various other forms of music surfaced that delineated the paradigm of contemporary music.

A creative surge of music took place in the 1960s with the contribution of a multitude of influential figures. The songs created in this period set forth the fearless innovation and the proud voices of artists. Rock and roll music continued to grow with more variations of hard, rebellious rock and soft rock. Folk music was also revived during this time. The efforts of prominent singers and songwriters like Bob Dylan and Joan Chandos Baez resulted in the development of different folk styles that openly addressed the ongoing political issues. Gradually, folk developed into folk-rock with the use of electrified instruments. The American duo Simon and Garfunkel and Bob Dylan led to the growth of the folk-rock genre.

'Rock n roll' of the 1960s was popularized by the British rock band, The Beatles, who first came to prominence in the English city of Liverpool. This group of four appeared for the first time on the famous American television show, The Ed Sullivan Show, in the year 1964, from where they gained immense fame globally. Thereafter, more British bands became popular with their protest songs and songs on life, which is called the British invasion. The rock bands like The Who, The Rolling Stones, and The Animals, which were part of this British invasion, achieved great fame in the United States. The Monkees was an American rock band that gave several single hits in the 1960s.

The music during this era was greatly influenced by blues-rock, garage rock, and surf rock genres which were put forth by influential bands, like The Beach Boys, The Strokes, and The Allman Betts Band. Their songs brought out the opposing social and political ideas, like feminism, the sexual revolution, environmentalism, and the Black Power of the African Americans, which greatly impacted the American culture. The youth showcased an anti-authority demeanor that was criticized by many traditional people of the '60s. Because of this extreme political liberty of the rock bands, many folk music enthusiasts despised rock music and thought of them as degrading.

Read on to know more about the musical style of the artists and bands in the '60s.

If you really like reading this article, then why not read the 1965 facts and the 1963 facts here on Kidadl?

The 1960s Music Revolution

In the early 1950s, blues and rock and roll were popular among the masses who listened to them on the radio stations. These songs influenced the teenagers who began purchasing the records to show some kind of rebellion. The term 'rock n roll' was first added to the rock music genre after its introduction by Alan Freed, who played his first rock music in the Cleveland concert in 1952. Since then, the journey of rock and roll began, which influenced innumerable young hearts and revolutionized the ideals of traditional music.

In the early '60s, Black singers like Little Richard and Fats Domino came to the limelight with their inspirational lyrics. Their records were produced by the white producer, Sam Phillips, who also launched the superstar Elvis Presley. His first song, 'That's All Right', was produced in 1954. In the same year, another song, 'Rock Around The Clock' was recorded by Bill Haley & His Comets, which was added in a movie, 'The Blackboard Jungle'. It caught massive fame among rebellious teenagers. Several other songs were released prior to the '60s, which eventually ignited the sparks of contemporary music forms.

Bob Dylan's 'Blowin' In The Wind' became a piece of protest music for Civil Rights. Apart from this famed protest song, Dylan also wrote songs such as 'Like a Rolling Stone' and 'Mr. Tambourine Man'. Other songs on anti-war marches and the sexual revolution were launched by the artists of the '60s. The music scene at that time reflected the rebellious minds of the youth.

The bold lyrics brought out the courage in them and made them unafraid to pinpoint the various social, political, and cultural matters in question. These songs of protest were widely accepted in the music festivals, where many artists openly put forth the various social issues in their own style. They expressed their anger boldly on stage, like destroying their instruments and bringing out their anti-authority thoughts to be shared by their fans.

Many traditional music enthusiasts did not approve of such behavior and were against these songs. However, with the introduction of other genres, including folk music, soul music, heavy metal, punk rock, and disco, burgeoning contemporary music eventually gained more acceptance in society.

Rock in The '60s

The early '60s witnessed the purest form of rock and roll. Later, a blend of new genres revolutionized the concept of rock music. The singers and songwriters added a new wave of country and folk music that inspired the global population.

The innovative genres of pop-rock, psychedelic rock, and blues-rock made the whole world groove to their beats. This epoch also witnessed novelty in terms of pop music, which included sunshine pop from Southern California, the classical concoction of baroque pop, and the upbeat style of bubblegum pop, which was originally brought out for the children of the United States. Funk music, along with Christian gospel music, became popular in Latin America. Over the year, the rock forms developed into electronic, jazz, experimental, and contemporary classical musical styles.

With their ever-increasing fame, different forms of pop were established, including Bossa Nova in Brazil, the Cuban music Cha-cha-cha, the Afro American music Calypso, and the Jamaican Ska. Free improvisation of the rhythms along with soulful lyrics made these forms of music immensely popular throughout the world.

Western culture also greatly inspired pop music from other parts of the world. The fondness of rock music led to the rise of a new genre: the Group Sounds in Japan. They brought out the blend of Western rock and Japanese Kayōkyoku and were the pioneers of modern Japanese pop music.

The Motown Record Corporation

The most popular American record label, which is owned by the Universal Music Group, The Motown Record Corporation, launched some of the biggest hits of all time during the '60s. It is the first African-American label that achieved immense success in compiling a variety of musical styles and genres. More than 79 records from Motown hit the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the 1960s.

The Black artists and musicians came close together because of Motown Records. The founder, Berry Gordon, initiated this kind of music which was liked by both black and white people. 'Come See About Me' by The Supremes is their most popular hit. Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight, Marvin Gaye, The Marvelettes, The Jackson 5, and The Spinners were the most renowned names of Motown records, who took the entire world on a musical spree with their soulful rhythm and motivational lyrics. Brian McKnight, Erica Abi Wright, Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye have worked with the label since the beginning of their career.

Popular Artists From the 1960s

John Lennon of The Beatles, Bob Dylan, James Brown, Bruce Channel, The Beach Boys, and many more such artists launched their songs in the '60s that captured the heart of millions. The English rock band, The Rolling Stones, formed in 1962, was one of the most loved rock bands of all time. They were the pioneers of hard rock and psychedelic rock. Mick Jagger, their lead vocalist, wrote most of the band's songs along with the guitarist Keith Richards. Prior to opting for newer variations, they sang mostly rock and roll music and the blues. Along with The Beatles, they are considered the foremost musical band of the British invasion. 'Aftermath' was the first original album from them, followed by 'Jumpin' Jack Flash', 'Honky Tonk Women', 'Gimme Shelter, 'Sympathy for the Devil', and 'You Can't Always Get What You Want.' The experiments of the Rolling Stones with psychedelic rock for a couple of years influenced Western culture to a great extent.

A plethora of renowned personalities played popular music and used acoustic instruments prior to the invention of the electric guitar. Such instruments, along with soulful lyrics, made the songs dynamic. Jimi Hendrix, on the other hand, turned electrical guitar playing into art and is widely known as one of the best guitarists of all time. The majority of the British groups gained immense success in the United States that ignited the sparks in several other bands in the 1960s. On the other hand, American artists like Bob Dylan, Ray Charles, and Elvis Presley vastly contributed to popular music.

The lead guitarist George Harrison, and the bassist, co-vocalist, Paul McCartney of The Beatles, were known for exploring the different genres of music, including pop music, electronica, rock, and classical. The Beatles are still considered to be the most influential band of all time. Along with hard rock and rock and roll, they were also involved in the establishment of the '60s counterculture. John Lennon and McCartney were the lead songwriters whose powerful lyrics with an artistic representation made them the leaders of the youth of the '60s. They incorporated a concoction of elements in their songs that revolutionized traditional pop culture. The band received countless awards, including seven Grammy Awards, fifteen Ivor Novello Awards, an Academy Award, and four Brit Awards. Their musical comedy film, 'A Hard Day's Night', became a massive hit in the '60s.

The lead singer of The Supremes, the legendary Diana Ross, rose to fame with her Number One hit singles, including 'Baby Love', 'Love Child', 'Where Did Our Love Go?', and 'Come See About Me'. She was also one of them, if not the most successful singers of Motown and embarked on a solo career after leaving The Supremes. Her solo debuts, 'Ain't No Mountain High Enough' and 'I'm Still Waiting' became the top hits that encouraged her to perform in worldwide concert tours. Thereafter she dropped innumerable music albums, including 'Mahogany' and 'Diana Ross'. She was also part of several American films, like 'Lady Sings in the Blues', and was awarded the Academy Award and the Golden Globe Award for her role in the film.

The Beatles were the most popular English band of the 1960s.

Pop Music In The 1960s

Pop music in the '60s greatly influenced the youth of this era and contributed to the various socio-cultural movements. Several political and social issues that were ongoing at that time were addressed by the pop artists through their bold music.

A multitude of songs became popular in the '60s, most of which made their way to the Billboard top 100 lists and were even consistent for a couple of weeks. Some of the most played songs of that period were 'Good Vibrations', 'Surfin USA', and 'California Girls' by The Beach Boys, '(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave', and 'Dancing In The Street' by Martha & The Vandellas which were released in 1963 and 1964 respectively. 'Under The Boardwalk' by The Drifters, 'Wipeout' by The Surfaris, 'Summertime, Summertime' by The Jamies, 'Those Lazy Hazy Crazy Days Of Summer' by Nat King Cole, 'Summer Wind' by Frank Sinatra, and 'Hot Fun In The Summertime' by Sly and the Family Stone. Many more such songs were launched in the summer months and were super hits.

Some of the biggest dance music hits that were enjoyed by all age groups in the 1960s were 'Hang On Sloopy' by The McCoys, 'Pretty Little Angel Eyes' by Curtis Lee, 'Twist and Shout' and 'Good Vibrations' by The Beatles, 'Mickey's Monkey' by The Miracles, and 'The Twist' by Chubby Checker.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 1960s music facts then why not take a look at 1962 facts, or 1967 facts?

<p>With a Master of Arts in English, Rajnandini has pursued her passion for the arts and has become an experienced content writer. She has worked with companies such as Writer's Zone and has had her writing skills recognized by publications such as The Telegraph. Rajnandini is also trilingual and enjoys various hobbies such as music, movies, travel, philanthropy, writing her blog, and reading classic British literature.&nbsp;</p>

Read The Disclaimer

Was this article helpful?