It’s a tougher job than I initially thought to try to classify modern music into a relatively small number of genres. This category of rock & roll and early RnB is a great example.
I see this as a category that is uptempo, good-time music that makes you want to get up and dance but it’s very distinct from disco.
To quote from Wikipedia “Rockabilly usually (but not exclusively) refers to the type of rock and roll music which was played and recorded in the mid-1950s primarily by white singers such as Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, and Jerry Lee Lewis, who drew mainly on the country roots of the music. Many other popular rock and roll singers of the time, such as Fats Domino and Little Richard came out of the black rhythm and blues tradition, making the music attractive to white audiences, and are not usually classed as rockabilly.”
This “black rhythm and blues tradition” goes back to boogie-woogie and the jump blues of artists like Louis Jordan and Cab Calloway.
I’m trying to draw together these strands so that it includes Elvis, Jerry Lee, Fats and Little Richard but also allow me to update it through the 1970s with people like Joe Cocker and the J Geils Band. I’ll also bring it up to date with music like Jools Holland and The Rhythm & Blues Orchestra.
I should also say that I’m using the phrase early RnB to distinguish it from the contemporary RnB. This is the music of the Blues Brothers but it’s usually distinct from classic soul although again the borders are blurred.
Again quoting from Wikipedia “In the commercial rhythm and blues music typical of the 1950s through the 1970s, the bands usually consisted of piano, one or two guitars, bass, drums, saxophone, and sometimes background vocalists.”
I think it makes sense but I’m always open to persuasion otherwise.
What Are The Best Best Rock & Roll and Early RnB Live Albums
There are some fantastic live albums in this category
What great live albums have I missed? I need an early Elvis Presley album there but I don’t know which and I think the later albums may have too many slower numbers to qualify.