Rock and roll, lifestyle and the working class



Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle choices and the working class

Postby wolfgangguhl » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:39 pm

PeterC wrote:I personally listen to and enjoy music from all eras and in many genres, but I'm basically a pop music fan. I can't listen to too much "serious" music, nor hard rock these days... and when I do listen to "rock" it tends to have a "pop" edge to it (ie Queen rather than Led Zeppelin, and The Boomtown Rats rather than The Clash).

Today I've been listening to the New Seekers and Del Shannon, both who crafted commercial and enjoyable pop songs that probably didn't change the world too much. As for "Americana", I tend to be more of an Anglophile (particularly for music made after the 50s & early 60s) though again there's plenty of exceptions such as Motown, surf, folk-rock, etc. 8)


Elton John must be the perfect choice for you then. The ultimate pop artist in my opinion and he is even from England.
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle choices and the working class

Postby wolfgangguhl » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:49 pm

Fans of Jerry Lee Lewis probably tend to be more tolerant than the average R&R-only fan as JLL himself has played in a variety of styles through the years. Rock'n'Roll, Blues, Gopsel, Country, just to mention a few.
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle choices and the working class

Postby PeterC » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:57 pm

wolfgangguhl wrote:Elton John must be the perfect choice for you then. The ultimate pop artist in my opinion and he is even from England.


I've never found him a convincing rocker, but I like many of his slower songs. Some people (Jerry Lee Lewis, John Lennon, Rod Stewart) are great at all styles of music, others not so much. Paul McCartney is another superb balladeer who isn't much of a rock 'n' roll singer...
Last edited by PeterC on Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle choices and the working class

Postby wolfgangguhl » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:58 pm

On the other side at Legends shows with Chuck Berry and Little Richard, Jerry's fans have often been very intolerant of the other artists on the bill, often shouting abuse or even walking out. At one show in the 90s that I attented one guy was particularly nasty, continuously shouting "Jerry, Jerry" while Chuck was on. Chuck in return angrily told the crowd "to put that guy in jail" (the audience member, not Jerry!).
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle choices and the working class

Postby PeterC » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:07 pm

wolfgangguhl wrote:On the other side at Legends shows with Chuck Berry and Little Richard, Jerry's fans have often been very intolerant of the other artists on the bill, often shouting abuse or even walking out. At one show in the 90s that I attented one guy was particularly nasty, continuously shouting "Jerry, Jerry" while Chuck was on. Chuck in return angrily told the crowd "to put that guy in jail" (the audience member, not Jerry!).


I heckled Blonde Hell and Kay Martin told me off afterwards! :lol:
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle and the working class

Postby PeterC » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:11 pm

Of course, sometimes there's singers and musicians that we really dislike for no apparent reason. Personally I can't stand The Carpenters. Karen Carpenter's voice just makes me cringe! My good friend Tom Sturt can't stand David Essex, someone who I think is pretty cool (not a great singer but a very charismatic performer). Each to their own...
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle and the working class

Postby martin bates » Mon Aug 19, 2013 10:20 pm

Sgt Pepper was a bit of a turning point for me.... I liked it but it was the start of all the experimental stuff that I didn't like at the time.... up to Sgt P. my brother & I tended to pool our money to buy records; after that we went our musical seperate ways; you couldn't be a fan of the Beatles or the Stones without knowing about Carl Perkins/Chuck/Little Richad et al ,as they were each always singing the praises of their idols (& recording their songs) and I tended to go in that direction; also around that time we had Johnny Cash at San Qunetin (a Granada TV production)- Rock n Roll revival & a certain Elvis Presley making a 'comeback'. In the thick of all this a Shakespearean actor was getting ready to leave L.A. to record some C&W tunes...... :wink:
I've always liked a wide range of stuff,with a strong prefeance for rock n roll & country; most of my favourites have been able to perform a wide range without the need for labels ......Piet mentioned PJ Proby -he's another of my favs & could sing anything.
if anything these days as a casual listener I'm more tolerant , but I actively play the same old stuff.
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Re: Who is the Queen of Rock 'n' Roll?

Postby Tony Papard » Tue Aug 20, 2013 9:02 pm

martin bates wrote:
Tony Papard wrote:I'm afraid even in this day of gay marriages homophobia persists in certain circles, including sport and the rockin' scene. :cry:

it's human nature and can be found everywehere - no reason sport or rock n roll would be any different. Not just homophobia but all sorts of intollerance of different lifestyles. When Lee Lewis announced his girlfriend was expecting a baby, even you, Tony, made a comment to the effect that they should be married before having a child.

I'm curious in the other post - why they advertised the gig as 'Gay Rocin Tonite' - why not simply announce a rock n roll gig ?
If they're concerned a bunch of homophobic teds would find themselves in a gay pub - then don't have the gig there. Alternately, just advertsie it in house to your target audience.

However some rock'n'roll has actually been played on the gay scene, mainly at gay tea dances. I used to attend these, and they played music from the 1920s/1930s up to date, with all dances included from the Waltz and Quickstep thru jive to the more modern dances, with music from all the decades. Rock'n'roll was played in the 1950s section, and dear Jo Purvis, the lesbian DJ, played several of my requests over the weeks, including 'Tennessee Saturday Night' by Jerry Lee Lewis.

Martin.


My reply to this seems to have been lost, or perhaps I only previewed it instead of submitting it. I can't now remember what I wrote exactly, but to answer Martin's main question, it was not meant to be just another rock'n'roll gig. It was meant to a) provide some different music to that usually played in the gay clubs and pubs and b) provide a place where LGBT people on the rockin' scene can relax, be themselves, meet other LGBT rockers and enjoy the kind of music we love. This is why we wanted it in a gay pub.

Gay friendly straights would of course have been welcome, but in the event only a handful of gay rockers/rockabillies turned up because the advertising failed to reach the target audience, who by and large wouldn't have read the gay press where some ads were put if I recall correctly. Only Southern and Rockin' published the ad on the rockin' scene, and this just attracted the homophobic remarks and threats mentioned in a previous comment by me.

I don't remember ever saying Lee and his girlfriend ought to have been married before having a child, but may well have said not doing so would have raised many eyebrows and been condemned in the Bible Belt of the Deep South. My own view is that children need a stable environment ideally with role models of both sexes. That, in my personal view, rules out adoption by same-sex couples unless the child/children is/are given regular access to the biological father(s) in the case of two lesbians with children, or the birth mother(s) in the case of two gay men with children.

Marriage is not essential, and we probably wouldn't have opted for gay marriage had it been available when my partner was alive. We would definitely have gone for a civil partnership for all sorts of practical reasons: visiting rights if one of us ended up in intensive care, inheritance rights, rights of next-of-kin generally, etc.

I'm glad to say, although homophobia persists on the rockin' scene, it is slowly changing as a few LGBT people are now 'out' on the scene. Although the rockin' scene likes to present a macho image, possibly why lesbians are more accepted than gay men, there are some things which would strike as odd to an outsider to the rockin scene. For example: the way Teddy boys often preen themselves in front of mirrors for ages - and nearly every time they visit the Gents, the fact that at rock'n'roll/rockabilly Weekenders it is nearly all males on the dance floor when bopping, nearly all females when Strollers are being played, and only when Jivers are played to males and females (or two females) dance together. Two males jiving together is still seen as a joke, however. Another reason why a gay record hop in a gay pub would make this acceptable.

There's also the fact that Jerry Lee usually provoked an almost fanatical reaction from mainly males whereas acts like The Beatles had screaming girl fans in the main. In fact I read one report on the Granada TV special years ago which said the scenes of males clustered around Jerry Lee's piano reaching out to touch him, and up to him when he stood on top of the piano, looked very gay or words to that effect! This, of course, was the reaction of an outsider to the rockin' scene.

Although there is homophobia on the rockin' scene, there is also a hatred of rock'n'roll/rockabilly, etc. on the gay scene. I have personal experience of this too. At a famous London gay pub they were playing the usual disco/house stuff and I went up and half-jokingly asked the manager if we could have some Bill Haley for a change! He literally ran away across the dance floor screaming: 'I HATE rock'n'roll! I HATE rock'n'roll!'. My partner warned me that if we played all rock'n'roll/rockabilly at our parties, all the gays would leave. So he made up cassettes with a mixture of music, and only a few rock'n'roll tracks for my benefit.

His fears were confirmed long after he died when I had a joint birthday party in a straight pub with a straight Ted whose birthday it was too. We had Flying Saucers playing. Half of my gay friends left early because they hated the music. At a party in my flat after my partner died we had rock'n'roll in one room and the gay friends had their music in another room. The two lots of guests didn't mix at all, except to go in the kitchen and get drinks replenished.

A friend and myself did put on some rock'n'roll gigs in another gay pub, but in the back bar and the LGBT regulars all stayed in the front bar. Linda Gail Lewis played there twice - it was The Buzz Bar in Battersea High Street (now long gone). However a rather cute and presumably straight rockabilly spotted karaoke going on in the front bar, and went in and did an Elvis Presley song. He got a very good reception from the gay crowd, whether because of his singing or his looks of course is a matter of conjecture. He probably didn't even realize it was a gay pub.

It should also be remembered how many LGBT people were involved or associated with 1950s and early 1960s pop and rock'n'roll. Apart from some of the singers and musicians themselves, people like Britain's Joe Meek and Larry Parnes, and of course the idol of many rockers/rockabillies - film actor James Dean who was gay or bisexual. Without LGBT people the rockin' scene would have been lacking some great artists, and the early pop/rock scene in UK would have been very different.
Long ago in Ferriday down in Louisiana, They all watched Jerry play and pump that old piana

My blog: http://www.tonypapard.info/

My Jerry Lee Lewis page:
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle and the working class

Postby Tony Papard » Tue Aug 20, 2013 9:13 pm

The above long post by me has a paragraph missing, or rather, the paragraph appears in Martin's comment before his signature, the one I'm replying to.

I can't correct it as the Edit feature is currently not working - it comes up Internal server error every time I try to edit and repost the message.

The paragraph concerned begins.... However.... and mentions the gay tea dances where rock'n'roll WAS played.

Tony
Long ago in Ferriday down in Louisiana, They all watched Jerry play and pump that old piana

My blog: http://www.tonypapard.info/

My Jerry Lee Lewis page:
http://www.btinternet.com/~tony.papard/JERRYLEELEWIS.HTM
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle and the working class

Postby Tony Papard » Tue Aug 20, 2013 9:19 pm

This is the misplaced paragraph:

However some rock'n'roll has actually been played on the gay scene, mainly at gay tea dances. I used to attend these, and they played music from the 1920s/1930s up to date, with all dances included from the Waltz and Quickstep thru jive to the more modern dances, with music from all the decades. Rock'n'roll was played in the 1950s section, and dear Jo Purvis, the lesbian DJ, played several of my requests over the weeks, including 'Tennessee Saturday Night' by Jerry Lee Lewis.
Long ago in Ferriday down in Louisiana, They all watched Jerry play and pump that old piana

My blog: http://www.tonypapard.info/

My Jerry Lee Lewis page:
http://www.btinternet.com/~tony.papard/JERRYLEELEWIS.HTM
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Re: Rock and roll, lifestyle and the working class

Postby martin bates » Tue Aug 20, 2013 11:50 pm

thanks Tony, & going to the trouble of re-writing /submitting your post; an interesting comentary on your experiences.
Martin.

Tony Papard wrote:This is the misplaced paragraph:

However some rock'n'roll has actually been played on the gay scene, mainly at gay tea dances. I used to attend these, and they played music from the 1920s/1930s up to date, with all dances included from the Waltz and Quickstep thru jive to the more modern dances, with music from all the decades. Rock'n'roll was played in the 1950s section, and dear Jo Purvis, the lesbian DJ, played several of my requests over the weeks, including 'Tennessee Saturday Night' by Jerry Lee Lewis.
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