Music History

Published on August 25th, 2018 | by Alan Cross


Is rock becoming the new jazz? Stay with me on this…

The first half of the 20th century was driven by jazz. This was the dominant music of the era and thus was the genre that more than any other pushed culture forward.

But then in the middle 1950s, a threat. A new sound: rock’n’roll.

“A fad!” everyone cried. “It’s crap! Eventually, the kids will tire of it and they’ll grow into good music. They’ll soon be into some form of jazz like their parents and their parents’ parents. It’s just a matter of time. You’ll see.”

But then came Elvis, the Beatles, Dylan and the 70s. For the next fifty years, rock was the music that drove the culture. Jazz never went away, but it was reduced to a niche within the wider realm of popular music.

But while everyone was rocking through the 90s, a new sound started taking hold among young people: hip-hop.

Today, hip-hop is the dominant musical form. Will rock end up like jazz? Walter forwards us this video on the subject.


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About the Author

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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4 Responses to Is rock becoming the new jazz? Stay with me on this…

  1. Eric says:

    Rock ‘n’ roll really needs to be central to our culture again

  2. Pingback: Is rock becoming the new jazz? – Music & Hi-fi Appreciations

  3. Pingback: How times have changed — music then, and music now: Alan Cross - National | World Affairs 7

  4. Pingback: How times have changed — music then, and music now: Alan Cross -

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