Ongoing History Daily: The origin of the term New Wave, part 1

One of the most useful terms in the history of music is “New Wave.” It’s the catch-all term for the music of the late 70s and early 80s that came in the wake of punk. It was more melodic, less intense, and more accessible than punk, but you knew when you heard it that something like punk had to have happened.

The term actually goes back to the early 70s when several writers were using it to describe some of the day’s underground bands like The Velvet Underground and The New York Dolls. From there, it spread to describing acts associated with CBGB: The Talking Heads, Blondie, and even the Ramones. And for a while, “punk” and “New Wave” were used interchangeably.

But that wouldn’t last for long. More next time.

Yesterday’s post was about losing a Porsche 911 in a very Metallica way.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ 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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