Rock songs by Non-Rock artists

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It was 1982, I was a young teenager and I was experimenting with all sorts of music. Although I had already developed a taste for Rock music it was a lady dressed in black leather that sealed the deal for me. The second I saw Joan Jett waking up to that Julebox in “I love Rock N Roll”. I was hooked to the music, there would be no turning back.

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Throughout the years there have been bands who recorded rock songs although they were not Rock bands, often far from it.

Here are a few of them, you might argue with me about the 1st one, but if you listen to the structure of the song there is no denying it is a Rock song.

ABBA-Does your mother know.

“Does Your Mother Know” was recorded in February 1979 and released as a single in April of that year. Written by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, the song is something of a pastiche to 1950s/early 1960s-style rock and roll and touches on the subject of a man responding to the flirting of a much younger girl.

“Does Your Mother Know” deviated from the typical ‘ABBA at their most famous’ formula, in that the lead vocals were sung not by the female vocalists (Agnetha Fältskog and Anni-Frid Lyngstad) as was usually the case, but by Björn Ulvaeus. This was one of the few ABBA singles to feature Ulvaeus as the sole lead vocal.

ABBA-Rock Me

Staying with ABBA, this song was used as the B-side to the group’s 1975 single “I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do”. However, after “I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do” hit number 1 in both Australia and New Zealand, “Rock Me” was released as an A-side, reaching number 4 and number 2 respectively. It was also issued as an A-side in Yugoslavia and in 1979. The lead vocals here was also done by Björn Ulvaeus.

The Osmonds-Crazy Horses

The squeaky clean boy band the Osmonds not only recorded a run of the mill Rock song, Crazy Horses can only be described as a Hard Rock song, it even borders to Heavy Metal Jay Osmond said of the 1972 song “The song changed the way we were perceived. Before that, we’d been called “bubblegum”. But suddenly we were getting invited to see Led Zeppelin at Earls Court, to sing Stairway to Heaven with them on stage”

Céline Dion – Think Twice

It was written by Andy Hill and Peter Sinfield. Production on the track was by Christopher Neil and Aldo Nova. The song is rock-influenced and features a guitar solo, one of only a few of Dion’s songs to do so, performed by Nova.

“Think Twice” was released as the fourth single from Dion’s third English-language album The Colour of My Love (1993), on 18 July 1994 in North America, on 10 October 1994 in the United Kingdom, Australia and Japan, and in February 1995 in other European countries.

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How the Grammy’s turned from a prestigious award into a joke.

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Whatever happened to music? What happened to the Grammy’s?

Over the last decade or so the music industry has been complaining about the decline of sales figures, and they blamed everything and every one. First it was Napster. Then it was the illegal downloading of music from other websites like ‘limewire’ which was shut down.

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Now they are blaming the several streaming services like “Spotify’ and also Youtube.

However they forget to blame the massive elephant in the tiny room. The music industry itself, the music has gone dire as if all songs were thrown into a big blender and came out less then blend. There are still a few exceptions that perform great music but in general the quality is just bad. It is not a surprise that some of the old timers still tour.

If any proof was ever needed how bad the music has become, we only have to look at the recent performance of the EIGHT time Grammy awards winner Fergie at the NBA All star game.

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Fergie won 8 Grammy’s the most prestigious music price in the world. But the Grammy’s are no longer that, they have become a bit of a joke. It has become more of the musical equivalent of the Razzies.

Let’s just have a brief look how it went from a platform of the world’s greatest performers to the manufactured a-musical rubbish nowadays. I will not go though all 60 editions, just a few but it will illustrate the decline of music perfectly.

Winners at the 1st Grammy awards in 1958

Frank Sinatra,Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald, Perry Como.

 

Winners at the 10th Grammy Awards in 1967.

The Beatles,Glen Campbell,Chet Atkins, Duke Ellington

 

Winners at the 20th Grammy Awards in 1977

The Eagles,Barbra Streisand,Steely Dan,Al Jarreau

 

Winners at the 30th Grammy Awards in 1987

U2,Paul Simon,Sting, Whitney Houston

 

Here we take a small detour to the 33rd Grammy awards in 1990. You will not find any records of this ‘band’ on the Grammy website because it caused a major scandal and embarrassment because this band won the award of best new comer by miming or lip syncing. The band was of course Milli Vanilli.

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But the damage was already done and  the rot started to kick in at the Grammy’s

Winners at the 40th Grammy Awards in 1997

R.Kelly,Backstreet,Radiohead,Puff Daddy(or P.Diddy or whatever he is called nowadays)

 

Winners at the 50th Grammy Awards in 2007

Kanye West,Justin Timberlake,Rihanna,Ne-Yo

 

At the last Grammy’s in 2017 the pendulum slightly swung back to award real musicians/,singer/songwriters  even though Bruno Mars was the biggest winner. I do actually like Bruno Mars but as a show man or entertainer. As a singer he does not stand out.

Winners at the 60th Grammy Awards in 2017

Bruno Mars.Ed Sheeran, Foo Fighters, Leonard Cohen

 

If you look at the winners of the last 15-20 years or so and you compare them to artists who never won a Grammy, you can’t help but think the Gammy’s have become a joke.

Artists who never won a Grammy.

Bob Marley,Jimi Hendrix,Joe Satriani,Led Zeppelin,Queen,Guns N Roses,Ramones,Journey,The Who,The Kinks,Iggy Pop,Talking Heads,Velvet Underground and Chuck Berry.

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Resource

Grammy

Rolling Stone Magazine

 

Famous bands that changed their names.

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Starting off with probably the best known band from the low countries”Golden Earring”. Their name change was very subtle, they were formed in 1961 as the “Golden Earrings” they dropped the S in 1969.

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The next name change is a bit less subtle but still subtle enough “the Cranberries” started off as “the Cranberry Saw Us” in 1989. When their male lead singer left and was later replaced with the one and only Dolores O’Riordon history was made as Limerick’s biggest ever Rock act. Sadly Dolores O’Riordan passed away earlier this year.

1957,Liverpool a group of teenagers called themselves “the Quarry men” after they had tried names like ‘The Blackjacks, Johnny and the Moondogs, Japage 3’ However this skiffle band eventually became known as “the Beatles”. You may have heard of them.

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Continuing on a Dutch theme with Van Halen. Eddie and Alex Van Halen formed their first band with three other boys, calling themselves The Broken Combs, performing at lunchtime at Hamilton Elementary School in Pasadena, whereEddie Van Halen was in the fourth grade. Eddie Van Halen would later say that this was when he first felt the desire to become a professional musician.In 1972, The Van Halens formed another band, originally called “Genesis.” The name was changed to “Mammoth” when they became aware of the English progressive rock band of the same name. Mammoth consisted of Eddie Van Halen on guitar and lead vocals, his brother Alex on drums and bass guitarist Mark Stone. Mammoth had no P.A. system of their own, so they rented one from David Lee Roth,a service for which he charged by the night. Eddie Van Halen became frustrated with singing lead vocals, and decided they could save money by adding Roth to the band.Michael Anthony later replaced Mark Stone on the bass guitar. The band opted to change its name because Roth suggested that the last name of the two brothers “sounded cool.”

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U2 Ireland’s biggest band. I can hear you say “What’s the Hype?” and you’d be correct. What is the Hype? That would be U2. The Hype started off as a 5 piece band. The Edge’s older brother,Dik Evans, used to be part of the band. After he left the band was renamed U2.

Even though they were called V2 on the posters for their first gig in the UK. About 6 people showed up.

This is the Dublin 4 in my hometown ‘Geleen’ in 1981.

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Led Zeppelin were not always called Led Zeppelin, in fact the had several incarnations.The first one being “the Yardbirds”. The band that included 3 of the world’s best guitarists ever. Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page and the man musicians refer to as “God” Eric Clapton. Jimmy Page was actually the bassist.

In 1968 the Yardbirds played their last gig and “the New Yardbirds” were born with Robert Plant on vocals.However the name ‘the New Yardbirds’ didn’t stick, it went down like a lead balloon or even a Led Zeppelin.

 

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