Rock and Roll Music (Attention: This is an interactive post)

Sadly, Chuck Berry died two days ago. Although I never owned any of his records (45, album, cassette, CD or streaming), I’ve always been an armchair fan of his. His music is iconic and his personality so charismatic. It’s been entertaining listening to people from all walks of life talk about his influence on music–everyone from politicians to journalists to fellow famous (and infamous) musicians have extolled his virtues as the virtual genesis of rock and roll. According to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, OH, Alan Freed gets the credit for creating the term rock and roll, but according to the mass of admirers, Chuck Berry gets the credit for creating rock and roll music. Listening to all his admirers made me think about my own unique experiences with music so I thought it would be fun to relay some and ask you to weigh in with yours. My hope is that at a minimum, all three of us and our immediate relatives at least contribute one input to this list. Pick your favorite category and go with it:

First record: 45 of The Lion Sleeps Tonight by The Tokens (In the jungle, the mighty jungle…hey, it was cool back then)

First album: Van Halen (yes, the album was named for the group…don’t laugh, Chicago did this 36 times)

First Cassette: Squeeze, Singles (probably why I was single at the time)

First CD: U2, Under a Blood Red Sky (need I say more)

First Concert: Van Halen, 1984 (noticing a trend here…I had great taste in music)

First Downloaded Song: Jack Johnson, Better Together

Your turn. I think it will be good for those who read these in the future to know more not just about us, but about the people who shaped us into who we are today. ¬†Add your first whatever or pick your own music category. Jump in…or in the famous words of David Lee Roth, “Jump!”

4 Comments

  1. First record: 45 Jet, Paul McCartney and Wings. The 45 label was a green apple that had been sliced open – the Beatles had started a record label called Apple records.

    First album: High Infidelity by REO Speedwagon. It was part of my subscription to the RCA record club where you got 10 albums for a penny – then had to buy 10 more at regular price.

    First Cassette: Wild-Eyed Southern Boys by 38 Special. The album cover was what got me (I was a 15-year old boy).

    First CD: The Completion Backward Principle by the Tubes. It was a phase, although I still like the Tubes 80s releases.

    First Concert: Molly Hatchet and 38 Special. I liked, and still like, southern rock. My ears rang for two days after. My favorite concert was U2 at Red Rocks in Colorado – no ear ringing.

    First Downloaded Song: Life in the Fast Lane by the Eagles. When I was young and dumb (those go together) I would start the song before I left my apartment in Dudeldorf, Germany and try to get to the front gate of Spangdahlem AB before the song ended. It was about 5km through some of the most treacherous roads (twisty) in Germany. I’m amazed I’m still here.

  2. Great Post! My musical tastes run the entire gamut from classical to, yes, some rap. This really made me think, though. My musical tastes in grade school/high school/college ran from Glenn Miller and a lot of Big Band artists, to Metal, Punk and orchestral rock (ELO, etc.). Anyway, looking back, here you go…

    First record was also a 45 by Paul McCartney and Wings of Band on the Run, but I bought it for the B side, an instrumental called “Lunch Box, Odd Sox”. First 45 I remember listening to, though, was “The Battle of New Orleans” by Johnny Horton, which a friend of mine had. It was later remade by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, but the original is still the best.

    First Album was from one of the other members of the Holy Trinity of Rock n Roll. It came out after High Infidelity and was Paradise Theater by Styx. The album had a hologram on each side of the album featuring the two sides of the album cover, opening night at the Paradise and the last days of the Paradise. Unlike Jay, though, I waited on Columbia House for my cassettes.

    First Cassette was Queen’s A Night at the Opera, which opened with Death on Two Legs and closed with Bohemian Rhapsody flowing into God Save the Queen. Excellent album and the beginnings of my exploration into Queen, Bowie and ELO. Second was Weird Al in 3D. Bought them the same week. My tastes ran pretty wide.

    First CD was a return to Styx wth Grand Illusion. The opening track was so crystal clear it was amazing in headphones. Still gives me chills when I hear it. I bought it from the record store where a good friend of mine worked and we laughed about bands like Twisted Sister being on CD, because the difference in audio quality really made the nuanced tones of the band so pronounced.

    First concert was Stevie Nicks off the Rock A Little tour. Peter Frampton opened for her and there was one guy in the lawn seats that seemed to be really, really drunk and new every song Frampton ever did and proceeded to defy the laws of physics by not trampling or falling over large sections of the crowd while playing air guitar along with Frampton. The four of us who went blew up a surgical glove and wrote “The White Winged Glove” on it in an homage to the song Edge of Seventeen and the glove made it all the way to the stage.

    First downloaded song and first paid downloaded song were two different things. I had discovered Napster and others prior to really getting into the paid services and had some friends that I shared mp3s with, while cutting my CDs to mp3s. Anyway, my first and since purchased downloaded song was Johnny Cash’s “One Piece at a Time”, followed by “A Boy Named Sue”. I later bought them from iTunes. My first purchased download was Cheap Trick’s “Dream Police”.

    Now you’ve got me trying to track down my iPod again…

  3. First album (CD): probably something from Relient K

    First concert: Rock and Roll Worship Circus (thanks mom)

    First MP3 player: iPod mini

  4. First concert: rock and roll worship circus (thanks mom)

    First cd: superchik

    First cd downloaded MP3: relient k MHMMMM

    First MP3 player: iPod mini

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