Rock ‘n’ Roll Greats Vol 1 – Great Balls of Fire (Jerry Lee Lewis).
This album is a wonderful collection of the classic rock and roll music that kicked off so many people’s interest in the music of the last 50+ years. All of the famous artists are here, but for me, it is Jerry Lee Lewis and his very distinctive piano playing that started my listening to rock and roll all those years ago.
This track is probably his best known and is, of course, an absolute classic of rock and roll. There cannot be any song with a more powerful start. You cannot imagine how much of a shock this was in the 50s and how frowned upon this style of music was at the time. This was a cultural revolution and what a great way to do this – through music.
Great Balls of Fire – Jerry Lee Lewis
Good Golly Miss Molly – Jerry Lee Lewis
Rock and Roll Music – Chuck Berry
Sweet Little Rock and Roller – Chuck Berry
Sweet Little Sixteen – Chuck Berry
Roll Over Beethoven – Chuck Berry
Check Me Out – Chuck Berry
Blueberry Hill – Fats Domino
Please Don’t Leave Me – Fats Domino
Jambalaya (on the Bayou) – Fats Domino
Ain’t That a Shame – Fats Domino
What’d I Say – Jerry Lee Lewis
Greatest Oldies Collection Vol – Buddy Holly / Peggy Sue.
This MP3 download was a recent purchase, mainly to complement my other music from the 50s and 60s. However, there are some really brilliant pieces of music on this album and it is very important, with this type of collection, to remember the era the music was written in. For me this is easy as it is my era and what an era to have lived through. Most of the music played on the radio was old style ballet and love songs (crooners) or popular music (middle of the road) that didn’t upset anyone and didn’t break down any barriers. Then along came Rock and Roll and everything changed so fast!
For me there is only one track to pick from this collection and it is by Buddy Holly, whose short musical life gave so much to Rock and Roll, and the track is a classic – Peggy Sue. I know I have already picked this track (sung by John Lennon), but this is the original and I hope you will forgive me repeating the choice.
1. Chubby Checker / Limbo Rock.
2. Elvis Presley / Don’t Be Cruel.
3. Ben E. King / Spanish Harlem.
4. Joe Dowell / Wooden heart.
5. Buddy Holly / Peggy Sue.
6. The Four Seasons / Big Girls Don’t Cry.
7. The Mamas & Papas / California,
8. Sam Hui / Keep Searching.
9. Johnny Rivers / Secret Agent M.
10. The Drifters / Save The Last Dance for Me.
11. Chubby Checker / The Twist.
12. Sam The Sham & The Pharaoes / Wooly Bully.
13. Johnny Tillotson / Poetry In Motion.
14. Neil Sedaka / Oh Carol.
15. Elvis Presley / Jailhouse Rock.
16. Jeannie C. Riley / Harper Valley P.T.A.
17. Herman’s Hermits / No Milk Today.
18. Los Bravos / Black Is Back.
19. Searchers / Love Potion No. 9.
20. Neil Sedaka / Breaking Up Is Hard to do.
Watt – I’m Coming On.
This album (vinyl) goes back to my student days and much of the rock and roll sounds were used for dance music at parties. I always liked the rock style of Ten Years After and this album remains a long time favourite.
This track opens the album with a real rock and roll beat and the opening riff is excellent and the lyrics provide a really exciting rock anthem – I just love this track.
Very Best of Ian Dury & the Blockheads: Reasons to be Cheerful – Sweet Gene Vincent.
I always liked the clever lyrics and unusual styles of music that this band produced and it was a sad loss when Ian died. There are many tracks of this greatest hits that people will know well and I could have chosen, but there is something special about the rock and roll sound, the two different rhythms and the lyrics of this song that make it special for me! This album remains one of my all time favourites and is a perfect example of sing-along music.
Rock the Joint – Farewell So Long Goodbye.
Another album (vinyl) that was a Christmas present back in the 60s and another collection of classic rock and roll.
This track has a lot of good (early) guitar work and is classic of the style from the 50s. Listen for sounds that occur later in rock music.
Rock ‘N’ Roll – Peggy Sue.
Continuing the theme of rock and roll this tribute to that sound, from john Lennon, is an excellent reminder of the importance of the sound to modern music.
Peggy Sue was one of my first singles I bought as a 78rpm (remember them?) and this version is a tremendous tribute to Buddy Holly. This rhythm is one of the fastest beats on early rock records and is an excellent sound – simple yet brilliant.
Rock Around the Clock – Shake Rattle and Roll.
Okay, I was only 4 years old when the title track of this album was released, but I guess that this shows I grew up with the sound of rock and roll. in fact my mother bought me this album when I was a teenager and it was one of my first albums. It was from this music, which was such a change to the popular sounds of the 50s, that all of the music I have been reviewing grew – this is my musical birthplace and I still love the sound, despite it’s simplicity.
This track is one of my all time favourite dance tracks, many a time this was dancing with mum, lol!