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Vintage Rock

Vintage Rock Mar/Apr 2019

VINTAGE ROCK celebrates a time when music changed the world - 45s, youth culture and the odd thrusting pelvis. Vintage Rock chronicles all the stellar artists and music, the enduring legacy of those early pioneers - and why it’s still the best way to live. Spanning the dawn of the 50s to early Beatles (pre Eastern mysticism!), Vintage Rock covers a time of Mods and Rockers, crinoline skirts and blue jeans, rock star movies and screaming-girl concerts. This special magazine rejoices in the music and verve of Elvis, The Shadows, Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry, Gene Vincent and a host more, and speaks to a contemporary audience that relishes the vitality and flair of the era.

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United Kingdom
Anthem Publishing
6 Issues

in this issue

1 min.

Look back at the end of year charts in the 1950s and, despite what you may like to think, you won’t find a nation in thrall to rock’n’roll. Sure, Elvis Presley was massive. But across both the US and the UK (which was always much more conservative anyway), it was relatively slim pickings for the kings, princes and queens of rockabilly. Perry Como, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Paul Anka were much more likely to be regularly spinning on those all-new, all-exciting radiograms, and although the spurt in the growth of the single – the vibrant, some say “pure” rock’n’roll format – certainly helped young rockers, their craft was still largely a cult concern. ‘Gentler’ music was still the order of the day. In the UK, at least, the whole…

7 min.
all mama’s children

Ritchie Valens Remembered Young rocker perished alongside Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper 60 years ago The plane crash that took the life of Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper and others was, of course, a tragedy, but Ritchie Valens’ demise on 3 February 1959 in the same crash was particularly sad. The young rocker had only eight months to record his entire works, beginning for the Del-Fi label producer Bob Keane in May of 1958, but after three indelible hits — Come On, Let’s Go and the blockbuster double-sided pairing of Donna and La Bamba — Valens was on the cusp of superstardom at the age of just 17. To commemorate Valens’ brief but brilliant career, the Bear Family label has issued a fresh compilation, Ritchie Valens Rocks, on CD. The single-CD Digipak…

1 min.
rare rock’n’rollrecords

OH! WHAT A WONDERFUL TIME C/W LET THE DADDY HOLD YOU (JAY-DEE RECORDS 808-45) OTIS BLACKWELL Two absolute scorchers from one of the greatest songwriters in history, this 45 from 1955 is always at the top on any serious R&B ‘want list’. MINT VALUE: £1,000 WHERE’S MY MONEY (MR PEACOCK RECORDS MP 104) WILLIE JONES Used on the Northern scene, this shaker is perfect to get the dancefloor shifting! Extremely hard to find either the original stock or promo copy, buyers beware this has now been bootlegged extensively! MINT VALUE: £500 MISSED THE WORKHOUSE (LUCKY 0006) BILL WATKINS This infectious 45 from big Bill Watkins was penned in 1959 and it’ll definitely get those feet moving! Watkins tells of a dangerous tale where he loses control of his sports convertible, with dire consequences… MINT VALUE: £800 I’M SHAKIN (KING 45-5342) LITTLE WILLIE JOHN Little…

3 min.
emma & the ragmen

“We much prefer performing live to recording,” says Emma Nelson of Scottish rockers Emma & The Ragmen. “Nothing beats playing to a live audience!” The band formed in late 2015, inspired by a shared admiration for Patsy Cline, Varetta Dillard, Buddy Holly and Fats Domino. They released their debut single Ragtop Roll/In The Know the following year on the newly founded Rampage Records. After building their reputation playing around Scotland, they’re breaking out with performances at high-profile events including the Rockabilly Rave and Rhythm Riot… How did the band get together? “David Cameron [drums] and Alan McCubbin [double bass] played in a Scottish rockabilly band called the FretTones. They played all over Britain and Europe until lead singer Keith Turner passed away in 2015. David played in an indie band at…

21 min.
a - z of rockabilly

A IS FOR… ALL THE TIME Thomas “Sleepy” LaBeef (né LaBeff) cut this rockabilly classic in 1957 when he was 18. Sleepy was never a star and this was never a hit – although he cut over 100 records, he possibly earned more money from his work as a truck driver, a lumberjack, a grocery clerk and even playing The Swamp Thing in 1968 horror flick The Exotic Ones (he’s 6ft 5″, so was perfect). All The Time, his second single, is explosive rockabilly: no drums, just slapping, throbbing upright bass, razor guitar licks from the great Hal Harris and the lazy-eyed Sleepy declaiming: “No I can’t stop my crazy heart/It feels just like it will break apart/And I want her with me… all the time /(Let’s git it now!)” Should’ve been…

1 min.
elvis presley

Without Elvis Presley, the entire rockabilly movement may well have never gotten out of the starting gate. When Presley, guitarist Scotty Moore, and bassist Bill Black convened at Sun Records in Memphis in July of 1954 in search of something commercial enough for Sam Phillips to release, they hit upon the perfect hybrid when they kicked into an impromptu rendition of bluesman Arthur ‘Big Boy’ Crudup’s That’s All Right. It wasn’t blues, it wasn’t hillbilly, and it certainly wasn’t pop. The term rockabilly hadn’t been coined yet, but that’s what it was. Plenty of other backwoods boppers were trafficking in similar territory, yet Elvis instantly defined the genre with That’s All Right and its flipside’s recasting of Bill Monroe’s Blue Moon Of Kentucky. Presley’s early days in the Sun studio delivered…