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Folk Rock II

  Folk Rock II In the first instalment on Folk Rock , I talked about the origins and the founders of the genre such as Bob Dylan and The Byrds. I stand by my observation that for the most part, the genre hosts songs rather than artists. The February 2020 post has become my most viewed since then and actually doubles the next in line, Bohemian Rhapsody .  Perhaps this genre has become more popular with the current state of the world and it's coming up on Google searches, so I thought it might deserve a second part. This means a bit more exploring and then moving beyond the formative years of the 60s and early 70s. What defines a Folk-Rock song? On the surface it is simply a blend; you take a folk song and add elements of Rock and there you have it. The perfect example is the first song that got labelled "Folk Rock" which was the cover of Dylan's " Mr. Tambourine Man " by The Byrds. It was recorded January 20, 1965 and released on April 12. But that one is eas
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"Tis or 'tis not? (the Season to be Jolly)

  "Tis or 'tis not "the Season to be Jolly"? As I discussed in my post last year on Christmas and Holiday songs they are the most covered and performed songs of all time. Yet this year many will struggle to be anywhere near jolly this Holiday Season. Our front line workers, in particular those in hospital and senior care settings have been and continue to put their lives on hold to care for others. I thank you all. However this may just be just what the doctor ordered so to speak, for as much as many of these songs are filled with joy, hope and kindness towards our fellow human beings many songs express a variety of other sentiments about the holiday season.  Many find it hard to relate to religious carols like " Silent Night " or even the more secular songs such as " White Christmas " and even the happy go lucky " Holly Jolly Christmas ". Some, especially this year, may find more solace with songs of a somber or gritty tone such as The

Women of Rock

Women of Rock History Melissa Etheridge You can always count on me for a walk back in time in my blog and this topic will be no different. In order to trace the history of female Rock singers I will go back to some of the pioneers.  Let’s first start with some background on the Rock & Roll genre. What was once referred to as Rock & Roll was shortened to just Rock by the late 1960s and has continued to evolve. Some may want to separate it into two genres, but semantics can't change the history of this diverse genre. The Rock & Roll period also includes Blues, R&B, Country and Rockabilly styles, among others. So whether these artists find themselves in the subgenre of Hard Rock, Acid Rock, Pop Rock, Folk Rock or one of the many dozens of other sub-classifications, a little reminder of the history is what I'm starting with today. These early influencers are where some of our more recent great artists received inspiration, motivation and in some cases the educatio

What is a Cover Song?

  What is a Cover Song? Simply put: a cover song is a re-recording of an original song. And the original song has to have been recorded first and in most cases, released on some recognizable format be it vinyl, video or digital. It’s sometimes splitting hairs as there have been many songs that are written and recorded but not released by the record company. Said company may give that song to another artist who may release it first. Technically, there is no formal legal definition of a cover song, and one could even argue the first recording is now a cover song once it is released. I will talk more on that in a bit. Regardless, after a song is released it is now free game for anyone to obtain a mechanical licence and cover it. I gave an example in a previous blog where Bruce Springsteen blocked Bette Midler from releasing one of his songs, that’s because he had only performed it live and he nor anyone else had released it yet. Though as soon as it’s recorded, the artist would lose that

The Most Covered Pop Artists and Songs of All Time

The Most Covered Pop Artists and Songs of All Time There are three categories in today’s blog: 1. The most covered songs written by a single artist, 2. The most cover versions combined and 3. The most covered Pop songs.  These numbers are for artists that write and record their own songs. For more on songwriters, read my series I Write the Songs . The statistics come courtesy of Secondhandsongs.com and are verified via strict protocols. This website posts 'covers' submitted from around the globe and in many different languages, edited by very knowledgeable experts in music recording. There are other resources as cited but other than the odd personal anecdote or opinion, I'm using information and knowledge, not to mention YouTube posts that already exist. In addition, the numbers change daily, and I had originally written this blog in December 2019 so it’s been interesting to see the changes in less than a year. On the whole, the artists in each list stayed the same but

Isn't it Ironic

Isn't it Ironic? Sorry, I'm not talking about Alanis Morissette! But there are artists who have been eclipsed by their own songs. Many of them are amazing songwriters but, ironically, their chart-topping hits were written by someone else. As I pointed out in my series, I Write the Songs, many great songwriters are not well-known, yet their songs are easily recognized by most people. Today I will point out the contrasts in popularity for some singer/songwriters. When I say ironic, I mean that things turned out the opposite or in an unexpected way from what one might have expected. Willie Nelson Now everyone knows of Willie Nelson, and I've mentioned him quite a bit. He is one of the best songwriters in Country music but his first #1 song was " Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain " (1975), written by Fred Rose. Not only did Nelson not write it himself, it was a cover version that was first done by Roy Acuff . In fact, Nelson’s next five #1 songs: "If You've Got t