How Is Rock Music Great?Posted by Mike Schuck
What is rock music? That seems like a simple question, but it’s one that has baffled many since the genre first emerged in the mid-20th century. Some say it’s just about drums and guitars, while others argue that songs need to be longer than a minute and have lyrics. Others still believe it’s only supposed to sound heavy and hard!
It’s difficult to define what makes something “rock” because the word itself has different definitions depending on who uses it. More often than not, however, people refer to how rock sounds.
Music written during the classic era of rock (1960–1980) was characterized by its use of complex rhythms, dramatic changes in volume and tone, and strong vocals. This type of music typically includes elements such as guitar riffs, bass lines, and drum breaks.
Since then, other genres of music have incorporated some or all of these things, making it harder to describe what makes something rock. Many musicians today are influenced more directly by early punk and new wave artists, which focused less on having lots of effects and bells and whistles and more on creating an intense sense of rhythm and audience participation.
This article will discuss two main theories for why there is no clear definition of what constitutes rock music. Then, we will look at some examples of popular rock songs to see if they match either theory.
Origins of rock music
As we know, rock is not one genre but rather a large cluster of genres. It’s often characterized by its use of guitar, lyrics that discuss themes such as love or life, and songs with an instrumental bridge (a section of music that expands the song and adds another element).
However, what defines rock is actually kind of fuzzy and depends on when it was written. Some say rock began in the 1950s while others argue for 1960s bands like The Beatles to be considered true rock musicians.
Regardless, there are several important factors about rock that have remained constant throughout time. These include artists that make frequent references to nature, use imagery related to science or philosophy, and incorporate musical instruments into their compositions.
Music theory also tells us that most rock songs follow a simple structure called ABABC. This acronym stands for verse-bridge-chorus-verse. Each part of this pattern is typically two minutes long which makes them ideal length units for songs!
What is the bridge?
The term “bridge” refers to a short piece of music that links together two other sections. In ABAB formats like those mentioned above, the bridge is usually just long enough to take you back and forth from the first section to second.
Some people may describe the bridge as being difficult to understand, or as having no clear theme or tone.
Classic rock genres
There are many different types of classic rock music, but they all have several common traits. They are usually characterized by strong melodies, interesting lyrics, and solid vocal performances. The songs in these genres also tend to be longer than average.
Classic rock is typically considered to be made up of five main classic rock genres: power, hard rock, glam metal, alternative, and progressive. Each of these sub-genres has its own defining characteristics, but overall they share similar musical qualities.
Power ಠ_ಟ Power is defined as “music with strong intensity”. Songs in this genre often feature powerful bass lines, high pitched vocals, and electric guitars that play fast riffs. Some popular artists that fit into this category include Adele, Pink, Lady Gaga, and Ariana Grande.
Hard rock ٌٍُِّ Hard rock is described as being very rhythmically complex. It may contain drums, heavy bass rhythms, and guitar parts that go down heavily at times. Artists such as Metallica, Led Zeppelin, and Queen fit into this genre.
Glam metal تام Glühwein or German hot chocolate is definitely not your typical classic rock! If you’ve ever heard of Thin Lizzy, Motörhead, or Poison, then you know what I mean when I say that bands like Iron Maiden, Kiss, and AC/DC fit into this genre.
Modern rock genres
Recent popular music styles are categorized as part of what is referred to as the “modern rock genre.” These include bands such as Motörhead, Rage Against The Machine, Incubus, Twenty One Pilots, and many more!
Modern rock usually includes lyrics that emphasize themes about love, life, and personal growth. Lyrics often contain references to nature or existentialism.
These songs typically use an instrument such as guitar, bass, or drum set. Most musicians in modern rock groups play several instruments, especially guitarist where they can add variety to the song.
Overall, these types of songs make for great listening because they are not only entertaining to listen to, but also meaningful.
Who are some famous rock artists
Many people know who some of the biggest rock bands are, but few can name all of their songs or identify what music genre they belong to. This is totally okay!
Music fans have lots of different genres and styles that they enjoy listening to. Some may listen to soft ballads, others heavy metal, classic rock, or something else entirely.
None of these types of music sounds like the next one, which is why there are no hard and fast rules for defining what makes an artist be considered part of the rock genre.
Who are some famous rock bands
Many people know what kind of music is considered to be “rock” but they may not know all of the brands within that genre. Some people also confuse musicians with their band names only knowing the individual artists’ identities.
It is very important to know who every artist in this style of music is because it teaches you about the craft of writing and singing songs!
Music writers and vocalists are often grouped together, which is why it can be hard to tell whether or not someone knows their songwriting tools. It is essential that you listen to each musician's work and understand how they write lyrics, compose melodies, and structure songs.
What are some famous rock songs
Many people associate music with lyrics, but not everyone knows what it is that makes up the other half of the song! The genre of rock includes many different components such as vocals, bass guitar, rhythm guitars, keyboards, drums, and sometimes even brass instruments or orchestration. All these parts work together to form the overall sound of the song!
Some musicians will add special effects like reverb or echo to make the notes more prominent in the mix, while others will use compression software to pull down the volume of the rest of the band so that their part sounds less thin.
It is important to be able to recognize all of the various elements of a rock song if you want to know how they fit into the whole thing.
What are some famous rock albums
Many consider The Beatles to be one of the greatest bands ever, so they’re included here as an example. They released seven solo studio albums and two live album releases during their career, making a total of 10 albums. All but one of these albums have spent at least 20 weeks in the top 40 or higher on the Billboard 200 chart, which is how many weeks an album needs to stay in the top 50 to qualify as “successful.”
That one exception was When I'm 64, which only made it five weeks into the top 100 before dropping out. It still managed to sell over six million copies worldwide, though!
The band's first three solo efforts all contain at least one song that has won a music award or received lots of praise from fans. These songs include "I Want To Hold Your Hand", "She Loved You First" and "Let It Be". Each of those tracks also achieved success independently outside of the group setting.
Their next four solo efforts feature more upbeat songs with catchy melodies and lyrics that people can get hooked on quickly. Some examples of this are George Harrison's Grammy-winning track "My Sweet Lord" and Paul McCartney's hit single "Hey Jude". Both of those songs were reinterpreted by other artists for the sound collabs that we know them as today.
What are some important elements of rock music
As we have seen, one of the most fundamental things about rock is its genre. However, there are other key components that make up the music within this genre.
These additional features include how the songs are constructed, what instruments are used to create the sound, what style the song belongs to, and what influence the artist has on others.
When talking about an artist’s stylistic influence, it is helpful to consider something called canonization. This occurs when artists outside of your main genre can have a strong impact on you.
For example, say my favorite band was The Beatles. Then someone else created a new album that I also really like – let’s call it The New Album. If I listened to only one side of each album for two weeks, then The New Album would win in terms of having an overall bigger effect on me.
The Jam Addict team is a revolving door of writers who care about music, its effects on culture, and giving aspiring artists tools and knowledge to be inspired and keep on creating.
If you have any questions or concerns or just want to drop us a line, don't hesitate to contact us! We always appreciate the feedback.