Friday, December 17, 2010

Right Rhythmic Rock and Roll Music - Part II

     My previous post on an April 1945 use of the phrase "rock and roll" turns out to have bearing on the official history of rock and roll.  Rock of Ages: The Rolling Stone History of Rock and Roll states that a June 22, 1946, review of  Joe Liggins' "Sugar Lump," which  used the same  "right rhythmic rock and roll music"  was the the first time that phrase had appeared in print.  This is also stated in Adam Woog's History of Rock and Roll
     The Routledge Dictionary of Modern American Slang and Unconventional English lists the June 22, 1946 usage as well.
     The Yale Book of Quotations discussing Alan Freed's use of the phrase--'An earlier article in Billboard, 22 June 1946, had referred to ''right rhythmic rock and roll music,'' but this was an isolated description rather than a label for a musical genre, such as Freed's usage.'
     So the usage I cited is over a year older than the usually cited instance, which raises a bunch of questions in itself although it may still be an "isolated description" since the second usage seems to simply copy the first almost word for word.
     Anybody out there have access to the OED online or otherwise? What do they have as the earliest usage of "rock and roll" referring to a musical style or genre? 

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