Last week, we here in the Inland Northwest had a lively debate over the "Rock 'n Roll" Hall of fame, who belonged, who didn't. The discussion was started by John Rook, long time professional in radio, both locally, and nationally.
John claimed that his friend, Pat Boone, belonged in the R & R hall of fame. I contended that he didn't, based on the fact that he didn't do rock. He was a crooner, a singer of ballads. Others that were greats in that time, ('50's) Frankie Avalon, Paul Anka, same-same. John contended that all the trade magazines used the common denominator R & R for all these singers.
Well, I didn't subscribe to the insider pubs, but, you see, I was a '50's teen. I observed from the consumer side, and trust me, none of us thought that Boone or the others, (Maguire Sisters, Crew Cuts, Four Aces) were Rock and Roll. What we had back then was the greatest cross-roads of music probably every seen or ever will be seen.
In one period of three years, 53-56, we had 40's holdovers, big bands, female trios, male quartets, rhythm & blues, hard rock, country cross-overs, such as Hank Sr., Roy Orbison, Faron Young, Lefty Frizell, and who could forget Teresa Brewer. Bill Haley was Rock & Roll.
All of these were great hit parade artists, none mentioned however did Rock & Roll. Our criteria then was, "If you can't Bop to it, it ain't rock & roll. Doug Clark, Spokesman-Review, chimed in today on the same subject.
I support a "Hit parade Hall of Fame" that recognizes all of the fine music produced over the years, whether or not it rocked.
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