It seems January 7th was a quiet day in rock history throughout the years. In 1971, Black Sabbath released their landmark album “Paranoid” in the US. To this day, still one of my all-time favorite rock albums.
However, something did happen way back in 1955. A band called Bill Haley & The Comets had a record out called “Rock Around The Clock”. It entered the UK charts on this day and rock n roll took off.
Back then, parents called rock n roll the devil’s music. It drove teens into a frenzy, causing widespread disobedience, sexual depravity and out of control behavior. Thank you Bill Haley.
Although the song got quite a bit of airplay, it was the frequent riots at the Bill Haley concerts that received the most attention.
Bill Haley and the Comets were the first rock ’n’ roll band to get signed to a major label, the first to have a national hit, the first to have a song in a feature film and the first to appear on a major TV show (Ed Sullivan). “Rock Around the Clock” started a tradition of “counting” songs in rock ’n’ roll, from Chuck Berry’s “Thirteen Question Method” to Gene Vincent’s “Five Days, Five Days.” It has sold over 25 million copies (200 million if you count more than 500 cover versions cut in 32 languages) and appeared in 36 movies.
It received a resurgence in popularity when used as the opening song for the hit series “Happy Days”.
It’s a great song and to this day still gets me to sing along.
Long live Rock n Roll !!