60′s The British Invasion
British youth who grew up in the 1950s listening to American rock and roll invaded the American music scene from the early to mid 1960s. Many of the key figures of the British invasion pointed to early American rock and rollers as the inspiration and motivation for their music; e.g. Keith Richards/Chuck Berry and John Lennon/Buddy Holly. But these bands didn’t merely imitate the artists they admired; they took a uniquely American sound and internationalized it. What had started as an American youth rebellion became, in the hands of their British counterparts, a more literate and eloquent reflection.
Bands like the Rolling Stones, The Who and The Beatles changed the look of rock and roll from the individual star (Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly) and music industry manufactured teen idol to that of a group that wrote and produced their own music. The traditional quartet rock group of today; drum, bass, guitar, vocals, was made standard by the groups of the British invasion.
Though all the groups associated with the original British invasion had varying degrees of popular success and longevity, the overall impact of the movement was profound. No longer was rock and roll an American art form but it became a global unified voice of youthful angst. Since the original British invasion, there has been a constant back and forth in popularity and influence from American to British artists (as well as artists from other countries). Various other British “invasions” have happened since the 1960s.
- Bands, as opposed to individual rockers
- Mopish hairstyles
- Complex, literate lyrics