A Rocket in My Pocket: The Hipster's Guide to Rockabilly Music

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Profile Books, Dec 9, 2010 - Music - 336 pages
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Rockabilly had its roots in country, blues, folk, hillbilly, R&B, boogie-woogie and most other indigenous Deep South forms of popular song that you could strum three chords along to or howl down a cheap microphone. It was young people's music, made almost entirely by the first wave of teenagers, despised by adults in general and the country music establishment in particular. Its pioneer exponent, Elvis, eventually become respectable in the eyes of straight society but he was the exception.

1950s rockabilly was a spontaneous outburst of spirited three-chord songs, tiny record labels, primitive studios, fiercely partisan audiences and wild-eyed, driven performers who weren't even sure that their musical careers would last the week. The book charts the rise (and fall) of the original 50s wave of rockabillies. It will also follow the progress of the music, in clubs, on radio, TV and film, pinpointing the key record labels and important regional centres, showing how fashions eventually changed and left rockabilly high and dry, far too wild and primitive in an era of smoother sounds. Décharné traces the music to its Memphis roots.

 

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Contents

Hillbillies on Speed
1
The Shootin Wars Over But Theres Still Some
17
Do You Wanna Jump Children?
19
The King of Western Bop
34
Get With It
49
Like It Says On The Label
82
It Came From The Garage
99
Bound For Glory
114
Juke Joint Johnnies
176
Howdy Friends and Neighbours
189
Same Time Same Channel
204
Hollywood Be Thy Name
221
OffTheEdgeoftheMap
240
Back From the Dead Bigger Than Ever
272
Stray Cats Polecats and BornAgain Hepcats
286
Still a Lot Of Rhythm In These Rockin Bones
300

Queens of Rockabilly
131
All Aboard the Bandwagon
162

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About the author (2010)

Max Décharné is a writer and musician. He has written about music regularly for Mojo magazine since 1998, where he is their chief authority on the subject of rockabilly music, which he has followed and played since the 1970s. His work has also appeared in the Sunday Times Colour Magazine, the TLS and Bizarre, among others. He is the author of six books, the most recent of which, King's Road - The Rise & Fall of the Hippest Street in the World, was published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson in November 2005.

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