He wasn’t the first person to use the words “Rock and Roll”, but he was the one …

Written by on January 20, 2018


He wasn’t the first person to use the words “Rock and Roll”, but he was the one who gave them definition.

Today we are remembering Alan Freed who passed away on Jan. 20, 1965. Albert James “Alan” Freed , also known as Moondog, was an American disc jockey. He became internationally known for promoting the mix of blues, country and rhythm and blues music on the radio in the United States and Europe under the name of rock and roll. His career was destroyed by the payola scandal that hit the broadcasting industry in the early 1960s.

Freed is commonly referred to as the “father of rock’n’roll” due to his promotion of the style of music, and his introduction of the phrase “rock and roll”, in reference to the musical genre, on mainstream radio in the early 1950s. He helped bridge the gap of segregation among young teenage Americans, presenting music by African-American artists (rather than cover versions by white artists) on his radio program, and arranging live concerts attended by racially mixed audiences. Freed appeared in several motion pictures as himself. In the 1956 film Rock, Rock, Rock, Freed tells the audience that “rock and roll is a river of music that has absorbed many streams: rhythm and blues, jazz, rag time, cowboy songs, country songs, folk songs. All have contributed to the big beat.”

RIP Alan. We all owe you so much.




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