Category Teeny boppers

THE KING IS DEAD (But Johnny B. Goode Lives On): Chuck Berry, Rock ‘n’ Roll’s Pioneer Architect of Youthful Abandon, Dies at 90.

Chuck was/is a progenitor of the gloriously messy swamp of cross-pollinated sounds we call rock ‘n’ roll. With his own influences as disparate as T-Bone Walker and Nat “King” Cole, Berry burst on the national scene in the early 1950s as a five-tool artist who wrote, sang, played, performed, and created an exciting new form from existing traditions, effortlessly fusing elements of nascent Teenage Pop (which he helped invent), Tin Pan Alley, Blues, R&B, Rockabilly, Swing, and even Country and Western.


When Davy Jones died, presumably of a heart attack at the too-young age of 66, the phone rang. It was my mother, who had just heard the news on TV. She said her first thought was of me. “You were always the ‘Monkees Man.’ ” I felt instantly seven or eight years old again. I found myself getting choked up, and then breaking down into a kind of sob beyond any rational control, as I tried to articulate and pay tribute to why Davy’s death felt so knee-buckling. Of course, the grief was — and is — about loss, both figurative and concrete. The stricken sadness had to do with the death of someone whose heartbeat was a core part of my childhood. And it had to do with flesh-and-blood reality vanquishing warm and fuzzy celluloid fantasy — a fantasy which, until then, carried the subconscious illusion of always existing and being untouchable.

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