In the 1960's and
early 1970's music was a force that actually affected the way many people
thought and acted. Music awakened people to what was "hip" or "unhip"
in the world around us.
was more than just a decade, it was a state of mind.
surfers took to skateboards as a way to stay fit out of season, and by 1963, the
fad had spread across the country.
dolls, introduced by Mattel in 1959, became a huge success in the sixties, so
much so that rival toy manufacturer Hasbro came up with G. I. Joe, 12 inches
tall and the first action figure for boys.
Another doll, the troll or Dammit
doll (named for it's creator, Thomas Dam) was a good luck symbol for all ages.
Slot cars overtook toy trains in popularity.
1960's began with crew cuts on men and bouffant hairstyles on women.
casual shirts were often plaid and buttoned down the front, while knee-length
dresses were required wear for women in most public places.
E. Neuman -Early 1960's
mid-decade, miniskirts or hot pants, often worn with go-go boots, were revealing
legs, bodywear was revealing curves, and women's hair was either very short or
long and lanky. Men's hair became longer and wider, with beards and moustaches.
Men's wear had a renaissance. Bright colors, Dashikis, double-breasted sports
jackets, polyester pants suits with Nehru jackets, and turtlenecks were in
E. Neuman -Late 1960's
wore peasant skirts or granny dresses and chunky shoes. Unisex dressing was
popular, featuring bell bottomed blue jeans, love beads, and embellished
Clothing was as likely to be purchased at surplus stores as boutiques.
Blacks of both genders wore their hair in an afro.
of the 1960s was characteristic of the revolution that was going on during the
decade. It was a time of rebellion and counter-culture in which the younger
people were questioning everything, including authority, corporations, the
government, and other aspects of everyday life. It was essentially a revolution
of the status quo.
Beatles and other British rock groups helped create in the 1960s a milieu that
emphasized youth, exuberance, and innovation not only in music but in fashion.
Young Americans found British fashions as appealing as the music crossing the
ocean. The Beatles' popularity in the United States was phenomenal; in March
1964 they achieved the unprecedented feat of having the top five singles on the
nation's charts. Their success in the American market emboldened other British
groups like the Rolling Stones to test the trans-Atlantic waters. The success of
the Beatles and their compatriots prompted American disc jockeys to coin the
phrase "the British Invasion."
and The Family Stone
and The Family Stone, a multi racial group, unheard of for the times, recorded a
landmark 1969 song about acceptance, "Everyday People". The band
exemplified racial harmony, ethnic diversity and a voice for women in its
lineup. Sly and the Family Stone came together late in 1966, with
keyboardist/vocalist Sly Stone (born Sylvester Stewart) recruiting family
members: his sister Rose (keyboards, vocals), brother Freddie Stone (guitar) and
cousin Larry Graham (bass). The group was rounded out by Cynthia Robinson
(trumpet), Greg Errico (drums) and Jerry Martini (sax).
for authority declined among the youth, and crime rates soared to nine times the
rate of the 1950's. Marijuana use soared. Counter culture figures such as
Timothy Leary encouraged the use of LSD as a mind-opening drug.
for yourself and question authority"
on, Tune in, Drop out"
Rock, highly amplified and improvisational, and the more mellow psychedelic rock
Many hippies moved to Haight Ashbury in San Francisco, East Village in New York
City, or lived in communes.
Major issues included a growing disillusionment of
government ideology, advances in civil rights, increased influence of the women's
movement, and a heightened concern for the environment.
Civil Rights movement made great changes in society in the 1960's. The movement
began peacefully, with Martin Luther King and Stokely Carmichael leading sit-ins
and peaceful protests, joined by whites and Jews. Malcolm X preached about Black
Nationalism. The Black Panthers were formed and advocated
"self-defense" against oppression.
Seale and Huey Newton Black Panther Party
Vietnam anti-war movement in the United States began with demonstrations in
1964 and grew in strength in later years. As the Vietnam War continued to
escalate, public disenchantment grew and a variety of different groups were
formed or became involved in the movement.
What started out
as a tiny traditional peace movement broke out of its shell, reaching a far
wider segment of the population by 1965 and becoming a radical peace movement on
college campuses. Within three years polls would show that more than half the
population was opposed to the war. The radicalization of the peace movement
began with the formation of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS).
Campus unrest began as sit ins
and protests soon escalated to burning buildings and throwing rocks or bombs at
law enforcement officials.
1968 was a year of unrest and
turmoil. The Tet offensive by the North Vietnamese and Vietcong, President
Johnsonís announcement not to run for a second term, the assassination of
Martin Luther King, Jr., after which riots broke out in almost every major
U.S. City, Robert Kennedyís assassination, the violent demonstrations
and brutal police reactions at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago
were some of the low lights.
On Monday, May 4 at Kent State a
student protest was occurring and National Guardsmen were ordered to clear the
campus . The Guardsman opened fire and fired sixty-one shots within thirteen
seconds, killing four students and wounding nine.
Civil Rights movement and the escalating war in Vietnam were the two great
catalysts for social protest in the 1960's and 1970's . Many songs and musicians work
focused on the war and civil rights in the United States during this turbulent
styles to protesting for a cause, music was a driving force.
Godfather of Soul"
Father Of Funk"
It Loud - I'm Black and I'm Proud" is a 1968 recording by James
Brown. It is notable both as one of Brown's signature songs and one of the
most popular "black power" anthems of the 1960s. In the song, Brown
addresses the prejudice towards blacks in America, and the need for black
empowerment. He proclaims that "we done made us a chance to do for ourself/we're
tired of beating our head against the wall/workin' for someone else".
May 26, 1969 John Lennon and Yoko Ono held a very unique protest-in bed. During their week-long bed-in at
the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal, the former Beatle and his wife recorded
their anthem Give Peace a Chance. "We're here as a protest
against violence," Lennon said.
"If we say peace often
enough, if I, John Lennon, say peace, it's going to make all those people who
love me say peace. Now think about it. At least, they're going to think about it
which is the most anybody can count on, " On December 8,1980 John Lennon
was shot and killed by obsessed loner Mark Chapman.
Jackson 5 perform "Can You Remember" in 1969 on the Hollywood Palace.
The song is one of their early cuts on their debut album for Motown, "Diana
Ross Presents The Jackson 5."
movement endorsed drugs, rock music, mystic religions and sexual freedom. They
opposed violence. The 1969 Woodstock Festival at which 400,000 young people gathered
in a spirit of love and sharing, represents the pinnacle of the hippie movement.
The musical phenomena of the
decade was Woodstock, a three day music festival that drew 400,000 people and
featured peace, love, and happiness...and LSD.
1970 George Harrison organized the Concert for Bangladesh to raise funds for
UNICEF's relief efforts to aid war victims in Bangladesh. -- the first, and
perhaps the greatest, concert-for-a-cause that rock 'n' rollers ever staged.
was staged at Madison Square Garden, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Billy Preston, Leon
Russell and Ringo Starr, among others played . Unofficially, it was the
first rock for benefit concert.
Harrison died on 29 November 2001.
Many of the
"radical" ideas of the 1960's gained wider acceptance in the 1970's ,
and were mainstreamed into American life and culture and were reflected in the
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