Bill Haley and His Comets: Oriental Rock (1958)

 |   |  <1 min read

Bill Haley and His Comets: Oriental Rock (1958)

There are a few views of rock'n'roll pioneer Bill Haley whose Rock Around the Clock provided the revolutionary soundtrack to the '55 Glenn Ford movie Blackboard Jungle: that he was the rebel voice of a post-war generation . . . or that he was the accidental John the Baptist to Elvis' rock'n'roll Jesus.

There is the view that Haley -- who looked like your receeding-hair uncle who was entertaining at a family wedding but no one's idea of a pop star -- was a popular culture abberation who got in the way of black artists like Chuck Berry, Little Richard and Otis Blackwell . . .

Or that he opened the door for others/betters to walk through.

Whatever, within a couple of years of Rock Around the Clock, Haley's career was already on the slide.

In '58 he released the album Rockin' Around the World (sometimes just Rockin' in reissue) and it was as the title said: generic rock'n'roll songs -- each with a slight variation to allow for some regional reference.

And so you had Rockin' Matilda (Australia), Rockin' Rollin' Schnitzelbank (that takes care of Germany), Pretty Alouette for the French, Wooden Shoe Rock (that takes care of the Dutch), Piccadilly Rock for the British . . .

Kinda sad in way. 

For more one-offs, oddities or songs with an interesting backstory get your daily update by RSS feed From the Vaults.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

Charles Bukowski: I've Always Had Trouble with Money (1970?)

Charles Bukowski: I've Always Had Trouble with Money (1970?)

The notorious barfly-poet Charles Bukowski (1920-1994) lived longer than most of those who have been careful and healthy and, like Keith Richards, used his body as a laboratory (for booze in... > Read more

Jean Claude Vannier: Les Mouches (1973)

Jean Claude Vannier: Les Mouches (1973)

French writer/arranger and producer Vannier has worked with anyone who counts in his home country (Gainsbourg, Francoise Hardy, Juliette Greco, jazz pianist Martial Solal etc) as well as Astor... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

The Groundhogs: Blues Obituary 50th Anniversary (Fire/Southbound)

The Groundhogs: Blues Obituary 50th Anniversary (Fire/Southbound)

The Groundhogs are not a band you hear much, if ever, mentioned these days. They emerged at the start of the British blues boom in the early Sixties and – with singer/guitarist Tony McPhee as... > Read more

The Lijadu Sisters: Afro-Beat Soul Sisters (Soul Jazz/Southbound)

The Lijadu Sisters: Afro-Beat Soul Sisters (Soul Jazz/Southbound)

The story of the twins Taiwo and Kehinde Lijadu out of Nigeria could have come from a very familiar template with that bell curve of a career: The excitement of being young and in hot bands (among... > Read more