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A new photo album with 134 historic images at deluxe size by Dust to Digital. A book with lots of found images. Among those aren’t photos of Bill Hayley, Elvis Presley or any usual person, but there’re ordinary, nameless men, women, and children. Most of the people in the photos wouldn’t have heard of rock’n’roll, much less thought of themselves as rock’n’roll progenitors. Instead, the images capture the gangly musicians, the giddy dancers, and the drunken antics found in smalltown America from the 1930s to the 1960s and beyond. All the musical genres that influenced what we know of as “rock” are represented: everything from jump blues and gospel to boogie woogie and Western swing.

The author, Jim Linderman says: “We have this notion that rock’n’roll started in Memphis in 1955, and it really didn’t. Bob Wills was playing in the ’30s and ’40s in Oklahoma, and Chuck Berry modeled Maybellene on a Bob Wills song. The roots of rock go back a lot further than we realize. It came from the church, from vaudeville, from the music played in after-hours clubs, from juke joints. The whole point was pretty much to get together, get drunk, and get laid. That’s the real history of rock ’n’ roll.”

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As Muddy Waters said, “The blues had a baby and they called it it Rock and Roll.”

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