Stomp and Shout
R&B and the Origins of Northwest Rock and Roll
Published by: University of Washington Press
152.00 x 229.00 mm, 30 b&w illus.
- ISBN: 9780295751252
- Published: November 2022
Long before the world discovered grunge, the Pacific Northwest was already home to a singular music culture. In the late 1950s, locals had codified a distinct offshoot of rockin’ R&B, and a surprising number of them would skyrocket to success, including Little Bill & the Bluenotes, the Wailers, Ron Holden, Paul Revere & the Raiders, the Kingsmen, Merrilee Rush, and the Sonics.
Peter Blecha tells the story of music in the Pacific Northwest from the 1940s to the 1960s, a golden era that shaped generations of musicians to come. The local R&B scene evolved out of the area’s vibrant jazz scene, and Blecha illuminates the musical continuum between Ray Charles (who cut his first record in Seattle) and Quincy Jones to the rock ’n’ rollers who forged the classic jazz-tinged “Northwest Sound.”
Blecha offers highly entertaining firsthand accounts gleaned from hundreds of interviews. DJs built a teen dance circuit that the authorities didn’t like but whose popularity pushed bands to develop crowd-friendly beats. Do-it-yourself enthusiasts launched groundbreaking record companies that scored a surprising number of hit songs.
Highlighting key but overlooked figures and offering a fresh look at well-known musicians (such as an obscure young guitarist then known as Jimmy Hendrix), Blecha shows how an isolated region managed to launch influential new sounds upon an unsuspecting world.