Alternative Rock and it's sub-genres Grunge and Pop Punk expand in popularity and ironically, explode into the mainstream during the 1990's. Major labels begin luring independent bands away from small record labels. These artists are resistant to the demands of big record companies and unwilling to change styles to reach a mass market audience. Nevertheless, many alternative bands, including REM, The Smashing Pumpkins, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, The Smiths and grunge
bands like Nirvana, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam and others find success with mainstream audiences.
John Lennon is shot to death by a fan in 1980 just as he was coming back into the public eye with a new album. MTV (Music Television) is launched on 300 cable TV systems in 1981. By 1983 MTV is available on 2,000 cable systems. VH1 is launched in 1984 with a more classic rock format.
The prevalance of music videos as a 24/7 marketing tool
is influential in bringing numerous new bands and music styles into the mainstream, including a resurgence in heavy
metal, the emergence of synthpop, new wave, rap and hip hop. The number of successful female artists, across many genres, is reflected in singles and album sales.
Records and concerts to benefit charity are supported by many rock music artists. These include Band Aid, We Are The World, plus the Live Aid and Farm Aid concerts.
The Beatles break up in 1970, but all four members continue to impact the decade with successful solo careers. The early seventies are marked by the deaths of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison who all die at the age of 27. Pyschedelic music declines,but morphs into hard rock, progressive rock and heavy metal. Touring bands move from playing clubs and theaters, to playing sports arenas. Big time bands, many of them formed in the '60's, such as the Rolling Stones, Pink
Floyd, The Who, Grand Funk and Led Zeppelin travel in private jets and play to thousands in arenas and outdoor stadiums.
In the sixties rock music comes of age and dominates the popular music charts. Elvis Presley continues to score hits in the early part of the decade, but the music continues to diversify with the folk revival, the Brill Building sound, Phil Spector's wall of sound, girl groups and surf music, all impacting the early part of the decade. The Motown, Stax and Atlantic labels bring more african-american artists back to the forefront of the pop charts. By 1964 American artists are sharing the top of the charts with U.K. bands led by the Beatles and The Rolling Stones. In the U.S. garage bands emerge, inspired by the British Invasion sound.
In the early 1950's new recording technologies such as the 45 RPM single, the 33 and 1/3 RPM long playing album, 45 RPM jukeboxes, along with solid body electric guitars and electric bass guitars emerge. The rapid adaptation of these new technologies change the way people create and listen to music
An equally important convergence occurs in what people are listening to on the radio and jukeboxes, along with the records they are buying. White teenagers begin listening to and buying traditionally black music such as Rhythm & Blues.
More than 15 years after Randy Rhoads’ death, many questions raised by the circumstances of his demise remain unanswered. For example, why did the brilliant young guitarist agree to go for a ride in a small, single-engine aircraft, given his admitted fear of flying? Why did the pilot repeatedly buzz the band’s tour bus? Was he attempting to murder his ex-wife, who was standing outside the bus, as some have suggested? Was it a cocaine-fueled kamikaze run? Or just rock and roll high jinks? While the answers to these questions may never be fully known, there are enough details of the incident available today to piece together what happened that fateful morning… though why will it always remain a mystery.
Born on July 10, 1942 , this Cortland, New York native began his recording career back in 1958. Even back then, the seeds of Ronnie James Dio's future musical excesses had already been sown. After more than 40 years in the rock business, Ronnie James Dio has shown he still has what it takes to get the job done. The mystery surrounding Ronnie's age is still going. He himself says the age is not important, the only thing that matters is the music. He was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, but was raised in Cortland, near Syracuse in New York State in the USA, in a quiet, Italian, middle class community. Ronnie changed his name sometime (the exact date is unknown) from Padovana to Dio - Which means "God" in Italian.
Bon Scott was already a house-name in Australia since the later 1960's- having several top 10 hits with the bubble-gum 60's pop rock band THE VALENTINES. Before this, Bon drummed and also sang in the band THE SPEKTORS during early 1965. THE VALENTINES were formed sometime in the later part of 1966 and released several singles(many hits) until 1970, when they disbanded. Bon went on to perform in his "serious music" band FRATERNITY from 1970 until 1973- performing psychadelic style progressive Rock, finally breaking out of Australia and touring England in 1973-opening for BRIAN JOHNSON fronted GEORDIE at the time!