For those confused on why the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted this band, here’s your answer. #roxymusic #RRHOF
Just a few short weeks ago, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced the selections for the class of 2019. Much considerable debate happened among many music fans, especially the question was 2019 inductee Janet Jackson was actually a “Rock and Roll” artist. Another inductee, The British Invasion band The Zombies were also named, and those who have heard several of their hits on classic rock radio welcomed their honor. One band seemingly left many shaking their heads, though: Roxy Music.
Granted, Roxy Music never caught in a big way in the United States. They only charted two Billboard Hot 100 singles in their initial studio recording run from 1972-1982 (which was bridged by a hiatus the band took in the mid-1970’s), and only one of those managed to make the top 40. Adding to this was that the band’s sound changed dramatically after their hiatus in 1975, which unknowingly set the stage for the New Wave and New Romantic movements that would follow it.
When the band finally did break through in the States as an album artist, it wasn’t until their final official studio album together, Avalon, which was drenched with synths, melancholy and dreamy landscapes. Rock of the 1980’s Los Angeles radio station KROQ played tracks from the album often, completely ignoring the band’s much different roots.
Much like Queen, Roxy Music was initially Glam Rock artists in the early 1970’s. And much like that band, their early material is often glossed over in favor of more radio-friendly tracks. Whereas Queen were bordering on Hard Rock volume and majesty, Roxy Music were probably the smartest and most classy Avant-Garde Rockers of the Glam period, and could swing like nobody’s business.
“…the zenith of contemporary British art rock.”Jim Miller, Rolling Stone, 2/27/75 (link)
The period we cover here, which was their first initial run of five albums in just three-and-a-half years, illustrates why the band’s early work is treasured so greatly.
- The Thrill of It All, 1974, Country Life
- Virginia Plain (live), 1973, Music Laden Broadcast
- Mother of Pearl, 1973, Stranded
- She Sells, 1975, Siren
- Ladytron, 1972, Roxy Music
- Grey Lagoons, 1973, For Your Pleasure
- Love Is the Drug (live), 1975, bootleg
- Out of the Blue, 1974, Country Life
- Street Life, 1973, Stranded
- Pyjamarama, 1973, original mix single A-side
- Do The Strand (edited album version), recorded 1973/edited 1978, original on For Your Pleasure, edit on Roxy Music’s Greatest Hits (U.K.) Street Life (U.S.)
- Whirlwind, 1975, Siren
- 2HB, 1972, Roxy Music
Love to you all, and Happy New Year 2019!
Ben “Bear” Brown Jr., owner
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