mid century music

Tonight in Sam Plays The Ukulele

I’d just like to state for the record that I love the G7 chord, and I suspect that my love for the G7 chord is also why I love early to mid 20th century popular music.

It’s everywhere! It’s like in 1930 someone discovered G7 and then in 1960 or so everyone forgot it existed. 

E minor, meanwhile, continues to be the bane of my existence. It’s not even that it’s hard to finger, it’s not, but most ukuleles for some unknown reason don’t have straps, so you’re supporting the instrument with your hands, and I can’t figure out how to transition into and out of E minor without losing control of the ENTIRE NECK OF THE UKULELE.  

I’m going to ask my parents for ukulele lessons for my birthday but I’ve got seven months until then to keep JUGGLING UKES. 

Sister Rosetta Tharpe is an American singer, songwriter, guitarist and recording artist. A pioneer of mid-20th-century music, she attained popularity in the 1930s and 1940s with her gospel recordings, characterized by a unique mixture of spiritual lyrics and rhythmic accompaniment that was a precursor of rock music.  Referred to as “The Original Soul Sister” and “The Godmother of Rock and Roll”, her 1944 hit “Down by the Riverside” was selected for the National Recording Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress in 2004, noting it “captures her spirited guitar playing and unique vocal style, demonstrating clearly her influence on early rhythm-and-blues performers” and cited her influence on “many gospel, jazz, and rock artists”. Her 1945 hit “Strange Things Happening Every Day” was the first gospel record to cross over and reach no. 2 on the Billboard “race records” chart, the term then used for what later became the R&B chart, in April 1945. The recording is cited as precursor of rock and roll. In 2007, she was inducted posthumously into the Blues Hall of Fame.