Punk Music- History of American Popular Music

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Punk Music

History of American Popular Music; Period 5

The poet Victor Hugo once stated that “music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot be silent.” This quote seems to represent punk music in a way that isn’t immediately apparent. Punk is considered to be an “underground” genre and style that is popular with teens and young adults that feel oppressed. The expression that "cannot be put into words" and "cannot be silent" describes the ideals of punk perfectly.

The punk genre and age was born in 1977 in the United States and Britain. Punk was born in a time of a failing economy, mass unemployment, a malfunctioning government, racial strife and a time when new possibilities seem unavailable. This new type of music appeared to come from a subculture that was angry. The philosophy of this music came from anger, disillusionment, deviance, violence, and hopelessness. The idea of no future became a present concept in many songs. This scene began "as a backlash against disco and pop and progressive rock" (Morrison 2006,).

The genre thrived and declared its difference from other types of music. In order to freely express themselves, "punk players and singers rejected musical ostentation and artifice" (Morrison 2006,). They abandoned embellishments, keyboards and productions. "... all that was left was slashing guitars, pumping bass, thumping drums, and snarling voices singing frankly realistic lyrics" (Morrison 2006,). The music itself seemed to offend instead of please.

There are many artists and bands that started the punk scene in the late 1970's and the 1980's. These bands include The Sex Pistols, The Ramones, Patti Smith, Velvet Underground, NOFX, Dead Kennedy's, Iggy Pop, and MC5 (or Motor...

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Morrison , Craig. punk rock. New York: American History Online, 2006. (accessed February 10, 2014).

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All Time Low, Break Out! Break Out!, © 2006 by Hopeless Records, MP3 download.

Panic! At the Disco, The Only Difference Between Matyrdom and Suicide is Press Coverage, © 2005 by Fueled By Ramen, internet music video.

Blink-182, All The Small Things, © 1999 by Jerry Finn, internet music video.

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