Modern pop music was born in the USA when two different kinds of music came together. The first kind was the music of Africa which was brought to the USA by blasck slaves. The second kind was taken to the USA by white settlers from Britain and Ireland. Rhythm was the most important thing in black music, while white songs had a strong melody. For a long time the two kinds of music developed separately.
Then in the 1950s a young man called Elvis Presley brought them together, and rock an roll was born. Other rock and roll singers soon appeared- Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis. Since then, every generation has added something new to pop music. In the 1960s, rock music was developed in several different directions by British bands like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and The Who, and by American stars likr Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix. The 1970s produced glam rock (short for `glamour rock´). Bands like Slade, Queen and the Swedish group, Abba, were as famous for their colourful costumes as for their music. Heavy metal bands with their very loud music also appeared in the 1970s.
The second half of the 1970s gave us punk rock. The Sex Pistols, The Clash and other similar bands tried to shock people with their angry music. In the 1980s, American dance music was in fashion with hip hop, house and garage music. British bands like Duran Duran, Spandau Ballet, and Tears for Fears were also big at this time. The 1990s produced Britpop bands like Oasis and Blur. They were followed by girl bands like the Spice Girls, and boy bands like The Backstreet Boys. Most of the boy and girl bands didn´t play their own instruments. They usually sang and danced. Rap music also became very popular in the ´90s. The different kinds of pop music have often changed teenage fashions, too. Rock and roll made jeans and T-shirts fashionable. The hippies of the late 1960s had long hair and wore colourful `flower power´ clothes. Punks tried to shock people with their clothes as well as their music. They dyed their hair bright colours like green or orange, and put safety pins in their ears and noses.
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