Welcome to the final episode of the first season of Let It Roll. I’m Nate Wilcox and I’ll be finishing up my conversation with Ed Ward about his book The History of Rock and Roll 1920-1963. This week we’ll be concluding 1963 and hearing about the Lebanese Restaurant that birthed surf music and saved Fender guitars, how Murray Wilson’s failed musical career laid the groundwork for his sons’ amazing success, how Columbia buried Bob Dylan’s first attempt to go rock, and the split between kids singing “My Boyfriend’s Back” and those singing “Blowing in the Wind.”
We talk about Stevie Wonder’s first hit and why you can hear someone shouting “what key? What key?” in the background, the mystery of Smokey Robinson’s failure to get a hit with the Supremes and we finally get to England and talk about the Beatles and the Rolling Stones and the revolution they triggered and would bring to America in 1964.
Hosted by longtime rock and roll fan and sportswriter Nate Wilcox, "Let It Roll" is a series of in-depth interviews with Ed Ward about his book, The History of Rock and Roll, Volume 1: 1920-1963. Ward was the official rock and roll historian for NPR’s Fresh Air for 30 years, and is a former editor of Rolling Stone, writer for Crawdaddy, and Cream.