Searching For The First Rock And Roll Song

Series produced by Jamie Dell'Apa

Series image
Image by: Regular Listener, J.T. Lindross, From Finland 

We, the rock and roll generation, have never found our self-defining first rock and roll song. Host Jamie Dell'Apa presents music and musicians you've never heard from the small regional record companies who pioneered rock and roll. Songs that could have been the first rock and roll song. Songs that fill the gap in understanding where we came from and who we are.

Searching For The First Rock and Roll Song features records coveted by collectors from the era when rock and roll was emerging but hadn't yet settled on a definition of itself. Music from before rock and roll was domesticated into a commercial music industry. When country and western sounded like swing, pop music sounded like rockabilly, rockabilly sounded like rhythm and blues, and doo wop sounded like girl groups and all those musics sounded an awful lot like what we now call, “rock and roll”.

Not a hits, oldies, or “history of” radio show. it's all the songs that influenced our now-legendary musicians who are regularly featured in all those hits, oldies, and “history of” radio shows.

Hosted by WWOZ in New Orleans for the last 18 years, the show is carried by a dozen stations.

P.S. We never find the first rock and roll song. Just like our journey through life, the search is the joy. Finding the final destination in life or music is something to continually delay until after next week's episode.
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Searching For The First Rock and Roll Song features records coveted by collectors from the era when rock and roll was emerging but hadn't yet settled on a definition of itself. Music from before rock and roll was domesticated into a commercial music industry. When country and western sounded like swing, pop music sounded like rockabilly, rockabilly sounded like rhythm and blues, and doo wop sounded like girl groups and all those musics sounded an awful lot like what we now call, “rock and roll”.Not a hits, oldies, or “history of” radio show. it's all the songs that influenced our now-legendary musicians who are regularly featured in all those hits, oldies, and “history of” radio shows. Hosted by WWOZ in New Orleans for the last 18 years, the show is carried by a dozen stations. ... Show full description


653 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
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A 15-song sequence of songs put into a sequence where they told the complete story of a romance from start to a memory. Plus the usual unusual.

Bought by KFCF FM and Prairie Public


  • Added: Sep 18, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:50
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: wynona carr
Between a great start and finish, is a good show.

  • Added: Sep 10, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:27
Caption: upsetters with Little Richard
What's the universal feeling we get listening to this show? What brings us back every week? That's tonight's theme. (Partial credit for simply...

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Sep 04, 2020
  • Length: 02:57:05
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Willie Mays Sings "If You Love Me" (and he does a good job of it)
Music you've never heard by musicians you've never heard of. A good sprinkling of New Orleans music tonight and the sounds of 38 cents rattling a...

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Aug 27, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:26
  • Purchases: 1
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New Orleans does masking like no other place so let's get started with great masks.

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Aug 20, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:07
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: My friend Thai opening the "drive up window" for me to spend some time with my mom.
A vacation give-away on the radio that you don't need to be the fifth caller or know the name of any of the songs or musicians. (In fact, you bett...

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Aug 14, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:15
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Harry Glenn the welder/owner of Mar Vel Records of Hammond, Indiana
Songs about elevators and songs from Indiana (that you've never heard by musicians you've never heard of). Post WWII when rock and roll wasn't a t...

Bought by KFCF FM and Prairie Public


  • Added: Aug 07, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:32
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Lee Denson / Jesse James
Record companies often have a "sound" that's uniquely identifiable to them. Of course, Chess and Sun Records had their sounds but they recorded a...

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Jul 31, 2020
  • Length: 02:55:51
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Jesse Hawthorne, The Midnight Creeper
Jesse Hawthorne used to do the Friday midnight to Saturday 5am shift (a day before my show) and the Sunday morning gospel show. That's a grueling ...

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Jul 28, 2020
  • Length: 01:54:55
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Hank Ballard
Songs about shotgun weddings, the West, NYC, and every wacky place and thought in between. Music you've never heard by musicians you've never hear...

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Jul 24, 2020
  • Length: 02:59:38
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Hank Ballard
The first part of the show is pre-rock and roll music with a primitive sound. All the music that wasn't Elvis.

Bought by Prairie Public, KUGS Bellingham, Wash., and WYAP


  • Added: Jul 17, 2020
  • Length: 02:57:39
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: Marvin and Johnny with Johnny Otis
Music you've never heard by musicians you've never heard of - tonight some of the thoughts behind why this music works after a half century.

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Jul 09, 2020
  • Length: 02:55:44
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Center is Shorty Long and Dolly Dimples (Emidio Vagnoni and Gladys Ulrich) with the Santa Fe Rangers (who all live in Exeter Township, PA)
Music from the French Quarter of New Orleans. After the conventioneers have left the clubs with their souvenir plastic drink cups. After the drun...

Bought by Prairie Public, WXXI Rochester, and WYAP


  • Added: Jul 02, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:40
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: Augie Garcia in Shorts
In the post WWII era, music was not nationalized yet. That is; the music industry hadn't consolidated. Radio stations played their local favorite...

Bought by Prairie Public


  • Added: Jun 26, 2020
  • Length: 02:58:31
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: One of these army men is me at Mardi Gras
Music you've never heard by musicians you've never heard of (except in the case of Burt Ward who you've heard of but isn't a musician and what he c...

Bought by WXXI Rochester and Prairie Public


  • Added: Jun 19, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:42
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Rockin' R's
"Music you've never heard by musicians you've never heard of" from my endless music library. Tonight, we're mixing-in a handful of 78 rpm recordin...

Bought by WXXI Rochester, WYAP, and Prairie Public


  • Added: Jun 12, 2020
  • Length: 02:56:44
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: Washington Phillips with his homemade instrument
Singers who's voices alone are incredibly soulful and evocative. CORRECTED VERSION

Bought by Prairie Public and WXXI Rochester


  • Added: Jun 05, 2020
  • Length: 02:57:13
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Medallions
Music you've never heard by musicians you've never heard of from my endless library documenting the post WWII explosion of music.

Bought by Prairie Public and WXXI Rochester


  • Added: May 29, 2020
  • Length: 02:57:23
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Mad Mike and the Maniacs
Not the jingles, not the advertising department's idea of music but songs that were written by the musician who's muse decided that a single produc...

Bought by Prairie Public, WXXI Rochester, and WYAP


  • Added: May 22, 2020
  • Length: 02:58:03
  • Purchases: 3

  • Added: May 14, 2020
  • Length: 03:00:46
  • Purchases: 2