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Popular culture at the beginning of the 1960's.

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Popular culture at the beginning of the 1960's To many of the people at the time, they were the 'swinging sixties'. They were a decade when fashions changed continuously and young people appeared to have more freedom than ever before. It was a time that many people look back on with fond memories, but which others blame for some of the failings of society. In the middle of the 1950's, Britain was still getting over the shock of the war; things were slowly getting back together but shortages were still part of everyday life. This was a very dull time, for British youths especially. The only way of consoling themselves was with their dreams and the delights and images they saw on the big screen of life for kids in America. The American children had a great deal more than the children in Britain. They spent money like it was growing on trees, had the latest clothes and generally lived a more fun-filled life. Another thing that British youths were deprived of was the latest wild and exotic "Rock 'n' Roll" sounds that were coming from the states. ...read more.


Petite, doll-like, with a frame of short dark hair around her face, Mary Quant first began designing clothes for herself and friends, "who did not want to grow up to have candy floss hair, stiletto heels and great boobs". Her early clothes indeed had a child-like appeal -- pinafores and tent dresses in bright colours, with a decidedly flat bust. She sold them from BAZAAR, a boutique opened in 1955 on King's Road, Chelsea, the street that became the parade ground for the fashionable young. But her influence really became apparent in the next decade. In 1965 she launched the mini-skirt on a thunderstruck, which was the biggest dare of all, and soon the 'Quant Look' could be seen throughout the world. Her designs included miniskirts; vinyl boots; dresses with striking geometric patterns and strong colours; and the "wet" look achieved by tightly fitted vinyl clothing for a young and avant-garde clientele. The mini skirt was her greatest invention, getting shorter and shorter throughout time. This also applied to her version of a dress, which other fashion designers took and expanded. ...read more.


Many new and different styles of popular music developed during the 1960s, in the aftermath of Rock 'n Roll. For example: Motown: a group of black singers and songwriters on the Motown record label (from Motor Town - Detroit). This was a type of soul music, lyrical and tuneful, using 'horn' sections (trumpets, trombones and saxophones) - as well as the bass guitar, which was now used in all popular music. Examples: Smokey Robinson and Diana Ross. Also there was Soul: based on the Atlantic coast of the US, soul music was also lyrical but somewhat more aggressive than Motown. Examples: Wilson Picket and James Brown. Then there was Protest music: the Cold War, the Vietnam war, and unrest over black civil rights gave rise to this - a type of angry folk song usually sung by a soloist with guitar accompaniment. Example: Bob Dylan . Finally, British music: Britain developed its own distinctive style, and the two best-known bands - The Beatles and The Rolling Stones - were hugely popular in the US as well as in Britain. At the end of the 60's David Bowie mixed theatrical performance with his music to create a style known as Glam Rock. The Rolling Stones ...read more.

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