Music as Cultural Artifact

For each week in our course, you will consider music as a cultural artifact and be
assigned either a piece of music or a specific musical artist to explore and analyze for
the week. This week, you will be listening to music from the early Rock and Role genre.
As you have read this week, Rock and Roll was a term first coined by DJ Alan Freed in
the 1950s. Rock music was often synonymous with R&B in the early years. However,
Rock and Roll, with the exception of Little Richard and Chuck Berry, began with white
artists “covering” hits that would have at one time be considered R&B.
In addition to your etextbook, you should expect to complete some research online to
respond to these questions. Be sure to use vetted resources—if you aren’t sure what a
reliable source is, remember, you can use the CRAP test to determine if your source is
Resources that might help you:
• 53d. America Rocks and Rolls. (2019).
• Will, G. (2017, May 14). Today’s left would have called elvis’s music ‘cultural
appropriation’. National Review.
• On the internet or your phone, listen to TWO of the following early Rock and Roll
songs from the list below:
o Bill Haley, “Rock Around the Clock”
o Elvis Presley, “That’s All Right”
o Elvis Presley, “Mystery Train/”I Forgot to Remember to Forget”
o Elvis Presley, “Jailhouse Rock”
o Little Richard, “Tutti Frutti”
o Chuck Berry, “Johnny B. Goode”
o Chuck Berry, “Brown-Eyed Handsome Man” U
o Buddy Holly, “That’ll Be the Day”
o Buddy Holly, “Bo Diddley”
MUS 121 – Rhythm Blues and Hip Hop
Unit 2 – Rock and Roll – Music as a Cultural Artifact – Guided Listening Assignment
• After listening to your TWO selections, answer the following questions in a word
o Define the musical term: Rock and Roll.
o Share a brief biography of each of the two bands/artists you chose.
o Name the members of each of these bands.
o Who were the songwriters of the songs that you chose? Was there any
controversy surrounding the song if the performing artist was not the
original song writer?
o What are the lyrics of each of the songs that you chose?
o What are the ideas being addressed in each of these songs?
o What is the date that the original music was written? What is the date that
this original recording was made/released?
o Has anyone else recorded the two songs you have chosen? If so, find one
YouTube recording of “covers” of each the two songs you have chosen if
they are available. If nothing is available, please indicate that as well.
o List the instruments you hear in these recordings. Are each of these songs
the same or different instrumentation?
o What was your favorite thing about the performances/recordings?
o What emotions did the performances/recordings make you feel when you
heard it?
• Two to three pages in length, excluding the Reference page.
• APA format, including an in-text citation for referenced works.
• At least four resources.
Be sure to read the criteria by which your work will be evaluated before you write
and again after you write.
Evaluation Rubric for Guided Listening Assignments
CRITERIA Exemplary Proficient Needs
54-60 points 48-53 points 36-47 points 0-35 points
Subject matter
is thoroughly
Arguments are
well elaborated
and fully
supported by
research and
Subject matter is
fairly well
Arguments are
supported by
research but
could be further
elaborated with
specific details.
Subject matter
is adequately
Arguments are
supported by
Subject matter
is minimally
Opinions are
offered, but
arguments lack
9-10 points 8 points 6-7 points 0-5 points
Incorporates all
some musical
one of the
9-10 points 8 points 6-7 points 0-5 points
4 or more
3 resources 2 resources 0-1 resource
9-10 points 8 points 6-7 points 0-5 points
Paper Length 3 pages 2 pages 1 page
0 pages or
more than
three pages
9-10 points 8 points 6-7 points 0-5 points
Clear and
Writing with
APA Format
Errors impede
guidelines not
Significant errors
that do not
Few errors that
do not impede
Writing and
format are
APA compliant,
and error free.

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