The Black Roots Of Rock And Roll: Part 1 : World Cafe : World Cafe Words and Music Podcast Join us as we explore how black artists invented and influenced rock music – where it started, and where it's going.

The Black Roots Of Rock And Roll: Part 1

The Black Roots of Rock and Roll: Part 1

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Sister Rosetta Tharpe performs onstage with the Lucky Millinder Orchestra, circa 1938. Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images hide caption

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Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Sister Rosetta Tharpe performs onstage with the Lucky Millinder Orchestra, circa 1938.

Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Playlist

  • Sister Rosetta Tharpe, "Rock Me"
  • Louis Jordan, "Caldonia"
  • Little Richard, "I Don't Know What You Got"
  • Little Richard, "Rip It Up"

So much of the rock music you hear today would not exist without the innovation of black artists throughout the decades. February is Black History Month, and all month long, we'll dive deep into the Black Roots of Rock and Roll with a special guest, music journalist John Morrison.

Throughout this four-part series, Morrison will play music from some of the black innovators of rock and roll. Like Louis Jordan's 1945 hit "Caldonia."

"It's rooted in jazz," Morrison says. "The energy is very much rock and roll. And you can even hear the future of what would become rap music and hip-hop along with the beat of rock and roll."

How black artists invented, influenced and changed rock music – where it started, and where it's going. This is part one of The Black Roots of Rock and Roll.

Episode Playlist