Folk Rockfolk rock
Music Ethnica Rock.
Folk rock is a musical genre that combines elements of rock with those of folk music; in fact, it refers to a genre that was born in the mid-1960s in America. It' s a kind of boundary where it' s difficult to set boundaries; folk rock can be more inspired by folk than rock or vice versa and there is no clear dividing line to say which elements should be part of it and which should not.
It was born from three different musical experiences: the traditional folk, the singer-songwriter and the reanimation of rock'n'roll. The characters of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, who inspired the first folk songwriters like Bob Dylan in America and Donovan in Britain, are fundamental. It is the success of English bands like Beatles and Rolling Stones that has led many young bands to explore the expressive potential of rock.
The moment of the birth of folk rock is generally regarded as July 26, 1965, when Bob Dylan first recorded the electric guitar in public at the Newport Folk Fest after an acoustic start. The sound can be defined as rather thin, with few vocal harmonies, at least at the beginning, and with a repertoire that fishes in both folk and national traditions.
Important for the development of the genre in America was certainly the history of groundbreaking groups like Byrds and Flying Burrito Brothers, whose instrumental and vocal abilities gave a boost to all those who wanted to imitate their heroic deeds. Folk rock, however, cannot be limited to an American phenomenon: it should be remembered that Fairport Conventions were born in England in the mid-1960s, and two years later Pentangle, exponents of the British version, which took the opposite approach and added the first elements of the British folk tradition of blue and Jazz.
The same happened in France with Alan Stivell, who integrated Celtic music with traditional instruments such as harp and bagpipes for rock; perhaps the most successful fusion in England was made by Steeleye Span, born in 1969 and able to perfectly represent the best of both styles, with excellent commercial results.