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Rock and roll anthem

A Rock and roll anthem is a celebratory rock song. The subject that the anthem celebrates can vary, although one common anthemic theme is the celebration of rock and roll for itself.

Chuck Berry probably wrote more of these than any other songwriter:

  • "School Days" (1956) "Hail, Hail Rock and Roll, deliver me from the days of old"
  • "Roll Over, Beethoven" (1956) -- "and tell Tchaikovsky the news"
  • "Rock and Roll Music" (1957) -- "got a back beat you can't lose it"
  • "Johnny B. Goode" (1958) -- "never ever learned to read or write so well, but he could play a guitar just like ringing a bell"
  • "Let it Rock" (1959)

The essence of the rock and roll anthem may be best captured in the Lieber and Stoller[?] song "That is Rock and Roll", sung first by the Coasters in 1959:

You say our music's for the birds and you can't understand the words,
Well honey if you did, you'd really blow your lid, 'cause baby that is rock and roll

There are many others:

It'll be here for ever and ever, ain't gonna leave, never no never
Sinkin' deep in the heart of man, Rock and Roll forever will stand
"It will stand" -- The Showmen[?]

In addition to those which celebrate rock and roll, other rock anthems that have celebrated other subjects have included:



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