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Milwaukee Rock and Roll, 1950-2000

A Reflective History

Phillip Naylor Bruce Cole David Luhrssen

256 pages
Marquette University Press

Milwaukee Rock and Roll, 1950-2000: A Reflective History surveys and celebrates a rich musical heritage. It does not claim to be a definitive account of Milwaukee rock, but it offers an important narrative—a foundation for further study and appreciation. This book is an anthology of written, vocal, and visual reflections, which will inform readers and evoke memories for those who experienced this music and era. It includes, among so many other performers, Milwaukee rock pioneers Sam McCue, Artie Herrera, and Larry Lynne; truck driver folk great Larry Penn; impresario Nick Topping; rhythm and blues standout Junior Brantley and soul man Harvey Scales; 60s bands like the Ricochettes, Shag, and the Corporation; bluesmen Jim Liban and Jon Paris; “girl rockers” epitomized by the G.T.O.'s and Ruby Starr; punks like the Haskels, the Oil Tasters, and Die Kreuzen; the internationally renowned punk/indie Violent Femmes; and prog rocker (among his other impressive musical talents) Sigmund Snopek III. Others are also referenced including Buddy Holly; Pete Seeger; Jean Ritchie, Bob Dylan; the Dave Clark Five; the Beatles; Cream; Led Zeppelin; the Grateful Dead; Chuck Berry; Muddy Waters; Lou Reed; Bruce Springsteen; and Patti Smith. The editors present a multifaceted cultural history of Milwaukee and rock music highlighted by a multiplicity of voices—musicians, promoters, DJs, photographers, artists, and audience members—collectively committed to the sounds of a great city.

Author Bio
Phillip Naylor is a professor of history at Marquette University. His departmental specialty is Middle East and North Africa (MENA), a field in which he has published numerous studies. He is also a longtime blues and rock aficionado and performs and records with the local Western Civilization Blues Band. Bruce Cole is a librarian at Marquette University and curator of the Jean Cujé Milwaukee Music Collection, the archive showcased in this book. A legendary drummer, renowned locally, nationally, and internationally. Bruce currently plays with the Doo-Wop Daddies. David Luhrssen is Managing Editor of the Shepherd Express, Milwaukee’s weekly newspaper. He is author or co-author of several books, including The Encyclopedia of Classic Rock, Brick Through the Window: An Oral History of Punk Rock, New Wave and Noise in Milwaukee, Secret Societies and Clubs in American History, and Elvis Presley: Reluctant Rebel.