Since the emergence of rock music in the 1940s, this genre has been changing, re-inventing itself, finding new forms and formulas to serve to its audience, and never stopped amazing. During this process, rock music fans experienced the emergence of modern rock, a special sub-genre of rock music which came to life in the 1970s.

Every true music lover needs to have their facts together, so it’s a great idea for you to learn about the history of modern rock, how it first emerged, when, where and why. Let’s break it down together. If you want to know more about history of other music genres you can read those music essays.

·       The 1970s

When we speak about the emergence of modern rock, the 1970s were definitely a breaking point for this genre.

It’s important to differentiate it from classic rock, which mostly encompasses music created in the period between the 1960s and the 1980s.

But, why were the 70s a breaking point in the history of modern rock? The answer is simple: the 70s were the period in which new, bold, daring, and intriguing rock bands started creating and releasing records far from the conventional rock music people were used to listening and started winning over a different kind of audience.

Let’s take a look at some of the most prominent bands and artists from the era, who played a major part in the emergence of modern rock.

·       The Runaways

This all-female USA rock band is said to have paved the way for modern rock music creation. Their music was different from the conventional classic rock, and certainly far from the heavy sound which was simultaneously emerging.

They tried out a different approach in their music and had huge success back in the 70s.

·       The Stranglers

This English rock band was just getting started in the late 70s, however, what they brought to the music scene is notable.

Their sound was unconventional and could be characterized as a mixture of punk, art rock, garage rock, and many other styles.

·       The Clash

Formed in 1976, this English rock band made their way to the top thanks to the experimenting nature of their music, and their urge to create something different, and never before heard.

They too contributed to the emergence of modern rock as a genre.

·       Iggy Pop

The music Iggy Pop created in the late 70s is also considered to be one of the building blocks of modern rock, thanks to the use of specific elements, combined into something never heard before.

·       The Police

The Police is a UK band which emerged during the “new-wave” of music and launched their impressive career at the time of changes and innovation. They grew to become one of the biggest bands on the planet.

·       The Sex Pistols

Sex Pistols emerged with a band. Their notoriety and boldness made them globally recognized, while it also inspired young artists to follow their path.

·       Billboard Modern Rock Tracks Chart

It took some while for the genre to be officially recognize, but it happened in 1988 when Billboard launched the first ever  “Modern Rock Tracks” chart.

It featured artists such as Tracy Chapman, Graham Parker, The Bible, The Primitive, Siouxsie And The Banshees, and many others.


Final Thoughts

The history of modern rock is actually a series of events, record releases, debut albums, and bold new moves, made by the 70s prominent rock artists. All of those led to a different stream in music and the emergence of modern rock as a genre.

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