British Invasion

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British Invasion
Part of the Swinging Sixties and the
broader Counterculture of the 1960s
The Beatles in America.JPG
The arrival of the Beatles in the US in 1964 marked the start of the British Invasion.
Date1963 – late 1960s (disputed)
Location United Kingdom and United States
OutcomeBritish influence to the music of the United States

The British Invasion was a cultural phenomenon of the mid-1960s, when rock and pop music acts from the United Kingdom [1] and other aspects of British culture became popular in the United States and significant to the rising "counterculture" on both sides of the Atlantic. [2] Pop and rock groups such as the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Kinks, [3] the Dave Clark Five, [4] Herman's Hermits, the Zombies, and the Animals were at the forefront of the "invasion". [5]

Phenomenon philosophical concept

A phenomenon is "an observable fact or event". The term came into its modern philosophical usage through Immanuel Kant, who contrasted it with the noumenon. In contrast to a phenomenon, a noumenon cannot be directly observed. Kant was heavily influenced by Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz in this part of his philosophy, in which phenomenon and noumenon serve as interrelated technical terms. Far predating this, the ancient Greek Pyrrhonist philosopher Sextus Empiricus also used phenomenon and noumenon as interrelated technical terms.

Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, and developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and later, particularly in the United States and the United Kingdom. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, a style which drew heavily from the genres of blues, rhythm and blues, and from country music. Rock music also drew strongly from a number of other genres such as electric blues and folk, and incorporated influences from jazz, classical and other musical styles. Musically, rock has centered on the electric guitar, usually as part of a rock group with electric bass, drums, and one or more singers. Usually, rock is song-based music with a 4/4 time signature using a verse–chorus form, but the genre has become extremely diverse. Like pop music, lyrics often stress romantic love but also address a wide variety of other themes that are frequently social or political.

Pop music is a genre of popular music that originated in its modern form in the United States and United Kingdom during the mid-1950s. The terms "popular music" and "pop music" are often used interchangeably, although the former describes all music that is popular and includes many diverse styles. "Pop" and "rock" were roughly synonymous terms until the late 1960s, when they became increasingly differentiated from each other.



The rebellious tone and image of US rock and roll and blues musicians became popular with British youth in the late 1950s. While early commercial attempts to replicate American rock and roll mostly failed, the trad jazz–inspired skiffle craze, [6] with its do it yourself attitude, produced two top 10 hits in the US by Lonnie Donegan. [7] [8] Young British groups started to combine various British and American styles in different parts of the U.K., such as the movement in Liverpool known as Merseybeat or the "beat boom". [9] [10] [11] [12]

Rock and roll is a genre of popular music that originated and evolved in the United States during the late 1940s and early 1950s from musical styles such as gospel, jump blues, jazz, boogie woogie, and rhythm and blues, and country music. While elements of what was to become rock and roll can be heard in blues records from the 1920s and in country records of the 1930s, the genre did not acquire its name until 1954.

Blues is a music genre and musical form which was originated in the Deep South of the United States around the 1870s by African-Americans from roots in African musical traditions, African-American work songs, and spirituals. Blues incorporated spirituals, work songs, field hollers, shouts, chants, and rhymed simple narrative ballads. The blues form, ubiquitous in jazz, rhythm and blues and rock and roll, is characterized by the call-and-response pattern, the blues scale and specific chord progressions, of which the twelve-bar blues is the most common. Blue notes, usually thirds, fifths or sevenths flattened in pitch are also an essential part of the sound. Blues shuffles or walking bass reinforce the trance-like rhythm and form a repetitive effect known as the groove.

Trad jazz

Trad jazz, or "traditional jazz", was a form of jazz played in Britain during the 1950s and 1960s. British musicians such as Chris Barber, Acker Bilk, Kenny Ball, Ken Colyer, and Monty Sunshine tried to revive the New Orleans jazz that started in America in the early 1900s. Bands were arranged in the New Orleans format of trumpet, trombone, clarinet, banjo, double bass, and drums. Musicians in the band of Acker Bilk wore clothing from the period. Repertoire of bands included jazz versions of pop songs and nursery rhymes. The brief revival ended in 1965.

While American acts were popular in the UK, few British acts had achieved success in the US prior to 1964. Cliff Richard, who was the best-selling British act in the UK at the time, only had one Top 40 hit in the US with "Living Doll" in 1959. Along with Donegan, exceptions to this trend were the US number one hits "Auf Wiederseh'n, Sweetheart" by Vera Lynn in 1952, "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands" by Laurie London in 1959, and the instrumentals "Stranger on the Shore" by Acker Bilk and "Telstar" by the Tornados, both in 1962. [13] Also in 1962, "Midnight in Moscow" by Kenny Ball peaked at No. 2 on the US charts and the Springfields' version of "Silver Threads and Golden Needles" reached the Top 40 in the US. [14]

Cliff Richard British pop singer, musician, and actor

Sir Cliff Richard is a British singer, musician, performer, actor and philanthropist. Richard has sold more than 250 million records worldwide. He has total sales of over 21 million singles in the United Kingdom and is the third-top-selling artist in UK Singles Chart history, behind the Beatles and Elvis Presley.

In the music industry, the top 40 is the current, 40 most-popular songs in a particular genre. It is the best-selling or most frequently broadcast popular music. Record charts have traditionally consisted of a total of 40 songs. "Top 40" or "contemporary hit radio" is also a radio format. Frequent variants of the Top 40 are the Top 10, Top 20, Top 30, Top 50, Top 75, Top 100 and Top 200.

"Living Doll" is a song written by Lionel Bart made popular by Cliff Richard and the Shadows in 1959. It was the top selling single in the UK in 1959. It has topped the UK charts twice: in its original version in 1959 and a new version recorded in 1986 in aid of Comic Relief.

Some observers have noted that US teenagers were growing tired of singles-oriented pop acts like Fabian. [15] The Mods and Rockers, two youth "gangs" in mid-1960s Britain, also had an impact in British Invasion music. Bands with a Mod aesthetic became the most popular, but bands able to balance both (e.g., the Beatles) were also successful. [16]

Fabian Forte American singer and actor

Fabiano Anthony Forte, professionally known as Fabian, is an American singer and actor.

Mod (subculture) Subculture in England

Mod is a subculture that began in London in 1958 and spread throughout Great Britain and elsewhere, eventually influencing fashions and trends in other countries, and continues today on a smaller scale. Focused on music and fashion, the subculture has its roots in a small group of stylish London-based young men in the late 1950s who were termed modernists because they listened to modern jazz. Elements of the mod subculture include fashion ; music ; and motor scooters. The original mod scene was associated with amphetamine-fuelled all-night dancing at clubs.

Rocker (subculture) member of youth group

Rockers, leather boys, Ton-up boys, and possibly café racers are members of a biker subculture that originated in the United Kingdom during the 1950s. It was mainly centred on British café racer motorcycles and rock 'n' roll music. By 1965, the term greaser had also been introduced to Great Britain and, since then, the terms greaser and rocker have become synonymous within the British Isles although used differently in North America and elsewhere. Rockers were also derisively known as Coffee Bar Cowboys. Their Japanese counterpart was called the Kaminari-Zoku.


Fans and media swarm the Beatles at Schiphol Airport in 1964. Aankomst Beatles op Schiphol, overzicht drukte op Schiphol, Bestanddeelnr 916-5134.jpg
Fans and media swarm the Beatles at Schiphol Airport in 1964.

In October 1963, the first newspaper articles about the frenzy in England surrounding the Beatles appeared nationally in the US. [17] The Beatles' November 4 Royal Variety Performance in front of the Queen Mother sparked music industry and media interest in the group. [17] During November, a number of major American print outlets and two network television evening programs published and broadcast stories on the phenomenon that became known as "Beatlemania". [17] [18]

The Beatles English rock band

The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. With a line-up comprising John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, they are regarded as the most influential band of all time. The group were integral to the evolution of pop music into an art form and to the development of the counterculture of the 1960s. Their sound, rooted in skiffle, beat and 1950s rock and roll, incorporated elements of classical music and traditional pop in innovative ways. They also pioneered recording techniques and explored music styles ranging from ballads and Indian music to psychedelia and hard rock. As they continued to draw influences from a variety of cultural sources, their musical and lyrical sophistication grew, and they came to be seen as embodying the era's socio-cultural movements.

Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother Queen consort of the United Kingdom

Elizabeth Angela Marguerite Bowes-Lyon was the wife of King George VI and the mother of Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Margaret, Countess of Snowdon. She was Queen consort of the United Kingdom and the Dominions from her husband's accession in 1936 until his death in 1952, after which she was known as Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, to avoid confusion with her daughter. She was the last Empress consort of India.

Beatlemania Intense fan frenzy for the English rock band the Beatles

Beatlemania was the intense fan frenzy surrounding the English rock group the Beatles in the 1960s. The band's popularity grew in the United Kingdom throughout 1963, propelled by the singles "Please Please Me", "From Me to You" and "She Loves You". By October, the press adopted the term "Beatlemania" to describe the scenes of adulation that attended the group's concert performances. From the start of 1964, their worldwide tours were characterised by intense levels of hysteria and high-pitched screaming by female fans, both at concerts and during the band's travels.

On December 10, CBS Evening News anchor Walter Cronkite, looking for something positive to report, re-ran a Beatlemania story that originally aired on the November 22 edition of the CBS Morning News with Mike Wallace but was shelved that night because of the assassination of US President John Kennedy. [17] [19] After seeing the report, 15-year-old Marsha Albert of Silver Spring, Maryland, wrote a letter the following day to disc jockey Carroll James at radio station WWDC asking, "Why can't we have music like that here in America?" [19] On December 17 James had Miss Albert introduce "I Want to Hold Your Hand" live on the air. [19] WWDC's phones lit up, and Washington, D.C., area record stores were flooded with requests for a record they did not have in stock. [19] James sent the record to other disc jockeys around the country sparking similar reaction. [17] On December 26, Capitol Records released the record three weeks ahead of schedule. [19] The release of the record during a time when teenagers were on vacation helped spread Beatlemania in the US. [19] On December 29, The Baltimore Sun , reflecting the dismissive view of most adults, editorialized, "America had better take thought as to how it will deal with the invasion. Indeed a restrained 'Beatles go home' might be just the thing." [17] In the next year alone, the Beatles would have 30 different listings on the Hot 100. [20]

<i>CBS Evening News</i> Evening news programme, broadcast on CBS News

CBS Evening News is the flagship evening television news program of CBS News, the news division of the CBS television network in the United States. The “CBS Evening News” is a daily evening broadcast featuring news reports, feature stories and interviews by CBS News correspondents and reporters covering events across world. The program has been broadcast since July 1, 1941 under the original title CBS Television News, eventually adopting its current title in 1963.

Walter Cronkite American broadcast journalist

Walter Leland Cronkite Jr. was an American broadcast journalist who served as anchorman for the CBS Evening News for 19 years (1962–1981). During the heyday of CBS News in the 1960s and 1970s, he was often cited as "the most trusted man in America" after being so named in an opinion poll.

<i>CBS Morning News</i> US television program

CBS Morning News is an American early morning television news program for CBS News that is broadcast on CBS. The program features late-breaking news stories, national weather forecasts and sports highlights. Since 2013, it has been anchored by Anne Marie Green, who concurrently anchored the CBS late-night news program Up to the Minute until its cancellation in September 2015.

Ed Sullivan and the Beatles, February 1964 Beatles with Ed Sullivan.jpg
Ed Sullivan and the Beatles, February 1964

On January 3, 1964, The Jack Paar Program ran Beatles concert footage licensed from the BBC "as a joke", but it was watched by 30 million viewers. While this piece was largely forgotten, Beatles producer George Martin has said it "aroused the kids' curiosity". [17] In the middle of January 1964, "I Want to Hold Your Hand" appeared suddenly, then vaulted to the top of nearly every top 40 music survey in the United States, launching the Fab Four's sustained, massive output. "I Want to Hold Your Hand" ascended to number one on the January 25, 1964 edition of Cash Box magazine (on sale January 18) [19] and the February 1, 1964 edition of the Hot 100. [21] On February 7, 1964, the CBS Evening News ran a story about the Beatles' United States arrival that afternoon in which the correspondent said, "The British Invasion this time goes by the code name Beatlemania." [22] Two days later, on Sunday, February 9, they appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show . Nielsen Ratings estimated that 45 percent of US television viewers that night saw their appearance. [12]

According to Michael Ross, "It is somewhat ironic that the biggest moment in the history of popular music was first experienced in the US as a television event." The Ed Sullivan Show had for some time been a "comfortable hearth-and-slippers experience." Not many of the 73 million viewers watching in February 1964 would fully understand what impact the band they were watching would have. [23]

"In [1776] England lost her American colonies. Last week the Beatles took them back." – Life magazine [24]

The Beatles soon incited contrasting reactions and, in the process, generated more novelty records than anyone—at least 200 during 1964–1965 and more inspired by the "Paul is dead" rumour in 1969. [25] Among the many reactions, favoring the hysteria were British girl group the Carefrees' "We Love You Beatles" (#39 on 11 April 1964) [26] and the Patty Cakes' "I Understand Them", subtitled "A Love Song to the Beatles". [27] Disapproving the pandemonium were American group the Four Preps' "A Letter to the Beatles" (#85 on 4 April 1964) [28] and American comedian Allan Sherman's "Pop Hates the Beatles." [29]

On April 4, the Beatles held the top five positions on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, and to date, no other act has simultaneously held even the top four. [12] [30] [31] The Beatles also held the top five positions on Cash Box's singles chart that same week, with the first two positions reversed from the Hot 100. [32] The group's massive chart success, which included at least two of their singles holding the top spot on the Hot 100 during each of the seven consecutive years starting with 1964, continued until they broke up in 1970. [12]

Beyond the Beatles

One week after the Beatles entered the Hot 100 for the first time, Dusty Springfield, having launched a solo career after her participation in the Springfields, became the next British act to reach the Hot 100, peaking at number 12 with "I Only Want to Be with You". [33] [nb 1] During the next three years, many more British acts with a chart-topping US single would appear. [nb 2] As 1965 approached, another wave of British Invasion artists emerged which usually consisted of groups playing in a more pop style, such as the Hollies or the Zombies as well as artists with a harder-driving, blues-based approach like the Kinks and the Rolling Stones. [53] [54] [55] [56] [ excessive citations ] On May 8, 1965, the British Commonwealth came closer than it ever had or would to a clean sweep of a weekly Hot 100's Top 10, lacking only a hit at number two instead of "Count Me In" by the US group Gary Lewis & the Playboys. [57] [58] The British Commonwealth also nearly swept the Cash Box singles chart's top ten the previous week, lacking only a hit at number six instead of "Count Me In". [59] That same year, half of the 26 Billboard Hot 100 chart toppers (counting the Beatles' "I Feel Fine" carrying over from 1964) belonged to British acts. The British trend would continue into 1966 and beyond. [60] British Invasion acts also dominated the music charts at home in the United Kingdom. [53]

The musical style of British Invasion artists, such as the Beatles, had been influenced by earlier US rock 'n' roll, a genre which had lost some popularity and appeal by the time of the Invasion. However, a subsequent handful of white British performers, particularly the Rolling Stones and The Animals, would appeal to a more 'outsider' demographic, essentially reviving and popularizing, for young people at least, a musical genre rooted in the blues, rhythm, and black culture, [61] which had been largely ignored or rejected when performed by black US artists in the 1950s. [62] Such bands were sometimes perceived by American parents and elders as rebellious and unwholesome unlike parent-friendly pop groups, such as the Beatles. The Rolling Stones would become the biggest band other than the Beatles to come out of the British Invasion, [63] topping the Hot 100 eight times. [64] Sometimes, there would be a clash between the two styles of the British Invasion, the polished pop acts and the grittier blues-based acts due to the expectations set by the Beatles. Eric Burdon of the Animals said "They dressed us up in the most strange costumes. They were even gonna bring a choreographer to show us how to move on stage. I mean, it was ridiculous. It was something that was so far away from our nature and, um, yeah we were just pushed around and told, 'When you arrive in America, don't mention the [Vietnam] war! You can't talk about the war.' We felt like we were being gagged." [65]

"Freakbeat" is a term sometimes given to certain British Invasion acts closely associated with the mod scene during the Swinging London period, particularly harder-driving British blues bands of the era that often remained obscure to US listeners, and who are sometimes seen as counterparts to the garage rock bands in America. [66] [67] Certain acts, such as the Pretty Things and the Creation, had a certain degree of chart success in the UK and are often considered exemplars of the form. [68] [69] [70] [71] [ excessive citations ] The emergence of a relatively homogeneous worldwide "rock" music style marking the end of the "invasion" occurred in 1967. [9]

Other cultural impacts

Outside music, other aspects of British arts became popular in the US during this period and led US media to proclaim the United Kingdom as the center of music and fashion.

Film and television

The Beatles movie A Hard Day's Night marked the group's entrance into film. [9] Mary Poppins , released on August 27, 1964, and starring English actress Julie Andrews as the titular character, became the most Oscar-winning and Oscar-nominated Disney film in history, and My Fair Lady , released on December 25, 1964, starring British actress Audrey Hepburn as Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle, won eight Academy Awards. [72]

Besides the Bond series which commenced with Sean Connery as James Bond in 1962, films with a British sensibility such as the "Angry Young Men" genre, What's New Pussycat? and Alfie styled London Theatre. A new wave of British actors such as Peter O'Toole and Michael Caine intrigued US audiences. [15] Four of the decade's Academy Award winners for best picture were British productions, with the epic Lawrence of Arabia , starring O'Toole as British army officer T. E. Lawrence, winning seven Oscars in 1963. [73]

British television series such as Danger Man (renamed Secret Agent in its US airings), The Saint and The Avengers began appearing on American screens, inspiring a series of American-produced espionage programs such as I Spy , The Man From U.N.C.L.E. , and the parody series Get Smart . By 1966, spy series (both British and American) had emerged as a favorite format of American viewers, alongside Westerns and rural sitcoms. [74] Television shows that featured uniquely American styles of music, such as Sing Along with Mitch and Hootenanny , were quickly canceled and replaced with shows such as Shindig! and Hullabaloo that were better positioned to play the new British hits, and segments of the new shows were taped in England. [75] [76]


Fashion and image marked the Beatles out from their earlier US rock and roll counterparts. Their distinctive, uniform style "challenged the clothing style of conventional US males," just as their music challenged the earlier conventions of the rock and roll genre. [62] "Mod" fashions, such as the mini skirt from "Swinging London" designers such as Mary Quant and worn by early supermodels Twiggy, Jean Shrimpton and other models, were popular worldwide. [77] [78] [79] [80] [81] Newspaper columnist John Crosby wrote, "The English girl has an enthusiasm that American men find utterly captivating. I'd like to import the whole Chelsea girl with her 'life is fabulous' philosophy to America with instructions to bore from within." [82]

Even while longstanding styles remained popular, US teens and young adults started to dress "hipper." The evolution of the styles of the British Invasion bands also showed in US culture, as some bands went from more clean cut to being more hippie. [23]


In anticipation of the 50th anniversary of the British Invasion in 2013, comics such as Nowhere Men , which are loosely based on the events of it, gained popularity. [83]

Impact on American music

The British Invasion had a profound impact on popular music, internationalizing the production of rock and roll, establishing the British popular music industry as a viable centre of musical creativity, [84] and opening the door for subsequent British performers to achieve international success. [53] In America, the Invasion arguably spelled the end of the popularity of instrumental surf music, [85] pre-Motown vocal girl groups, the folk revival (which adapted by evolving into folk rock), teenage tragedy songs, Nashville country music (which also faced its own crisis with the deaths of some of its biggest stars at the same time), and temporarily, the teen idols that had dominated the American charts in the late 1950s and 1960s. [86] It dented the careers of established R&B acts like Chubby Checker and temporarily derailed the chart success of certain surviving rock and roll acts, including Ricky Nelson, [87] Fats Domino, the Everly Brothers, and Elvis Presley (who nevertheless racked up 30 Hot 100 entries from 1964 through 1967). [88] It prompted many existing garage rock bands to adopt a sound with a British Invasion inflection and inspired many other groups to form, creating a scene from which many major American acts of the next decade would emerge. [89] The British Invasion also played a major part in the rise of a distinct genre of rock music and cemented the primacy of the rock group, based around guitars and drums and producing their own material as singer-songwriters. [90]

Though many of the acts associated with the invasion did not survive its end, many others would become icons of rock music. [53] The claim[ according to whom? ] that British beat bands were not radically different from US groups like the Beach Boys and damaged the careers of African-American and female artists [91] was made[ when? ] about the invasion. However, the Motown sound, exemplified by the Supremes, the Temptations, and the Four Tops, each securing their first top 20 record during the invasion's first year of 1964 and following up with many other top 20 records, besides the constant or even accelerating output of the Miracles, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Marvin Gaye, Martha & the Vandellas, and Stevie Wonder, actually increased in popularity during that time. [92]

Other US groups also demonstrated a similar sound to the British Invasion artists and in turn highlighted how the British "sound" was not in itself a wholly new or original one. [93] Roger McGuinn of the Byrds, for example, acknowledged the debt that American artists owed to British musicians, such as the Searchers, but that "they were using folk music licks that I was using anyway. So it's not that big a rip-off." [94] Both the US sunshine pop group the Buckinghams and the Beatles-influenced US Tex-Mex act the Sir Douglas Quintet adopted British-sounding names, [95] [96] and San Francisco's Beau Brummels took their name from the same-named English dandy. [97] Roger Miller had a 1965 hit record with a self-penned song titled "England Swings", in which although its title references the progressive youth-centric cultural scene known as Swinging London, its lyric pays tribute to Britain's traditional way of life. [98] Englishman Geoff Stephens (or John Carter) reciprocated the gesture a la Rudy Vallée a year later in the New Vaudeville Band's "Winchester Cathedral". [99] [100] Even as recently as 2003, "Shanghai Knights" made the latter two tunes memorable once again in London scenes. [101] [102] Anticipating the Bay City Rollers by more than a decade, two British acts that reached the Hot 100's top 20 gave a tip of the hat to America: Billy J. Kramer with the Dakotas and the Nashville Teens. The British Invasion also drew a backlash from some American bands, e.g., Paul Revere & the Raiders [103] and New Colony Six [104] dressed in Revolutionary War uniforms, and Gary Puckett & The Union Gap donned Civil War uniforms. [105] Garage rock act the Barbarians' "Are You a Boy or Are You a Girl" contained the lyrics "You're either a girl, or you come from Liverpool" and "You can dance like a female monkey, but you swim like a stone, Yeah, a Rolling Stone." [106] [107]

In Australia, the success of the Seekers and the Easybeats (the latter a band formed mostly of British emigrants) closely paralleled that of the British Invasion. The Seekers had two Hot 100 top 5 hits during the British Invasion, the #4 hit "I'll Never Find Another You" (recorded at London's Abbey Road Studios) in May 1965 and the #2 hit "Georgy Girl" in February 1967. The Easybeats drew heavily on the British Invasion sound and had one hit in the United States during the British Invasion, the #16 hit "Friday on My Mind" in May 1967. [108] [109]

According to Robert J. Thompson, director of the Center for the Study of Popular Television at Syracuse University, the British invasion pushed the counterculture into the mainstream. [23]

End of the first British Invasion

The historical conclusion of the British Invasion is ambiguous. American bands regained mainstream prominence in the late 1960s, and along with it, the wave of anglophilia largely faded as American culture shifted in response to the Vietnam War and the resulting civil unrest. Nevertheless, British bands retained their popularity throughout the decade and into the 1970s. Later in that decade, British bands such as Badfinger and the Sweet, and American band the Raspberries, are considered to have evolved the genre into power pop. In 1978, two rock magazines wrote cover stories analyzing power pop as a savior to both the new wave and the direct simplicity of rock. Along with the music, new wave power impacted current the fashion, such as the mod style of the Jam or the skinny ties of the burgeoning Los Angeles scene. Several power pop artists were commercially successful; most notably the Knack, whose "My Sharona" was the highest ranked US single of 1979. Although the Knack and power pop fell out of mainstream popularity, the genre continues to have a cult following with occasional periods of modest success. [110]

A subsequent wave of British artists rose to popularity in the early 1980s as British music videos appeared in American media, leading to what is now known as the "Second British Invasion". Another wave of British mainstream prominence in US music charts came in the mid-1990s with the brief success of Spice Girls, Oasis and Robbie Williams. At least one British act would appear somewhere on the Hot 100 every week from November 2, 1963 until April 20, 2002, originating with the debut of the Caravelles' "You Don't Have to Be a Baby to Cry". British acts declined in popularity throughout the 1990s, and in the April 27, 2002 issue of Billboard, none of the songs on the Hot 100 were from British artists; that week, only two of the top 100 albums, those of Craig David and Ozzy Osbourne, were from British artists. [111]

The most recent recognized movement came in the mid to late 2000s when British R&B and soul artists such as Amy Winehouse, Estelle, Joss Stone, Duffy, Natasha Bedingfield, Florence Welch, Adele, Floetry, Jessie J, Leona Lewis, Jay Sean and Taio Cruz enjoyed huge success in the US charts, which led to talk of a "Third British Invasion" or a "British Soul Invasion".

See also

Further reading and listening


  1. She soon followed up with several other hits, becoming what AllMusic described as "the finest white soul singer of her era." [34] On the Hot 100, Dusty's solo career lasted almost as long, albeit with little more than one quarter of the hits, as the Beatles' group career before their breakup.
  2. Peter and Gordon, the Animals, Manfred Mann, Petula Clark, [35] Freddie and the Dreamers, Wayne Fontana and the Mindbenders, [36] Herman's Hermits, [37] the Rolling Stones, [38] the Dave Clark Five, [39] the Troggs, Donovan, [40] and Lulu in 1967, would have one or more number one singles in the US. [9] Other Invasion acts included the Searchers, [41] Billy J. Kramer, [42] the Bachelors, [43] Chad & Jeremy, [44] Gerry and the Pacemakers, [45] the Honeycombs, [46] Them [12] (and later its lead singer, Van Morrison), Tom Jones, [47] the Yardbirds (whose guitarist Jimmy Page would later form Led Zeppelin), [48] the Spencer Davis Group, the Small Faces, and numerous others. The Kinks, although considered part of the Invasion, [3] [49] [50] initially failed to capitalize on their success in the US after their first three hits reached the Hot 100's top 10 [51] (in part due to a ban by the American Federation of Musicians [52] ) before resurfacing in 1970 with "Lola" and in 1983 with their biggest hit, "Come Dancing".

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The Billboard charts tabulate the relative weekly popularity of songs and albums in the United States and elsewhere. The results are published in Billboard magazine. Billboard biz, the online extension of the Billboard charts, provides additional weekly charts. There are also Year End charts. The charts may be dedicated to specific genre such as R&B, country or rock, or they may cover all genres. The charts can be ranked according to sales, streams or airplay, and for main song charts such as the Hot 100 song chart, all three pools of data are used to compile the charts. For the Billboard 200 album chart, streams and track sales are included in addition to album sales.

Please Mr. Postman original song written and composed by Robert Bateman, Freddie Gorman, Brian Holland

"Please Mr. Postman" is a song written by Georgia Dobbins, William Garrett, Freddie Gorman, Brian Holland, and Robert Bateman. It is the debut single by the Marvelettes for the Tamla (Motown) label, notable as the first Motown song to reach the number-one position on the Billboard Hot 100 pop singles chart. The single achieved this position in late 1961; it hit number one on the R&B chart as well. "Please Mr. Postman" became a number-one hit again in early 1975 when the Carpenters' cover of the song reached the top position of the Billboard Hot 100. "Please Mr. Postman" has been covered several times, including by the British rock group The Beatles in 1963.

The trend of Australian music have often mirrored those of the United States and United Kingdom. Australian Aboriginal music during the prehistory of Australia is not well documented; this timeline will concentrate on the time since radio began broadcasting in Australia (1923).

"Hippy Hippy Shake" is a song written and recorded by Chan Romero in 1959. That same year, it reached #3 in Australia. Romero was just 17 when he wrote the song.

This article includes an overview of the major events and trends in popular music in the 1970s.

Swedish popular music, also called Swedish pop music, or just Swedish pop, refers to music that has swept the Swedish mainstream at any given point in recent times. After World War II, Swedish pop music was heavily influenced by American jazz, and then by rock-and-roll from the U.S. and the U.K. in the 1950s and 60s, before developing into the dansband music. Since the 1970s, Swedish pop music has come to international prominence with bands singing in English, ranking high on the British, New Zealand, American, and Australian charts and making Sweden one of the world's top exporter of popular music by gross domestic product.

Adult contemporary music Radio format and music genre

In North American music, adult contemporary music (AC) is a form of radio-played popular music, ranging from 1960s vocal and 1970s soft rock music to predominantly ballad-heavy music of the present day, with varying degrees of easy listening, pop, soul, rhythm and blues, quiet storm, and rock influence. Adult contemporary is generally a continuation of the easy listening and soft rock style that became popular in the 1960s and 1970s with some adjustments that reflect the evolution of pop/rock music.

The Beatles North American releases album

The Beatles experienced huge popularity on the British record charts in early 1963, but record companies in the United States did not immediately follow up with releases of their own, and the Beatles' commercial success in the US continued to be hampered by other obstacles, including issues with royalties and public derision toward the "Beatle haircut".

British rock and roll, or sometimes British rock 'n' roll, is a style of popular music based on American rock and roll, which emerged in the late 1950s and was popular until the arrival of beat music in 1962. It has generally been considered inferior to the American version of the genre, and made little international or lasting impact. However, it was important in establishing British youth and popular music culture and was a key factor in subsequent developments that led to the British Invasion of the mid-1960s. Since the 1960s, some stars of the genre, most notably Cliff Richard, have managed to sustain successful careers and there have been periodic revivals of this form of music.

British soul

British soul, Brit soul, or the British soul invasion, is soul music performed by British artists. Soul has been a major influence on British popular music since the 1960s, and American soul was extremely popular among some youth subcultures, such as mods, skinheads, and the northern soul movement. In the 1970s, soul gained more mainstream popularity in the UK during the disco era.

British pop music is popular music, produced commercially in the United Kingdom. It emerged in the mid-to late 1950s as a softer alternative to american rock 'n' roll. Like American pop music it has a focus on commercial recording, often orientated towards a youth market, as well as that of the Singles Chart usually through the medium of relatively short and simple love songs. While these basic elements of the genre have remained fairly constant, pop music has absorbed influences from most other forms of popular music, particularly borrowing from the development of rock music, and utilising key technological innovations to produce new variations on existing themes. From the British Invasion of rock bands in the 1960s, led by The Beatles, British pop music has alternated between acts and genres with national appeal and those with international success that have had a considerable impact on the development of the wider genre and on popular music in general.

This article includes an overview of the events and trends in popular music in the 1960s.

A girl group is a music act featuring several female singers who generally harmonize together. The term "girl group" is also used in a narrower sense in the United States to denote the wave of American female pop music singing groups, many of whom were influenced by doo-wop and which flourished in the late 1950s and early 1960s between the decline of early rock and roll and start of the British Invasion. All-female bands, in which members also play instruments, are usually considered a separate phenomenon. These groups are sometimes called "girl bands" to differentiate, although this terminology is not universally followed.

Second British Invasion Music cultural movement

The Second British Invasion refers to music acts from the United Kingdom that became popular in the United States during the early-to-mid 1980s primarily due to the cable music channel MTV. The term derives from the similar British Invasion of the U.S. in the 1960s. These acts primarily brought with them synthpop and new wave styles of music to the American charts, and according to Rolling Stone, brought "revolution in sound and style."

Music of the United Kingdom developed in the 1960s into one of the leading forms of popular music in the modern world. By the early 1960s the British had developed a viable national music industry and began to produce adapted forms of American music in Beat music and British blues which would be re-exported to America by bands such as The Beatles, The Animals and Rolling Stones. This helped to make the dominant forms of popular music something of a shared Anglo-American creation, and led to the growing distinction between pop and rock music, which began to develop into diverse and creative subgenres that would characterise the form throughout the rest of the twentieth century.

Because (The Dave Clark Five song) 1964 single by The Dave Clark Five

"Because" is a song recorded by English rock band The Dave Clark Five from their third studio album American Tour (1964). Written by Ron Ryan but credited to Dave Clark and produced by Adrian Clark, the song was originally the B-side to "Can't You See That She's Mine" in the UK.


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