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September 4, 2012 by joesonotheque

Maria’s Package Goods & Community Bar presents
With DJ Supreme James Porter featuring rare R&B, early rock and roll,
rockabilly and post-war boogie
Thursday, September 13 – 9PM-2AM – Free, No Cover
960 W. 31st Street, Chicago, Il. 60608 – 773.890.0588 – http://www.community-bar.com

No one at the time could imagine the cultural revolution that was to
occur worldwide when RCA records released the first 45 RPM single in
1949. Previous to this, the 78 RPM record was the dominant format to
listen to recorded music even though these shellac discs were prone to
shatter easily, crack and chip. The smaller 45 single was a
significant advancement to the 78, being more durable and of higher
audio fidelity. Originally monoral, the 45 single would adapt to the
growing industry and technological demands of hi-fi specialists and
transition its pressings to stereo by the sixties.

However, the “golden age” of the 45 single was undoubtedly the decade
of the 1950s and early 1960s when younger teenagers became a dominant
voice both economically and socially. The 45 single offered a type of
perfect storm for the recording industry to take advantage of a rising
middle class with more leisure, resources and avenues to spend
especially after a rigidly austere time spent focused on the demands
and sufferings following both the Great Depression and WWII. It
certainly was time to celebrate.

It was during this period of accessible leisure and hedonism that the
45 single achieved supreme dominance. Although the LP was a viable and
alternative format (especially to the audiophile), its cost made it
more prohibitive. Record charts ranking the constantly shifting
popularity of 45 singles became broken down into numerous
sub-categories ranging from genres like r&b, gospel, rock and roll,
instrumentals, country, vocals, pop and soul. These charts like the
Hit Parade, Hot 100, Top 40 and Billboard were a quick litmus test for
the music industry to gauge the quick shifts in an artist’s popularity
plus changes in styles and opinions.

Each city seemed to have its own television and radio programs
focusing on these ever-shifting trends while national taste makers
like American Bandstand (originally aired locally in Philadelphia and
hosted by Bob Horn and not Dick Clark) took advantage of this emerging
youth demographic with a combination of live performances of current
sensations, a Top 40 list and local kids dancing to the latest hits.

To pay tribute to this seminal period in the history of the 45 RPM
single, Maria’s Packaged Goods & Community Bar is kicking off its 45
FEVER series on Thursday, September 13 with avid record collector and
writer James Porter digging deep into his collection of rare R&B,
early rock and roll, rockabilly and post-war boogie.

James Porter is a lifelong Chicago resident who grew up hearing the
sainted sounds of Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Buddy Holly and
Eddie Cochran on the oldies station as a kid. Eventually he was
inspired to dig deeper, past the obvious hit makers and closer to the
one-hitters, no-hitters and regional successes that fleshed out the  &
roll story. He has also written about classic fifties and
sixties rock & roll for various magazines. While he does have a
sizable stash of LPs and 45s, he agrees that there is nothing like the
hot mix of an ancient 45 gripping your heart and satisfying your soul.

45 FEVER has been curated Maria’s musical director Joe Bryl. We will
continue the series on Thursday, September 20 with an evening
featuring psychedelic sounds and garage music of the sixties 45’s with
deejay Michael Latham and on Thursday, September 27 with groove
merchant Joe Bryl showcasing the commanding influence of the 45 for
soul and funk. The 45 FEVER will continue in October (dates to be
determined) with DJs Rik Shaw (reggae) and Clark Quente (Brazilian)
showcasing their personal collections of tropical 45 singles.

All events begin at 9PM and continue until 2AM. The series is free.


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