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Most people are familiar with blues music and its origins in the Deep South of America, popularised by African Americans. That begs the question of what is roots music, and how does it tie in with the blues? Roots music actually has several different styles and genres, but the one that most closely aligns with the blues is roots rock.
The cultural inception of roots rock began back in the 1960s and was initially based on traditional folk music, with a hint of the blues. Several artists rose to fame by incorporating roots rock into their catalogue of songs. The likes of Janis Joplin, Steppenwolf and Procol Harum can all be said to have embraced the genre. Other musicians fused roots music with traditional country melodies and even rock and roll, creating a unique sound.
Known for taking music back to its basics, Bob Dylan is credited with bringing roots rock to the public's attention. His 1966 album, Blonde on Blonde epitomised everything about this genre of music. One of the first double albums, it is widely acclaimed for its witty lyrics.
Is blues and roots music still relevant today? The answer is undoubtedly a resounding, yes. Its popularity continues as enthusiastic fans seek out the likes of the Amazing Rhythm Aces, the Badlees and Calexico. These bands are renowned for their unique, energetic live stage performances.