The Bay Area's Jazz Station to the World
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Sunday, 5/19/2024, 10pm - Juke In The Back

The R&B of RCA. It is a popular belief that the seeds of Rhythm & Blues, Rock n' Roll and even Jazz were planted by the small independent labels and that the major labels exhaustively played catch-up as the music grew in popularity. That is simply not true. The major labels were there from the beginning, often breaking important artists, many with mainstream leanings, while the indie labels promoted the more "grittier" aspects of the music, which we view today as the more "authentic" sound of R&B, Rock n' Roll and Jazz. And so, like Columbia and Decca, RCA Victor released some stellar Rhythm & Blues during the late 1940s into the early 1950s, before the label signed Elvis in 1955. It's hard to imagine Rock n' Roll emerging from a world void of Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup as Elvis and his contemporaries took so much inspiration from him, including covering his songs. Crudup was a star on RCA's blues roster as was Jazz Gillum. John Greer, The Robins and even Jesse Belvin all spent time on RCA. This week the spotlight shines on some great Blues, Jump Blues, Rhythm & Blues and vocal group sounds from RCA Victor during the golden age of R&B of RCA.