Various Artists

It's Rock 'N Roll

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This collection's first song, "It's Rock & Roll" by Jack Winston, is pretty forgettable, but the second, "Rock the Joint" by Rocky Rhule, and its third, "Pretty Baby" by Jimmy Thurma, get things moving in the right direction, and fast. Jimmy Strayton's "Hot Hot Mama" turns up the temperature considerably; Larry Terry's "Hepcat" keeps the heat on, and even though Ray Whisnant's "Rock That Rhythm" moderates the tempo, it doesn't break the mood of teens with over-saturated hormones and lots of energy to expend on cars and girls. Buck Trail's "Honky Tonk on Second Street" is a lost rock & roll classic in the same mold as Merrill Moore's "House of Blue Lights." Don't ask how the Jerry Lee Lewis-influenced Frank Triolo ever got his "Ice Cream Baby" into ASCAP's roster -- it's as loud a piece of rock & roll as anyone was doing. Lee Dresser's "Beat Out My Love" is a raunchy, screaming sax-driven jewel that just misses classic status with a flat second half. Dwarless Fearsley's name had to be a joke, and "You Talk Too Much" is almost a parody of rock & roll conventions of the middle and late 1950s. "Grandma Rock & Roll" by Gene Sisco is pretty forgettable except as a country novelty tune, but Bobby Poe is a wailing, whooping stuttering lunatic on "Rock & Roll Boogie." Frank Triolo outdoes Jerry Lee Lewis at his own game on "Pretty Little Woman." Glenn Reffuse outdoes them all with "Love's No Game," a loud, raunchy paean to teenage lust. Donnie Bowshire's "Rock & Roll Joys" misses the reckless abandon of the music, and is a strange place to end this collection.

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