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Essential Pittsburgh: The Past, Present and Future of Pittsburgh Rock 'n Roll

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Castrin Austin/Flickr
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The Rolling Stones in Glastonbury in 2013. The Stones are slated to play Heinz Field this June.

An event billed as the Pittsburgh Rockin' Reunion will take place this weekend. Joining us for a look at Pittsburghers who made rock ‘n’roll music in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s is Ed Salamon, author of the book "Pittsburgh's Golden Age of Rock 'n' Roll."

"All of the elements that created rock 'n roll were present here in Pittsburgh. A lot of musicologists say it's a combination of jazz, of pop, of rhythm and blues. All of those musics existed here in Pittsburgh, and they cross-pollinated in Pittsburgh as in few other places." - Ed Salamon

Also on today's show: Justin Hayward--singer, songwriter, and lead guitarist for the legendary rock group The Moody Blues--remembers a long career of classics, and WYEP's Mike Sauter lays out the steel city's rock 'n roll future: Ringo, Rosanne Cash and none other than The Rolling Stones. 

Pittsburgh's Golden Age of Rock 'n Roll (starts at 0:00)

Ed Salamon says that, if you were to describe a uniquely Pittsburgh rock 'n' roll sound you should look to Jimmy Beaumont and the Skyliners.

"Taking the Sinatra-type pop, taking the rhythm and blues, but singing with these multiple Jazz-like notes, that was something new and fresh...Jimmy Beaumont and the Skyliners had "Since I Don't Have You." Every male artist wanted to be them, and every girl wanted to kiss them."

Justin Hayward & The Moody Blues (starts at 17:20)

The Moody Blues are coming to Pittsburgh Monday to perform at Heinz Hall as part of their 2015 Spring tour titled "Timeless Flight - The Polydor Years." Moody Blues front man, singer/songwriter Justin Hayward, joins us to talk about some of the songs they'll be playing and share stories behind the music from their breakthrough album "Days of Future Passed," including their most famous song, the classic hit "Nights in White Satin."

Hosting the Greats (starts at 37:10)

Several big concert announcements have left Pittsburghers anxious for the upcoming months-- and ready to check some must-see performers off their bucket lists. Mike Sauter, Program Director at WYEP preps us for some of the most exciting shows of 2015, including Ringo Starr's All-Starr Band, Rosanne Cash and The Rolling Stones. 

More Essential Pittsburgh segments can be found here

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