Eve of Destruction – Barry McGuire
Lyndon Johnson announces decisions to bomb North Vietnam, and to raise the draft call.
Lyndon Johnson Told the Nation – Tom Paxton
Ways to avoid the draft
My Generation – the Who
US Marines fire on Viet Cong. Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony. Sir Winston Churchill dies. Richard Dimbleby provides commentary for Churchill’s funeral. Richard Dimbleby dies.
Catch the Wind – Donovan
Martin Luther King leads civil rights march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama
You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling – the Righteous Brothers.
Riots in Los Angeles, Watts District
We Gotta Get Out of This Place – the Animals
Help! – the Beatles
Beatles perform at Shea Stadium. Paul McCartney introduces…
Ticket to Ride – the Beatles
Interview with the Beatles
I’m Down – the Beatles
Beatles interviewed after receiving MBEs. Objection to Beatles reciving MBES.
I Got You Babe – Sonny and Cher
Diana Rigg joins The Avengers. PJ Proby ordered off tour after trouser ripping incident. The mini skirt
I’m Alive – the Hollies
Ronnie Biggs escapes from prison
Subterranean Home Sick Blues – Bob Dylan
President Johnson’s State of the Union address
The Last Time – the Rolling Stones
Edward Heath elected leader of the Conservative Party
Like a Rolling Stone – Bob Dylan
Interview with Mick Jagger
I Can’t Get No Satisfaction – the Rolling Stones
North Sea oil rig Sea Gem. Northeast power cut affects parts of USA and Canada
Go Now – the Moody Blues
Conservatives win Leyton by-election. Rhodesia declares UDI
For Your Love – the Yardbirds
Ed White makes the first walk in space. Gemini 7 and Gemini 6A make first rendezvous in space
Mr Tambourine Man – the Byrds
Anti-Vietnam War demonstrations in Washington. Robert McNamara predicts increase in American military efforts. Vietnamese villagers rendered homeless.
Yesterday – the Beatles
Beatles’ Christmas Record
The main new story in this edition is the Vietnam War. In Britain 1965 is remembered as the year that Winston Churchill died.
Pop music was becoming more sophisticated. The Beatles’ music was becoming more sophisticated (although I don’t think it was a good idea to have another programme ending with a Beatles’ Christmas record). The Rolling Stones were writing their own songs, and the Who made their breakthrough. Surprisingly James Brown, the pioneer of soul music, wasn’t included. There was already a hippy sound coming into pop music, and in America the folk-protest music scene lead by Bob Dylan was really taking off, but then there was a lot to protest about.
The Sound of Silence – Simon and Garfunkel
England wins the World Cup. Kenneth Wolstenholme’s commentary.
England Swings – Roger Miller
Carnaby Street fashions
Dedicated Follower of Fashion – the Kinks
Radio London jingle. Vitalis shampoo commercial. Radio Caroline marooned. Radio Caroline jingle.
Wild Thing – the Trogs
Edward Short, postmaster general, presents white paper outlawing pirate radio, but allowing local radio stations
Paint It Black – the Rolling Stones
Over five hundred billion dollars spent on Vietnam War. Bombing in Vietnam continues. Interview with President Johnson.
The Ballad of the Green Berets – Staff Sergeant Barry Sadler
Charles Whitman shot dead by police after shooting spree at University of Texas
Hey Joe – Jimi Hendrix
Eight students murdered in Chicago. Hendrik Verwoerd stabbed to death. Indira Ghandi elected prime minister of India. Mao Zedong’ Cultural Revolution
For What It’s Worth – Buffalo Springfield
John Lennon gets into trouble after saying the Beatles are more popular than Jesus
Eleanor Rigby – the Beatles
Calls for sanctions against Rhodesia. Speech by Ian Smith.
Summer in the City – the Lovin’ Spoonful
The Man From UNCLE – Montenegro
David McCallum visits Britain before making film in Italy
River Deep Mountain High – Ike and Tina Turner
Muhammad Ali refuses to join US army on religious grounds
Reach Out I’ll Be There – the Four Tops
You Keep Me Hangin’ On – the Supremes
Safari park opened at Longleat. Chi Chi the panda sent to Moscow Zoo to be mated with An An
Good Vibrations – the Beach Boys
Interview with juvenile delinquents
California Dreamin’ – the Mamas and the Papas
Ronald Reagan becomes governor of California. Lurleen Wallace succeeds her husband as governor of Alabama. Edward Brooke becomes first black senator. Labour wins general election
Taxman – the Beatles
Harold Wilson opens new Cavern Club in Liverpool
Rainy Women – Bob Dylan Doctor
Timothy Leery appeals against sentence for drug offences
Eight Miles High – the Byrds
Timothy Leery describes LSD experience
Tomorrow Never Knows – the Beatles
1966 was a transitional year. The Beatles stopped touring. This is the fifth consecutive edition of Twenty-five Years of Rock to end with the Beatles, but the song is nothing like anything they recorded before. The Rolling Stones and the Beach Boys joined the psychedelic bandwagon, as did new acts like Jimi Hendrix and Buffalo Springfield.
1966 was the year that the phrases ‘Swinging Sixties’ and ‘Swinging London’ were coined, and it was an optimistic time for Britain with Britain leading the worlds of pop music and fashion, England winning the World Cup. The programme even includes a couple of animal stories.
The US mid-term election results included the former actor Ronal Reagan (surname pronounced incorrectly in the new report) being voted governor of California. A few months after this programme was broadcast he was elected president of the United States.
Magical Mystery Tour – the Beatles
Last Train the Clarksville – the Monkees
The Monkees perform in Britain
Theme from The Monkees – the Monkees
Interview with Davy Jones
I’m a Believer – the Monkees
Israel fights Arab nations in Six Day War
A Whiter Shade of Pale – Procol Harum
Race riots in Detroit
Light My Fire – the Doors
Anti-Vietnam War protests
Al Capone – Prince Buster
Che Guevara killed in Bolivia. SS Torrey Canyon runs aground and creates massive oil spillage
Waterloo Sunset – the Kinks
Hi Ho Silver Lining – Jeff Beck
Interview with American visitors to Carnaby Street. Interview with Twiggy.
Let’s Spend the Night Together – the Rolling Stones
Interview with Mick Jagger after controversy over lyrics of Let’s Spend the Night Together. Mick Jagger and Keith Richard avoid being jailed for drug offences.
We Love You – the Rolling Stones
British Medical Journal warns of dangers of taking LSD. Flower people have love-in at Woburn Park. Interview with Duke of Bedford.
San Francisco – Scott McKenzie
Ed Stewart appeals to listeners to save Radio London
Sweet Soul Music – Arthur Conley
Radio London Jingle. Radio London closes down.
We Shall Overcome – Pete Seeger
Johnnie Walker on Radio Caroline. Radio One is launched
Radio One is Wonderful – Kenny Everett
Beefeaters – Johnny Dankworth
Tony Blackburn introduces…
Flowers in the Rain – the Move
Radio One – Jimi Hendrix
Purple Haze – Jimi Hendrix
Till Death Us Do Part
See Emily Play – Pink Floyd
Interview with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Brian Epstein dies. Interview with the Beatles.
Within You and Without You – the Beatles
Third phase of LSD
Cliff Richard says Paul McCartney was wrong to admit to taking LSD, and will be giving up show business career for the church.
Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds – the Beatles
Harold Wilson announces devaluation of the pound. Coronation of the Shah of Iran. Steve Race goes behind the scenes on Beatles’ latest record…
All You Need is Love – the Beatles
Doctor Christian Barnard carries out first heart transplant. Canada celebrates centenary, and hosts Expo ’67. Charles De Gaulle supports Quebec separatists.
Itchycoo Park – the Small Faces
Beatles open Apple Boutique. The Fool play at the opening party.
White Rabbit – Jefferson Airplane
This was the middle episode of the original twenty-five part series.
Rather incongruously the programme begins with Magical Mystery Tour which was the Beatles’ Christmas special. It was a mixed year for the Beatles, they made their most celebrated album, and their most famous tv appearance, but they lost their manager.
There are a lot of anthems here from the hippy/psychedelic era by the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Scott McKenzie, the Pink Floyd, Procol Harum, Jefferson Airplane and others. Jimi Hendrix should have featured in the introduction in the first programme.
Al Capone was probably included because it was the inspiration for the Specials’ then recent hit Gangster.
1967 was the year that Radio 1 started, and the programme includes the station’s opening moments. In 1987, to mark Radio 1’s twentieth anniversary, this edition only was repeated under the title The Year in Rock.
Lazy Sunday – the Small Faces
Government cuts. Harold Wilson endorses “I’m Backing Britain” campaign.
Mrs Robinson – Simon and Garfunkel
US sends warships to North Korea following capture of USS Pueblo. Viet Cong launch Tet Offinsive
Dance to the Music – Sly and the Family Stone
Student demonstrations in Paris
Revolution – the Beatles
Anti-Vietnam War protest in London turns into riot outside American Embassy. Student unrest in Berlin following assassination attempt on student leader Rudi Dutschke
Fire – the Crazy World of Arthur Brown
Malcolm Muggeridge resigns as rector of Edinburgh University over students taking drugs
Jumpin’ Jack Flash – the Rolling Stones
Brian Jones fined for possession of cannabis resin. Mick Jagger and Marianne Faithful bailed for drugs charges. Eugene McCarthy and Bobby Kennedy run for Democratic presidential candidate. Lyndon Johnson announces he will not stand for re-election.
All Along the Watchtower – Jimi Hendrix
Martin Luther King assassinated
We’re Going Wrong – Cream
Bobby Kennedy assassinated. Edward Kennedy speaks at his brother’s funeral.
Hey Jude – the Beatles
Demonstrations outside Democratic convention. Hubert Humphrey becomes Democratic presidential candidate.
Fire Brigade – the Move
Sabre Dance – Love Sculpture
Soviet troops invade Czechoslovakia
Alabatross – Fleetwood Mac
Protests against government’s immigration policy. Enoch Powell makes “Rivers of Blood” speech.
On the Road Again – Canned Heat
Ian Paisley speaks out against nationalist march in Derry.
The Mighty Quinn – Manfred Mann
Men of the Year Lunch. Melody Maker Readers Pop Poll Awards
This Wheel’s on Fire – Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger and the Trinity
Richard Nixon becomes Republican candidate, with Spiro Agnew as his running mate. Nixon elected president.
With a Little Help From My Friends – Joe Cocker
Jackie Kennedy marries Aristotle Onassis
Everlasting Love – Love Affair
Apollo 8, the first manned orbit of the Moon
Nights in White Satin – the Moody Blues
Vietnam peace talks in Paris become deadlocked
In 1968 the hippy movement went from love-ins to protests. It was a violent year with the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy, the continuing Vietnam War, protests against the Vietnam War, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, and the start of the troubles in Northern Ireland. The best news of the year was the first manned orbit of the Moon, another stage closer to getting men on the Moon.
The music in this programme is almost the start of the early seventies rock and pop scene. The main charts were moving from rock to pop, the Rolling Stones had jumped on the psychedelic bandwagon but quickly returned to their rhythm and blues style, Sly and the Family Stone were making funk music, and Cream and Can were the roots of prog rock. It also marked the start of a new era in American politics.
Something in the Air – Thunderclap Newman
President Nixon on first Moon landing. London School of Economics closes after students break down protective gates. London Street Commune in Piccadilly, interviews with squatters. Ronald Reagan imposes curfew at University of Berkley
Street Fighting Man – the Rolling Stones
Rolling Stones give free concert in Hyde Park and pay tribute to Brian Jones
Honky Tonk Woman – the Rolling Stones
Prince Charles invested as Prince of Wales
Je t’Amie Moi No Plus – Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg
Charles de Gaulle resigns. Bernadette Devlin becomes Britain’s youngest ever MP. British Troops sent into Northern Ireland
Bad Moon Rising – Credence Clearwater Revival
Concorde’s maiden flight. Boeing launches 747.
Get Back – the Beatles
Paul McCartney marries Linda Eastman. John Lennon marries Yoko Ono and stages bed-in for peace
The Ballad of John and Yoko – the Beatles
Interview with John Lennon
Give Peace a Chance – Plastic Ono Band
Reports of atrocities in South Vietnam. Second Lieutenant William Calley court martialled following My Lai Massacre.
Also Sprach Zarapthrustra – Richard Strauss
Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin become first men on the Moon
Space Oddity – David Bowie
President Nixon speaks to Apollo 11 astronauts
Star Spangled Banner – Jimi Hendrix
Country Joe McDonald addresses audience at Woodstock Music and Art Fair. Interviews with attendees at Woodstock.
Soul Sacrifice – Santana
Country Joe McDonald introduces…
I Feel Like I’m Fixin’ to Die – Country Joe and the Fish
Nixon announces plan to withdraw American troops from Vietnam
I Heard It Through the Grapevine – Marvin Gaye
Rolling Stones fan stabbed to death at concert in Altamont, California
Sympathy For the Devil – the Rolling Stones
Charles Manson and five followers charged with the murder of Sharon Tate
Hare Krishna Mantra – Radha Krishna Temple
Pinball Wizard – the Who
The Who perform their rock opera Tommy. Edward Kennedy interviewed after Chappaquiddick incident
Oh Well – Fleetwood Mac
Melody Maker Readers’ Awards
Living in the Past – Jethro Tull
Benjamin Spock addresses largest anti-Vietnam War demonstration in Washington
A Whole Lotta Love – Led Zeppelin
Something in the Air sets this programme up very nicely for the last year of the sixties (and the end of the first half of the thirty part series). It was a bad year for the Rolling Stones, Brian Jones died and the Altamont concert ended in tragedy. The Who broke new ground with the first rock opera, and Oh Well by Fleetwood Mac was the theme tune to Twenty-five Years of Rock. But the biggest pop music event of 1969 was Woodstock, and we hear performances by Jimi Hendrix, Santana and Country Joe McDonald and the Fish.
If the 1960 programme gave little indication of the type of music that was coming in the next decade, the 1969 programme features two influential new acts. The programme plays out with Led Zeppelin who were a major influence on some of the rock bands of the early seventies, and there’s David Bowie who would be a major influence in the seventies and beyond.
Space Oddity ties in with the biggest news event of the year, the first Moon landing. Oddly the series doesn’t include any of the other Moon landings apart from the failed attempt in 1970. Meanwhile back on Earth President Nixon pledged to end the United Sates’ involvement in Vietnam, but it would be a slow process.