More notes at http://tanguay.info/learntracker
C O U R S E 
History of Rock, 1970-Present
John Covach, University of Rochester
C O U R S E   L E C T U R E 
1975-1980: The Rise of the Mega-Αlbum
Notes taken on September 26, 2015 by Edward Tanguay
second half of the seventies
FM radio changed over the course of the 1970s
started as free form, you can play anything you want, disc jockey was in complete control
as it became popular, more stations switched to the album-oriented rock format
more possibility of profits being made
so only had songs that people wanted to hear
radio was not just radio, it was commercial radio, the owners of the stations were in it to:
self advertising, make money
the more ears you could get on the station, the more you could charge for advertising
there was a force on the station to construct a play list that kept people listening as much as possible
as the 70s unfold, the disc jockeys have less and less say about what is played on the air
they don't lose all say but in general
leads to a bigger FM radio business
in the beginning of the 70s you might have had long tracks that went on for 8 or 9 minutes
by the end of the 70s the maximum song is about 4 to 5 minutes
AM became pop radio at the end of the 60s
rock radio moves into the FM band at the end of the 60s and into the 70s
but by the time it gets to the mid-decade it looked quite like AM radio from the 60s
in the sense that it is highly formatted
almost a top 40 kind of format
a lot of the musicians from the first half of the decade didn't like that that much
concert circuit venues
the first tours in the 60s was not a big concert business
in the late 70s you have people who are in the business of doing nothing but
promoting these tours
providing sound systems for these tours
providing lighting for these tours
being on the road with a band becomes a business that you can do full time and make a lot of money
provides a lot of opportunities for bands
the rise of the mega-album
comes as a bit of a surprise in the music business
some bands in the second half of the 70s had record sales far beyond the wildest fantasies and dreams of record company owners and investors
explodes in a fantastic kind of way
triggered a kind of dumbing down of rock in order to go for the biggest sales possible
Peter Frampton - Frampton Comes Alive (1976)
one of the first big mega albums
previous bands
Humble Pie
1971 Rockin' the Fillmore: double live album
1972-1974 three solo albums
a live album
"Show Me the Way"
"Baby, I love Your Way"
"Do You Feel Like We Do"
became famous for something called the talk box
had inch-wide surgical tubing
you could shape it as if the guitar was talking
make him into a star
Eagles - Hotel California (1976)
Joe Walsh
very big album
"New Kid in Town"
"Hotel California"
"Life in the Fast Lane"
a bit of a concept album about what can happen to you if you get stuck in the California life style
you can check out anytime you want but you can never leave
influenced by the Sgt. Pepper album cover
1979: The Long Run, another big album
put the Eagles into the category of mega stars with gigantic sales
Fleetwood Mac -
originally starts out as a Blues band in England
Mick Fleetwood and John McVie
Peter Green on lead guitar
black magic woman, later a hit for Santana
Bob Welch in early 1970s
then leaves
then two Americans
Lindsey Buckingham
Stevie Nicks
1975 Fleetwood Mac
"Over my Head"
1977 Rumours
very big album
not only #1, but spent 31 weeks at #1
"Go Your Own Way"
"Don't Stop"
all staples of classic rock radio now
tremendous expansion of profit in the business
record businesses had their mouths watering
because there was so much money in it
the criticism would be that this shapes a lot of their thinking
it's a multi-million dollar lottery and they don't want to invest their money in bands that don't have a chance of winning