We can chart these changes in the music of the decade. In 1960 the big hits were by Elvis, Connie Francis, and the Everly Brothers. These were the sweet, teenage love songs that teens danced to and made out on lover's lane to. The lyrics were important to the listener, no doubt, but the subject was invariably love in all of its variations and dramatic turns.
In 1962 musical events were happening that would become very important very quickly. A premier album by a young folksinger named Bob Dylan was released. In Hamburg, Germany, the Beatles were learning their craft at the Star Club and their way around a recording studio as a backup band before recording on their own. The Rolling Stones were fully formed and took up their first resident gig at the Marquee Club in soon to be swinging London.
By the middle of the decade, drastic changes were apparent. Dylan had moved past his folkie phase and into electric music, the Beatles were experimenting with new sounds and lifestyles, and the Stones were growing in stature by leaps and bounds. On the west and east coasts of America, things were evolving in the music world as well. Fueled by new attitudes of freedom, rebellion against the old ways, infusions from all kinds of genres of music, and experimentation with psychedelics, the music scene exploded with novelty, pushing all of the former boundaries.
Within 2 short years, the summer of love would come and go, and with it some of the most famous and best rock albums of all time came into being and into the public consciousness. The Doors' first LP, Sgt. Pepper by The Beatles, the Jimi Hendrix Experience's first 2 records, Janis Joplin's debut, Jefferson Airplane's groundbreaking and hitmaking Surrealistic Pillow - all of these and many more still define counterculture for millions of listeners. By the time the end of the decade and Woodstock rolled around, the masterpieces of classic rock had been created, and it remains an important genre today so today.