Ed Ward

Ed Ward is the rock-and-roll historian on NPR's Fresh Air with Terry Gross.

A co-author of Rock of Ages: The Rolling Stone History of Rock & Roll, Ward has also contributed to The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and countless music magazines. The first part of his two-volume history of rock and roll, covering the years 1920-1963, will be published by Flatiron Books in the fall of 2016.

Ward lives in Austin, Texas. He blogs at City on a Hill.

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Music
1:31 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

Bob Dylan's 'Basement Tapes' Formed A Legend

Bob Dylan's career was interrupted in 1966 when he crashed his motorcycle while riding near his home in upstate New York. He wasn't badly injured, but used the occasion to disengage from the grind of touring he'd been doing, relax, and hang out with his band. During this hiatus, some tapes surfaced of new songs he'd been writing: the infamous Basement Tapes. On the occasion of the entire archive being released, Fresh Air critic Ed Ward takes a look at them.

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Music
1:38 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

The Mysterious Case of Arthur Conley, Otis Redding's Protege

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. Arthur Conley was Otis Redding's protege, his special project, and had a number of hits before mysteriously disappearing. Our rock historian Ed Ward has uncovered what he can about Redding's story.

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Music
3:02 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

The Toil And The Oil That Fueled The Bakersfield Country Scene

Originally published on Wed October 8, 2014 3:23 pm

Bakersfield, Calif., has become famous for its own brand of country music, with such stars as Merle Haggard and Buck Owens given credit for putting the town on the musical map. But they evolved through a music scene that was wild and wide-open during the 1950s and '60s, and Fresh Air's Ed Ward has the story.

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Music Reviews
12:41 pm
Mon September 1, 2014

The Story Of Little Feat's Fame, Destruction And Revival

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

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Music
2:40 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Box Set Looks Back On Pioneering '5' Royales

Soul music is often defined as the moment when gospel and blues met and formed a new sound. Ray Charles is often given credit for this, but there were others, most notably the "5" Royales, who had immense success as a live act, but never sold as many records as such a pioneering group should have. With the release of the 131-track collection Soul and Swagger: The Complete "5" Royales, the group has finally gotten the recognition they deserve. Fresh Air critic Ed Ward has the story.

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