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Come Together: Fifty Years of Abbey Road

In September 2019, the Institute for Popular Music, in partnership with the Eastman School of Music will welcome top Beatles experts to Rochester for a conference celebrating the 50th anniversary of the release of Abbey Road.

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Sgt. Pepper’s lasting impact, 50+ years later

“Ironically, an album that might not strictly speaking have been a concept album ended up being the most influential concept album in the history of rock music,” says John Covach, professor of music and director of the Institute for Popular Music.

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The core of Chuck Berry’s legacy

Rock ‘n roll legend Chuck Berry died on March 18 at the age of 90. In this essay in Macleans, rock historian John Covach remembers what made Berry iconic in a era of song stylists, covers, and lyric sanitization.

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Much more than a teen idol

John Covach, rock historian and director of the University’s Institute for Popular Music, summarized Michael’s impact on and influence in an essay for CNN.

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John Covach, Director

Advisory Board Members

Lori Burns, University of Ottawa
Walter Everett, University of Michigan
Susan Fast, McMaster University
Andrew Flory, Carleton College
Robert Fink, University of California, Los Angeles
Daniel Harrison, Yale University
Portia Maultsby, Indiana University
Allan Moore, University of Surrey
Jocelyn Neal, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Guthrie Ramsey, University of Pennsylvania
Mark Spicer, Hunter College, City University of New York
Rob Wegman, Princeton University
Albin Zak, University of Albany

University of Rochester

Faculty Associates

Daniel Beaumont, Religion and Classics
John Covach, Music Department and Eastman School of Music
Harold Danko, Eastman School of Music
John Fetter, Eastman School of Music
Kim Kowalke, Music Department and Eastman School of Music
Jennifer Kyker, Music Department and Eastman School of Music
Bruce Pilato, Music Department
Jason Titus, Music Department


Fragile and More

A Performance of Yes's Classic 1971 Album and More

This concert will celebrate the breakthrough album for English progressive rockers, Yes. Performed by Going for the One, along with staff, faculty and students from Eastman and the College, this concert in Eastman's historic Kilbourn Hall and in conjunction with the Rochester Fringe Festival will feature the music of Fragile plus additional Yes selections. Click on In Performance for details.


The University of Rochester offers thirty one courses in popular music, ranging from American Musical Theater to Sound Design.
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IPM Director

John Covach Playing Guitar

John Covach
College Music Department and Eastman School of Music

A Message from the Director

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