All Shook Up: Concord College Prof Writes Book on Rock and Roll

For Immediate Release: 
Jun 24 2001

All Shook Up: Concord College Prof Writes Book on Rock and Roll

Athens, W.Va. - Concord College Professor of Sociology Carson Holloway’s first book, All Shook Up, is shaking up the way Americans view their music.

The social commentary by Holloway was published by Spence Publishing Company of Dallas, Texas, and released this past February in the nation where Presley and Lewis introduced the world to rock and roll. In All Shook Up, Holloway acknowledges that America is now a nation where rock and roll’s latest war isn’t being waged over the music’s beat and rhythm but the genre’s increasingly sexual and violent lyrics and the current battlefield isn’t the dinner table but the political arena.

All Shook Up seeks historical answers to modern-day concerns over music and explains that we’re viewing the power of music all wrong.

In All Shook Up, Holloway asserts that the current social and political views on music’s role in society and the influence it has on children is shallow and superficial. He undermines both liberal and conservative means of dealing with violent and sexually explicit lyrics as unrealistic and ineffective. He proposes that, in an historical context, the ancient Greeks—who believed that music had a massive impact on young minds and assigned it a critical role in education—had a more realistic view of music, a view that could benefit American society. Holloway concedes, however, that for modern society to embrace a similar understanding of music would involve “a radical transformation in our understanding of what we are, what the universe is, and how we are related to it.”

“I guess you can count me as a critic of some popular music—not all, but some,” says Holloway, who is publishing his first book at the age of 30. “But I’m also a critic of the critics.”

The Wall Street Journal in a recent review of Holloway’s book, compared All Shook Up to works by Camille Paglia and Alan Bloom (Closing of the American Mind). Regarding Holloway’s theory on the role of music and the superficiality of current political arguments, Journal columnist Adam Schulman concluded the review by writing, “All Shook Up points us in the right direction.”

Holloway began his teaching career at Concord College in 1998. A native of Iowa, Holloway met his wife Shari in graduate school at Northern Illinois University where he obtained both his master’s and his doctorate in political science. He currently lives in Athens, W.Va.

For more information on Holloway’s book call 1-304-384-5299 or email


Photo: Carson Holloway

Concord College Notes: The Communication Arts Department produces the College’s student newspaper, radio programming and television programming. The department also produces theatrical and musical productions. It is organized similar to today’s modern corporation with the students completing projects under both student and faculty supervision. This gives students real-world experience that focuses on accountability and responsibility.

Jessica Shifflett, an intern in the public relations/marketing department, wrote this press release. Her hometown is Oak Hill, W.Va. She is majoring in Communication Arts with an emphasis in Broadcasting and Journalism. Her anticipated graduation date is August 2001.