[Ads-l] Antedating of "Heavy Metal" (Music)

Shapiro, Fred fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Fri May 8 11:59:09 UTC 2020

The OED's first citation for the term "heavy metal" referring to a type of music is dated 1973.  I have previously pointed out that Wikipedia's article on "heavy metal music" has an excellent discussion of early uses of "heavy metal," with the oldest mentioned occurrence in reference to a type of music being in Rolling Stone magazine, May 11, 1968.

The following citation reveals a 1967 usage:

1971 _Journal of Popular Culture_ Winter 589 (ProQuest)  _Wet Dream_. Words and music by Ed Sanders. Copyright (c) 1967 by Heavy Metal Music Inc.

Interestingly, the earliest citation for the term "punk rock" in the OED is a 1970 Chicago Tribune article quoting Ed Sanders.

Fred Shapiro

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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