T. Rex Inducted Into the Ultimate Classic Rock Hall of Fame
Marc Bolan formed the band, originally called Tyrannosaurus Rex, in 1967. At first, they leaned toward folk rock, grabbing inspiration from some of Bolan’s musical heroes. But by 1970 they shortened their name and released their first album under the new moniker.
Along with the name change came a shift in sound, as Bolan steered the group toward more baroque and electric styles. By 1971, he was immersed in the burgeoning glam-rock scene of the band’s native London and recorded one of the definitive albums of the genre, ‘Electric Warrior.’
The LP was an immediate hit, racing straight to No. 1 in the U.K. and to the Top 40 in the U.S. Songs like ‘Get It On’ and ‘Jeepster’ became anthems for a new generation of glitter-covered glam-rock kids. The music on ‘Electric Warrior’ pretty much set glam’s template, even more so than pal David Bowie‘s equally influential ‘The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars.’
The next six years were filled with a series of albums — some good (‘The Slider’), some not so good (‘Futuristic Dragon’). On Sept. 16, 1977, Bolan died in a car accident, two weeks before his 30th birthday. But the music he recorded during his short decade as an artist has inspired generations of music fans — from ’70s punks to ’80s New Wave acts to the retro-leaning synth-pop groups of the ’00s, some of which borrow heavily from the glam playbook Bolan and T. Rex helped write.