Bowers & Wilkins and Abbey Road Studios help celebrate five decades of British cool – and you can be there!

Vintage at Goodwood

Bowers & Wilkins is attending Vintage at Goodwood, and would love for you to join us. Together with the world-famous Abbey Road Studios, we are representing the very best that Britain has to offer in terms of sound recording and reproduction.

This innovative festival of music, design and fashion celebrates all that is great about British popular culture. The festival takes place in the wonderful surroundings of the Goodwood Estate on the 13, 14, 15th of August.

To mark the event, we are extremely happy to be able to offer you the chance to win tickets to the festival. First prize is a glamorous Hotel Bell Tent for four people for the festival weekend, while five runners up can win a pair of tickets for a day of their choice.

To enter, simply post a comment below telling us your favourite decade for British music and why. And we will pick the winners from our favourite answers.

This competition is now closed, and the winners have been notified by email. Thank you to everyone who entered.

263 Comments

  • John says:

    My musical awakenings came with the rock opera productions in the Seventiies. The energy and many musical references and diverse styles and characterisations widened my musical appetite and introduced me to a variety of vocalists and musicians. The Who (Tommy, Quadraphenia), Rice/Lloyd Webber (Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita). The original concept albums and the later soundtrack albums to the film productions broadened my catalogue of music styles.
    There are mixed rock/classical influences in JCS and Evita including choral pieces and a further transfer to the visual medium of cinema was enhanced by the first time intorduction of Dolby encoded soundtracks (Tommy and Listzomania 1975 and 1977). Ken Russell (UK) directed these later two films and added his visual palette to the fundamental musical interpretation of these original compositions. Russell had earlier success with the film biopic of Gustav Mahler (Mahler) and The Music Lovers (Tchaicovsky). The combination of his Sound and Vision was an exciting period for music production and enjoyment.
    These concept albums, theatrical presentations and cinema transfers with soundtracks attracted a diverse range of singers and performers. Ian Gillan (Deep Purple/Black Sabbath) lead vocal on original release of Jesus Christ Superstar. Colm Wilkinson/David Essex/Julie Covington on original album release of Evita. Roger Daltry/Elton John/Eric Clapton/Tina Turner/Ann Margaret on film soundtrack album to ‘Tommy’
    The close of the decade saw the release of the concept album, THE WALL, (Pink Floyd). This was promoted initially by a single release with an animated promotional video by Gerald Scarfe which immediately secured the No. 1 spot. It was tantalising with a choral chorus by cockney school children delivering an anarchic anthem. It announced the concept double album by the Group and expanded their worldwide audience. The later touring live concert production was an aural experience of epic proportions.
    The end of the decade heralded the mainstream arrival of promotional videos which consolidated in the inception of Music Television (MTV) within 18 months in 1981.
    It was an interesting decade which touched on a wide range of artistic sources and styles and advanced the production qualities and reproduction medium for its audience.

  • andrew parkes says:

    the 60′s, i’m old enough that the music was still played commonly, but too young to have been lucky enough to have been there, all since i’ve been lucky enough to experience first hand, the sixties.i’m a “product ” but but not “part” of !

  • Peter Woolly says:

    It’s gotta be the sixties! From the first twang of Hank Marvin to the power riff of Jimmy Page that set a whole movement of rock music that still thrives today.

    I mean, where would we be now without The Beatles, Bowie, Stones, Hendrix, Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, Genesis, Nice, Who, Yes and of course Tom Jones!

    Life begins at 40? – well my life really began in the 60′s…………..!

  • Lisa Gallagher says:

    The 80′s were the best
    Just think of Frankie in his vest!

    Adam had his Ants
    We all were wearing baggy pants!

    Big hair was the fad
    Yes, we were all mad!

    The 80′s were the best years
    Now I’m off to celebrate with a few beers!

  • David Stooke says:

    A Vintage Decade?

    The 70′s – no competition!

    For me, at least. Lost my virginity to a sublime punk rockette while taking in a John Bonham solo at Knebworth (August 1979, the last great festival of the decade).

    Like I say – for me it’s no competition – The 70′s….(just).

  • Norman says:

    The 1970s is my favourite decade. The music of Pink Floyd and other rock bands from that period take me back to what I regard as the most interesting and innovative music of all time.

    Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side Of The Moon” played through my pair of “B&W DM6” speakers still sound as good today as it did back in 1973.

  • Jimmy B says:

    The eighties had it for me….
    Although music will always be a reflection of the times. . The 80′ s with it’s materialism and economic boom generated some very image driven music. The extended use of electronic sounds and beats generated a feeling of something very clean & modern. Glad I was a part of it.

  • Nigel Johnson says:

    The 90′s for the new inventive Brit pop scene – young, vibrant and energetic

  • John says:

    It has to be the 70s or to be more accurate the last four years of the 70s. The music that came out then shaped so much of everything since. Joy Division, The Clash, The Damned, Gary Numan, Kraftwerk. There was so much in that time and a lot of it still sounds fresh today.

  • Francis Mulcahy says:

    It was the 70′s for me. I was coming of age in the golden age of Pink Floyd. Everything seemed possible.

  • charlie holmes says:

    i’d say 60′s…so many huge huge stars were born out of that decade, and i’d say its the most influential decade, even today we’re still taking ideas from it!

    as a music producer and sound engineer, the ability of the sound engineers in the 60′s really was incredible, for the equipment they had, the recordings are perfect, not just the sound quality, but the recordings had such atmosphere and character.

    as for record producers…well…in my view the 60′s is where the role of record producer totally changed, with the likes of George Martin and Phil Spector. Those guys were genius’ and i don’t think there have been many producers since who have been anywhere near as influential and pioneering. one song says it all really…Tomorrow Never Knows – The Beatles…i cant think of another song from another decade that defies time quite as prolifically as that one song, not to mention it has probably inspired the majority of music producers and sound engineers worldwide, myself included!

    also, for me, this is where the pop song really took hold…the majority of the motown songs from the 60′s still sound perfectly current and relevant today, lyrically and melodically. and its not as if i’m from the 60′s and am biased towards it…i was born in 1991!!

    i probably dont need to mention a long list of artists, they’ll get listed a thousand times…but lets be honest, the majority of the greatest artists and bands probably of all time were from the 60′s! Way too many to mention. and lets not forget some of our biggest stars of the moment are based on a 60′s sound e.g Amy winehouse, mark ronson, daniel merriweather, john mayer, james morrison….its an endless list!

    as someone who works in the music industry, i think i can safely say that the majority of musicians, artists, songwriters etc, who i have worked with and throughout the whole industry are heavily influenced by music written or made in the 60′s more than any other decade!

    so…so re-cap….60′s!!!!

    C.

  • Edward Leach says:

    The 60′s was a world changing musical decade. The Beatles came on the scene and and changed the music style in America. The Stones, the WHO, the Kinks and all the British pop bands had a big influence on the culture of the world. Great music and still popular today.
    My thanks to all those involved.

  • Mark says:

    Of course it’s the 70′s. They don’t call them sensational for nothing! No other decade has had such an influence on everything that came afterwards and is cited by today’s musicians as such. What an era for great British rock guitarists – Jimmy Page, Pete Townshend, Eric Clapton, Ritchie Blackmore, Mark Knopfler, Gary Moore, Tony Iommi and of course, the best album of all time – Dark Side of The Moon. We even had truly influential DJs on Radio 1 – Noel Edmonds on the breakfast show, Fluff Freeman on Saturday afternoons and John Peel on late nights – it’s never been beaten.

  • Chris says:

    It has to be the 70′s. Bold, loud and, alive with much experimental music. Sounds perfect through the B&W’s! the music was alive….much like the speakers!

  • Si says:

    The 80′s was by far the best with Games Without Frontiers/ Dire Straits on Digital CD for the first time ever so I could really hear them just copared to my cheap scraty teenage turntable my first CD player was a revalation and got me onto the track for higher and higher HIFi from that day forward!!

  • Nick Carr says:

    The 70′s were the best for the development of modern themes and the time to learn guitar! Bowie challenging how chart music could be explored, Zeppelin just rocked with Palmer and Page, Queen added to the theatrics in a time when nobody connected Freddie with Gay (figure that out). This era woke us all up!!! Of course there is great music across all decades but the 70′s broke to rules for everyday folk and made us want better music systems.

  • Stephen Fell says:

    80′s – Right back into my teens, twenties and Kawasaki’s!

  • erica tomlinson says:

    70′s just plain & simple the music was so much better you could understand all what was sang unlike now when half the time you dont have a clue what words are being sung,loved the sweet,mud,slade etc…..total class

  • Angela Fearon says:

    I am a Music Lover.

    Born in the 70′s, Grew up in the 80′s, Partied hard in the 90′s, during the first decade of the 20th Century I started to become the person I am, Married the man of my dreams and had 3 lovely children, and now as I enter the 2nd part of the 20th Century I can reflect on my life listening to all the fantastic music ever produced in British history exploring each decade at my leisure and create my own festival live in my own lounge with the newest member of my family “The Zeppelin” with its breathtaking sound quality and stunning design features.

    So for me my favourite decade has got to be now, because its the technology of this decade that lets me listen to all the decades that have past at the press of a button and lets me get the most out of my music.

  • michael says:

    60′s just because Ihad to choose one.

  • simon says:

    the 80s
    the smiths reeled around the fountain
    u2 were a garage band
    new order made monday blue
    the cure were in a forest
    and all the stuff that still sounds fresh today

  • Marcus B. says:

    1910 – 1920 Those who would dismiss the works of Elgar and Holst as ” ..relatively simple music works” and then heap acclaim on 70′s prog rock beggars belief. Elgar and Holst are the architects of the concept album.

  • James Potts says:

    Just have to add a comment – many of you that list the 70′s as your favorite are filling it’s rosters with bands that were all from the 60′s! While this shows that everyone likes good music from the period, even bands like Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, and Led Zeppelin all became big in the 60′s, although they continued their careers well into the next decade. But please people, stop filling in your fav 70′s bands with products of the 60′s! The Beatles disbanded in 1970! Do your research.
    I play in a band that covers music from the British Invasion to present, and I can tell you first hand that almost all pop and rock right to this day was evolved from the 60′s.

  • Richard says:

    The rapid change in style, sound and technology in the 60s was exciting and must make it the winner. The post-war years had been very grey and austere and the music industry had been dominated by large, conservative, American record companies with their resident string orchestras which I suppose they felt obliged to use.

    Suddenly, teenagers were defined and recognised as having some money to spend . Our music came from Luxembourg, then the North Sea and finally Auntie gave us Radio 1.

    It was the era of the guitar groups who wrote their own material. Television archives show the number of bands who could play well live. But there was aIso variety with folk, blues, jazz, rock and heavy metal. Additionally for me, there were joyful evenings with Caribean friends playing direct imports from home.

    Yes, it has to be the 60s.

  • Shaun says:

    When I was growing up, I thought it was the 80s, then the 90s – but I know now it is ’65-’74….

    The music I first loved, which got me hooked on music in the first place, was in the 1980s – Adam & The Ants, Duran Duran, Human League, Prince, U2, Guns N Roses, then into the 90s it was Oasis, Blur, Prodigy, Happy Mondays, Stone Roses, Suede, Pulp. Gradually I began to find out more about the bands that influenced my favourite acts – invariably The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Beach Boys, The Who, Led Zeppelin, The Zombies, Small Faces, The Kinks, Bob Dylan, Can, Kraftwerk, Bowie, Love etc.

    In terms of influence, the greatest decade has to be the late 60s to early 70s – when these acts made their greatest albums, ones which continue to be enjoyed, and loved – but also influence other bands, who in turn will influence future generations. Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt Peppers, White Album, Let It Bleed, Exile on Main Street, Pet Sounds, Tommy, Quadrophenia, Led Zep I-IV, Odessey and Oracle, Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake, Village Green Preservation Society, Blonde on Blonde, Soundtracks, Tago Mago, Autobahn, The Man Who Sold the World, Ziggy Stardust, Forever Changes…. I could go on…. But, hey, not a bad 10 year period!

  • Tom DImond says:

    It has to be the 70′s this is when imagination clashed with technology. Guitars got faster, pianos got electric, and drummers were thankful if they survived. Revolution, fun, humour, trchnology and new found freedom were thrown together and allsorts burst out. Brilliant!

  • Richard James says:

    The Genre is Progressive Rock Era is late 1960′s to Early and into the 1970′s
    King Crimson, Yes, Of Course Genesis, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Soft Machine, Electric Light Orchestra, Procol Harum, Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones which is mostly hard Rock, Emerson Lake and Palmer, Moody Blues, and countless others

    These inspired and inspiring artists gave Rock music an elevated status amoung the more accepted and acceptable mainstream music and were the pathfinders that gave rise to the many and varied genres and musical forums without whos contributions we would not have today such as my favorites Progressive Jazz, and Jazz Fusion. To whom we will be forever greatfull for the fond memories given us by their musical expressions

  • joanne harrison says:

    It has to be the 80′s Duran Duran was my absolute first choice on my tape recorder! I love the decades because the fashion and music dictates the era. i had a small tape deck like a handbag I used to carry around with me, really dreadful sound but i did not care. The music reminds me of the fashion that was the early 80′s. I flew to australia in 1982 (had 12 years there listening to last years music, was so far behind then) at the airport there were ‘new romantic’ flowing dark hair, blouses with big attitude, and lots and lots of eye make up …… and that was the boy’s! Gosh know’s how they got through passport control! So it is the 80′s for me human league, huge shoulder pads, Bananarama, ABC, Madonna, Michael Jackson, the list goes on. Now where is my eyeliner!

  • ericinLA says:

    While I grew up in the 70s with Led Zep, Deep Purple, Yes and Genesis, I’d have to say that my favorite decade spanned the 80s and 90s, when raves started and techno and house began thumping in dark clubs. Love Chemical Bros, Orbital, and the guy that started it all (it seems), Alex Paterson and the Orb. Sure, Radiohead was deep, but Orbital? Deeper.

  • Veronica says:

    For me the excitement of the 60s music never fades. The fact that so many groups from the 60s still tour – and some have tribute groups as well! – show their groundbreaking music will never die.

  • Jean Cole says:

    The 60`s are the one for me
    The reasons are quite plain to see
    Cliff, Elvis and The Who
    Dave Clarke Five , the Animals too
    Tom Jones and Sandie Shaw
    Adam Faith and many more,
    The Beatles with their Rubber Soul
    To me its all just ” Rock N Roll”

  • Tracy says:

    For me the 1970s had it all (even though some of the artists may have started their careers in the 1960s or even before!). No other decade seems to have had so much diversity with glam rock on the one hand – Marc Bolan, Wizzard, Slade and rocking tunes on the other Stones, Queen, Quo, Bowie, Elton John, Rod Stewart and please don’t forget Blondie – so hip today and many of which are still going strong.

    With new wave and punk rock rearing their heads and Quadrophenia influening a new generation of mods and rockers, it was a great time to be a teenager!

    So many real tunes, with real musicians (mostly). Whenever I’m on my own, it’s always the 70s records that I play (but on CD now of course, even thought I’ve still got the original vinyls in the garage!!)

  • Ann Horne says:

    I am 51; (just had to check from birthdate as I am still waiting to grow up) so predictably it has to be th 70′s. I discovered Genesis and was lucky enough to catch them together and then separately. Loved going back to Manchester again recently ( I know it wasn’t in the last few months; but time goes so quickly!) to see Phil Collins and then Genesis.
    Also so much other good music from people who are still around.
    I love playing them all on my Zeppelin, sorry do not mean to creep! (But it is fantastic, loud as you like and no distortion)

  • Peter H says:

    The 70′s. Because it was a decade of remarkable musical innovation and diversity …. and a lot of that music is still rattling around in my head, so it must have been good!!

  • Laurie Joseph Gallant says:

    I guess that would be the sixties for me. There was such an explosion of creativity all around Britain. Of course the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd … but also in the Classical field with Baroque music rejuvenated with authentic instruments and Classical music in general reaching new heights. Lots of fantastic orchestras and great performers. The sixties were fabulous in my opinion.

  • Mrs SJ BRAN says:

    Myself, I just loved Elvis in the ’60′s, I used to go all’ shivers down the backbone’ every time I heard him sing: , I was just a young teenager and very impressionable! : Cliff Richard came a close second to Elvis and when Elvis died on my Hubby’s birthday , I was very devastated

    So, there you go, it is the 1960′s for me ……………………….

  • Paul says:

    Undoubtedly the 70s.

    Long Summer days of adolescent exploration, a naive idealism and an innocent optimism ensuring that life would simply get better and better. All this set against a backdrop of music which fueeled those feelings.

    A magical age of innocence never to be recaptured.

  • Chris Overs says:

    It can only be the SIXTIES…British music ruled the world, innovation and invention went hand in hand. Through that decade the British music industry set itself up to continue to go forward for the next four decades. It was simply inspiraional and the basis of the following decades of beautiful music. Bowers and Wilkins are the gateway to those fantasic sounds.

  • Ann calland says:

    The 80′s- Great music,big hair and fab clothes!

  • Greg Horton says:

    The Seventies – Because there was so many new movements in music, including Punk, Heavy Rock, Electronic, Glam, Disco – It was all new, fresh and exciting. And yes I am over 40!

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