Soft rock, also referred to as light rock or easy rock, is a style of music which uses the techniques of rock and roll to compose a softer, more toned-down sound for listening, often at work or when driving.
Soft rock emerged in the early 1970s, both as a reaction against the increasingly heavy music (punk rock and heavy metal etc.) that was developing at the time, and also as a reflection of the changing priorities of the Baby Boom. What set 1970s soft rock apart from its 1960s counterpart, which for lack of a better word is usually just called "pop", is that in the 1960s pop existed for those who simply didn't like rock; the 1960s' pop artists usually were vocalists who were stylistic throwbacks to the pre-rock era. Soft rock developed organically to suit the needs of those who did have rock listening experience; as such, it can be considered a bona fide rock genre. Soft Rock could be characterized as a Pop-oriented Rock.