Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Bobby Vee 1943 - 2016

From (Holy) Greil Marcus' brilliant Mystery Train:

At a DJ convention early in 1973, I sit drinking with Bobby Vee and Brian Hyland, veterans of the Now-That-Elvis-Is-in the Army-We-Can-Cash-in-on-the Vacuum Era. I am interviewing Bob (he has changed his name back to Veline and is a folksinger now) in order to pen six thousand words of liner notes to a greatest hits package, an essay that will no doubt be the only extended critical discussion of his oeuvre. Bob tells me that, yes, for him it all began with Elvis -- and suddenly the whole tone of the conversation is different. Professional cool drops away and we are shameless fans, awed by our subject. Vee and Hyland have met Elvis: he got drunk with Hyland (so Brian says) and was surly to Vee (I believe that). Well, they are outcasts in the rock 'n' roll world now, two very ordinary looking men; for all their triviality as rock singers, they once did their best to live up to Elvis and keep the faith. You can almost feel them gazing at Elvis as he is today, as if in his comback they still see a glimmer of a future for themselves, just as they did when he started out years ago.

The guy died of Alzheimers, which he first was diagnosed with at the age of 67.

This kind of shit is really starting to break my heart.


Billy B said...

I never paid this guy much attention. I see where the Buddy Holly stuff came from.

steve simels said...

I didn't know until today that the song was co-written by Gene Pitney.

mainuh said...

Just read his Wiki page...friend of Dylan.
He just became a whole lot more interesting to me.


Anonymous said...

Yeah, Dylan mentions him in his book. But he still sings like a candy ass from the "Bobby" era. Even his record with The Crickets isn't that great. Somebody told me I'd like it.

That kinescope of "The Night Has a Thousand Eyes" has some unintentionally entertaining moments, though.

VR - my baby's watching The Ambushers, time to get my knees dirty and do some serious head-bangin' as the ritual dictates