The Liner/Sleeve Notes:
“Buddy Holly’s professional career lasted a little over eighteen months, yet during that time he recorded some of the most memorable music to come from the rock ‘n’ roll era.
Although Buddy recorded in 1956 for American Decca, it was not until he became associated with Norman Petty in 1957 that the hits began to happen. Petty operated a small independent studio in Clovis, New Mexico, close to Buddy’s home town of Lubbock, Texas, and it was there that most of the tracks on this album were recorded. Buddy has his first taste of success as lead singer with the Crickets when their record That’ll Be The Day became a million-seller in the autumn of 1957. Later, Holly’s Peggy Sue earned him a gold disc, too – and established him as a solo artist. During the year that followed, Buddy Holly and the Crickets were rarely absent from the charts in America and England and both Holly and the group made several successful tours, including visits to Australia and England.
Of the dozen or more Buddy Holly albums to be released in this country, only this and “The Chirping’ Crickets” (CDLM 8035) were released during Holly’s lifetime. The tracks on this album were recorded between March 1957 and January 1958, and feature instrumental accompaniment by the Crickets – Jerry Allison (drums), Joe B. Mauldin (bass) and Niki Sullivan (rhythm guitar).
Although Buddy was a prolific writer, he chose to record several songs written by others – including three on this album recorded by some of his own favourite singers – Fats Domino, Little Richard and Elvis Presley. Holly’s version of Presley’s Baby I Don’t Care became a huge hit when it was released in England as a sing in 1961.
The front cover of this album (the same as that was used on the original release) shows Buddy for once without his horn-rimmed glasses. In 1957 when this and other publicity pictures were taken, he was well aware that no rock ‘n’ roll singer had made it wearing glasses. Only after he had dropped his guitar pick on stage and been unable to find it did he wear glasses on stage – and then he chose frames that looked inconspicuous as possible. It wasn’t until January of 1958 that Buddy began to wear the ones that became his trademark – by this time Jerry Allison and Phil Everly had convinced him that if he had to wear glasses, he should make a point of it.
This album includes some of the best of Buddy Holly’s recordings, in the same form as the original July 1958 release. The rock ‘n’ roll era may never return, but if you dust off the Dansette, kick off your shoes and roll up your faded jeans you’ll find a little of the summer of ’58 right here in this album….
So, it’s been 56 years today since Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and the Big Bopper all died in a plane crash in Iowa. All of them and their music have lived on through all these years, and they have all been immortalized in several ways. Buddy Holly however has had the film “the Buddy Holly Story” as well as the Don McClean song, “American Pie” about him. He was also replaced in the Crickets by David Box after his death, only for David Box to meet a similar fate.
The album opens with “I’m Gonna Love You Too” which opens with an amazing guitar solo, and then Holly singing. Holly had a certain aspect to his voice that made him like no other artist of his time, he had a way with his singing and he was just a fantastic singer. I do love the guitar playing on this track also. After that comes one of my favorite Buddy Holly songs, “Peggy Sue” – everything on this track is perfect from the drumming to the vocals, to the guitar solo in the middle – everything is so perfect with this track and it’s unbelievable. After that comes the track “Look at Me” and it’s not a bad track, I definitely love the piano playing in this one, and the vocals remain amazing as ever. We continue on with the song “Listen to Me” which is amazing just for the guitar and drumming, the whole song is great. Then comes the song “Valley of Tears” and it’s a slower song, and it even has organ playing in this one, and Holly’s vocals are superb. The A-Side closes with the song “Ready Teddy” and Holly just rips right into the track with all the guitar playing and all the amazing vocals, and do we really need to say more? Buddy Holly is one of the greatest musicians of our time.
The B-Side goes on with the track “Everyday” and although it’s a slower, softer track it makes for a wonderful opening track, Holly’s vocals are soft and sweet, but the instrumentalization is pretty nice. I believe, according to the liner notes, the instrument is a ‘celeste’ and I have no idea what that is. “Mailman, Bring Me No More Blues” comes next, and it just goes to show the difference between 2015 and 1957, as this song is about getting break-up letters in the mail, now it’s all done via text message and email. (True story.) anyways, the song was alright, not one of my favorite Buddy Holly tracks. “Words of Love” comes next, and once more we get amazing guitar playing and Buddy’s vocals are pretty great. “Baby, I Don’t Care” comes next, and it’s actually an Elvis song that Buddy Holly covered, and it’s just as great – and if you think back to when Buddy Holly was just starting out, he was nothing compared to Elvis, and now, they’re both at the same level as being some of the greatest rock n’ roll musicians. It’s a good song though. “Rave On” comes next, and once upon a time, I used to write a comic based off of this song. The song itself is one of Buddy Holly’s greatest songs, it uses every instrument as his disposal, guitar, drums, bass and piano. It’s fantastic. Unfortunately they couldn’t identify the background vocalist. The album ends with the song “Little Baby” and it’s kind of a bluesy sounding track, and it’s really good. Holly is fantastic musician.
A1 – I’m Gonna Love You Too
A2 – Peggy Sue
A3 – Look at Me
A4 – Listen to Me
A5 – Valley of Tears
A6 – Ready Teddy
B1 – Everyday
B2 – Mailman, Bring Me No More Blues
B3 – Words of Love
B4 – Baby I Don’t Care
B5 – Rave On
B6 – Little Baby
Studio Musicians & Other Album Credits:
Vocal, Lead Guitar, Rhythm Guitar & Guitar – Buddy Holly
Rhythm Guitar – Niki Sullivan
Bass – Joe Mauldin
Piano – Vi Petty & C.W. Kendall, Jr.
Celeste & Organ – Norman Petty
Drums – Jerry Allison
Other Albums I Own by Buddy Holly: