General Poetry posted July 2, 2023

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Gone in a Heartbeat!

Buddy Holly

by Debbie D'Arcy

At four he was a budding star
With music in his soul
By teenage he would "Rip It Up"
And "Shake, Rattle and Roll."
"Oh Boy!" He'd set his heart on fame,
Was soon "Learning The Game."
He formed a group with two young men -
The Crickets was their name.
Their first hit "That'll Be The Day,"
A line that would remain
So striking from a Western film*
And spoken by John Wayne
And music in those two short years
Would see his status soar.
His fans would crave him "Everyday"
Whilst "Wishing" more and more.
But Buddy would then choose to split
And go it all alone.
He'd "Rave On" up on gruelling tours,
New York became his home.
And marriage would come "Down The Line"
But not to "Peggy Sue."
Maria - he would swear on oath -
"I'm Gonna Love You Too!"
So this young Texan man so poised
With "Words Of Love" to share,
His trademark looks would never prompt
The words that "You're So Square."
But "Moondreams" can be fragile too,
Be oft so sadly rent
And "True Love Ways" would part and he'd
Be "Gone" from all life meant.
Bud "Early In The Morning" died,
A plane crash was to blame
A life curtailed so cruelly
Had brought him early fame.
But mem'ries of his joie de vivre
Sought "Not (to) Fade Away,"
His songs inspired so many more
Who wished his "Heartbeat" stay.
Yet for the void he left behind,
With grandeur undenied,
McLean would write his lyrics proud -
"The day the music died."**

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With thanks to Paul Manton for his subject suggestion:)
joie de vivre - Buddy's music is noted for its celebration and 'joy of life' (as well as conveying a sense of the wide-open spaces of West Texas).
* The Searchers, Western film starring John Wayne;
** Lyrics taken from Don McLean's song American Pie written in 1971 in which his hero's plane crash (also involving the deaths of great fellow musicians: Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens) is a metaphor for the deep cultural changes, profound disillusionment and loss of innocence that took place between 1959 and 1970.

Buddy Holly (1936-1959) was the Founding Father of rock and roll influencing icons such as Elvis Presley, The Beatles, Elton John, Everly Brothers and Rolling Stones to name but a few.

The above song titles were released as follows (some after his untimely death):

1) Rip It Up - 1964
2) Shake, Rattle And Roll - 1964
3) Oh Boy - 1957
4) Learning The Game - 1960
5) That'll Be The Day - 1957
6) Everyday - 1958
7) Wishing - 1959
8) Rave On - 1958
9) Down The Line - 1965
10) Peggy Sue - 1958 (Actually Buddy's drummer's girlfriend)
11) I'm Gonna Love You Too -1958
12) Words Of Love
13) You're So Square - 1958
14) Moondreams - 1960
15) True Love Ways - 1960
16) Gone - 1964
17) Early In The Morning - 1959
18) Not Fade Away - 1957
19) Heartbeat - 1958

The youngest of 4, Buddy was born to a loving, supportive and musical family in Lubbock, West Texas. Already versed in several music styles he was a seasoned performer by 16. Went on to form The Crickets in 1957.Although he lacked the incendiary sex appeal of Presley, he more than made up for it with his trademark horn-rimmed glasses (inspiring Elton John to copy him) and famous musical hiccup. He married Maria Santiago (4 years his senior) in 1958. They had no children. She was unable to attend his funeral in Lubbock having just suffered a miscarriage.

By the time of his death, Holly was broke. Like Presley, he had an unscrupulous manager, in this case - Norman Petty - who was also a song writing partner, publisher as well as owner of their recordings. Holly had been forced financially to go on tour and, tired of travelling in cramped buses, he opted to charter a private plane which crashed shortly after take-off.

In 1986 he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 1996 he was honoured by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

In 1976 Paul Mc Cartney bought the publishing rights to his songs.
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