Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Crickets

It’s So Easy!

First recorded by The Crickets (1958).
Also recorded by Bobby Vee (1963), The Trashmen (1963), Waylon Jennings (1969).
Hit version by Linda Ronstadt (US #5/UK #11/CAN #9 1977).

From the wiki: “‘It’s So Easy!'” was written by Buddy Holly and Norman Petty, and first released as a single by Holly under the moniker of his band, The Crickets. The single did not chart. Bobby Vee, The Trashmen (‘Surfin’ Bird’), and Waylon Jennings were among the several performers who recorded cover versions of the song before Linda Ronstadt’s 1977 Peter Asher-produced Top-5 recording.”

Not Fade Away

First recorded by The Crickets (1957).
Hit version by The Rolling Stones (US #43/UK #3 1964).
Also recorded by Rush (CAN #88 1973), Tanya Tucker (1979).

From the wiki: “‘Not Fade Away’ is credited to Buddy Holly (originally under his first and middle names, Charles Hardin) and Norman Petty, and was first recorded by Holly under the moniker of his band, The Crickets. The group recorded the song in Clovis, New Mexico, on May 27, 1957, the same day the song ‘Everyday’ was recorded. The song’s rhythm pattern is a variant of the Bo Diddley beat; Crickets drummer Jerry Allison pounded out the beat on a cardboard box.

“Contrary to the depiction in the 1978 film The Buddy Holly Story, ‘Not Fade Away’ was NOT the last song Holly ever performed before his fatal plane crash. In a 50th anniversary symposium held in Clear Lake, Iowa, where Holly last performed, discussion panel members Tommy Allsup, Carl Bunch, and Bob Hale – the emcee at that final show of February 2, 1959 – all agreed that the final song of the night was Chuck Berry’s ‘Brown Eyed Handsome Man’, performed on-stage together by all of the acts.

Love’s Made a Fool of You

First recorded by Buddy Holly, writer (1958, released UK #39 1964).
Hit versions by The Crickets (UK #26 1959), Bobby Fuller Four (US #26 1966), Cochise (US #96 1971).

From the wiki: “Love’s Made a Fool of You’ was co-written and originally performed by Buddy Holly in 1954. It was first recorded in 1958 by Holly as a demo for The Everly Brothers (who chose not to record it). Holly’s demo would be posthumously released in the UK in 1964 on the Peggy Sue Got Married EP; charting in the UK Top 40. The song would be covered by The Crickets (Holly’s backup band) in 1959, becoming the group’s first single to be released following Holly’s death, but would be more famously covered in 1966 by The Bobby Fuller Four (who also covered The Crickets ‘I Fought the Law‘ the previous year).

I Fought the Law

Written by Sonny Curtis and first recorded by The Crickets (1959).
First covered by Paul Stefan & the Royal Lancers (1962), Bobby Fuller (1964).
Hit versions by The Bobby Fuller Four (US #9/UK #33/CAN #11 1965), The Clash (UK #29 1988).

From the wiki: “Sonny Curtis (‘More Than I Can Say‘) joined The Crickets as lead vocalist and guitarist after Buddy Holly’s death in 1959. The Crickets recorded Curtis’ ‘I Fought the Law’ shortly after Buddy Holly’s death in 1959 and released it on their 1960 album In Style With The Crickets. (Had Holly had lived, there’s a good chance it would have been a huge hit for him with The Crickets.) Instead, Bobby Fuller, in 1964, had a regional hit with the song on Exeter Records in New Mexico and West Texas – his biggest local hit. In 1965, Fuller re-recorded by song (using the same group of musicians) for Del-Fi Records label and, with national promotion support, reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100.

More Than I Can Say

Written and originally recorded by The Crickets (UK #42 1960).
Hit versions by Bobby Vee (US #61/UK #4 1961), Leo Sayer (US #2/UK #2 1980).

From the wiki: “‘More Than I Can Say’ is a song written by Sonny Curtis (‘I Fought the Law‘) and Jerry Allison, both former members of Buddy Holly’s band The Crickets. They recorded it in 1959 soon after Holly’s death and released it in 1960. Their original version hit #42 on British Record Retailer Chart on 5/12/60.

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