The Best Buddy Holly Tracks Ever Written
Buddy Holly performing It's So Easy - MinorThreat81 / Youtube
Considered as one of the greatest influences in the development of rock music, Buddy Holly broke stereotypes and impressed the masses with his work. With a mere three studio album record under his belt, Holly still managed to rise to fame and provide considerable force in developing the genre. Buddy Holly performed with his backing band, The Crickets, for most of his career, establishing the standard band format of 2 guitars, a bass, and drums. Ever the genius songwriter, Buddy Holly also implemented other techniques like double tracking and major melodic arrangements to establish his signature sound. Everything was going smoothly, until the tragic plane crash on the 3rd of February 1959, taking Holly’s life along with his colleagues. It’s been six decades ever since, but Holly’s influence and memory lives on. Here are some of the best songs he created in his brief career.
“Not Fade Away” – The Chirping Crickets (1957)
Written by Buddy Holly and Norman Petty, “Not Fade Away” was based on the Bo Diddley beat, which was influenced by West African “hambone” drumming patterns. Using his derived groove, Holly paired it with his own melodic arrangement to make a unique track. While not charting on any occasion, the song is considered to be one of his most influential, with acts like The Grateful Dead making it a regular concert staple.
“It’s So Easy” – (1958)
The single is the last track released by The Crickets with Holly still in the band. Another Petty and Holly collaboration, the song features a laid-back summer feel, with immaculate backing vocal accents. Holly playfully uses subtle growls throughout the track, with a jangly guitar solo that lets his personality shine through while performing the song.
“Everyday” – Buddy Holly (1957)
A real Buddy Holly classic from start to finish, the song is instantly recognizable with his vocal parts weaving in and out with harmony. The childlike quality, is brought in by the celesta, a keyboard instrument with a glockenspiel’s sound, and the incessant knee tapping and typewriter sounds.
“Peggy Sue” – Buddy Holly (1957)
Originally meant to be titled “Cindy Lou” after Holly’s niece, it was changed to the well-known version after Holly dedicated the song to Peggy Sue Gerron, who was the girlfriend of fellow Cricket Jerry Allison at the time, when the two broke up temporarily. Built on lyrics of longing, the track playfully conveys the message, with the drum track droning in and out of modulation. The song reached number 3 on the charts, becoming one of Holly’s biggest hits.
“That’ll Be The Day” – The Chirping Crickets (1957)
Originally performed by Holly with the Three Tunes, but the version with the Crickets became the massive hit we know today. Becoming Holly’s only number one track under his belt, “That’ll Be The Day” became one of his most covered hits, even going down to be covered by the Quarrymen, which evolved into the Beatles in the later years, and another notable version by Linda Rondstadt in 1976 surfaced as well. The song proved Holly’s massive influence in rock n’ roll at the time, and rock music in general.