Listen to Me: Buddy Holly

Listen to Me: Buddy Holly


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Buddy Holly was rock & roll's first real singer/songwriter (a case could also be made for Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Bo Diddley, and several other early rock & roll pioneers, but Holly come closest to the way the singer/songwriter genre defined itself in the 1970s), and whether it was a ballad or a poppy, upbeat piece, Holly always brought a refreshing joy and verve to the proceedings. This set, part of Verve/Forecast's new Listen to Me series, celebrates what would have been Holly's 75th birthday year with 16 covers of some of his best-known songs done by a varied host of contemporary singers, including Stevie Nicks, Brian Wilson, Jackson Browne, Ringo Starr, Jeff Lynne, Lyle Lovett, Natalie Merchant, and others, including a goofy turn at "Raining in My Heart" by Eric Idle. Nothing here gets too far away from the template of Holly's original versions (save for Idle's baffling turn), which is both the strength and perhaps the fault of this release. Nothing gets stretched, so one is tempted to say that an album of Holly's versions of these same 16 songs would make for a much more enduring listen, but that said, Holly's songs usually shine through no matter what is done to them. Among the highlights here are Stevie Nicks' take on "Not Fade Away," which sticks close to the vest but features a surprisingly sassy vocal, Brian Wilson's late-era Beach Boys touches on "Listen to Me," Jeff Lynne's fairly faithful (albeit with a contemporary drum loop) version of "Words of Love," and Ringo Starr's "Think It Over," in which his unassuming vocal and equally unassuming persona can't help but draw a smile of nostalgia. The best track here isn't a new recording, though-Linda Ronstadt's hit version of "That'll Be the Day" from 1976 is also included (Peter Asher, who produced Ronstadt's single back then, is the executive producer of this album). This set is a pleasant listen, but the fact remains that the best versions of Holly songs are by Buddy Holly, and no album of covers, no matter how well done or well intentioned, can eclipse them.

Product Details

Release Date: 09/06/2011
Label: Verve Forecast
UPC: 0602527815145
catalogNumber: 001605002
Rank: 72329

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Jackson Browne   Piano
Jeff Lynne   Bass,Guitar,Drums,Vocals,Vocal Harmony
Linda Ronstadt   Hand Clapping
Ringo Starr   Acoustic Guitar,Drums,Tambourine,Hand Clapping
Andrew Gold   Electric Guitar,Background Vocals
Peter Asher   Acoustic Guitar,Percussion,Ukulele,Background Vocals,Wood Block
Scott Bennett   Vocals,Vibes
Sharon Celani   Background Vocals
Steve Dudas   Guitar
Kenny Edwards   Bass,Background Vocals
Daniel Greco   Percussion
Gary Griffin   Organ,Piano
Joe King   Guitar,Background Vocals
Greg Leisz   Mandolin,Pedal Steel Guitar
Darrell Leonard   Trumpet
Roger Manning   Piano,Wurlitzer
Rafael Padilla   Percussion,Drums
Richard Page   Background Vocals
Cary Park   Guitar
Scott Plunkett   Keyboards
Dave Priseman   Trumpet
Rowland Salley   Bass
Brett Simons   Electric Bass,Guitar (Baritone)
Bruce Sugar   Keyboards
Waddy Wachtel   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Victoria Asher   Vocals,Background Vocals,Keytar
Nick Walusko   Electric Guitar,Vocals
Jeffrey Foskett   Vocals,12-string Guitar
Leland Sklar   Bass
Jessy Greene   Violin,Background Vocals
Timothy Landauer   Cello
Lori Nicks   Background Vocals
Rudy Stein   Cello
Probyn Gregory   Electric Guitar,Vocals
Sarah Thornblade   Violin
Bill Cinque   Bass,Background Vocals
Gabe Saporta   Vocals
Nelson Bragg   Percussion
Steve Aho   Drums
Michele Richards   Violin
Mike Botts   Drums
Aaron Sterling   Percussion,Drums
David Campbell   Conductor
Karen Elaine   Viola
Zooey Deschanel   Background Vocals
Uri Sharlin   Piano
Isaac Slade   Piano,Vocals
Ben Wysocki   Percussion,Drums
Alex Suarez   Bass
Ryland Blackinton   Guitar,Background Vocals
Nadine Loren   Background Vocals
Jeff Alan Ross   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Background Vocals,Tres
Steve Rushton   Drums
Bob Zimmitti   Percussion
David Stone   Double Bass
Mario de León   Violin
Gare   Bass
Nate Novarro   Drums
Dave Welsh   Guitar
Jay Unger   Violin
Russell Kunkel   Drums
Mike D'Amico   Drums
Charlie Hayden   Bass
Ji Hye Jung   Marimbas
Darrel Hingham   Guitar

Technical Credits

Buddy Holly   Composer
Jeff Lynne   Producer
Ringo Starr   Producer
Brian Wilson   Producer,Vocal Arrangements
Peter Asher   Producer,Liner Notes,Executive Producer,String Arrangements
Val Garay   Engineer
Nathaniel Kunkel   Engineer
Mark Linett   Engineer
Mark Needham   Engineer
Bruce Sugar   Engineer
Waddy Wachtel   Producer
Jennifer Cohen   Executive Producer
Warren Huart   Engineer
Mauldin   Composer
Jay Ruston   Engineer
Paul Von Mertens   Arranger
David Campbell   String Arrangements,Orchestral Arrangements,String Conductor
Jeff Alan Ross   String Arrangements
James Henke   Liner Notes
Eli Walker   Engineer
Damien Leroy   Programming
Sean Keepers   Art Direction
Tim Meaney   Vocal Engineer
Regan McCarthy   Executive Producer
Steve Jay   Engineer

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