Monday, May 9, 2011

A symphony for Sonny

Yep, that's S. Curtis in parentheses
under "I Fought the Law."
 We don't believe Sonny Curtis has received enough credit for his contributions to rock 'n' roll. Following Buddy Holly in the Crickets was a suicide mission, you know? Can't blame him for that. And speaking of suicides, you all remember Bobby Fuller?

It was Sonny Curtis' song "I Fought the Law" that catapulted the Bobby Fuller Four to stardom. The 1965 hit made it to No. 9 on the Billboard chart (No.33 in the UK), and ranks No. 175 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. Shortly after the song cracked the Top 10 Fuller was found dead in his mother's car in an L.A. parking lot. It was ruled suicide, but many suspect lazy police work.  They believe Fuller was murdered.

Now back to Curtis, a member of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame since 1991. He also wrote "Love is All Around," the theme to the Mary Tyler Moore Show, the Everly Brothers hit "Walk Right Back," and dozens of others. But tell us honestly, did you ever hear of Curtis before now? We didn't think so. Be sure to toast him today, along with other members of the May 9 Birthday Band:

Hank Snow (1914-1999): Country Music Hall of Fame
I’m Moving On, Rhumba Boogie, I’ve Been Everywhere

Nokie Edwards (1935): Guitar, Ventures
Walk Don’t Run, Perfidia, Hawaii Five-O Theme

Sonny Curtis (1937): Songwriter/musician, the Crickets
More Than I Can Say, I Fought the Law

Pete Birrell (1941): Bass, Freddie & the Dreamers
I’m Telling You Now, You Were Made for Me, Do the Freddie

Tommy Roe (1942): Singer/songwriter
Sheila, Sweet Pea, Hooray for Hazel, Dizzy, Jam Up Jelly Tight

Richie Furay (1944): Musician, Poco, Buffalo Springfield
Pickin' Up the Pieces, Good Feelin' To Know, Kind Woman

Steve Katz (1945): Producer/musician, Blood, Sweat & Tears
And When I Die, You Make Me So Very Happy, Spinning Wheel

Billy Joel (1949): Singer, songwriter
Just the Way You Are, It’s Still Rock ’n’ Roll to Me, Uptown Girl, Piano Man

Tom Petersson (1950): Bass/vocals, Cheap Trick
I Want You to Want Me, Ain’t That a Shame, Dream Police, Voices

1 comment:

  1. Was fortunate enough to see Sonny along with other remaining Crickets, Joe Mauldin and J.I. Allison in summer of '08 at Big Top Chautauqua. They co-headlined with Bobby Vee and it was one hell of a sentimental show. Like watching a PBS pledge marathon without all the please give crap. For old men, these guys played like 50 years ago. Walking out I grabbed the playlists taped to the stage and stuck them in a frame. Truly a night to remember in Bayfield, good ole Wis-con-sin!