Monday, October 31, 2016

Music Monday - Death Knocks Again

Today is Halloween in the United States.  We decorate (well, some of us do - I don't) with decorations that remind us of death.  Children dress up in costumes and go door to door asking for treats (or else they will play a trick.) We watch scary movies with monsters.
Some of us turn our front lawns into graveyards.

A cultural anthropologist would have a field day (no pun intended) with this.

But sometimes, death comes a'knockin' for real.  This past week we lost two performers from my youth.

Bobbie Vee's career started after a plane crash on February 3, 1959.  The crash, near Clear Lake, Iowa  killed three great musicians - Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper.  They were enroute to Fargo, North Dakota, near Moorhead, Minnesota, where they were supposed to play their next concert.  Bobbie Vee, a fifteen year old local musician, and his band The Shadows, were brought in to play the date.

Stardom resulted.

Vee (his real name was Robert Velline) died Monday at the age of 73, in hospice care from complications of Alzheimer's.  He had been diagnosed in 2011.

My spouse loved his song "The Night Has a Thousand Eyes" - a title appropriate for a scary holiday song (the song itself isn't too scary).

More appropriate for Halloween is "Dinner with Drac", as performed by singer and TV horror host
John Zacherle.  Zacherle, also known as the "Cool Ghoul", died Thursday at the age of 98, after a long career.  He was one of the first TV horror hosts, broadcasting in both Philadelphia and New York City.  If he could have only waited another four days, it would have been so ghoulish.  So perfect.

As it was, he hosted one of the strangest TV music shows ever for three years in the 1960's - "Disc-O-Teen", which may be what American Bandstand would have been if Dick Clark had been a ghoul.

Happy Halloween!

Day 31 - the final day - of The Ultimate Blog Challenge.


  1. Oh, my- I forgot this Bobby Vee song. (I was never a great fan of his.) But, Zacharly!!!! I have mentioned him often. As recently as the death of Hugh O'Brian. (It's convoluted. He was a friend of my friend's father- and knew my parents. They played cards and went out Saturday nights. I had to baby sit my brother- and made chocolate pudding. When I had enough, I would watch Zacharly or Elvira- my brother would panic, call my parents, and they would come home...)

  2. I didn't know either of these performers, but I know how watching icons we've grown up with can shake us, or make us pause. Good for you for spending some time reflecting on this!

  3. Sounded a bit scary to read the first few lines.
    Guess that's the spirit of Halloween.
    Happy Halloween!

  4. A ghoul-hosted dance show? Now, that's an idea!

  5. Loved Bobby Vee. I want to be BOBBY'S GIRL, a favorite.

  6. Great entertainment. Lots of ghouls and things that go bump in the night.

  7. All the "greats" are leaving but their music will live on forever. I loved Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper music! As for decorating for Halloween, I like to remember when I was young and everyone was hobos (dressed in old clothes from grandparents), homemade costumes from burlap bags and little princesses. We hardly ever say scary, goolish monsters, the worse was a ghost. Ah the good old days that I loved!

  8. We don't get trick or treaters to far out. But when I was over at my client place and she got a trick or treater so I gave the ghoul of buck.
    Coffee is on

  9. Ah a scary list.
    That crash was tragic. I love Buddy Holly's songs - with Peggy Sue being one of my favourites.
    I'm guessing Bobby Vee's Shadows was different from the band Cliff Richard was a part of.

  10. Great to know about the artists through your writings and may both find peace. I am sure they will be remembered always.

  11. Interesting posting for Halloween- may their souls rest in peace.


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