Wednesday, November 02, 2016

U.S. 60's Teen Idols Who Are Called "Bobby"

Michael Bangar, a good friend, is an experienced Singaporean guitarist having performed for 40+ years with many pop bands. His comment below about the recently deceased Bobby Vee and the American pop 60's scene is insightful:

                                                           Pix: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

"RIP Bobby Vee! Him and his kind - Brian Hyland, Frankie Avalon, Fabian Forte, Bobby Rydell, Bobby Vinton and were made pop stars by the American music makers. They were groomed to look clean cut. And whether it's a coincidence or otherwise, many of them are called Bobby.

The US establishment was concerned about early rock and roll for being too wild. The King, Elvis Presley was drafted. Jerry Lee Lewis (pix A) married his 13 year old cousin. Chuck Berry (pix B) was in trouble for income-tax evasion. Little Richard (pix C) became a church minister.

Buddy Holly (pix X), Ritchie Valens (pix Y) and P. Richardson or The Big Bopper (pix Z) perished in an air crash. Only Ricky Nelson plodded along. So these teenage idols became clean cut pop stars. But he too died at an early age of 45 in 1985, while Elvis at 42 in 1977.

The big bosses in the US were unaware that there was a
huge musical storm brewing on the other side of he Atlantic.  Then in 1964 it suddenly hit them. The British Invasion. All the music stars in the U.S. of A. took a back seat for a few years.

When all these happened and all these clean cut teen idols came along, the first generation rock and rollers got sidelined. Jerry Lee Lewis later when interviewed was quoted as saying, 'Suddenly there was a lotta Bobbys.'

Ha, ha. I love that quote."

Of course if you want to include Bob Dylan, that's seven singers. Thanks very much Michael for your lighthearted but true story.

Mike has an extension under the Comment page. Click at the end of this post.

                                                 Pix: A,B,C

Here's a side projection. In Singapore many fans of pop music would include their own surname and use them to request for songs on Rediffusion. 

For example one could hear a, "Bobby Elvis Wong" asking for Jailhouse Rock to be played for a girl friend called, "Sandra Dee Cheong".

Another called, "Bobby Rydell Tan requested a song for friend, "Rickie Nelson Cheng." And the list goes on.

So here's a quiz. Except for two who had passed away, the others are still around and in their 70's. In the above pictures, do you know who the Bobbys are? 


Pix #1: 
Bobby Vinton (1935 @ 81), had more Billboard #1 hits than any other male vocalist, including Elvis and Sinatra from 1962 - 1972. Billboard Magazine called him "the all-time most successful love singer of the Rock Era."

Pix #2:

Bobby Darin (1936-1973), will have a musical in his honour. In September 2016, The Bobby Darin Musical, had its world premiere at Sydney Lyric Theater, Australia, featuring this legendary singer, songwriter and actor with an 18 piece big band.
                                              Pix: X, Y, Z

Pix #3:
Bobby Goldsboro (1941 @ 75), is well-known for his big hit Honey. It was the largest selling record in the world for 1968. With the hangover in the US after the British Invasion, it was one big feat.

Pix #4:

Bobby Rydell (1942 @ 74), a teen idol, was famous in Singapore for his big hit, Forget Him in 1964. With 34 Top 40 Hits, he received 5 Gold Disc Awards.

Pix #5:

Bobby Vee (1943 -2016 October). Click below to read:
Thanks to the Music Enhancement Channel for this YouTube Video.

Pix #6:
Bobby Sherman (1943 @ 73), teen idol released 107 songs, 23 singles and 7 albums. Tutored by actor and singer, Sal Mineo, he became such a hit with the young ladies in the audience, their screaming gave him hearing loss. He was at the tail end of the era i.e. late 60's.

Images: Google.
You Tube Video: Bobby Goldsboro, Honey.
Original article by Michael Bangar (pix: right).

Many thanks to Mike, who took the trouble to write about local music because he believes that we should tell our stories openly on Singapore60sMusic. Andy's blog is free.

To read the extension of this post, click Comment below.


BIRD DOG said...

They were well dressed & decent looking white male teenage idols whom every teenage girl wanted to bring home to mother. There were plenty of such look alike idols in the late 50's & early 60's. Others I remember were Rick[y] Nelson, Pat Boone,Everly Bros, Neil Sedaka & Paul Anka.

We even have our local ones like the Suriya bros. It was fun being an American teen of that era as shown in the movie American Graffiti with their souped up cars, drive in hamburgers joints with roller skated waitresses, drive in movies etc.

I remembered yearning to have this kind of lifestyle here. There is another Bobby V around & he is Bobby Vinton who is very old now. Sometimes I mix up these 2 because of the same genre of songs they sing.

Victor said...

I remember listening to Bobby Goldsboro's Honey on the late night radio show while waiting to fall asleep in the 1970s. It was one of my favourite songs which was soothing, touching and meaningful. They don't write songs like that anymore.


An extension:

Whatever the case may be all these teen idols made it in the pop music world. They had their fair share of the limelight for a while, hit after hit. Some evergreen classics are still vogue, until the British Invasion came along, headed by The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.

Meantime there was this pop star sending musical shock waves across Britain, Europe, parts of Africa and Asia; it was Cliff Richard and his backing band, The Shadows.

Before the invasion their management sent them on a tour of the US where they were booed off stage. The press there accused Cliff Richard of trying to be a carbon copy of Elvis Presley. They did not make it in the US. Then the British Invasion hit them.

The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Kinks, The Who, Gerry and the Pacemakers, Herman's Hermits, Freddie and The Dreamers and their likes came along. Later Cream, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Genesis joined the game. They took over a huge portion of the world pop music scene for a long long time.

Popular music, as we knew it went through a tremendous change. In years to come the teen idols and their music became nostalgia acts. But we still enjoy them today.