Bobby Vee was 1960s music star influenced by Buddy Holly

Vee released such hit songs as 'Take Good Care of My Baby.' The singer was a part of future singers' careers as well, with Bob Dylan once becoming part of his backup band and the Beatles selecting one of Vee's songs for an audition.

Jeff Baenen/AP
Bobby Vee poses at the studio console at his family's Rockhouse Productions in St. Joseph, Minn., in 2013.

Inspired by the rock-and-roll icon Buddy Holly, 1960s singer Bobby Vee became a legend in his own right, recording dozens of Billboard hits and even earning the admiration of the Beatles.

Mr. Vee, who died on Monday, released such songs as “Take Good Care of My Baby,” “Rubber Ball,” and “Run to Him.”

Vee released an album titled “I Remember Buddy Holly,” but the way his career was influenced by Mr. Holly went further than that. When Vee was 15, he and a band served as substitutes for Holly, the Big Bopper, and Ritchie Valens after the group were involved in a plane crash on the way to a dance in Moorhead, Minn. 

Dance organizers had announced on the radio that they were looking for a group to take over for the singers who were in the crash. Vee and his group called in and performed in Moorhead instead of Holly and the other singers.

Washington Post writer Terence McArdle wrote that Vee’s singing was influenced by Holly as well, with Vee “model[ing] his nasal vocal style on Holly’s.” 

Vee released such albums as the 1960 album “Bobby Vee Sings Your Favorites,” 1966’s “Look At Me Girl,” and 1972’s “Nothin’ Like A Sunny  Day.” 

The singer eventually had 38 songs appear in the Billboard Hot 100 between 1959 and 1970, according to The New York Times

In addition, Bob Dylan was at one point part of his band. Mr. Dylan spoke positively of his time working with Vee, and once called Vee “the most beautiful person I’ve ever been on the stage with,” according to the Times. Dylan also reportedly said of Vee, “I’d always thought of him as a brother.”

The Beatles appeared to be fans of Vee’s as well, as the group used Vee’s hit “Take Good Care of My Baby” when they recorded a song for Decca Records as part of an audition in 1962.

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