Buddy Holly's influence on generations of rock and country musicians has inspired various tribute projects in the 55 years since his death. On September 7th, on what would have been his 78th birthday, the Texas-born legend will be recognized with the release of The Buddy Holly Country Tribute: Remember Me.
Artists featured on the tribute LP include Merle Haggard, T. Graham Brown, Country Music Hall of Fame member Jimmy Fortune (of the Statler Brothers), Grand Ole Opry entertainer Helen Cornelius, singer-songwriter Sonny Curtis and David Frizzell, whose narration before each of the musical numbers on the 21-track collection explores Holly's enduring legacy. Proceeds from the album will benefit the Buddy Holly Educational Foundation, a charitable organization focused on musical education and co-founded by Buddy's widow, Maria Elena Holly. (See the complete track listing and performers below.)
Opening and closing the LP is "Remember Me," a Scott Wiseman tune Holly learned from his brothers but never recorded. Also of note is "Maria Elena," which Frizzell penned for Holly's widow as a gift for her 80th birthday.
"Buddy has stayed relevant because of the fans," said Maria Elena. "There are so many of them around the world, and they have kept him alive. They love him; they have remained loyal to him; they keep his music alive. All of the musicians who keep playing Buddy's songs, they also keep Buddy's spirit alive."
Also included on the LP is "Walk Right Back." Written by Sonny Curtis, the song was a hit for the Everly Brothers. Although it was hoped that Phil Everly, who was a close friend to Buddy and Maria Elena, would perform the song on the tribute album, he passed away before that could happen.
A DVD on the making of the project is also included with the CD release.
The Buddy Holly Country Tribute: Remember Me track listing and performers:
"Remember Me," Merle Haggard
"Rock Around With Ollie Vee," David Frizzell and Sony Curtis
"Brown-Eyed Handsome Man," David Frizzell
"Peggy Sue," David Frizzell
"Oh Boy," Jimmy Fortune
"That'll Be the Day," Merle Haggard
"Everyday," David Frizzell, Jimmy Fortune, Helen Cornelius
"Mailman Bring Me No More Blues," David Frizzell, T. Graham Brown
"Maybe Baby," T. Graham Brown
"Rave On," David Frizzell, T. Graham Brown
"Think It Over," Jimmy Fortune
"Early in the Morning," David Frizzell, Jimmy Fortune
"It's So Easy," Helen Cornelius
"Wishing" David Frizzell, Jimmy Fortune
"Learning the Game," David Frizzell
"Drown in My Own Tears," T. Graham Brown
"It Doesn't Matter Anymore," Jimmy Fortune
"True Love Ways," Jimmy Fortune
"Maria Elena," David Frizzell, Jimmy Fortune, Helen Cornelius
"Walk Right Back," David Frizzell, Jimmy Fortune
"Remember Me," David Frizzell, Jimmy Fortune, Helen Cornelius