Yesterday the 60 year anniversary of Buddy Holly’s final recording session, 21stOctober 1958, was commemorated with the announcement of a brand new Buddy Holly orchestral album entitled ‘True Love Ways’, to be released on the singer’s first ever record label, Decca Records.
A giant pair of Buddy Holly’s iconic horn-rimmed glasses appeared at the top of Primrose Hill, overlooking the London skyline, as the new version of title track, ‘True Love Ways’ (written for Buddy’s wife Maria Elena) was piped out across the city, and heard by Buddy Holly fans and passers-by for the first time.
Due for release on 16th November 2018, the newly recorded album – which features Buddy Holly’s utterly distinctive original vocals and guitar playing set to exquisite arrangements performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra – is the poignant realisation of a dream Holly first explored just four months before his tragic death in a plane crash at the age of 22. In that last recording session, at the Decca Studios, New York, the star was joined by an 18 piece orchestra, fronted by Dick Jacobs, the man bringing strings to rock and roll. They recorded four tracks: ‘True love Ways’, ‘Raining in My Heart’, ‘Moondreams’ and ‘It Doesn’t Matter Anymore’ all of which are soaked in strings, clearly demonstrating a new direction for Buddy.
Buddy Holly’s widow, Maria Elena, explains that Holly thought that the rock and roll era had peaked: “Buddy felt orchestral music in a popular vein was where the future lay, so he wanted to write, record, explore and innovate that style. So what better combination than the Royal Philharmonic and Buddy’s music. It’s just beautiful”
Recorded in London’s Angel Studios, and produced by Nick Patrick, the man behind the hugely successful Elvis Presley and Roy Orbison orchestral albums, ‘True Love Ways’ truly reflects Buddy Holly’s love for strings, havinglearnt to play the violin as a child and continued all his life. Beloved tracks the singer recorded with The Crickets such as ‘Everyday’, ‘Peggy Sue’ (whose namesake passed away earlier this month) and ‘That’ll Be The Day’ are all included, with orchestrations that invigorate, rather than overwhelm, the rock and roll of which Holly was king.
“This is what Buddy would’ve wanted done” – Larry Holley, Buddy Holly’s brother.