Bobby Vee [1961]

by: Bobby Vee

Bobby Vee's self-titled 1961 disc contains his first two Top Ten hits that broke toward the end of 1960, his remake of a tune by the Clovers from a few years earlier, "Devil or Angel," as well as "Rubber Ball." Produced by the great Snuff Garrett, the hits have a timeless charm that puts them in a class above much of the close-to filler material here -- covers of Johnny Tillotson's "Poetry in Motion," the Chordettes/the Four Aces '50s hit "Mr. Sandman," the Fireballs/the Crickets "More Than I Can Say" (an eventual hit for Leo Sayer), and Little Willie John's "Talk to Me, Talk to Me." Though Bobby Vee had the credibility of playing with his Shadows on the circuit, the album doesn't have the consistency of, say, The Young Frankie Avalon from a couple of years before. Of course with the hit songs to carry it, the "teen idol" look of the album and familiar material from other sources made for good marketing. The "Love Love Love" that closes this LP is not the British Bobby Hebb hit written by producerJerry Ross, this composition from David/McRae/Wyche was part of Dean Martin's repertoire as well asthe Clovers. An artist of substance, Vee does a good job with all of the material, though it would have been more interesting had Garrett allowed more of the singer's personality to come through by giving him a more varied song selection. ~ Joe Viglione

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