|Beatles John and Ringo , along with Roy’s first wife, Claudette (dark hair) celebrate Roy’s 27th in UK 50 years ago today. Pictured below is one of Orbison’s two sons who would later die in housefire in 1968.|
Cheers on what would be his 77th birthday to the man, Roy Orbison, who Rolling Stone Magazine once wrote off as an ‘insignificant’ figure in rock and roll – that before all the big names schmoozed him on Black & White concert,etc on the big comeback (not that Roy had really ever gone away)!
Bruce Springsteen and 10,000 fans Sing Happy Birthday to Roy
‘Pretty Woman,’ Roy Orbison’s blockbuster hit from 1964, here in a Spanish presentation combining Orbison’s first big national appearance, on Ed Sullivan in 1965, along with interspersed background scenes from the movie, ‘Pretty Woman,’ which would help Roy, even in death, continue his new found popularity. Producers of the movie had originally wanted a younger voice to sing the song, but Roy won out as nobody could sing it like Roy.
The eerily, beautiful video from the movie, Blue Velvet, 1986, which raised eyebrows for using Orbison’s ‘innocent, sweet song’ In Dreams in such a strange, violent movie, but
a key factor in propelling Orbison back into the spotlight in late Seventies and Eighties. It’s the most popular Roy YouTube video with over 5 million viewings! Today Orbison is the second most popular and top selling artist next to Elvis from the pre-Beatles rock and roll era (1955-63). As a barometor of today, his facebook page has over 600,000 fan ‘likes’; by contrast, Jerry Lee Lewis , who is alive, has 130,000 .
ROY ORBISON still in the national spotlight witj one of many appearances on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand, lipsynching ‘Oh Pretty Woman’ before an enthusiasic throng of teenagers. Includes an interview, where Orbison talks about his upcoming movie.
And, here’s Roy in a medley of songs and scenes from his only movie ‘Fastest Guitar Alive,’ beginning with an impressive flamenco presentation by Roy on ‘Pistolero.’ Other
songs include ‘Good Time Party,’ and the beat balad, ‘Whirlwind.’
With the Boston tragedy still on our minds, here’s the associated song, Neil Diamond’s ‘Sweet Caroline,’ performed by Orbison in Australia in the 1970s
Orbison surprises Neil Diamond at a concert and sings ‘Sung Song Blue ‘ together with
Diamond and then performs ‘Running Scared’ solo (Pretty unusual for an artists to be brought on to sing
one of his own songs, unplanned, in someone else’s concert ! (2-19-76) )
There were so many things that helped cement the Roy Orbison Comeback, which effectively began the night of Elvis’ passing, August 17, 1977 when Roy managed to perform without a dry eye in the sold out Santa Monica auditorium before over 10,000 folks. Orbison hadn’t been appearing much in the 1970s – an RV show in Cincinatti before 600 in 1976 was pretty typical . This would be a springboard for Orbison, who would continue to
perform regularly now and appear on TV more than ever , but his appearance with his old and new found adoring music associates that came together in the ‘Black and White Night’ tribute performance at Los Angeles’ Coconut Grove might have been the single biggest
contributing factor to his 10 year long comeback that culminated with the Traveling Wilburys and Mystery Girl top five album.
Here Roy sings on an ‘extra,’ BLUE ANGEL -not included in the regular Black and White Night program footage that has been seen around the world thousands of times since first aired in 1987 on PBS TV. Backed by the likes of kd lang, Bonnie Raitt, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Waits, Elvis Costello, James Burton and more, this is the tribute performance of all tributes, coming after Roy’s Hall of Fame induction.
Orbison singing the Star Spangled Banner at
a Los Angeles King hockey game, October 1988
ROY ORBISON on top of the Rock World again with new Top Ten song, ‘ You Got It ‘, here performing the song live at an awards reception in Holland shortly before his passing in 1988.
It was the lead song from his new, comeback solo album, ‘Mystery Girl’ . The song would reach number nine on the charts and the album number five. Sadly , Orbison passed before the album
was released and this was the only live performance of an album cut.
Intimate back stage footage of Roy working on his last album, . ‘Mystery Girl,’ including
footage of ‘leftover’ songs used on subsequent, posthumous LP, ‘King of Hearts.’ (West 57th)
TRAVELING WILBURYs Remember Roy
More recent tributes, from Hollywood Walk of Fame presentation two years ago with
Roy’s wife , Barbara, and three living sons, Wesley, Alex, and Roy Kelton Jr,
T Bone Burnett, Dan Akroid and others
And, now get read for a Big Surprise!
Ever wondered what Roy and Elvis might be doing today if they were still alive?
Well… here is it!
ELVIS PRESLEY and ROY ORBISON Together Again ! Amazing but true. Elvis and Roy had long talked of doing a duet together. And, now, through powers unbeknownst to us… a dream
come true… the duet, ‘Together Again.’
We are told through mysterious sources that Roy and Elvis want to return to Earth for a project – and this is their first effort from their proposed ‘Where Spirits Fly’ . We will hope to channel them again , soon, and let you know if and when we do
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