by Adam Levy
I first heard about Buddy Holly in 1978, when the film The Buddy Holly Story was newly released. This was right around the time I started playing
Holly’s song “Not Fade Away” is one of my favorites. It’s based on a repeating rhythmic figure akin to Bo Diddley’s classic “Hey! Bo Diddley.” “Not Fade Away” is different, however—a little slower than you might expect, with accents on unexpected beats. In fact, most cover versions of the song have missed the subtleties of Holly’s sly, country rhythm. Listen closely to the percussive background vocals of Holly’s bandmates, the Crickets, for a clue to this song’s true groove.
A longtime friend of the ‘Fire, Adam Levy has been unlocking the