Not Fade Away (Remembering Buddy Holly) is a decidedly uneven tribute to the late, great rock & roller. Though it is clear the artists on the tribute are sincere in their affection for Holly, their covers add nothing to the original versions…
In recent decades, both Reminiscing and Showcase have enjoyed less than stellar reputations among Buddy Holly fans and '50s rock purists, as both albums were made up of the products of producer Norman Petty's posthumous redubbing of Holly's unfinished demos. Apart from the bizarre inclusion of "Wait Till the Sun Shines, Nellie" – a B-side chosen by Petty for the single of the title track – Reminiscing is a very solid album, and was essential to the maintaining of Holly's memory, reaching number three in a six-month run on the U.K. charts in 1963; one can just about lay odds that various members of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones were among the listeners of this album or its successor.
One of the most persistent questions that musicians ask themselves while practicing a piece is the inevitable query of how the composer himself might have performed his music. There are many written reports on how the old masters such as Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven may have played or improvised; and there are lines of teacher/pupil relationships which can trace their lineage back to the pianistic greats such as Liszt, but still we have to imagine the sound since we cannot actually hear it.
The debut album by the Crickets and the only one featuring Buddy Holly released during his lifetime, The "Chirping" Crickets contains the group's number one single "That'll Be the Day" and its Top Ten hit "Oh, Boy!." Other Crickets classics include "Not Fade Away," "Maybe Baby," and "I'm Looking for Someone to Love." The rest of the 12 tracks are not up to the standard set by those five, but those five are among the best rock & roll songs of the 1950s or ever, making this one of the most significant album debuts in rock & roll history, ranking with Elvis Presley and Meet the Beatles.