Peggy Sue (song)
- This article is about the Buddy Holly song. For the Blink-182 song, see Cheshire Cat (Blink-182 album).
|Single by Buddy Holly|
|from the album Buddy Holly|
|Released||September 20, 1957
November 15, 1957 (UK)
|Recorded||June 29 and July 1, 1957, Clovis, New Mexico|
|Genre||Rock and roll|
|Writer(s)||Buddy Holly, Jerry Allison, Norman Petty|
|Buddy Holly singles chronology|
"Peggy Sue" is a rock and roll song written by Buddy Holly, Jerry Allison, and Norman Petty, and originally performed, recorded and released as a single by Buddy Holly in early July of 1957. The Crickets are not mentioned on the single (Coral 9-61885) but both Joe B. Mauldin (string bass) and Jerry Allison (drums) are known to be featured on the recording. The song was also released on Buddy Holly's self-titled 1958 album. The song is ranked #194 on the Rolling Stone magazine's 2004 list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.
The song was originally called "Cindy Lou", and was named for Buddy's niece, the daughter of his sister Pat Holley Kaiter. The title was later changed to "Peggy Sue" in reference to Crickets drummer Jerry Allison's girlfriend (and future wife), Peggy Sue Gerron, with whom he had recently had a temporary breakup.
Appropriately, Allison played a prominent role in the production of the song, playing paradiddles on the drums throughout the song, the drums' sound rhythmically fading in and out as a result of real-time engineering techniques by the producer, Norm Petty. Many music critics regard this as Holly's all-time best recording.
Initially only Allison and Petty were listed as the song's authors. At Allison's insistence, Holly was credited as a co-writer after his death.
Holly wrote a poignant sequel called "Peggy Sue Got Married", and recorded a demo or practice version in his New York City apartment on December 5, 1958, accompanied only by himself on guitar. The tape was discovered after his death, and was "enhanced" for commercial release, by adding background vocals and an electric guitar track that drowned out Holly's own playing (and almost his voice as well). The rarely heard original version was released on a vinyl collection called "The Complete Buddy Holly", and was later used over the opening credits of the 1986 Kathleen Turner film Peggy Sue Got Married. After Holly's death The Crickets would also release their own cover single in 1960. They followed the original Peggy Sue arrangements with the only difference being David Box, a Buddy Holly soundalike, singing as the lead vocalist.
The Beach Boys version
|Single by The Beach Boys|
|from the album M.I.U. Album|
|B-side||"Hey Little Tomboy"|
|Released||August 28, 1978|
|Recorded||April 15, 1976|
|Genre||Rock and roll|
|Producer(s)||The Beach Boys|
|The Beach Boys singles chronology|
In 1978 the American rock band the Beach Boys recorded a cover of "Peggy Sue" for their M.I.U. Album. Originally recorded on April 15, 1976, for potential inclusion on the 15 Big Ones album, the Brian Wilson production was not selected for the final album. In 1978, Al Jardine revisited this recording, tweaking it to better fit with the production styling of the M.I.U. Album. Sung by Al Jardine, the song was also a hit for them, charting at number 59 in the United States when released as a single. The original Brian Wilson-produced version of the "Peggy Sue" was accidentally issued in place of the released Al Jardine version when the "M.I.U. Album" was briefly re-issued by Sony Music in 1991, but was soon discontinued. The wrong master of "Peggy Sue," also recorded by Brian Wilson and originally slated for 15 Big Ones, was also mistakenly used on the 1991 "M.I.U. Album" re-issue. That edition of the album is now considered a rare collectors item.
- John Lennon covered the song on his Rock 'n' Roll album in 1975.
- George Harrison and Bob Dylan performed the song live at the Palomino in Los Angeles in 1987.
- In his song "Old", Paul Simon indicates his age by singing "First time I heard Peggy Sue/I was 12 years old./Russians up in rocket ships /and the war was Cold."
- Julian Cope's 1991 album was called Peggy Suicide.
- In an episode of Quantum Leap ("How the Tess was won"), young Buddy Holly, working as a Texas farm boy, invents the song as a homage to a piglet, calling it Piggy Sooey (a reference to hog calling). Sam Beckett suggests he calls it Peggy Sue instead and, after hearing this, he realizes that the teen, who he named "buddy", was in fact Buddy Holly.
- In blink-182's album Cheshire Cat, one of the songs is named "Peggy Sue". The song is also featured on a live album entitled "The Mark, Tom, and Travis Show: The Enema Strikes Back".
- In Myslovitz's album Miłość w czasach popkultury, one of the songs is named "Peggy Sue nie wyszła za mąż" (Peggy Sue did not get married).
- In Almost Famous, the lead guitarist of the fictional band Stillwater, Russell Hammond, begins to sing this song as the plane he and his bandmates are flying in encounters severe turbulence, a reference to Buddy Holly's own death in a plane crash.
- In 2004, the Norwegian band Trashcan Darlings released "Peggy Sue is Dead" on the "Tunes From The Trashcan EP".
- In Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction, the waiter Buddy Holly is calling Mia Wallace "Peggy Sue" when taking her order in Jack Rabbit Slim's, a 1950s-themed restaurant staffed by lookalikes of the decade's pop icons.
- In the alternate history novel Back in the USSA, Peggy Sue is the name of a girl the young Holly knows and is attracted to.
- In the Wild Cards novels (another alternate history series), the song retains its original name, "Cindy Lou". In the fifth Wild Cards novel, Down and Dirty, it is explained that in this version of history, Jerry Allison's breakup with Peggy Sue Gerron was permanent, and thus the song's name was never changed.
- The song is also referenced in a New Zealand children's songwriter named the Minstrel's song; "From Rock, to Roll to Rocket", in the line "Buddy Holly sang Peggy Sue".
- The song is featured in the 2003 film Evil.
- The song is also referenced to in the 2011 song "Man Down" by Rihanna.
Other notable recordings
- Bobby Vee released the song on the 1963 Liberty album I Remember Buddy Holly.
- Paul McCartney recorded an acoustic version of the song in 1975.
- Connie Francis recorded a version that appeared on the With Love To Buddy Holly collection.
- Waylon Jennings recorded a version as part of a medley that appeared as a bonus track on the album This Time.
- Freddie & The Dreamers recorded the song in the 1960s.
- Mike Berry
- The Hollies
- Billy Fury
- Bobby Fuller
- Victor Wood
- The Tremeloes
- Rusty York recorded the song in 1957.
- Matt Collins, Karlo Metikosh, released a recording of the song in Serbo-Croatian on the Zagreb-based label Yugoton in the former Yugoslavia.
- The Troggs
- Bobby Darin mentioned "Peggy Sue" in his songs "Splish Splash" and "Queen Of The Hop".
- Frankie Avalon mentioned "Peggy Sue" in his 1958 song "DeDe Dinah".
- Ritchie Valens mentioned "Peggy Sue" in his song "Ooh! My Head."
- The song is mentioned in The Regents song "Barbara Ann", also recorded by The Beach Boys.
- Country singer Billy "Crash" Craddock recorded the song in 1973 for his album Mr. Country Rock.
- Hank Marvin did an instrumental of the song in 1996 on the album Hank Plays Holly.
- Cobra Starship have recently contributed a cover version for their tribute album Listen to Me: Buddy Holly, released in September 2011.
- Lou Reed recorded the song for the 2011 album Rave On: Buddy Holly.
- Buddy Holly: Peggy Sue at Discogs (list of releases)
- http://buddyholly.pagesperso-orange.fr/page3.htm Buddy Holly timeline
- Amburn, p78
- "Acclaimed Music Top 3000 songs". 27 May 2009.
- NPR 100: Peggy Sue.
- Song artist 320 - Buddy Holly. tsort.org.
- Amburn, Ellis (1995). Buddy Holly: a Biography. St. Martins Press. ISBN 0-312-14557-8
- Jonathan Cott in The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock and Roll. Rolling Stone Press Random House. (1976) ISBN 0-394-73238-3
- http://www.hotshotdigital.com/WellAlwaysRemember/BuddyHollyDisco.html Buddy Holly Discography
- List of Holly "covered" songs, including this one
- BBC interview with Peggy Sue Gerron
- Full lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics