Iowa might be known as the place "where the music died," but former lead singer of the post Buddy Holly Crickets Jerry Naylor is keeping it alive with the launch of his Rockabilly Legends concert tour. And he is doing it in Iowa.
"Yes, Buddy Holly's last live performance at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake is a major reason we are premiering our Rockabilly Legends 'Live Concert Series' in Iowa," Naylor said. "But I have thousands of reasons to come back to Iowa, and it begins with my friend, Dennis Farland (head of the Winter Dance Party Musical Scholarship Fund) unmistakably one of the most passionate and faithful Buddy Holly/Crickets fans in the world."
In the two-hour concert, Naylor and Stan Perkins, son of Carl Perkins, tell the story of rockabilly as they set up each song. A multimedia production, the musicians play the hits while video of the rockabilly stars runs on the screen above.
For Naylor, paying tribute to rockabilly legends is personal. During his 55-year career, he wrote and recorded a number of hits and played on bills with Presley, Cash and Orbison. After Holly's death, he stepped in and led the Crickets to several hits overseas.
In 2007, Naylor completed an exhaustive anthology of rockabilly music that includes a documentary, book and 16 CDs that feature 113 original master recordings. The documentary has been broadcast on 176 Public Broadcast Stations, including Iowa Public Television.
And now, Naylor is taking his rockabilly tribute on the road, beginning in Iowa.