Roy Orbison was an American singer-songwriter particularly known for his voice which some said could encompass up to 4 octaves, as well as for his look based almost exclusively on the color black and his sunglasses.
He started his artistic career quite early as he started singing at the age of 8 in shows broadcast by local radio.
We find him a few years later in a country group called The Wink Westerners, a group that will allow him to slowly stand out. A group which renamed itself some time later The Teen Kings and produced the title "Ooby Dooby", a title which would officially become a few years later the first success attributed to the singer. We are then in 1956.
His solo career really started from the early 60s, with a first notorious success on the title "Only the lonely (Know the way I feel)".
A decade of the 60s which saw him gain strength over the years with titles such as "Running scared" and "Crying" in 1961, "Dream baby (How long must I dream)" in 1962, "In dreams" and "Blue Bayou" in 1963, “It's over” but also, and above all, the enormous “Oh, pretty woman", two titles which will be released in 1964 and which for the second, will literally explode the reputation of the artist and sell to more than 7 million copies !
Unfortunately, the great adventure turned into a tragedy in 1966 when his wife Claudette was killed by hitting the door of a van while they were both returning home on a motorcycle.
A bad fate which, two years later in 1968, continues to attack the singer when he learns, while he is on tour in England, that his house in Hendersonville in Tennesse has not only burned down, but also that his two oldest sons tragically died in the fire.
A terrible second part of the 1960s for the singer on the private life side, but which continues to unfold in the musical career with new hits such as "Goodnight" and "(Say) Your my girl" in 1965, "Twinkle toes" and "Lana" in 1966, "Cry softly lonely one" in 1967, "Heartache" in 1968 and "Penny arcade" in 1969.
After a decade of the 1960s, which literally saw him explode on the international scene, the 1970s will prove to be much more complicated to manage than expected. A decade without major hits, which saw him decline dramatically, both in musical career and in health. The culmination of a triple coronary bypass surgery that he will have to undergo urgently in 1978 ...
Miraculously, the phoenix rose from its ashes during the 1980s with a notorious first hit in 1980 when he sang the title "That lovin 'you feelin'" in a duet with Emmylou Harris.
Followed by a new crossing of the desert until 1988, when he made another major comeback with the title "Handle with care". A title performed in truth by many within the Traveling Wilburys, an ephemeral group but oh so glorious since it is composed of Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lyne and Tom Petty, just that !
A truly incredible end of the 80s for the singer as he succeeded in producing the biggest album of his career, namely the enormous "Mystery Girl". Album which meets an enormous planetary success in particular thanks to the title "I got it", title which will be one of the biggest successes of the year 1989. But also, and to a lesser extent, with the titles "California blue" and "She's a mystery to me".
Notable successes which unfortunately will not attend the singer since he died prematurely on December 6, 1988 of a cardiac arrest then aged only 52 years ...
To discover or rediscover.
Discography (among others ...) :
Ooby dooby 1956
Sweat and easy to love 1957
Seems to me 1958
Up town 1959
Only the lonely (Know the way I feel) 1960
Blue angel 1960
Running scared 1961
Dream baby (How long must I dream) 1962
The crowd 1962
Working for the man 1962
In dreams 1963
Blue Bayou 1963
Pretty paper 1963
Borne o the wind 1964
It’s over 1964
Oh, pretty woman 1964
Say (You’re my girl) 1965
Ride away 1965
Crawling back 1965
Breakin’up is breaking my heart 1965
Twinkle toes 1966
Too soon to know 1966
So good 1967
Cry softly lonely one 1967
Walk on 1968
Penny arcade 1969
She sheats on me 1970
So young 1970
(Love me like you did it) Last night 1971
God love you 1972
Blue rain (Coming down) 1973
Sweet mama blue 1974
Easy way out 1979
That lovin’ you feelin’ again 1980
Wild hearts (Time…) 1985
Handle with care (Traveling Wilburys) 1988
You got it 1989
End of the line (Traveling wilburys) 1989
California blue 1989
She’s a mystery to me 1989
I drove all night 1992
Heartbreake radio 1992
1956 ... very typical sixties rock beginnings of this period. Even if the quality is there, that will not be enough to effectively launch the career of the one who will become a few years later one of the major artists of this end of the XXth century on the American side ...
1957 ... after a first 'small' success, the end of the 1950s saw him do something on the spot. Despite a trendy sound and style, it still does not take off ...
1958 ... he tries everything, rhythm then softness and finesse. But it still does not want. He will therefore have to raise his level of play damnably to hope to pass in the big leagues ...
1959 ... one feels like a tremor in the evolution of things. Here he obtained a new 'small' success and is ideally positioned for the transition to the 1960s. A decade that will see him literally explode !
1960 ... then THIS title comes ! He will pass from the shadows to the light in a shattering way and obtain here a first planetary mega-hit, to say the least, but to say the least unexpected. HU-GE !
1960 ... a dynamic of success which is now firmly in place and which will allow him to become in a few years one of the major artists of the North American continent. The beginning of the legend !
1961 ... a voice recognizable among all and a style that fits perfectly with the times. Everything is there to keep the singer at the top of the bill for a long time !
1961 ... he excels in all areas. A versatility that is only found with the greatest and which will inevitably take him to the highest peak of success ...
1962 ... now, it's at least 1 mega planetary hit per year. For the year 1962, it will be this one. A constant rise in power that nothing and no one can now stop ...
1962 ... a decade of the 1960s which saw him climb step by step, level after level. And who sees him especially reaching the summits slowly but surely ...
1962 ... a decade of 60 which is its own and which is above all perfectly cut out for its style and especially its talent. A talent that asks only to express itself !
1963 ... for the year 1963, the top hit will be this one. Each year he writes his legend a little more and what is certain is that he certainly does not intend to stop there !
1963 ... on the success side, this title will be almost as strong as the previous one. Each title that comes out now is almost an event in itself ...
1963 ... an exceptional year 1963 which saw him release mega hit on mega hit. The ascent to the summits is linear and is done with disconcerting ease to say the least ...
1963 ... an incredible series of titles full of finesse which will have made this year 1963 a year truly apart. But given the talent of the guy, we imagine that he will not stop there ...
1964 ... a year 1964 which starts again almost on the same bases as the preceding one. This title will not be the most famous despite an obvious quality. No, no, it's another title that will steal the show and not the least ...
1964 ... it won't be that one either. No, the mega fireworks will take place at the end of the year. Difficult to imagine at this moment there the enormous continuation which is announced on the horizon ...
1964 ... the mega fireworks, here it is ! He signs here quite simply the biggest hit of his career but also one of the biggest titles of the end of the 20th century. But he does not yet know at this point that a little film called 'Pretty Woman' which will be released 26 years later will make this title one of the most cult titles of all time. MO-NU-MEN-TAL !
1965 ... an adventure which continues in earnest in this new year. One would have thought he had achieved Nirvana with the previous title, which is not far from wrong. He will not be able to match it but what is certain is that he still has things to tell and especially songs to sing ...
1965 ... every title that comes out turns almost immediately into solid gold. Impossible to stop a dynamic of success which almost borders on permanent genius ...
1965 ... the production of titles is bloated and does not reserve any bad surprises, no offense to the competition. Everything is perfectly calibrated, inspired and interpreted. A real war machine !
1965 ... a truly extraordinary talent in the 'emotional' register which really makes him one of the best in the world in the 1960s. What a talent !
1965 ... a slight sag in the Charts begins to be felt. Nothing to worry about at the moment because the bar was so high that it was obvious that he was going to come down from his pedestal one day or another ...
1966 ... the deceleration is tiny but very real. Anyway, the level of success remains at the Premium level and maintains him especially in the Elite without having to force his talent too much ...
1966 ... it was obvious that the competition was not going to sit idly by to see him take all the laurels and all the honors. At some point, the success curve had to start to weaken ...
1966 ... even if the level of success weakens somewhat, what he continues to produce nonetheless shows the competition that we will have to count on him for a few more years ...
1967 ... the dropout increases. After years of indisputable and undisputed reign, the artist struggles to renew himself and gradually loses the stroke of genius that made all the difference. Attention danger...
1967 ... a level of success which is still sufficient enough to keep him in the leading pack. It will not yet be for this year that the competition will finally be able to rejoice in its pure and simple disappearance of radars ...
1968 ... the end of the sixties which saw him a little with the pain. At least in the Charts because on the quality side of the titles produced, there is still some under the pedal, that's clear !
1968 ... he just lost the little extra that put him light years ahead of the competition. He has just returned to ordinary people, an obligatory passage for any artist, however talented he may be ...
1969 ... the dropout in the Charts accelerates and does not necessarily bode well for the rest of the events. The 1970s that are looming on the horizon risk being somewhat turbulent for the artist ...
1970 ... an incredible sonic evolution. So unbelievable that it will completely destabilize the fans from the first hour and totally screw him up in the Charts. A fall all the more incomprehensible when you see the quality of the song ...
1970 ... as soon as he returns to his basics, as if by chance, success is back. And again, a mini success that has absolutely nothing to do with what he experienced before ...
1971 ... what is incredible is that he tries to adapt to the new trends of the moment and succeeds quite well. And it is precisely this successful adaptation that scares the grassroots fans in droves. Go figure ...
1972 ... unbelievably, he disappears altogether from the Charts. After having reigned supreme over the Charts throughout the 1960s, the fall was brutal to say the least ...
1973 ... a decade of 70 that he will go through from beginning to end in general indifference. An incredible turnaround to say the least, and above all incomprehensible ...
1974 ... it must be said that what he offers does not really correspond to the new trends which emerge in the middle of the 1970s. He has tried to adapt to them without success unfortunately ...
1975 ... one of his very rare hits of the decade. And again, a minor hit which in no way corresponds to its real level. A 70s decade that looks like an endless desert crossing ...
1976 ... what makes his strength is that he always believes in it. Nothing shakes him, whether it be his personal problems or his rout in the Charts during this decade of 70. A resistance which commands respect !
1979 ... a decade of 70 which does not end and which he ends for some reason. He is trying to adapt once again to the latest trends but the delay is now irreparable ...
1980 ... it is this duo which will somewhat save the furniture and which allows him to start the 80's in a much better way than he ended the 70's !
1985 ... a big 5 years air gap followed by a comeback in certain shape. What is certain is that the 1980s will be anyway always better than the previous one !
1987 ... the year 1987 sees him temporarily rise to the surface. This ballad is of quality and the public gives it a minimum of attention. Like what, nothing is ever finished ...
1988 ... an incredible quartet to say the least when you see the names of the different protagonists. A 'Dream Team' which will only exist for a moment but the result is totally astounding. The opposite would have been surprising when you see the pedigree of each participant. HU-GE !
1989 ... a totally improbable return ! The Phoenix rose from its ashes in a spectacular way to say the least, and in the process landed a totally unexpected global mega hit. The end of the 1980s saw him return to the front of the stage in a totally unexpected way and which would complain about it. MAS-TER-FUL !
1989 ... an exceptional year in all respects for the artist. Whether alone or with others, he shatters everything in his path and one wonders how far this incredible resurrection will take him !
1989 ... mega hits follow one another at a totally astounding speed. While he had been dying for fifteen years, here he is back in a dazzling form that allows him to turn anything he touches into solid gold. Totally bluffing !
1989 ... and it continues ! When U2 writes for Roy Orbison, here is the result ! Sacred twist of history when little youngsters start writing for a sacred monster. Incredible but true !
1990 ... a succession of posthumous titles of more than certain quality. And which shows above all that the artist was in full revival and that he could still have done great things. But fate will have decided otherwise ...
1992 ... the original version of the track made famous by Cyndi Lauper. This song was originally intended for the singer, who recorded it in 1987 without leaving it. This will be done in this year 1992 ...
1992 ... this time, it's definitely the end. Four years after his disappearance, the adventure stops definitively on the singles release side, but the adventure was beautiful for this major artist. One of the most outstanding artists of the end of the 20th century and who left more than one legendary title in history !
Top Bonus : he delivers here an absolutely sumptuous title which once again shows his truly extraordinary talent. The final fireworks display !
Official Website :
https://royorbison.com/ Greatest Hits :