After I wrote last week about the death of Phil Everly and so many of our other musical influences, I received calls and e-mails.
PJ Rodgers appreciated the mention that the writer of many Everly Brothers songs had lived in Georgia, as had the inspiration for one of their top songs.
“The column … was of special interest because my much-younger sister was named Susan “Susie” because of the Everly Brothers song Wake Up, Little Susie,” Rodgers wrote. “What an interesting connection to Georgia. Thanks for mentioning that fact.”
Asked about his sister’s naming, he wrote: “There’s not much more to tell other than the two of us older brothers used to tease her by singing the song. We were seven and 10 years older than her.”
Pat Glover said the reminiscence brought back fond memories.
“As you say, they are gone but their music is still here!” he wrote. “Also remembered in other ways. Near Aspen, Colo., is the John Denver Sanctuary. John didn’t pick the spot, but if you visit it you will believe he did! A grassy meadow, a stream flowing through it and boulders with his songs cut into them. There is a natural hillside, like a small amphitheater with smaller rocks to sit on. Boy, could he have given a great concert there. But if you visit and listen, maybe you will hear it anyway!”
He sent photos of the rocky stream and the monuments to prove his point.
“Wake Up, Little Susie reminded me of the drive-ins in the ’60s – Hilltop, Forest Hills and Skyview – fun times and places,” Glover continued. “But I have to add to your list Jim Croce, a real master of his craft, and another gone way too soon. He didn’t have Georgia connections, but … he was in the National Guard, and was at Fort Jackson (S.C.) starting in September 1966.”
He was referring to his copy of I Got a Name: The Jim Croce Story.
“I got the book last May when we were in San Diego; went to Croce’s, the restaurant his wife started years ago – at the place where she and Jim wanted to have it. Neat place.”
David Parker posted merely: “My race is run beneath the sun …” He was quoting a line from Down in the Willow Garden, a folk favorite that was recorded by the Everlys. Parker closed with: “Requiescat in pace Phil.” (Rest in peace.)
One caller, whose name I didn’t get, brought up the good point that I failed to list black singers in my recollection of musical influences. Surely I had listened to soul and Motown singers growing up, including Georgia’s own Little Richard.
He was right. The stations I caught at night out of Chicago and Cincinnati and New Orleans would play Chuck Berry, Jackie Wilson, Percy Sledge, the Supremes and Wilson Pickett. Oh, and James Brown.
Not all the greats are gone. We should take time to appreciate the ones we have left.
Reach Glynn Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org.