The Crickets & Their Buddies
First Appeared in The Music Box, May 2005, Volume 12, #5
Written by John Metzger
It isnít often that a 47-year-old band cuts a new album. Nevertheless, The Crickets, which features founding members Joe B. Mauldin and J.J. Allison, has assembled a star-studded cast to assist with its latest endeavor, which quite appropriately has been titled The Crickets & Their Buddies. The collection boasts reworked classics from the groupís esteemed catalogue as well as appearances by Eric Clapton, Bobby Vee, Nanci Griffith, John Prine, J.D. Souther, and Waylon Jennings, to name a few of the artists who lent their support to the affair. The end result sounds more like a reverential tribute to The Cricketsí past than a starting place for pushing The Crickets into the future. Nevertheless, it does serve as a welcome reminder that the outfit didnít cease to exist when Buddy Hollyís plane went down.
For the record, much of The Crickets & Their Buddies is enjoyable, and only two of its 15 tracks ó Vince Neilís cringe-inducing romp through I Fought the Law and The Cricketsí newly penned and ridiculously corny autobiographical tune The Real Buddy Holly Story ó are truly dreadful. The problem, though, is that the bulk of the collection hardly could be called innovative or imaginative, and too frequently, the songs are polished to the point where they lack the youthful, free-spirited exuberance of the original renditions. In other words, The Crickets & Their Buddies offers a fond reminiscence, but it is a far cry from an essential experience. Ĺ
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2005 The Music Box