Thursday, February 03, 2011
His career while he was alive lasted just eight months, not long enough to gain him much in the way of on-air exposure; which is why I've had to resort to a clip from the 1987 biopic La Bamba in this instance.
Nevertheless, the impact Ritchie Valens made with just three hit singles - Come On, Let's Go, Donna, and La Bamba - is still being felt today, as he was the first performer to bring a Latin feel to rock and roll. So while no one seems to have his appearance on American Bandstand or The Ed Sullivan Show available, at least we have a couple of minutes of easy on the eyes Lou Diamond Phillips - expertly lip-syncing La Bamba, to the musical accompaniment of Los Lobos - for a genuine pop culture experience...
Only 17 on this day in 1959 - The Day the Music Died - Valens has been posthumously awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as well as the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.
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