Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Just had to share what happened today...

   I was in Costco today, and got in line to check out.
   In front of me was a woman and her 2 little boys...a 1 year old, and a 4 year old.

   The lady had a Roy Orbison CD in her hand, and the 4 year old asked her for it.
 She handed it to him, and he READ the title --Roy Orbison-- that surprised me since he was so little. Then he asked his mom if they could play it in the car. And added it was a 3 CD set.
   So I asked if he liked Roy... his mom said: Oh yes, also Johnny Cash.
   She had bought the CD for him!!!

  So I told him that I was also a fan. He asked me what my favorite songs were; I replied In Dreams and Pretty Woman. He said OH Pretty Woman was on his new CD.

   Then I asked him what his favorite song was, and he told me Only The Lonely!!!

   He has to be Roy's youngest fan!!!!
   He also spelled Roy Orbison without looking at the CD!!
   He was just adorable...........
Barb Gowen, IN, USA, Apr. 2008  

(Thank you very much, Barb!)


    Our record company, Liberty Records, sent us out to perform on stage for a radio station promotion. We arrived in the Montgomery, Alabama airport on a sunny November morning in 1962. The general manager of the radio station met our plane. No matter how many times I told him my name was Dee Dee, he kept referring to us as Dick and Dee Bee.
     “Yep, Dee Bee, it shore is nice you folks could drop in on us. Ya’ll must be find, wonderful folks.”
I assured him that we tried to be.
We arrived at the large arena in time to catch Roy Orbison’s rehearsal with the band. He was leading them through the charts to his hit record, “Crying.” Roy stood poised on stage, his body still, eyes closed. A blue filter colored his hair, like a black river reflecting the dark blue sky at midnight.
     “I was alright for awhile, I could smile for awhile.”
Suddenly the band hit a wrong chord and Roy’s eyes opened. Blinking at the musicians through thick glasses, his quiet voice drawled, “Let’s take it again.” As the song started, his high tenor voice cut through the atmosphere like a warm knife through butter. His high notes were pure magic.
As Roy hit the last note of the song and held it, the entire auditorium (crew, promoters, disc jockeys, and other singers) broke into applause. Roy nodded, embarrassed, said a few final works to the band and left the stage.
Later, Dick and I were waiting in the dressing room for our rehearsal when Roy entered.
     “Roy, this is Dick and Dee Bee,” the general manger shouted.
     I said, “It’s Dee Dee. D…E…E…D…E…E…”
     “Pleasure to meet you,” Roy replied.
Dick wasn’t paying attention. Something triggered a strong desire in Dick. I recognized the signs. He was almost salivating. What was he after? I followed the direction of Dick’s eyes as they swept the dirty dressing room floor, finally resting on Roy’s shoes.
I’d never seen anything like them. Made out of the softest black leather, the shoes had no laces. Instead, the ankle boots sported strips of elastic on either side to facilitate pulling them on and off.
Two years later the Beatles would wear similar shoes on their first American tour, forever redefining footwear for thousands of American men. But in 1962, only Roy Orbison owned a pair of what would be known as Beatle boots.
Dick could contain himself no longer. He moaned, “Oh, man, I really dig those shoes!”
Roy smiled and looked down, as if noticing the shoes for the first time.  “Yeah. I just got them.”
     “Where did you buy them?” Dick asked. “I’d give anything for a pair of shoes like that.”
     Roy smiled at Dick’s child like fascination. “I got them in England. You can try them on if you like.”
 Roy bent over, slipped off the shoes and handed them to Dick, who slid them on his feet with gusto. He rocked back and forth like Dorothy wearing the emerald slippers.
     “They’re so cool,” Dick muttered.
     “They fit you perfectly. Take them. They’re yours.” Roy smiled broadly.
     Dick looked shocked. “No, I can’t take your shoes.”
     “I’ve got another pair just like them. Go ahead. Take them. They look great on you.”
Dick pumped Roy’s hand up and down, and then stared down at his feet encased in the new shoes. When we went out of stage for the rehearsal, Dick kept his eyes on the floor. He didn’t even react when the disc jockey introduced us to the band as Dick and Dee Bee.

We never worked with Roy Orbison again, but Dick wore Roy’s shoes for many years, always telling anyone who would listen about Roy’s generosity.

Dee Dee Phelps,CA,USA
The Dick and Dee Dee website:


HA HA…….great story! There was absoloutely NOBODY like Roy Orbison. I saw him in 1981 (I think) in Lubbock, Texas, when they had the un-veiling of the Buddy Holly statue at the Civic Center. Tony Joe White, the Crickets, and Roy Orbison performed, though I’m sure there were others. I think I had seats in the 5th or 6th row. This was the first time I ever saw Roy and I was about to find out why he was called “the human jukebox” as he just stood on stage, sang in the microphone, and never moved a muscle. No need to run around and show off on stage………he just sang the songs and shyly thanked the audience after each song. I’ll never forget him doing the ending for the song CRYING about 3 or 4 times that night as people continuously stood and cheered every time he hit “those” notes at the end of the song………I can still picture it in my mind as if it were yesterday and can still hear him hit those notes and the loud ovations he received! WOW!!!! I still get goosebumps just thinking about it…………….
*Jeanie Boultinghouse:
Thank you so much for that wonderful story about Roy Orbison and
his boots.
Just another example of how generous and sweet he was.
Thanks so much,
Hi Dee Dee,
I love the book. It really gives us a chance to get to know you and Dick.
Roy will always be atop my musical Mt. Rushmore. One of a kind singer/songwriter and one of a kind person.
Thanks for sharing.
Port Washington, NY.
Just wanted to say Hello to everyone.
Much to read and learn here, I’m sure I will enjoy !
Just a wonderful story, thanx Dee Dee.
(*Dee Dee Phelps: Thanks for your interest in the wonderful Roy Orbison.
Best Wishes,
Dee Dee Phelps, Apr. 2008)
About the author, Dee Dee Phelps:
Throughout the years I met so many wonderful people. This blog provides a way to re-connect with friends from the past and to forge new relationships in the future.
I’ve been a writer my entire life. On this blog you’ll hear stories…some current and some about past experiences. I’m hoping to get to know you better, so please write your stories, too.
I began my career in journalism, songwriting and singing at age sixteen. Since that time I’ve has been a newspaper columnist, top forty recording artist (singing as Dick and Dee Dee, one of the most popular recording duos of the Sixties), songwriter, performer, and author of the newly released narrative non fiction memoir, Vinyl Highway.
Some of you fans of 60’s music might remember some of our hit records: The Mountain’s High, Tell Me, Young and In Love, Turn Around and Thou Shalt Not Steal.
Dick St. John (my singing partner) and I had the good fortune to perform with such high profile artists as the Beach Boys, Rolling Stones, Dionne Warwick, Dick Clark, Tina Turner and many others, which I chronicled in my book, Vinyl Highway. Our television performances include American Bandstand, Where The Action Is, Shindig, and the British television show, Ready, Steady, Go. We sang in the motion picture Wild, Wild Winter and performed in the first precursor to videos, Scopitone (to listen to Jennifer Sharp talk about the rise and fall of the Scopitone jukebox on NPR public radio, please visit this page. We also toured the United States, Japan and Europe as Dick and Dee Dee (visit www.dickanddeedee.com to view vintage videos).
Some of my exploits are chronicled in other books. “Rock and Roll and Remember,” by Dick Clark and “Liberty Records,” by Michael “Doc Roc” Kelly. In the past few years, I attended numerous memoir classes at UCLA as a writer’s program student during the years spent writing Vinyl Highway.
I also attended the Maui Writer’s Retreat, 2003.

So now, let’s write! Rock on!

Dee Dee Phelps, CA, USA

Thursday, April 17, 2008


*The Road House 61 in Webster. Mural shows BB King, Roy Orbison, and the Man in Black- Johnnie Cash


*Detail of Texas Music History Mural at second incarnation of the Texicalli Grille, 2700 1/2 South Lamar, 1986. The mural no longer exists.
Mance Libscomb, Little Joe y La Familia, Delbert McClinton, Tanya Tucker, Lightning Hopkins, Roy Orbison, Harry James, Sippie Wallace, Angela Strehli, Familia Jimenez.



*Roy Orbison, mural in Montreal, Quebec, Canada


*WHO IS WHO -mural, New York,NY,USA
Here are definitely Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper, and Ritchie Valens. Also, Bill Haley, Bette Midler and Don Ho, Fats Domino. Also, Johnny Cash and Roy Orbison (left), Little Richard, Roger Daltrey....


*Mural on the wall of Mickey D's, USA         

*The Roy Orbison Museum, Wink,TX,USA       


Friday, April 4, 2008

The Immortals - The Greatest Artists of All Time: 37) Roy Orbison

By K.D. Lang

I've always compared Roy Orbison to a tree: passive and beautiful yet extremely solid. He maintained a sense of humility and sensitivity and gentleness uncommon to his era. He wasn't effeminate but extremely gentle. He was someone you felt entirely safe with, whether you were listening to his records or being around him. It wasn't like Elvis: It wasn't like your loins were on fire or anything like that. It's more like Roy was a private place to go -- a solace or a refuge.
He broke the mold of the Fifties tough-guy thing, and even the style of his music was a kind of fine art for somebody from Wink, Texas. It was cosmopolitan in a mysteriously soft and romantic way.
Roy Orbison was like a folk opera singer. I think he was influenced by Spanish opera in structure and in feel. He also loved to express his voice in this upper range, in falsetto. He was vulnerable and strong at the same time. He was extremely earnest in his voice and his appearance, and yet he had this veil of mystery to him.
In 1987, Roy and I recorded a version of "Crying" for a movie called Hiding Out. We ended up recording "Crying" in Vancouver, which is where I lived. I walked into the studio, and it was like staring at the huge image of the Marlboro Man on Sunset Boulevard -- so immediately ominous and present. We were rehearsing the song in the studio with the band, and Roy and I happened to be sharing a mike. When we got to a part where we were singing at the same time, we both leaned into the mike and our cheeks touched. His cheek was so soft, and the energy was so amazing. Not sexual but totally explosive, like the chemistry of some sort of kinship. I'll never forget what that felt like. I can hear that voice right in my ear. His vibrato was sort of fast and had a small waver within it, and that's what gave him the vulnerable sound. That voice.
[From ROLLINGSTONE, Issue 946 — April 15, 2004, illustration by Mark Gagnon]