At some point during the 90s a 70s culture-grab started, and a generation who were old enough to know better and remember worse were only too happy to point out how inferior and unoriginal were our new heroes. The inferiority is questionable, but the lack of originality is undeniable: the backward looking obsession was nothing the 70s hadn’t itself already experienced. In 1972, Don McLean sang about the day the music died; the day was February 3rd 1959, when Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper died in the same plane crash. But Don was outsold that year by budget compilation kings K-Tel with “25 Rockin’ & Rollin’ Greats”, a rag-bag compilation of 50s and 60s tracks including Rock around the clock, Be-Bop-A-Lula, Blue Suede Shoes, Surfin’ USA (looking a little out of place), and Rockin’ Robin, itself a hit again in ‘72 for Michael Jackson. Three days before Jackson’s single was released, the musical Grease began its Off-Broadway run.
The music may have died, but its shrine was a thriving concern: for ten years after his death, new Buddy Holly material continued to be released (even if “new” often just meant “older and rougher”). In 1978, the same year Grease transferred to celluloid, The Buddy Holly Story opened in Cinemas. In the 90s a jukebox musical based around Buddy Holly songs played over five thousand times to West End audiences, and has now played worldwide over 20,000 times. (It might not have quite been the first, but it has a lot to answer for…)
So what better way to tie all that up than with an award-winning 90s video in which the band is spliced into a 70s show that was itself a rose-tinted call back to the 1950s.