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Not Fade Away: Complete Studio Recordings & More Box set

4.6 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, November 23, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

Long awaited 2009 six CD box set from the influential Rock 'n' Roll legend containing all of his official studio recordings. The 203 tracks range from his earliest recordings when 12 to 15 years old to demos with Bob Montgomery; from his earliest recordings with The Crickets and a set of garage recordings to his first studio recordings for Decca in Nashville; from the Coral and Brunswick recordings and hits that made him famous to his heralded apartment tapes. There are 6 previously unreleased tracks, including most of an August 1955 session, plus another 11 recordings previously unreleased in the U.S. Furthermore, all of the original, locatable undubbed original recordings are here as well as all 57 of the overdubbed versions recorded both in New York City and Clovis months and even years after the 'day the music died.'

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. My Two-Timin' Woman
  2. I'll Just Pretend
  3. Take These Shackles From My Heart
  4. Footprints In the Snow
  5. Flower Of My Heart
  6. Door To My Heart
  7. Soft Place In My Heart
  8. Gotta Get You Near Me Blues
  9. I Gambled My Heart
  10. You And I Are Through
  11. Down The Line
  12. Baby, Let's Play House
  13. Down The Line
  14. You And I Are Through
  15. Baby, It's Love
  16. Memories
  17. Queen Of The Ballroom
  18. Memories
  19. Moonlight Baby a/k/a Baby, Won't You Come Out Tonight
  20. I Guess I Was Just A Fool
  21. Don't Come Back Knockin'
  22. Love Me
  23. Midnight Shift
  24. Midnight Shift (false start/alternate)
  25. Don't Come Back Knockin' (alternate)
  26. Don't Come Back Knockin'
  27. Blue Days, Black Nights
  28. Love Me
  29. Baby Won't You Come Out Tonight
  30. I Guess I Was Just A Fool
  31. It's Not My Fault
  32. I'm Gonna Set My Foot Down
  33. Changin' All Those Changes
  34. Rock-A-Bye Rock
  35. Because I Love You

Disc: 2

  1. Rock Around With Ollie Vee
  2. I'm Changin' All Those Changes
  3. That'll Be The Day
  4. Girl On My Mind
  5. Ting-A-Ling
  6. Rock Around With Ollie Vee
  7. Modern Don Juan
  8. You Are My One Desire (false start)
  9. You Are My One Desire
  10. Gone (incomplete)
  11. Gone
  12. Gone (alternate take)
  13. Have You Ever Been Lonely (incomplete alternate)
  14. Have You Ever Been Lonely (alternate)
  15. Have You Ever Been Lonely
  16. Brown-Eyed Handsome Man
  17. Good Rockin' Tonight
  18. Rip It Up
  19. Blue Monday
  20. Honky Tonk
  21. Blue Suede Shoes
  22. Shake Rattle And Roll (partial)
  23. Bo Diddley
  24. Ain't Got No Home
  25. Holly Hop
  26. Brown-Eyed Handsome Man
  27. Bo Diddley
  28. I'm Looking For Someone To Love
  29. That'll Be The Day
  30. Last Night (undubbed)
  31. Maybe Baby (first version)
  32. Words Of Love
  33. Mailman Bring Me No More Blues
  34. Not Fade Away (alternate overdub)
  35. Not Fade Away
  36. Everyday

Disc: 3

  1. Ready Teddy
  2. Valley Of Tears
  3. That'll Be The Day (greetings to Bob Thiele)
  4. That'll Be The Day (greetings to Murray Deutsch)
  5. That'll Be The Day (greetings to Bill Randle)
  6. Peggy Sue (alternate take)
  7. Peggy Sue
  8. Listen To Me
  9. Oh Boy (undubbed)
  10. I'm Gonna Love You Too
  11. Send Me Some Lovin' (undubbed)
  12. It's Too Late (undubbed)
  13. Oh Boy
  14. An Empty Cup (And A Broken Date)
  15. Rock Me My Baby
  16. You've Got Love
  17. Maybe Baby
  18. Send Me Some Lovin'
  19. It's Too Late
  20. Tell Me How
  21. Little Baby
  22. (You're So Square) Baby I Don't Care
  23. Look At Me
  24. Mona (rehearsal)
  25. Mona (version 1)
  26. Mona (version 2)
  27. Mona (version 3)
  28. Rave On
  29. That's My Desire (two false starts plus undubbed master)
  30. Well...All Right Well...All Right
  31. Fool's Paradise (alternate take 1)
  32. Fool's Paradise (alternate take 2)
  33. Fool's Paradise (undubbed master)

Disc: 4

  1. Think It Over (false start & rehearsal take)
  2. Think It Over (undubbed alternate)
  3. Think It Over (undubbed master)
  4. Take Your Time (false start & alternate take)
  5. Take Your Time
  6. Fool's Paradise
  7. Think It Over
  8. Lonesome Tears
  9. It's So Easy
  10. Heartbeat
  11. Love's Made A Fool Of You (undubbed)
  12. Early In The Morning
  13. Now We're One (fragment)
  14. Now We're One
  15. Come Back Baby
  16. Reminiscing (undubbed)
  17. True Love Ways (mono mix)
  18. True Love Ways (stereo mix)
  19. It Doesn't Matter Anymore (mono)
  20. It Doesn't Matter Anymore (stereo)
  21. Raining In My Heart (mono)
  22. Raining In My Heart (stereo)
  23. Moondreams (mono)
  24. Moondreams (stereo)
  25. You're The One
  26. That's What They Say (w/fragment)
  27. What To Do
  28. Peggy Sue Got Married
  29. That Makes It Tough
  30. Crying, Waiting, Hoping
  31. Learning The Game
  32. Wait Till The Sun Shines Nellie

Disc: 5

  1. Slippin' And Slidin' (slow version #1)
  2. Slippin' And Slidin' (slow version #2)
  3. Slippin' And Slidin' (fast version)
  4. Drown In My Own Tears (fragment)/Buddy & Maria Elena talking in apartment
  5. Dearest (alternate take)
  6. Dearest
  7. Untitled Instrumental (a/k/a Buddy's Guitar/listed as "Tremolo Instrumental")
  8. Love Is Strange
  9. Smokey Joe's Café
  10. Peggy Sue Got Married
  11. Crying, Waiting, Hoping
  12. That's What They Say (version 2)
  13. What To Do
  14. Learning The Game
  15. That Makes It Tough
  16. Baby Won't You Come Out Tonight
  17. Because I Love You
  18. Changin' All Those Changes
  19. I'm Gonna Set My Foot Down
  20. It's Not My Fault
  21. Rock-A-Bye Rock
  22. Brown-Eyed Handsome Man
  23. Bo Diddley
  24. What To Do
  25. Peggy Sue Got Married
  26. Crying, Waiting, Hoping
  27. That Makes It Tough
  28. That's What They Say
  29. Learning The Game
  30. Reminiscing
  31. Wait Till The Sun Shines Nellie
  32. Dearest (version 2)
  33. Slippin' And Slidin' (slow version 2)

Disc: 6

  1. Baby Let's Play House (I Wanna Play House With You)
  2. Down The Line
  3. Wait Til' The Sun Shines Nellie (overdub version 2)
  4. Reminiscing
  5. Flower Of My Heart
  6. Door To My Heart
  7. Soft Place In My Heart
  8. I Gambled My Heart
  9. Gotta Get You Near Me Blues
  10. Gone (version 3)
  11. Rip It Up
  12. Honky Tonk
  13. Blue Suede Shoes
  14. Shake Rattle And Roll
  15. You And I Are Through
  16. Baby It's Love
  17. Memories
  18. Queen Of The Ballroom
  19. Love's Made A Fool Of You
  20. Wishing (mono)
  21. Wishing (stereo)
  22. Maybe Baby
  23. That's My Desire
  24. Have You Ever Been Lonely (version 1)
  25. Good Rockin' Tonight
  26. Blue Monday
  27. Ain't Got No Home
  28. Holly Hop
  29. Slippin' And Slidin'
  30. You're The One
  31. Love Is Strange
  32. (Ummm, Oh Yeah) Dearest
  33. Smokey Joe's Café

Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 23, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 6
  • Format: Box set
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Hip-O Select
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #215,889 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Martijn on November 24, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Not since the 6-lp set "The Complete Buddy Holly" was released an odd 30 years ago has there been a Buddy Holly release of this magnitude.

This box set is more or less an expanded version of a combination of the also excellent "Down the Line: Rarities" and "Memorial Collection". I'm sure there will be people griping about the fact that this set was released only a relatively short time after those 2 releases. The cynic in me even suspects that that's why this 6 cd set was released under the relatively obscure sub-label "Hip-o Select" (which is part of Universal/Geffen Records).

To be fair however, there is nothing at all to complain about with regard to "Not Fade Away: The Complete Studio Recordings And More". This set is a must for any self-respecting Buddy Holly fan.

The set has been spectacularly remastered and is accompanied by a full-color 80-page book (in fact the whole box looks more like a book than a 6-cd set). The 203 tracks are presented in chronological order and sound quality on the vast majority of tracks is better than ever.

Take for example "You Are My One Desire" - a track which I always regarded as a bit of a dud. Definitely not one of Buddy's big hits. But on the cd here, the sound quality literally gave me goosebumps- it's almost like being right there in the studio. The bass is full. No crackles or pops or hiss or anything. And then Buddy's voice sounding just magnificent. And this is a 53-year old recording!

The sound quality on many of the other tracks is great too for as far as that's realistically possible - the garage tapes for example (previously presented on "Down the Line") are of course not hi-fi, yet they sound probably as good as they will ever sound.
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Well, let me begin with a huge Thank You to Hip-O-Select for finally resolving all the legal problems and getting this release out. It's been a very frustrating wait! I worry that many of Buddy's fans are long gone - hopefully the next generations of music fans will pick up on the genius of this great talent.

What's on the set? The easy answer is everything! Some will likely complain that a few of the sessions Buddy played on as a backing musician did not make the cut, and there are obviously no live tracks. But the title basically is correct - "The Complete Studio Recordings and More". It's important that for the first time on many songs, you hear both dubbed abd Undubbed versions. This is important as many of Buddy's tracks were messed with after he died, sometimes to terrible effect. Then again some of the demos also sound good with the added instrumentation.

Disc One begins with a recording from 1949 when Buddy was a teenager and he took a crack at Hank Snow's "My Two Timin' Woman" The quality of this and the next few recordings are certainly a little rough, but obviously important to have. From these early recordings the set moves to recordings made in 1954-1955 with Bob Montgomery in Texas. These are the undubbed recordings - just as "Buddy and Bob" made 'em and they are actually pretty cool - real country music and just about every song has "Heart" in its title. Rounding out 1955 are Buddy's first recordings as basically a solo artist. "Baby Won't You Come Out Tonight", "I Guess I Was Just A Fool" "Don't Come Back Knockin" and "Love Me". All four were recorded again in Nashville but these early cuts are good also and undubbed.

The 23rd track into the set is the beginning of the Nashville 1956 recordings and are a real highlight.
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I have to agree, this is one great package. As the title suggests, this is the complete studio recordings. Consequently it omits Holly's live appearances. If you really need those, as well as interviews and more alternates, invest in El Toro's 'Complete Recordings' 1956 and 1957 sets.

The only real error I could find concerns 'Wait Til The Sun Shines Nellie' (track 31, CD 5). The liners would have you believe this is the 45 version of that song, as released on a Coral single in 1962. It's not, it's the 'Reminiscing' album version, which was given extra overdubs on each channel to give the song a stereo effect. As a consequence, we get the album version TWICE in this package - it's also on CD 6, albeit with slightly widened separation. As a consequence, the 45 version is still MIA on any Holly comp. Given the research which went into this project, an error such as this should never have occurred.

The 80 page hard cover book is great and is packed with pics and a full sessionography. The only thing which stops me giving this a 5 star rating is the error with 'Nellie', as well as the fact that little or no effort appears to have been made to clean up the sound on some of the demo recordings included in this set. A fairly straightforward task given the abundance of software programs available. Thankfully, those tracks are in the minority.

Don't wait, grab this set while it's still available. You won't be disappointed. A fitting tribute to the late star.
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This is almost the box set that everybody has been waiting for. If you're more than a casual Buddy Holly fan who wants to delve deeper than the usual hits, this set is the one for you - wonderful pictures and almost everything you could ever need. Stop reading now and buy this set.

If you're an obsessive Buddy Holly completist, like me, then this set is stil good but manages to make mistakes that prevent it from being definitive. Here is my running list - taking into account valuable opinions of others - of what's missing, what should not have been included, and what should have been done differently. I have disregarded live tracks, interviews and session work.

- That's My Desire (overdubbed). The undubbed version from Disc 3 was repeated on Disc 6 in error.
- Wait Till the Sun Shines Nellie (mono - first dubbed version). The stereo, second dubbed version was used in error on both Disc 5 and Disc 6.
- Rock Around With Ollie Vee (partial outake)
- I'm Changin' All Those Changes (partial outake)
- Have You Ever Been Lonely (fourth version). The liner notes claim the fourth version is a duplicate of an earlier version, but they're wrong. Each of the four versions has a different, distinct ending.
- Words Of Love (acetate)*
- Everyday jingle*
- Peggy Sue jingle*

*These may be poor quality, but that didn't stop the lo-fi inclusion of Send Me Some Lovin' or It's Too Late on the set.

Also missing, but not so important:
- The unedited Smokey Joe's Cafe demo*
- Assorted studio chatter/intros/warm ups especially on the Nashville and strings sessions. Some studio chat appears on on the box set, so why they didn't include everything is a mystery.
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