’60s Pop Star, Bobby Vee, Returns to Music While Fighting Alzheimer’s

Alissa Sauer
By Alissa SauerFebruary 3, 2014

1960s pop star Bobby Vee is not allowing Alzheimer’s to get the best of him. The rock n’ roller was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2011 but is now recording an 18 track album which will be released on February 3. 

'60s pop star, Bobby Vee, Returns to Music While Fighting Alzheimer's

An American Idol

Bobby Vee stumbled into fame at the age of 15 when he took the stage for Buddy Holly at the Moorhead National Guard Armory. Holly had been killed in a plane crash that night, along with rock n’ rollers Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson. Since then, Vee has become a rock n’ roller in his own right, recording 38 top 100 hits from 1959 to 1970. His most famous hits include “Take Good Care of My Baby” and “Run to Him,” along with “Rubber Ball” and “The Night Has a Thousand Eyes.” Vee continued to record into the early 2000s.  In 2011, Vee was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and he performed his last show at a community fundraiser in St. Joseph, MN.

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Inspiring Others to Fight Alzheimer’s

This rock n’ roller is not succumbing to the disease without a fight. Vee has tried alternative treatment methods including chiropractor visits, acupuncture, exercising and speech therapy with little success.

But, he won’t let that stop him from making music. Work on Vee’s latest album unintentionally began when his sons decided to set up drums and amps in their garage.  Vee’s son, Jeff, said, “Our mantra from that point forward has been, ‘Don’t turn down any parties.’ We’re going to make every day as good a day as it can be.” That jam session launched an 18 track album entitled “The Adobe Sessions,” which includes “Save the Last Dance for Me,” Townes Van Zandt’s “If I Needed You,” and a cover of Bob Dylan’s, “The Man in Me.”

Vee hopes that being open about his fight with the disease will help others who are dealing with the same diagnosis. While things don’t come as easily to him as they once did, Vee says, “I’m not going to cry about it. God brought me home. And that’s the deal.”

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Alissa Sauer

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