Robert Thomas Velline April 30th 1943 – October 24th 2016

bobby-vee-photoLate 1960 after a couple of songs had barely inched their way into the national charts it appeared that Liberty was losing faith when a radio station in Pittsburgh, PA began playing the back side of what might have been Bobby’s last single. The song was “Devil or Angel.” It had been a R&B it a few years earlier by a group called The Clovers and was a favorite of Snuffy Garrett, the young producer responsible for signing Bobby to Liberty. Following the records success in Pittsburgh, “Devil or Angel” went on to reach the top ten in city after city.

By the end of 1960 it peaked at number 6 in the Billboard charts, as well as reaching the top 20 on the R & B charts. Liberty Records exercised its option and signed Bobby to a five year contract.

Other hits included “Take Good care of my baby” 1961 & “The Night has a thousand eyes” 1962.

In 2011, following a shocking diagnosis of early Alzheimer’s Disease, the decision was made to retire. Bobby pulled back from touring and had a stretch of retirement shows including Joetown Rocks in St. Joseph, an annual event he helped to create.

For much of 2011, he concentrated on his two loves – his music and his family.  He loaded up the family and made a cross country RV trip to Tucson, Arizona to move into their new winter home.  And as part of the healing process, he and his family made music.  They recorded family favorites and realized their fans would want to hear these sessions, so a new CD “The Adobe Sessions” is now available.

From the white socks and ducktail days of “Susie Baby” to the high tech digital present, Bobby continued to grow as an artist and entertainer building a loyal following of fans and friends alike.