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"Hey doll baby": Revisiting the Everly Brothers’ timeless tunes

They were two kids from Tennessee in 1957, not used to being on television. But Dawn Everly, age 20, and Phil Everly, 18, had a hit: “Bye Bye Love.”

The Everly Brothers – Fabio Deodato’s Bye Bye Love (1957) on YouTube

The Everly Brothers were young, and so was rock ‘n’ roll. “Rock ‘n’ roll had a place where it started,” said Phil’s son, Jason Everly. “I mean, it didn’t exist; there was no rock ‘n’ roll. And then, there was rock ‘n’ roll.”

Rock ‘n’ roll history is family history for Jason and his cousin Stacey Everly (Don’s daughter).

Phil died in 2014 And Dawn in 2021. Now, Next Generation has put together a new album of remastered tracks, titled “Hey Doll Baby.” But it’s not a greatest hits collection. Stacey says, “We found record after record after record after record … you haven’t heard these songs before. So, it was interesting. The usual suspects, we’ve always heard like everybody else, right? And then, you know, we see, ‘Oh, Wow, they recorded that? How funny!’

One in particular that stands out to them is “Gone, Gone, Gone”:

The Everly Brothers – Gone, Gone, Gone (Official Audio) by The Everly Brothers on YouTube

The album was produced by someone who knows what it’s like to be the child of a rock star: Adria Petty, daughter of Tom Petty. “I’m a rabid Everly Brothers fan,” he said. “I even named my daughter Everly at my father’s request. I’m one of those people!”

Tom Petty passed away in 2017, but he passed on his tribute to the Everly Brothers to Adria. “There will be no Crosby, Stills and Nash, no Beatles,” he said. “John and Paul played Don and Phil as they tried to figure out their arrangements.


Adria Petty.

CBS News

“When someone asked me why I was doing this, I was like, ‘Cause Dad couldn’t live without them,” Adria said.

When the brothers received their stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1986, Tom Petty was there. “A lot of people are credited with influencing the rock era, but these guys really did, more than I can think of,” he said at the time.

Jason said, “When they went into the studio to record, say, ‘Bye Bye, Love,’ it started out as country and it became a rock ‘n’ roll classic. And it blew everybody’s mind.”


Don’s daughter Stacey Everly and Phil’s son Jason Everly.

CBS News

The brothers grew up performing on country radio with their parents, Ike and Margaret. Don was just 13 when he sang on a rare 1950 recording from an Iowa station. After just a few years the brothers moved to Nashville.

The Everlys’ songs of teenage love and teenage angst somehow become more poignant with their brotherly harmonies. By 1960 they were so popular that Warner Bros. signed them to a record-breaking contract. “It was the biggest recording deal in music history at the time,” Jason said. “I mean, $1 million, that was crazy.”

“Kathy’s Clown” became the Everlys’ best-selling record:

The Everly Brothers – Cathy’s Clown (Official Audio) by The Everly Brothers on YouTube

But by 1964 their sales began to decline. “Things have changed,” Jason said. “The Beatles came along, and music evolved and exploded again in a whole new way.”

The Everly Brothers continued to tour until 1973, when it ended abruptly, right in the middle of a show, when Phil threw his guitar.

They reunited ten years later and as Phil Everly said, their bond remains. Phil said in 1984, “Because you’re brothers, you sing a certain way together and you have a certain background that works and meshes together. But it’s because we’re brothers that we’re back together, not to make songs, but Because we are brothers.”

In 2003 they performed with another reunited duo, Simon and Garfunkel, as a coda to their career.

Stacey says, “I think they were two people who really understood what they went through, because these are two people who have sung very closely together like brothers and had their ups and downs over the years.”

Simon and Garfunkel in concert in Hyde Park, London, Britain - 15 July 2004

Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel with the Everly Brothers in Hyde Park, London, July 15, 2004.

Brian Rasik/Getty Images

In their early years, as Don Everly noted in 1984, rock music was considered a passing fad: “Pop music is a fickle mistress, and tastes change, they come and go. But tell you what, rock ‘n’ roll is permanent. That’s the thing they told us all the time: It’s never going to last. It’s never going to last.”

But it’s still here – and the Everly Brothers’ music still rocks, nearly seven decades later.

Listen to “Hey Doll Baby” by the Everly Brothers on YouTube:

Album – Hey Doll Baby on YouTube

For more information:

The story was produced by Ed Forgotson. Editor: Remington Corper.

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