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Bobby Fuller Four

During the early 1960s, he played in clubs and bars in El Paso, and he recorded on independent record labels in Texas with a constantly changing line-up. The only constant band members were Fuller and his younger brother, Randy Fuller (born on January 29, 1944, in Hobbs, New Mexico) on bass. Most of these independent releases (except two songs recorded at the studio of Norman Petty in Clovis), and an excursion to Yucca Records, also in New Mexico, were recorded in the Fullers' own home studio, with Fuller acting as the producer. He even built a primitive echo chamber in the back yard. The quality of the recordings, using a couple of microphones and a mixing board purchased from a local radio station, was so impressive that he offered the use of his "studio" to local acts for free so he could hone his production skills.

Fuller moved to Los Angeles in 1964 with his band The Bobby Fuller Four, and was signed to Mustang Records by producer Bob Keane, who was noted for discovering Ritchie Valens and producing many surf music groups. By this time, the group consisted of Fuller and his brother Randy on vocals/guitar and bass respectively, Jim Reese on guitar and DeWayne Quirico on drums.

At a time when the British Invasion and folk rock were the dominant genres in rock, Fuller stuck to Buddy Holly's style of classic rock and roll with Tex Mex flourishes. His recordings, both covers and originals, also reveal the influences of Eddie Cochran, The Beatles, Elvis Presley, Little Richard, and the Everly Brothers, as well as surf guitar. Less well known was Fuller's ability to emulate the reverb-laden surf guitar of Dick Dale and The Ventures. His first Top 40 hit, though not on the Hot 100, was the self-penned "Let Her Dance". His second hit, "I Fought the Law", peaked at #9 on the Hot 100 on 12–19 March 1966. The song was written by Sonny Curtis, who became a member of Buddy Holly's former group The Crickets after Holly's death. "I Fought The Law" was recorded by the line-up of the Fuller brothers, James Reese on guitar, and DeWayne Quirico on drums. The group's third Top 40 single was a cover of Holly's "Love's Made a Fool of You."

The Bobby Fuller Four appeared in the 1966 movie The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini, apparently backing up Nancy Sinatra on the song "Geronimo" and continuing to play during a pool-party scene.

Bobby Fuller (October 22, 1942 – July 18, 1966) was an American rock singer, songwriter, and guitar player best known for his single "I Fought the Law".
Just after "I Fought The Law" became a top ten hit, Bobby Fuller was found dead in his automobile, which was parked near his Los Angeles home. The police considered the death an apparent suicide, however, many people believe Fuller was murdered. The investigation was botched from the start. The crime scene was not secured and no fingerprints were obtained. A witness also claimed seeing a police officer throw a can of gasoline found at the scene into the trash. Fuller was found with multiple wounds all over his body and covered in gasoline leading many to speculate that the perpetrators fled before they could set the car on fire.Police later changed the cause of death to "Accidental asphyxiation" citing no evidence of foul play.Despite the official cause of death stated by authorities, rumors and speculation still surround Fuller's mysterious death.Fuller is buried in the Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles.

 

50s, 60s Hits

I Fought The Law

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