|The late, great Roy Orbison (from Wink, Texas) is one of my all-time favorite singer/musicians. In fact, I'd put him in my top five along with Elvis Presley, Marty Robbins, Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett (whom I saw perform at the Long Center earlier this year). |
Orbison had a great career in the 1950s and 1960s but then he quit recording for many years. During this time (approximately the late '70s), there used to be late night television commercials offering special deals on Orbison records and tapes (this was before compact discs). The announcer would say, at some point during the spiel, "Roy's gone now." For years, my buddies and I thought this meant that Orbison must have died since we weren't hearing any new songs by him on the radio. But if he had died, wouldn't we have heard about it? But that mellow voiced, late night television pitchman kept insisting that "Roy's gone now."
Of course, Roy Orbison was alive and maybe or maybe not well during that time. He made a spectacular comeback in the late 1980s as both a solo artist and as a founding member of the super group The Traveling Wilburys (along with Bob Dylan, Tom Petty and George Harrison). Orbison died in 1988 but he went out in a blaze of glory, his status as a rock and roll icon firmly secured.
But my question is, since Orbison was alive when those late night commercials were running, just where did Roy go?To the bathroom? The convenience store? On vacation? Can anyone answer this burning question?