A little history of the Summertime Blues

It is an enduring tune about the summertime blues, but the artist responsible for the song could not outrun some blues of his own.

The Calgary Eyeopener’s Chris dela Torre looks at the history of Eddie Cochran's popular song

Share your favourite version of Summertime Blues, or just your favourite summer song, in the comments below. (Nikos Koutoulas/Flickr)

It's an enduring tune about the "summertime blues," but the artist responsible for the song couldn't outrun some blues of his own.

For the second instalment of his weekly series about popular summer songs, the CBC's Chris dela Torre explored Eddie Cochran's Summertime Blues.

The song, released in 1958, was the first in a string of rockabilly hits for Cochran, whose short-lived career had a lasting impact on rock and roll. Summertime Blues went on to enjoy an enduring legacy, but Cochran himself wouldn't have the same luck. While touring the UK in 1960, Cochran died in a car accident. He was 21-years-old.

Summer anthems

Every Thursday this season Chris dela Torre will look at the history behind a summer song at 8:20 a.m. MT on 99.1 or online.

Cochran is just one of several 1950s era rockers to die while travelling on tour. His friends, Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens, died in a plane crash with fellow artist the Big Bopper while on tour in 1959.

"As the story goes, this really jilted Eddie Cochran," says dela Torre.

"He started to feel like he was going to die young, too. He started talking about how he wanted to stop touring and focus on making records."

Summertime Blues has been covered by a many artists, including The Beach Boys, The Who, Rush, Olivia Newton-John and Joan Jett.