October 24, 2016


'Rubber Ball' Singer Bobby Vee Dead at 73

Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Bobby Vee, a pop singer with 25 albums to his name, has died at age 73, according to the Associated Press. The singer retired in 2011 after being diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease.

Vee, born Robert Velline in Fargo, N.D., is most famous for his songs "Take Good Care of My Baby" and "Rubber Ball" (the one that goes "I'm like a rubber ball / I come bouncing back to you"). Other famous songs include "The Night Has a Thousand Eyes" and "Devil or Angel."

Vee got his big break filling in for Buddy Holly after Holly's untimely death in a 1959 plane accident. Vee volunteered to fill Holly's spot at the Moorhead National Guard Armory. 

Bob Dylan played in Vee's band shortly and was the one that suggested he change his last name from Velline to Vee. His wife of 50 years, Barbara, passed away in 2015. They had four children. Son Jeff Velline told the AP that his father was "a person who brought joy all over the world. That was his job."