Rocky Burnett is 'Tired of Toein’ the Line'
I’ve always assumed the term “rockabilly” was derived from combining the words rock music and Hillbilly music. As Paul Harvey would say, here’s the rest of the story.
In the mid ‘50s, one of the pioneers of rock music was a band called Rock N Roll Trio that was 2/3 comprised of brothers Johnny and Dorsey Burnette. Both brothers sired sons in 1953: Johnny fathered Rocky and Dorsey fathered Billy.
When Rock N Roll Trio hit the road, the brothers decided to name their tour after their sons: The Rocky and Billy Show. As the tour progressed, promoters mistakenly started morphing the name and calling it The Rockabilly Show. Rock N Roll Trio broke up in 1957 and Johnny Burnett enjoyed solo success with several hits including You’re Sixteen, which became a No. 1 remake hit for Ringo Starr in 1974.
By 1980, Rocky was all grown up and scoring a Top 10 hit with Tired of Toein’ the Line. The video is a camp classic with Rocky’s all-girl band in colored lame’ outfits that predate Robert Palmer’s fashion model band by six years.
Cousin Billy also found fame in the music business as he replaced Lindsey Buckingham as guitarist for Fleetwood Mac between 1987 and 1993.
- Kevin Wuench, guest blogger