Bobby Rydell, the ’60s teen pop icon and singer of ‘Volare’, has died aged 79.
According to the GuardianRydell passed away yesterday (April 5) of pneumonia complications not related to COVID at a hospital in his hometown of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Rydell was most famous for his pop hits in the 1950s and ’60s, and was a star of the teen pop craze of the time.
His most notorious tracks include ‘We Got Love’, ‘Swingin’ School’ and ‘Wild One’. A track of his, which is officially unnamed but believed to be ‘Forget Him’ – was also the inspiration behind The Beatles‘ massive early ’60s hit ‘She Loves You’, according to Paul McCartney.
Rydell, a drummer as well as a singer, got his break aged just nine when he appeared on talent show Paul Whiteman’s TV Teen Clubbefore teaming up in the band Rocco and the Saints with fellow Philadelphia native Frankie Avalon.
He continued to tour for the rest of his life after the teen pop craze died down, and also flirted with an acting career, appearing alongside Dick Van Dyke in the 1963 film Bye Bye Birdie.
Leading the tributes to Rydell online is author Stephen King, who wrote: “Bobby Rydell passed on. What a shame! He was the most talented of the 50s and early 60s teen idols. Well…maybe a tie with Bobby Darin.”
Bobby Rydell passed on. What a shame! He was the most talented of the 50s and early 60s teen idols. Well…maybe a tie with Bobby Darin.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) April 6, 2022
Deana Martin, American singer and daughter of the legendary Dean, added: “I am absolutely heartbroken at the loss of my dear Pallie Bobby Rydell. He was an incredible entertainer and absolutely one of the funniest people I’ve ever known. Rest well Bobby. We love you, Deana Martin.”
I am absolutely heartbroken at the loss of my dear Pallie Bobby Rydell. He was an incredible entertainer and absolutely one of the funniest people I’ve ever known. Rest well Bobby. We love you, Deana Martin pic.twitter.com/SxsBZjuYDO
– Deana Martin (@DeanaMartin_) April 5, 2022
See a range of tributes to Rydell below.
RIP Bobby Rydell. South Philly legend. Got to know him in later years- great guy, huge Philly sports fan, and kept a lifetime friendship with Ann Margret from his Bye Bye Birdie days. pic.twitter.com/03KhOi34TY
— Eric Cohen (@ebcinpa) April 5, 2022
— Kin Shriner (@kinshriner) April 6, 2022
With Bobby Rydell in March of 2017- a music icon and teen heartthrob and a great American . May he continue to serenade beyond the pearly gates. Rip 🙏🏻 pic.twitter.com/cbu8XZmpnu
— Jeanine Pirro (@JudgeJeanine) April 6, 2022
Farewell Bobby Rydell 🎙 pic.twitter.com/UT5cxJUdqC
— Vintage Los Angeles (@alisonmartino) April 6, 2022