The '60s were about neighbors and friends. Going to church on Sunday. Never having to lock your doors. It was about those black leather jackets - the cars - and the pom-poms. It was about a boy going fishing with his father or a father taking his son to a baseball game or the girls going to their pajama parties. It was about sharing money to take your friend to the show on the weekend. It was carrying your girlfriend's books after school.
I can still remember as a youngster coming home from school and singing in the alley and a neighbor shouting next door to my mother saying, "Hey Mary, I hear Bobby coming home!" Coming home from school to Mom's apple pie and those fresh buns coming out of the oven. We could hardly wait for the weekends to come so we could go to the dances and the roller rink. I remember the high school sock-hop dances that we still do today.
Yes, the '60s were about family - and it was about music. We got our first impressions from black and white TV and Elvis singing "Love Me Tender." I admired Elvis; he influenced all our lives, including mine. I remember all the Coca-Cola records and my first big commercial for them. "Things Go Better With Coke," which the radio stations played like a hit record.
The '60s were filled with dreams that we all had the opportunity to fulfill. You could not only dream about it, you could actually do it! You could shoot for the moon and be happy to land among the stars. I remember being on tour, on the bus with Dick Clark and all the American stars - and being in England on "Thank Your Lucky Stars" and then in Hollywood singing with the stars. I remember singing with Bill Haley and the Comets, The Coasters, Chubby Checker, Roy Orbison and all the good times I spent with so many artists. I remember recording songs in RCA's Studio B in Nashville with engineer Bill Porter, where many of the songs in this album were first recorded. It was a special time for all of us. That's the '60s I remember.
My life's been like a football game! On those occasions when I'd be running towards the goal line, going for the touchdown, and someone would knock the ball out of my hand, I'd get back up, and while they were fighting for the ball God would throw me another long pass. I'd take that lateral step, catch it, and run for the touchdown.
Former Canadian teen idol and singer Bobby Curtola has died. He was 73.
His death was announced Sunday in a statement from his children, who called Curtola "an amazing man who did so much for the people in this world."
A teen idol in Canada during the early '60s, Curtola also made his mark internationally in 1962 with the singles Fortune Teller and Aladdin.
Curtola, who was born in what is now Thunder Bay, Ont., was named to the Order of Canada in 1997.
He was also known for his charity work, particularly for children.
Up until early 2016, Curtola was living in Port Mouton, N.S. He moved after his partner Karyn Rochford died in a car crash in Nova Scotia in December 2015.
Curtola loved 'each and every' fan
In a statement issued through Curtola's Facebook and Twitter pages, Chris Curtola and Michael Curtola said their father loved his fans.
"He loved each and every one of you more than you will know, and never took for granted the life you gave him. He would want you to do something kind for one another today and each day," the statement said. "He would also want you to know he loves you, and that you have another angel watching over you."
In a statement, Bobby Curtola's sons Chris and Michael said their father "loved each and every one" of his fans. (The Canadian Press)
A number of those fans took to social media upon hearing of Curtola's death to remember the singer.
"I'm shocked and heartbroken, the man was an icon," tweeted one man.
"You were such a big piece of my early years. You were my first big crush," a woman said on Curtola's Facebook page.
Curtola's career began at 16, after he recorded his first hit single Hand in Hand With You.
He went on to establish the first coast to coast tour circuit in Canada, his website said. He released one of his biggest hits, Fortune Teller in 1962.
Curtola's work in the 1960s yielded 25 Canadian Gold singles and 12 Canadian Gold albums, according to a biography on his website.
In 1972 he was signed to a five-year contract in Las Vegas, making him the first Canadian entertainer to receive a long term deal in the city, according to his website.
Later in his career he began a relationship with The Princess Cruises, performing on ships in the Caribbean and Mediterranean for twelve years.
Curtola received a Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002 and a Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012, according to the Canadian Encyclopedia.