GLEN Joseph’s mother claims Johnny Be Good was playing on the radio when he was born.
Whether that subliminally planted a Buddy in his head from the moment he drew breath, there was a good chance the theatre bug might not have bitten.
At school Glen represented his county and England in youth rugby and cricket and went on to become a professional RFU Rugby referee.
“Even now it’s odd seeing Toby Flood playing for England. I remember him being outside centre – how strangely our career paths have evolved.”
Then Glen, whose credits include Dreamboats & Petticoats, Footloose and Oklahoma, would probably have struggled to play Buddy with cauliflower ears and a wonky nose.
As it turns out he made his West End début in Buddy and has been asked to recreate the role worldwide, including the anniversary concert marking 50 years since his death.
He even went to the US to meet Buddy’s widow Maria Elena with director Matt Salisbury. “We wanted to find out something nobody had found out before.
“You have to go back to the people who knew him to get a picture of what the man was like.
“And they had these aspirations as a young couple, to take on the world, if you like. Maria was his crutch, his PA, his manager. She allowed him to be creative.”
YouTube has interviews Glen conducted with her.
“People want to find out more, but one of the most important factors in the whole evolution of that is the Buddy Holly Story and keeping it as traditional and accurate as we can to make sure it pays homage to the legend.
“One of the loveliest things is it’s music in its purest form. In a way it’s not a reaction to, maybe it’s a remedy to, all these reality TV shows where we’re fabricating stars, if you like.
“Back in the day it used to be outright talents, people chasing dreams, doing it off their own back. There wasn’t a platform like reality TV to propel you forward. If you didn’t put the graft in, you didn’t get success.”