London couple make annual trek to Clovis Music Festival

By Emily Crowe
CNJ STAFF WRITER
ecrowe@cnjonline.com

From across the pond in London, Judy and Alan Nash have made their annual pilgrimage to eastern New Mexico to take part in the 26th annual Clovis Music Festival.

The couple, who fancy themselves American watchers, have been traveling stateside since 1971 and have visited each of the 50 states.

CNJ staff photo: Emily Crowe Judy and Alan Nash check out the Norman and Vi Petty Rock & Roll Museum upon their arrival in Clovis on Wednesday. The couple has traveled from London for the Clovis Music Festival since 2009.

CNJ staff photo: Emily Crowe
Judy and Alan Nash check out the Norman and Vi Petty Rock & Roll Museum upon their arrival in Clovis on Wednesday. The couple has traveled from London for the Clovis Music Festival since 2009.

They found Clovis by chance in 2008 when they were driving across Route 66, and decided to stop by the Norman Petty Studios on Seventh Street.

Judy Nash said they found out the studio tours were only available on a call-ahead basis, so the pair just drove to the parking lot to take a look — but then got a tour through a chance meeting with Dan Stoddard of Clovis, who had already lined a tour up for that afternoon.

That year, they picked up an autobiography by Peggy Sue Gerron, the subject of the Buddy Holly song, “Peggy Sue.” Stoddard said Gerron was coming through Clovis, and he’d mail them the book with her autograph. He kept his promise.

“We didn’t know anything about the festival then,” she said. “When we came back the following year, we met Peggy Sue.”

The Nashes say the welcome they get from people in Clovis keeps them coming back.

“Each year we come, we meet new peple,” Judy Nash said. “Everybody’s so friendly.”

When Chubby Checker was in town last year, the couple happened to be staying in the room next to his at the Days Inn hotel.

“The quote is, ‘I hope he’s not going to twist the night away because I want some sleep,’” joked Alan Nash.

While he said the festival has changed a bit since they initially started coming, Nash said they figured they would come anyway.

“We still go to see shows in London,” he said. “We don’t go see modern shows because we’re a bit out of touch with the modern.”

“We like hearing the new, up-and-coming country,” said Judy Nash. “We love the ’50s and ’60s music, but we also love country music as well.”

The Nashes said they are looking forward to the Desert Cruzers Run to Hillcrest car show Saturday, as well as Thursday’s elementary school performance.

“We just like the whole weekend,” said Judy Nash. “We’re looking forward to all of it.”

 

Music Festival Schedule

 

Today

• Norman & Vi Petty Rock & Roll Museum Tours

9 a.m.-4 p.m., 105 E. Grand

$5 admission

• Kids Rock  Rock & Roll Assembly

9 a.m., Mesa Elementary

• Tour of the Norman Petty Studio at 1313 W. Seventh St.

8 a.m.-12 p.m.

• Echoes from the 50s

Jam with George Tomsco of The Fireballs

10 a.m.-11:30 a.m., Norman Petty Studio

• Bill Medley and Travis LeDoyt as Elvis

7 p.m., Curry County Events Center

Doors open at 6 p.m. $30 in advance, $35 at the door, general admission; $35 in advance or $40 at the door, VIP seating

 

Saturday

• Norman & Vi Petty Rock & Roll Museum Tours

9 a.m.-4 p.m., 105 E. Grand

$5 admission

• Tour of the Norman Petty Studio

1313 W. 7th St.

8 a.m.-12 p.m.

• Echoes from the 50s

Jam with George Tomsco of The Fireballs

10 a.m.-11:30 a.m., Norman Petty Studio

• Andy Mason Children’s Concert

10 a.m., Clovis Carver Library

• Back to the 50s at Foxy’s Celebration

noon-2 p.m., Foxy’s Drive-In at 720 W. Seventh Street

• Buddy Holly’s Birthday Party

2-3 p.m., Norman and Vi Petty Rock & Roll Museum

Free admission

• Jack Russell’s Great White and Night Ranger

7 p.m., Curry County Events Center

Doors open at 6 p.m. $30 in advance, $35 at the door, general admission; $35 in advance or $40 at the door, VIP seating

 

Sunday

• One Lord, One Faith concert

6:30 p.m., Marshall Auditorium

Free admission in commemoration of 9/11