Flashback: Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, & ‘The Big Bopper’ Remembered (2023)

It was 64 years ago today (February 3rd, 1959) thatBuddy Holly,Ritchie Valens,andJ.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardsondied in a plane crash after a performance in Clear Lake, Iowa. The three had been performing along withDion & The Belmontsas part of theWinter Dance Party Tour, which would cover 24 cities in a short three-week period from January 23rd to February 15th. Holly, who had parted ways with longtime backing group theCricketsthe previous year, was backed up by a then-unknownWaylon Jenningson bass,Carl Bunchon drums, andTommy Allsupon lead guitar.

Dion DiMuccisays that although the shows were always hot, his favorite moments from the tour were jamming on the near freezing bus on the way to the next town:["Well, we used to play in the back of the bus — Ritchie Valens, myself and Buddy Holly. The Big Bopper didn't join in, he sat in the front with his beer. But we would rock in the back of the bus. You talk about tapes — I wish there was a tape going on."] SOUNDCUE(:14 OC: . . . tape going on)

Throughout the tour, the musicians' bus was either breaking down or often without heat. At one point, it was so cold that the tour's drummer developed frostbite, resulting in the Belmonts'Angelo D'Aleo— as well as Valens — serving double-duty by filling in on drums. When the tour finally arrived at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa on February 2nd, 1959, Holly had made plans to fly out to the next city directly after the show, rather than brave the unheated 430-mile bus trip to Moorhead, Minnesota. He had hoped to get to their next stop with time to rest and do his laundry.

Dion says that the time he spent with Holly has left a deep and lasting impression on him, and he remembers him as a man wise beyond his years:["I spent two weeks with him. And he was very mature for his age. I mean, I was 19 — he was 22. He was a verydecisiveguy. I don't know if it was his upbringing, but I couldn't make decisions that fast. I mean. . . Well, he rented aplane! At 22 years old, 'O.K. listen' — y'know, he was recruiting people — 'Let's fly out and we'll just split it.' But you think of a 22-year-old chartering a plane, that was his kind of personality."] SOUNDCUE(:27 OC: . . . kind of personality)

Holly chartered a plane to fly him and his band to Fargo, North Dakota, near Moorhead. Jennings and Allsup gave up their seats to Richardson and Valens. Dion was supposed to be on the plane rather than Valens, but balked when he heard that his share would be a whopping $36 — theexactamount of his parents' monthly rent back home in the Bronx. When Holly learned that Jennings wasn't going to fly, he said, "Well, I hope your old bus freezes up!" Jennings responded, "Well, I hope your plane crashes!" This friendly banter would haunt Jennings for years. Valens, who was sick, told Allsup, "I'll flip you for the remaining seat." On the toss of a coin, Allsup lost the seat — but won the rest of his life.

The red Beechcraft Bonanza took off from Mason City, Iowa, ten miles east of Clear Lake, at around 1:50 a.m. on February 3rd, 1959. A cold wind immediately gave way to snow, which drastically reduced visibility. The ground was already blanketed in white. The pilot may have been inexperienced with the instrumentation.

(Video) The Day the Music Died: Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper

The plane never made it to Minnesota.

Minutes after takeoff, one wing hit the ground and the small plane corkscrewed over and over. The three young stars and pilotRoger Petersondied immediately on impact. Over the years there has been speculation as to whether a gun was accidentally fired inside the plane, disabling or killing the pilot. The most logical explanation suggests that encased in a sea of white snow, Peterson simply flew the plane into the ground.

At the time of the crash, Buddy Holly was 22 years old. Ritchie Valens was 17, and the Big Bopper was 28.

Buddy Holly was born in Lubbock, Texas on September 7th, 1936 asCharles Hardin Holley. Although many of his greatest hits from the 1950s, such as "Peggy Sue," "Not Fade Away," "Every Day," "Maybe Baby" "Well… Alright," and "That'll Be The Day" have stood the test of time, Buddy's ultimate influence was not as a performer but as a songwriter. Buddy Holly helped spearhead a whole new genre, serving as a main inspiration for the next generation of rock songwriters including, most importantly,John Lennon&Paul McCartney,Gerry Goffin&Carole King,Mick Jagger&Keith Richards,Paul Simon,Pete Townshend,Brian Wilson&Mike Love,Ray Davies, andBob Dylan.

Paul McCartney has long cited Buddy Holly as his main songwriting influence went on to purchase Holly's songwriting catalogue. He recalled the scene for him on February 3rd, 1959:["I remember being in my old school playground, getting there in the morning, and we used to have a little thing called 'Smoker's Corner,' where those of us who were about 15, 16, or something, would, y'know, think we were real hoods, smoke a quick Woodbine (cigarette) before we went to class early in the morning. And someone had aDaily Mirror— and there, on the headline: 'Buddy Holly Died.' Oh my God. The rug was pulled out from underneath us. It was quite shocking. It's one of those events where people can remember where they were."] SOUNDCUE(:28 OC: . . . where they were)

Graham Nashrecalls how he and fellowHolliesco-founderAllan Clarkedealt with the news of Holly's sudden death:["I remember being on the street corner with my friend Allan Clarke, who later formed the Hollies with me — my best friend at the time — crying our eyes out. I mean we lost — not only Buddy, but the 'Big Bopper' and Ritchie Valens. Y'know, I wasn't as much into their music, although I knew it, but I wastotallyinvolved in Buddy's music and we were crying our eyes out."] SOUNDCUE(:22 OC: . . . our eyes out)

We asked Nash what he made of Holly upon first hearing him in 1957:["Unbelievable. He was one of us, he was a rock star that had glasses. It wasn't a sex thing, y'know, like Elvis (Presley) was with his swiveling hips. Buddy Holly touched people's hearts in how simple his music was and how attainable it was for everybody. I mean, who doesn't know a Buddy Holly song? I was looking the other day atThe Rolling Stone 500 Best Songs Of All Timeand he's gotfourof them in there! We called ourselves theHolliesfor God sake. And hedefinitelywithout question influenced the Beatles."] SOUNDCUE(:30 OC: . . . influenced the Beatles)

(Video) What Really Happened the Day the Music Died

Paul McCartney has without a doubt been the biggest champion for Buddy Holly's music over the decades:["It's great music, Buddy's. It's very evocative for those of us who were around then. Y'know, it really sums up the period. And a lot of it still plays now, still sounds good."] SOUNDCUE(:08 OC: . . . still sounds good)

McCartney recalled that apart from songwriting, Buddy Holly actually inspired him and John Lennon in other ways:["The thing about Buddy was, whereas Elvis (Presley) was this unattainable, gorgeous, god; Buddy was the boy next door. And I remember John being particularly pleased — he could now put his glasses on. 'Cause John had big horn-rimmed glasses that he always had to take off when we played or when there were girls around. John, of course couldn't see a bloody thing — he really was very short-sighted — so, he was very pleased when Buddy came around, 'cause he (could) actually put his horn-rims on and felt like a dude."] SOUNDCUE(:25 OC: . . . like a dude)

Back in February 1975 John Lennon premiered his covers album,Rock N' Rollon New York City's WNEW and shed light on re-recording a nearly-note perfect cover of Buddy Holly's "Peggy Sue":["In fact, when I was doing it, I did Deja vu. It came back to me, I didn't even have to read the words, which I did on most of them. And this I was singing when I was 16, or something. And it's virtually how Buddy did it — but not quite as good, but it'll do!"] SOUNDCUE(:11 OC: . . . but it'll do)

One of McCartney's first major publishing acquisitions for his company MPL Communications was the Buddy Holly catalogue. Although McCartney has been outspoken regarding the use of his Beatles songs in advertisements and movies, he admits that its a slippery slope for him when dealing with Buddy's legendary tunes:["It really is very difficult. With the Buddy Holly stuff I do have the right to sort of let people use it, 'cause we're the publishers of that, we can do it. So I think, generally, I don't like it — particularly with the Beatles stuff. I don't know, there might be people out there who say that you shouldn't do it with Buddy. I don't know, I've done it once or twice with him, but I don't really like doing it, I must admit. But you get your advisers saying, 'Okay, so you're going to turn down all that money, are you?' It's a very difficult decision, y'know? If I was being purist, I'd say, 'No one should do it.' I mean, my heart says that, but, y'know, you're not always as pure as you think."] SOUNDCUE(:35 OC: . . . as you think)

At the Winter Dance Party's January 31st, 1959 stop at Duluth, Minnesota's National Guard Armory, a 17-year-old Bob Dylan was standing pressed up against the stage. At the 1998 Grammy Awards ceremony, while accepting hisAlbum of the YearGrammy forTime Out Of Mind,Dylan paid tribute to Holly and spoke about the only time he saw his hero perform:["And I just wanted to say that one time when I was 16 or 17-years-old, I went to see Buddy Holly play, and I was three feet away from him. And he looked at me. I just have some kind of feeling that he was — I don't know how or why — but, I know he was with us all the time we were making this record in some kind of way."] SOUNDCUE(:19 OC: . . . kind of way)

Mick Jagger explained Buddy Holly's influence on all the future British Invasion rockers:["Every English person you talk to, from my generation, at least, will tell you that Buddy Holly was — he was a big influence as asongwriter. And he wrote all these songs in a very short period of time, and they're all very simple. And he was very big in England, I think he toured only once; I saw him on stage. But he was averybig influence."] SOUNDCUE(:18 OC: . . . very big influence)

Keith Richards recalled that Buddy Holly was the prototype for the rock musician who could write, record, and perform their own material:["The beauty of Buddy's thing to me is the self-containedness of it all. He didn't need anybody else, he didn't need, y'know, songs, but just put it all together. He had a great band — God knows how he got it together, but he was the first one to do it. I mean, until the Beatles turned up and Bob Dylan, who strengthened, y'know, writing your own material, nobody was in that position — Elvis (Presley) hardly wrote a song in his life. Jerry Lee Lewis has written one, all the other guys didn't do it. And it was inthatrespect, Buddy was streets ahead of his time."] SOUNDCUE(:29 OC . . . of his time)

(Video) The Day the Music Died | Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, Big Bopper Crash Site, Surf Ballroom, & Runway

All three fallen stars, Holly, Valens, and Richardson, became far bigger in death than during their short careers. Although talented in his own right, Valens — who had only one double A-sided hit with "La Bamba" and "Donna" — was not yet a major star on Holly's level. The "Big Bopper" — who in 1959 had written and producedJohnny Preston's 1960 Number One hit "Running Bear" — was a novelty act whose day job was as an outlandish disc jockey. Although Valens' career might have gone on to reach further heights, it's more than likely that "The Bopper" would have remained more a rock "personality" than a musical force for the ages. Dying along with Holly made them both rock immortals.

Several films featuring the tragedy have been made over the years, including 1978's Oscar-nominated, but historically inaccurate,The Buddy Holly Story, andLa Bamba, the 1987 biopic which chronicled Valens' life.

According to several sources, including Jennings, Holly's post-tour plans were to reconvene with the Crickets — drummerJerry"J.I."Allisonand bassistJoe B. Mauldin —and carry on with Allsup on lead guitar. Holly was also planning on starting his own record label — Prism Records — and signing Jennings as its first artist. Just prior to his 2022 death,J.I. Allison recalled the deal that he and Holly made prior to him moving to New York City in 1958:["The last time I saw Buddy as a matter of fact he said, 'O.K., if you're not gonna move to New York, y'all just work as 'the Crickets' and I'll work as 'Buddy Holly' and if it doesn't work out for either one of us we'll get back together, okay?' And we said 'Fine.' And Waylon told me that Buddy was talking to him on that last tour and said 'I'm going to get J.I. and Joe B. back.'"] SOUNDCUE(:17 OC: . . . Joe B. back)

Buddy Holly's widow,Maria Elena, who miscarried their child shortly after his death, recalls their time living in New York City as being an eye-opener for him as he explored the Greenwich Village folk scene and jammed most mornings with musicians at Washington Square Park, which was practically right outside his apartment building the Brevoort:["He really liked the excitement, and at that time that's where — as they say, where the action was. New York at that time was for musicians. On top of that, that's where I'm from. That's where the Brevoort is on Fifth Avenue, close to Washington Square Park. And that was something that Buddy really enjoyed, because that's where he saw that he could start a new career."] SOUNDCUE(:39 OC: . . . a new career)

She remembers Buddy performing for free, almost daily, with local musicians at the Park:["Right in the fountain — y'know, they'd have the benches there in the morning. We'd walk to Washington Square Park, and that's where a lot of musicians congregated. Bud would sit with a guitar and start playing, and then all of a sudden you see all these people gravitating towards him. They'd say, 'Are you Buddy Holly — 'That'll Be The Day'?' And then. . . little by little, we did that every day."] SOUNDCUE(:27 OC: . . . that every day)

TheEverly Brothersfrequently hit the road with the other forefathers of rock n' roll, and both Don and Phil Everly struck up an immediate and close relationship with Buddy Holly. The late-Phil Everly, who was a pallbearer at Holly's funeral in 1959, recalled the scene of rock's earliest tours in an upcoming documentary calledInventing Rock N' Roll, produced by Everly Films:["The first time I met Buddy Holly was. . . Don and I joined abigpackage tour, y'know. . . I believe it was the Fats Domino tour.Everybodywas on it — it was something. And, what it was, everybody was down in the, like, locker rooms, like at a sports event y'know, with a — everybody had a hook (laughs), y'know, for your wardrobe, and we all sat on benches and we were all in the same room and that's when we first met him. I was 18 at the time, so it was like going to college. Everybody was a contemporary and all that. It was like being in a fraternity (laughs), it was really, really something. We rode buses together on the tour and just was the best of. . . I always call it the golden age of rock."] SOUNDCUE(:41 OC: . . . age of rock)

Over the years, Buddy Holly's legend has continued to grow, with his music paving the way for the British Invasion and the burgeoning singer/songwriter movement of the late-'60s and the early-'70s. In 1971Don McLean's Number One hit "American Pie" opened with the narrator learning the news of Holly's tragic death, coining the phrase "The Day The Music Died."

(Video) The Day The Music Died • Tribute To Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens & The Big Bopper

It's come to light in recent years that Ritchie Valens had a direct effect on the Southern, California rock scene of the 1960's. In the late-'50s Valens gave guitar lessons to Hawthorne'sJohn Maus. The now departed Maus — who later changed his name toJohn Walkerupon forming theWalker Brothers— in turn gave guitar lessons to futureBeach Boys'Carl WilsonandDavid Marks.

Buddy Holly's music has lived on through various reissues over the years as well, with Paul McCartney buying his music copyrights in 1976 and starting the annual "Buddy Holly Week" every September 7th on Holly's birthday.

The Crickets — led by J.I. Allison andSonny Curtis— finally called it quits in 2016, the year after bassist Joe B. Mauldin's death.

The late-J.I. Allison told us that even now his biggest wish is to spruce up Holly's final recordings that he recorded in his New York City apartment, in the weeks before he died. The 14 tunes include "Peggy Sue Got Married," "Crying, Waiting, Hoping" and others that have been overdubbed by additional musicians over the years:["I think it would be great fun to go do that, and, and I think those are some of the best songs Buddy ever wrote. The tape machine he did that on was the same machine that we recorded 'That'll Be The Day' and 'Peggy Sue' and, you know, all those things(on). The quality of 'The Apartment Tapes' was great!"]SOUNDCUE(:13 OC: . . . tapes was great!)

Recently released isBuddy Holly With The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra: True Love Ways. The collection, which comes on the heels of similar sets by theBeach Boys,Elvis Presley,Roy Orbison, andAretha Franklin, features a dozen of Buddy Holly's classic hits utilizing his original vocals with newly overdubbed backing tracks. The album is available now digitally and for pre-order on CD and two-LP vinyl.

The tracklisting forBuddy Holly With The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra: True Love Waysis:"True Love Ways," "It Doesn't Matter Anymore," "Everyday," "Heartbeat," "Raining In My Heart," "Oh Boy!," "Rave On," "Words Of Love," "That'll Be The Day," "Peggy Sue," "Moondreams," and "Maybe Baby."


What was Waylon Jennings last words? ›

Supposedly, after hearing about the seat switch, Holly told Jennings, "Well, I hope your ol' bus freezes up." In an eerie response that allegedly haunted Jennings until his death in 2002, he replied, "Well, I hope your ol' plane crashes."

Did Donna go to Ritchie Valens funeral? ›

The woman, Diane Olson, showed up at Valens' funeral and told his family they'd been engaged.

Did Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens died in the same plane crash? ›

Rising American rock stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson are killed when their chartered Beechcraft Bonanza plane crashes in Iowa a few minutes after takeoff from Mason City on a flight headed for Moorhead, Minnesota. Investigators blamed the crash on bad weather and pilot error.

Who died in the plane crash along with Ritchie Valens? ›

CLEAR LAKE, Iowa (KTTC) – Friday marks 64 years since Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper died in a plane crash just north of Clear Lake. The three were leaving a concert at the Surf Ballroom.

Who gave up their seat to Ritchie Valens? ›

Richardson, suffering from flu, swapped places with Jennings, taking his seat on the plane, while Allsup lost his seat to Valens on a coin toss.
The Day the Music Died.
DateFebruary 3, 1959
SummaryCrashed following loss of control in near-IMC
SiteGrant Township, Cerro Gordo County, Iowa, U.S. 43°13′13.3″N 93°22′53.1″W
11 more rows

Was Waylon Jennings a heavy drinker? ›

I never did drink. That used to be one of my big brags. I would sit around and say, “I don't drink and I never did drink.” There I'd be just stoned out of my gourd on cocaine, but I was real proud of myself because I never did drink.

Did Ritchie Valens buy a house for his mom? ›

Ritchie came home a hero. His fame bought his mother a house on Remington Street, and he gave free concerts at his old schools, San Fernando High and Pacoima Junior High. The Pacoima concert on Dec. 10, 1958, was recorded on classmate Gail Smith's tape recorder and later released by Del-Fi.

How old was Ritchie Valens when he died in the plane crash? ›

At just 17 years old, Valens was the youngest to die in the crash. The tragedy inspired singer Don McLean to write his 1971 hit "American Pie", immortalizing February 3 as "The Day the Music Died". Valens's remains were buried at San Fernando Mission Cemetery in Mission Hills, Los Angeles, California.

What happened to Bob after Ritchie Valens died? ›

Bob Morales was 21 years old when his famous younger brother, Ritchie Valens died in a plane crash. After his brother's death, Morales went on a downward spiral after turning to alcohol. After his recovery, he successfully beat prostate cancer.

What happened to Patsy Cline plane? ›

Sixty years ago today (March 5, 1963) was a tragic day for the country music community: It was on that date that Patsy Cline, along with Hawkshaw Hawkins and Cowboy Copas, was killed in a plane crash while on her way home from a benefit concert in Kansas City, Kan.

Why did Patsy Cline's plane crash? ›

To this day, the cause of the plane crash was blamed on the inexperience of the pilot paired with poor flying conditions. Patsy Cline, who was only 30 years old during that time, was survived by her husband, Charlie Dick, along with her two children, Julie and Randy, who were respectively four and two then.

Did Ritchie Valens predict his death? ›

He reportedly said, "That's the first time I've ever won anything in my life." Just minutes later, on February 3, 1959, the plane crashed into the frozen ground, killing all on impact. Valens was only 17 years old.

Who else was supposed to be on the plane with Buddy Holly? ›

The plane was to take three members of the tour to Fargo, North Dakota, a neighboring city to Moorhead. Valens and Holly guitarist Tommy Allsup flipped a coin for a spot on the plane. Sick with the flu, Richardson asked Waylon Jennings, Holly's bassist at the time, for his seat on the plane.

What other singers died in plane crashes? ›

11 Legendary Artists Who Died Tragically in a Plane Crash
  • Glenn Miller (1944) Born in 1904, Miller died in 1944 after his military plane fell from the sky. ...
  • – 3. Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens (1959) ...
  • Patsy Cline (1963) ...
  • Jim Reeves (1964) ...
  • Otis Redding (1967) ...
  • Jim Croce (1973) ...
  • Lynyrd Skynyrd (1977)
Jan 9, 2023

Who was in the plane with Patsy Cline when she died? ›

She was joined by fellow country music stars Hawkshaw Hawkins and Cowboy Copas, as well as her manager and the pilot, Randy Hughes. Wikimedia CommonsPatsy Cline died at the age of 30 on March 5, 1963.

Were Buddy Holly and Waylon Jennings friends? ›

Buddy Holly and Waylon Jennings, two Texans, grew incredibly close friends having met randomly while both were dining in a restaurant as teenagers.

What song is about Buddy Holly plane crash? ›

On February 3, 1959, a single-engine plane crashed in a corn field near Clear Lake, Iowa, killing music stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. Richardson. News of the fatal crash hit Don McLean especially hard—so much so that, years later, it inspired him to write and record the 1971 hit “American Pie.”

Where is Ritchie Valens buried? ›

A photo of singer Ritchie Valens' grave at the San Fernando Mission Cemetery, near Los Angeles, California. His life story was told in the movie La Bamba.

Who is the heaviest drinker? ›

Andre Roussimoff was labeled "The Greatest Drunk on Earth" after drinking 119 12-US-fluid-ounce (350 ml) beers in six hours.

Did Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings get along? ›

Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings were the best of friends, and they collaborated on hits more than once. One of the pair's biggest hits was "Good Hearted Woman," and they finished it in an unlikely setting — in the middle of one of Nelson's infamous private poker games.

How much was Ritchie Valens estate worth? ›

Ritchie Valens was an American singer, songwriter, and guitarist who had a net worth equal to $500 thousand at the time of his death in 1959, after adjusting for inflation. Ritchie Valens was among the early pioneers of rock and roll and Chicano rock.

Is Ritchie Valens buried with his mother? ›

Ritchie Valens is buried with his mother at The San Fernando Mission Cemetery in Mission Hills, CA.

Where is Ritchie Valens Donna today? ›

Donna now lives in a small community near Sacramento with her third husband. She has two daughters.

Who didn't get on the plane when Buddy Holly died? ›

Buddy Holly death: Waylon Jennings gave up seat on plane before crash.

What female singer died in a plane crash? ›

On August 25, 2001, Aaliyah died at the age of 22 in an airplane accident in the Bahamas, when the overloaded aircraft she was traveling in crashed shortly after takeoff, killing all nine on board.

How long did Ritchie Valens career last? ›

Ritchie Valens was a Mexican-American singer, songwriter and guitarist. A rock and roll pioneer and a forefather of the Chicano rock movement, Valens' recording career lasted only eight months.

Was Bob jealous of Ritchie? ›

Keane helps him by giving him a little vodka to calm his nerves during the flight. Bob soon becomes jealous of Ritchie's success and drinks excessively while screaming and shouting at his family, wanting to see his daughter.

How did Ritchie Valens career end? ›

His short career ended when he died at age 17 in the 1959 plane crash in which Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper also perished. Valens grew up in suburban Los Angeles in a family of Mexican and possibly Native American descent.

Is Ritchie Valens brother Bob still living? ›

Bob Morales, the older brother of rock 'n' roll pioneer Ritchie Valens, has died. Morales was portrayed by actor Esai Morales in the 1987 film “La Bamba,” which followed the life and career of Valens, who died a plane crash in 1959.

Who raised Patsy Cline's daughter? ›

After Cline's death, her mother, Hilda Hensley, took her children as she wished on her will. Hensley continued living in Winchester, Virginia, where she raised Julie and Randy for the first couple of years. Julie and Randy moved back to Nashville when their father, Charlie, remarried in 1965, to singer Jamey Ryan.

Did Dolly Parton know Patsy Cline? ›

I remember seeing Patsy Cline [at the Grand Ole Opry],” Parton said in an article published by the Tennessean. “I was young, and it was after she had had a car wreck and she'd gotten scarred up,” she explained.

What was Patsy Cline worth when she died? ›

Patsy Cline was an American country music singer who had a net worth equal to $10 million at the time of her death in 1963, after adjusting for inflation. Known for her rich tone and contralto voice, Patsy Cline was one of the most successful and influential vocalists of the 20th century.

How bad was Patsy Cline's car accident? ›

When Cline was 29, she was nearly killed when she and her brother Sam were involved in a car crash on June 14. The head-on collision threw Cline into the windshield and left her in the hospital with severe injuries for a month.

What happened to Patsy Cline's husband when she died? ›

Patsy Cline's widower, Charlie Dick, who was married to the country icon at the time of her death in 1963, passed away in his sleep on 8 November at the age of 81. The couple had been married for nearly six years when Cline's life was prematurely taken by a plane crash at the age of just 30.

How did Loretta Lynn take Patsy Cline's death? ›

In this case, it just wasn't possible considering Cline died in a plane crash. “I stood by the casket, wishing I could see Patsy one more time, but the casket was closed,” Lynn remembered. “The plane crash had been too awful to leave it open.”

What was Ritchie Valens biggest fear? ›

Debris from the crash fell on the school, killing three students--one of whom was Valens' best friend. He developed an intense fear of flying after that, and would fly only when absolutely necessary.

Did Waylon Jennings gave up his seat to Buddy Holly? ›

Waylon Jennings was a member of Buddy Holly's band on Feb. 3, 1959, when he gave up his seat in a small plane scheduled to take Holly and some other musicians on to the next show. The plane crashed, killing all aboard, including Ritchie Valens and J.P. Richardson, “the Big Bopper.”

Was Waylon Jennings friends with Johnny Cash? ›

Waylon Jennings and Johnny Cash—long-time friends who traced their intertwined stories all the way back to when they shared an apartment together just outside of Nashville—were as close as ever, and sharing the stage as part of the supergroup The Highwaymen with Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.

Who was supposed to be on the plane with Patsy Cline? ›

Sixty years ago today (March 5, 1963) was a tragic day for the country music community: It was on that date that Patsy Cline, along with Hawkshaw Hawkins and Cowboy Copas, was killed in a plane crash while on her way home from a benefit concert in Kansas City, Kan.

Did Buddy Holly ever play with Elvis? ›

Buddy Holly and Elvis Presley | February 13, 1955 | Lubbock, Tx. Fair Park Coliseum (4pm matinee)

Who was first Buddy Holly or Elvis? ›

Although a year younger, Buddy Holly got started in professional music before Elvis. Around 1951, when Buddy was 15 years old, he started jamming with another Lubbock musician, Jack Neal.

Did Gary Busey sing in Buddy Holly story? ›

A great biopic. The Buddy Holly Story is a great biography with a super performance from Gary Busey. Busey did his own singing for this film and he does a great job.

Who is the most outlaw country singer? ›

Perhaps the very epitome of the outlaw country icons, Arkansas-born Johnny Cash beat off alcohol, drugs and repeated run-ins with the law to sell over 90 million records and become one of the giants of the music industry.

Did Willie Nelson ever meet Frank Sinatra? ›

One night we played a show in Vegas, and he invited me by his place to hang out, and I couldn't,” Nelson revealed to Today. “I had to get on a bus and go to LA, and I always regretted that I didn't get to hang out with Frank.”

Are Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson friends? ›

Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson are great friends. That's why it isn't a surprise if one covers a song of the other. With this, we present a Kristofferson song that Nelson recorded for his album Sings Kristofferson.

Was Bob Dylan friends with Johnny Cash? ›

Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash's friendship was a thing of purity that lasted close to 40 years. Initially, it was simply born out of a love for the music that one another were producing. However, it soon grew to be more significant than merely a mutual appreciation of artistic sensibilities.

Was Johnny Cash friends with Kris Kristofferson? ›

Never an ace player, he forged a career based on charisma matched only by his friend Johnny Cash and songwriting acumen that set him apart from anyone. Like his peer Tom T. Hall, Kristofferson reserved judgment in his songs, condemning only those who would condemn.

Who was Johnny Cash's best friends? ›

Cash counted several country stars among his best friends, including Kristofferson, Waylon Jennings, and the “Hillbilly Heartthrob,” Faron Young.

Who else died when Patsy Cline died? ›

On March 5, 1963, American country music performers Patsy Cline, Cowboy Copas, and Hawkshaw Hawkins were killed in an airplane crash near Camden, Tennessee, United States, along with the pilot Randy Hughes.


1. The Day the Music Died | Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper | Winter Dance Party 1959
(Luv Dup)
2. The Tragic Explanation Of The Day The Music Died
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