Holly, Buddy, 1936-1959

Variant names

Hide Profile

Buddy Holly (born Charles Hardin Holley, September 7, 1936, Lubbock, TX–d. February 3, 1959, Clear Lake, IA) was an American musician and singer-songwriter who was a central figure of mid-1950s rock and roll. He made his first appearance on local television in 1952, and the following year he formed the group "Buddy and Bob" with his friend Bob Montgomery. In 1955, after opening for Elvis Presley, he decided to pursue a career in music. He opened for Presley three times that year; his band's style shifted from country and western to entirely rock and roll. In October that year, when he opened for Bill Haley & His Comets, he was spotted by Nashville scout Eddie Crandall, who helped him get a contract with Decca Records.

Holly's recording sessions at Decca were produced by Owen Bradley. Unhappy with Bradley's control in the studio and with the sound he achieved there, he went to producer Norman Petty in Clovis, New Mexico, and recorded a demo of "That'll Be the Day", among other songs. Petty became the band's manager and sent the demo to Brunswick Records, which released it as a single credited to "The Crickets", which became the name of Holly's band. In September 1957, as the band toured, "That'll Be the Day" topped the US "Best Sellers in Stores" chart and the UK Singles Chart. Its success was followed in October by another major hit, "Peggy Sue".

After a show in Clear Lake, Iowa, he chartered an airplane to travel to his next show, in Moorhead, Minnesota. Soon after takeoff, the plane crashed, killing him, Ritchie Valens, The Big Bopper, and pilot Roger Peterson in a tragedy later referred to by Don McLean as "The Day the Music Died".

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Selective Service Card for Charles Hardin Buddy Holley National Archives at Fort Worth
creatorOf Holly, Buddy, 1936-1959. Love me / by Buddy Holly and Sue Parrish. Library of Congress
referencedIn Records of the Civil Aeronautics Board. 1931 - 1984. Minutes of Meetings. 1940 - 1984. Aircraft Accident Report National Archives at College Park
referencedIn Southern Folklife Collection artist name files, 1940-2005 (artists D-K). University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
referencedIn KOHM-FM Collection, U 165. 2., 2002-2003 Southwest Collection/Special Collections Libary, Texas Tech University
referencedIn Biography -- Holly, Buddy. Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library
referencedIn Southern Folklife Collection Artist Name File, 1940-2005 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Library. Southern Folklife Collection.
referencedIn Amburn, Ellis. Ellis Amburn papers, 1916-2005, (bulk 1973-2000). Texas Christian University
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Amburn, Ellis. person
associatedWith Big Bopper, 1930-1959 person
associatedWith KOHM-FM (Radio station : Lubbock, Tex.) corporateBody
associatedWith Parrish, Sue. person
associatedWith Valens, Ritchie, 1941-1959 person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Lubbock TX US
Clear Lake IA US
United States 00 US
Popular music
Rock music


Birth 1936-09-07

Death 1959-02-03




Permalink: http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6w67kn5

Ark ID: w6w67kn5

SNAC ID: 6177102