In 1957, a bespectacled kid from Lubbock, Texas reached the top of the charts with the song “That’ll Be the Day.” For Buddy Holly, the release of that single was life-changing, as it launched him into the stratosphere of rock icons. With his prominent, black-framed eyeglasses, Holly looked different than any rock star. He looked like an “everyman,” and audiences identified with him. “He made it okay to wear glasses,” John Lennon said. “I was Buddy Holly.”
Less than two years later, his new found fame came to an abrupt and horrible end, when he died on February 3, 1959 in a small plane crash in Clearlake, Iowa along with the pilot and two other pop stars, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson. Buddy Holly was only 22 years old.
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Although Holly’s spectacular time in the spotlight was fleeting, more than half a century later he continues to be one of the most influential artists in the history of rock and roll. Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, Elvis Costello, Stevie Nicks, Linda Ronstadt, Natalie Merchant, Blondie, John Mellencamp, Pearl Jam, the Grateful Dead, the Rolling Stones and the Beatles are just some of the musicians who have acknowledged the impact Holly had on their careers. Buddy Holly, one off the creators of Rock n’ Roll, was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.
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presales close on Friday, March 13 at 5 pm