Buddy Holly decided to go back on tour after terminating his association with The Crickets.
The tour was formed as he needed cash from the Crickets’ manager stealing money from him, and he wanted to raise money to move to New York City with his new, pregnant wife.
He had recently also signed to the General Artists Corporation (GAC), as they were planning to head on a British tour soon.
His new tour, “Winter Dance Party,” featured Waylon Jennings on bass, Tommy Allsup on guitar, Carl Bunch on drums, and opening vocals of Frankie Sardo.
The tour was set to cover 24 Midwestern cities in the same number of days, with no days off. Other artists such as Ritchie Valens and J.P. Richardson also joined the tour to promote their work.
The 1959 tour started in Milwaukee, WI, on January 23rd, and the performance in Clear Lake, IA, on February 2nd, being the 11th of the 24 scheduled concerts.
However, travel between the cities soon became a problem, as the tour was not systematically planned with the venues being close together.
Instead, they had to drive 10-12 hours some days to make it to the next venue.
After their eleventh concert, however, heading to the next concert would prove fruitless as the plane carrying Buddy and his band members crashed, killing everyone aboard.
10 /10 Plane Crash
Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and “The Big Bopper” J.P. Richardson. On February 3rd, 1959, a tragedy struck when multiple American rock and roll musicians died in a plane crash.
The crash was near Clear Lake, Iowa, and the pilot Roger Peterson also died. The event was later called “The Day the Music Died” in the song “American Pie” by Don McLean in 1971.
9 /10 Dealing With Her Husband’s Death
After finding out about Buddy’s death through a TV news report, Maria Elena Holly suffered a miscarriage shortly after. This was dubbed due to “psychological trauma.”
She became a widow after only being married for six months. His mother also screamed and collapsed after learning of her son’s death over the radio in Lubbock, Texas.