Buddy Holly will always be remembered as one of the “what ifs” in rock and roll history. His death on Feb. 2, 1959, at the age of 22, in a plane crash, ended what was becoming a brilliant career as one of the leading lights of the early rock and roll movement. While he only recorded for three years, his material has continued to be re-packaged for over 50 years.
On July 22, 1956, he recorded “That’ll Be The Day.” His label did not like the song, so it was not released at the time. A year later he was signed to the Coral label and wanted to release the song again. He could not issue it under his own name because of ownership problems with his previous label. He could, however, release it under the group name, The Crickets, who were at the time Jerry Allison, Joe Mauldin, and Niki Sullivan, in addition to Holly.
“That’ll Be The Day” became his first chart entry. It stalled at number three on the Top 100 and Most Played By DJ’s Chart but spent the week of September 23, 1957, at the top of the Best Sellers In Stores Chart, making it the only number one of his career.
He was elected to the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 1986.