Tuesday, February 03, 2009

The day the music died.

I didn't realize it till I logged onto Paperback Swap tonight and their home page mentioned this--today's the 50th anniversary of the day Buddy Holly's plane went down in an Iowa field.

I adore Buddy Holly. When I was 10 or 11 years old, I saw "The Buddy Holly Story" on TV and I was just smitten with him. I saved up my nickels and dimes and bought an LP of his greatest hits--the cover art on the album was a shot of graffiti on a stone wall that read "Buddy Holly Lives."

His music probably sounds completely dated and peculiar to anyone who grew up on hip-hop, but I love the way he played his guitar and harmonized with himself. His music is so light-hearted; even the sad songs are hopeful.

From reading about Buddy Holly as a kid, I discovered the Beatles and Elvis, and became a fan of what was then called "classic rock" and I guess now is called "oldies"--the rock-and-roll of the 50s and 60s.

So I've gotten a lot of enjoyment from Buddy--both from his own music and the music he inspired in other people. Dying at 22 didn't sound like such a big deal to me when I was 10 years old, but looking at it from age 38, it seems heartbreakingly sad.

Here he is on the "Arthur Miller Dance Party," introduced by the squarest, whitest, most middle-aged lady ever:

And here's another guy who died too young, singing some of Buddy's songs (fast forward over the one with Yoko blathering in the background, yuck):