On This Day, February 3

February 13, 1959 – The Day The Music Died. —On February 3, 1959, after performing at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa, Buddy Holly charters a plane to fly him to Fargo, North Dakota. Shortly after takeoff, the plane crashes eight miles northwest of the airfield, killing Holly, Ritchie Valens, J.P. Richardson (a.k.a. The Big Bopper) and pilot Roger Peterson.  “It was already snowing at Minneapolis, and the general forecast for the area along the intended route indicated deteriorating weather conditions,” wrote the Civil Aeronautics Board investigators six months after the crash.  “The ceiling and visibility were lowering…and winds aloft were so high one could reasonably have expected to encounter adverse weather during the estimated two-hour flight.” All of this information was available to 21-year-old pilot Roger Peterson, if only he had asked for it. Instead, he relied on an incomplete weather report and on the self-confidence of youth in making the decision to take off from Clear Lake, Iowa, shortly after midnight on February 3, 1959. Untrained and uncertified in instrument-only flight, Peterson was flying into conditions that made visual navigation impossible. “Considering all of these facts,” the investigating authorities concluded, “the decision to go seems most imprudent.”


Find the music of:

The Big Bopper (J. P. Richardson) – Freegal

Buddy Holly – hooplaFreegalLibrary

Ritchie Valens – hooplaFreegal – Library


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