Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 8:24 am

Just published in the new issue of Rolling Stone ->


590202_Holly_Surf Ballroom.JPG
Waylon Jennings, Buddy Holly, Carlo Mastrangelo (from the Belmonts) and Tommy Allsup
Monday, February 2, 1959 - Surf Ballroom, Clear Lake, IA

Photo: Dick Haukoos

Wow, what a photo!

This is from Buddy Holly's very last show.

[ Note 2013 discovery below of less-cropped version, and photo credit may actually be Mary Gerber. ]


590202_Holly_Surf Ballroom_less cropped.JPG
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Last edited by drjohncarpenter on Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:55 pm, edited 5 times in total.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 8:28 am

Read about the last day here ->

The Day The Music Died - Monday, February 2, 1959

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 9:48 am

This is a great book. And although I have it, I have just spent the last 30 minutes reading it on your post. Even after nearly 50 years hearts are still broken. I remember watching a doco about Holly's last day and Waylon Jennings stated how guilt ridden he was for making the "I hope your plane crashes" comment to Holly. He said that such guilt had led him to abuse drugs and alcohol for almost 20 years. Holly's death was a tragedy!

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 12:47 pm

drjohncarpenter wrote:Read about the last day here ->

The Day The Music Died - Monday, February 2, 1959


A peerless and moving account of the final tour. Well worth reading the whole volume - the book documents
the tour not in the face of imminent tragedy but telling the story of a group of young musicians struggling
through a pooly organised tour, warmed only by the enthusiastic crowds they played to each night.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 1:08 pm

I'm floored! Never thought I'd see it! Man, he only had roughly two hours to live!

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 1:12 pm

thefunkyangel wrote:I'm floored! Never thought I'd see it! Man, he only had roughly two hours to live!


Poingnent hey?

There are apparently 5 other photos from the show.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 1:17 pm

AndrewJ wrote: Poingnent hey?


Yeah, I know what you mean! Like I said, I'm floored!

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:24 pm

AndrewJ wrote:There are apparently 5 other photos from the show.


6 are known from Haukoos. They've been shown but never published. Just recently prinst of these were offered for USD 300 (the whole set of 6) but this offer was withdrawn in only a couple of days.

This now published one is supposed to be from a different source from what I've read. I'm not able to verfy this because I've never seen the Haukoos ones.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:46 pm

I assumed this was one of the 6 Haukoos photos.

So there is a different source then - and it has taken 50 years to be found!

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:59 pm

AndrewJ wrote:So there is a different source then - and it has taken 50 years to be found!


Check this link to Bill Griggs Rockin' 50's Messageboard for more information. http://www.voy.com/120134/33539.html

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:50 am

Per that link I updated the credits to include Carlo Mastrangelo (from the Belmonts) on drums.

Holly's current drummer -- Carl Bunch -- had left the tour and other acts on the bill filled in including, at times, Valens and Holly!

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 3:26 am

Can any one tell me why Carl Bunch left the tour? I know the answer and I bet the Doc and Buddy Holly does as well....... :)

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:38 am

Buddy Holly knows for sure, but we lost him quite a few years ago...

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:44 am

That picture is just incredible!!!!!!

Weren't alot of the guys on the tour also getting sick w/ colds and flu... so maybe that is why his drummer was out for this show?

JEFF d
EP fan

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 5:44 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:Buddy Holly knows for sure, but we lost him quite a few years ago...


Ahhh....C'mon Doc! I'm trying to be serious. :)

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 12:04 pm

Carl got frost bite and was still in hospital on the 3rd when he got a call from his mother. Bunch was told by his mother about the tragedy!

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:35 pm

I have been thinking a lot about this picture.

I wonder why Buddy decided to fly that night rather than find a hotel room in Clear Lake/Mason City and fly the next morning. I mean, it was around a 3 hour flight - so flying at midday would have meant a 3pm arrival.

Also, I wonder why Roger Peterson did not reply to any radio messages once airborne? Surely operating the radio was not an arduous task. I guess the plane was airborne for only a few minutes before they started buzzing farmhouses - so maybe he was disorientated from the moment the plane took up a north-eastern heading and started speeding away from the airfield.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Thu Jan 29, 2009 2:23 pm

thefunkyangel wrote:Carl got frost bite and was still in hospital on the 3rd when he got a call from his mother. Bunch was told by his mother about the tragedy!


Congratulations Funkyangel! You are correct. Your prize is in the mail.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Fri Jan 30, 2009 12:25 am

JEFF d wrote:That picture is just incredible!!!!!!

Yes -- and there are apparently 5 or 6 more.

How weird would it be if you were one of the people who saw this show? It would haunt you forever.

Buddy Holly wasn't just good, he was GREAT. And very ambitious.

Only 22, he would have done so much. It's such a heartbreaker.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Fri Jan 30, 2009 12:58 am

cool photo, check out the guitar pick wedged under the guard and then again when they found it while restoring it 40 years later http://www.buddyhollyonline.com/guitar.html

He was a real talent but its really conjecture on what he might have done had he survived. They say that about a lot of artists, Hendrix for example. Another great talent that died too young.
Buddy at the time was going through changes, musically, professionally and personally. He wasn't at the top of the charts when he died, and did that tour because he was in need of funds.

What if Carlos Santana had died after the third Santana album, what would they have said about him?

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:46 am

Ellos tienen que jugar?

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:52 am

jugar= playing but only a game ..

tocar = play an instrument

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:55 am

drjohncarpenter wrote:Ellos tienen que jugar?

Yes, they have to play.

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:21 am

ben wrote:
drjohncarpenter wrote:Ellos tienen que jugar?

Yes, they have to play.


Its a lyric from a Santana song.



You could also wonder about Carl Perkins if he had died in that car crash or Chuck Berry if he had died after "the great 28" or even Jerry Lee if he had died instead of marrying his cousin. How much more or differently would they have been thought of in terms of future contributions?

Re: Buddy Holly - The Last Show - February 2, 1959

Fri Jan 30, 2009 9:37 am

drjohncarpenter wrote: How weird would it be if you were one of the people who saw this show? It would haunt you forever.


Speaking of people who saw Buddy live, my mother (as a young teenager) saw Holly live in Sydney (at the Stadium) during the six date Jan/ Feb. '58 Australian Tour! When she told me I almost cried!

January 30 - Sydney Stadium - Sydney, Australia
February 1 - Sydney Stadium - Sydney, Australia
February 3 - Cloudland Ballroom - Brisbane, Australia
February 4 - West Melbourne Stadium - Melbourne, Australia
February 6 - Cloudland Ballroom - Brisbane, Australia
February 8 - Cloudland Ballroom - Brisbane, Australia