That line appears in the 1972 classic song, "American Pie" by Don McLean about "The Day The Music Died". Today (Feb. 3), is the 50th Anniverary of that tragic day in music history. Just after 1:00 a.m., a plane carrying music icons Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson crashed near Clear Lake, Iowa killiing everyone on board. The three musicians were on tour, performing at a venue that was not originally on their scheduled tour. Not happy with the tour bus conditions, Buddy Holly decided to charter a flight to their next venue on Moorhead, MN. Just after 1:00 a.m. (central time) the plane took off from Masonc City Municipal Airport. At around 1:05 a.m., the owner of Dwyer Flying Service could see the lights of the plane decend to the ground. The crash was not spotted until 9:15 a.m. in the morning. The cause of the crash was due to poor weather conditions and the inexperience of the chartered pilot.
That day will live on forever as "The Day The Music Died". When three musicians were "cut off" in their prime. Buddy Holly was 22 years old, J.P. "Big Bopper" Richardson was 28 and Ritchie Valens was only 17 years old. Each of them had their whole musical career still ahead of them. Who knows what the musical world would be like had they chose a different mode of transportation to their next tour stop.