Motorcycle owned by Buddy Holly among auction items

Publish Date: 
Aug 20, 2014

PHOENIX, Ariz. -- A 1958 Ariel Cyclone owned by rock 'n' roll legend Buddy Holly is among the items going up for auction next month.

The auction by Guernsey's of belongings formerly owned by country music legend Waylon Jennings will take place at the Musical Instrument Museum.

The Ariel was purchased by Holly on May 13, 1958 from Ray Miller's Motorcycle Shop in Dallas, Texas. Holly, along with band members Joe Maudlin and Jerry Allison each paid cash for their motorcycles. Allison and Maudlin each bought Triumphs, but Holly bought one of 174 Cyclones manufactured.

The trio bought gear for the 350-mile ride back to Lubbock. Less than a year later, Holly was dead in a plane crash with Richie Valens and J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson in what was referred to as "The Day the Music Died." Jennings, one of members of Holly's band, gave up his seat on the plane and rode the tour bus instead.

The motorcycle remained in possession of the Holly family, and was given to Jennings on his 42nd birthday in 1979. By then, he had achieved fame with a new generation, as the singer of the theme song and narrator for the television show "The Dukes of Hazzard."

The bike has 4,000 original miles on it, and hasn't been ridden in more than 20 years. Jennings died in 2002.

Items for auction, which includes costumes and music apparel of Jennings in addition to the motorcycle, will be on display at the Museum on Oct. 3-4, in advance of the auction Oct. 5.

From a news release