I remember the first time I heard Buddy Holly. My older brother bought the soundtrack from the film Stand by Me, and for weeks the song Everyday was stuck in my head. Soon I discovered Peggy Sue, Rave On and other classic hits. My feet have been tapping ever since.
It wasn’t until decades later that I learned Holly was born and raised in Lubbock and that the world’s best Buddy Holly museum sits in the heart of the Hub City.
The first thing I noticed as I turned off Crickets Avenue was a larger-than-life set of Holly’s signature black-rimmed glasses. Holly once considered wearing contact lenses to help his rock star image, but contacts hurt his eyes and he needed glasses to see the crowd. That’s a good thing, as the glasses became as much a part of his timeless look as the electric guitar in his hands. This is just one of many facts I learned inside Lubbock’s Buddy Holly Center.
The museum is full of artifacts and a complete timeline of how a kid from Lubbock forged a new rock ’n’ roll sound that changed the world. One display shows mementos from Holly’s high school days, including his baseball mitt and Converse high-tops. Another display holds items from Buddy’s rise to fame, including a tweed sports coat he wore on tour and a pair of super-hip suede shoes.
It’s hard to believe that Holly’s career lasted only a few years, cut short by a plane crash in Iowa. His black-rimmed glasses recovered from the wreckage now sit silently in a case at the end of the museum’s timeline.
The center gives every generation a connection to the man and his music. As the title of one of his hit songs says, his legacy will Not Fade Away.