On The Wing Wednesday

My 2¢…since in the context of the damn virus all that should matter is getting as many people vaccinated as quickly as possible, anyone who wants a vaccine should be able to get one if the supply exists. “Herd immunity” doesn’t care who gets vaccinated, just that the proportion reaches x percent of the population.


Some who read this blog will wonder why I have never mentioned that this day, February 3rd, is the anniversary of the Baltimore Ravens win in Super Bowl 47. (Sorry, I think the Roman Numeral thing is stupid.) This is the fourth February 3rd that Disaffected Musings has existed.

After the first time the Ravens won the Super Bowl, which is now 20 years ago, I made so much noise that our next-door neighbors thought I was abusing my wonderful wife; we lived in a single-family house that shared no common walls with any other house. After the Ravens won the Super Bowl on this day 8 years ago, I simply let out a sigh of relief.

My metamorphosis from sports fanaticism to sports apathy did not happen overnight. Losing my baseball business more than 10 years ago was the largest reason for the change, obviously, but not the only reason. Oh, it’s still less than 50-50 that I will watch the Super Bowl this Sunday.


Of course, on this day in 1959 musicians Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson died, along with pilot Roger Peterson, in a plane crash near Clear Lake, Iowa. This day has been called “The Day The Music Died” after singer-songwriter Don McLean referred to it as such in his 1971 song “American Pie.” Today’s post title is NOT intended to be disrespectful of the events of that day; “On The Wing” is a synonym for wandering.

I can’t say that I am a fan of the music of Buddy Holly, but I understand and appreciate his influence. I don’t write about this too often, but to me the phrase “current American music” is an oxymoron.

I don’t know much about the plane crash or the events that led to it. In the Wikipedia article about it, the organization (GAC) that made the tour arrangements (known as The Winter Dance Party tour) is criticized for not properly considering the distances between venues when the performances were scheduled. The long hours in a cold bus on two-lane roads led to the decision to charter the ill-fated plane to get to the next performance. Buddy Holly historian Bill Griggs is quoted as saying, “They [GAC] didn’t care. It was like they threw darts at a map…The tour from hell – that’s what they named it – and it’s not a bad name.”


The year of the day the music died is considered to be the zenith of the fins and chrome era. Of course, most car aficionados are familiar with the car that exemplified 1959 styling, the Cadillac:


See the source image


This picture of a 1959 Coupe De Ville is from Barrett-Jackson. Speaking of which…hey there, Barrett-Jackson. I live right in your backyard now. I am sure that someone with my aptitude and experience, my combination of analytical and communication skills and my love of cars would be an asset to your company. Sorry, had to write that even though no one from the company will ever read it.

Cadillac, with Packard now defunct and the 1957-58 recession in the rear-view mirror (see what I did there), had a good year with over 142,000 cars produced in 1959, which was a market share of more than 2.5 percent. Cadillac would love to have that kind of share today. By the way, Lincoln/Continental produced about 27,000 cars in ’59 while Imperial, a separate make from Chrysler, produced 17,000. As recently as 1949 (recent compared to 1959), Packard had outsold Cadillac by 26 percent and in 1951 Packard sales were only 9 percent behind Cadillac.

Cadillac’s V-8, the displacement of which was increased to 390 cubic inches in 1959, produced 325 HP/430 LB-FT of torque in all models except the Eldorado, whose engine was tuned for more power. Hey, the least expensive Eldo was $7,400 and the most expensive De Ville was $5,500. Cadillac had to create some reasons for the higher Eldo price.

In all honesty, the styling of these cars is excessive to me, but DSFDF.









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6 thoughts on “On The Wing Wednesday

  1. About the only modern music I listen to is bluegrass covers of current or recent popular songs. There are a couple of other fringe bands that I like some of their stuff, but not to the point I would go to a concert (remember those? seems so long ago). In reality, I couldn’t name 3 current pop artists and feel no need to correct that shortcoming.

    I grew up exposed to country music, the old stuff. Hank Williams, Porter Wagoner, etc that my parents enjoyed. Like most teens of the late sixties/early seventies I gravitated to rock music. When disco hit I couldn’t stand it. Then punk, “hair bands”, heavy metal, grunge and now hip hop/rap. My music interest dwindled more with each successive genre.These days it’s even rare that I listen to the old sixties rock, as I’ve heard most of it many times over. I think part of my enjoyment of bluegrass is that they are extremely talented musicians, and the words are secondary to the actual instruments. One exception to that would be a bluegrass style band from Canada called The Dead South. The playing is excellent and the songwriter writes some interesting songs.

    Just my $.02


  2. At one time, long ago, I considered using the 59 Cadillac tail lights on a 29 Ford roadster project I had started.

    Music trivia related to The Day the Music Died, the bass player for Buddy Holly on that ill-fated tour was Waylon Jennings. Waylon gave up his seat to one of the other passengers on the plane and thus saved his life. Buddy Holly had arranged Jennings first recording session and afterwards hired him as his bass player. Jennings had spent a lot of time in the Phoenix area and at his passing, his wife had him buried in the Mesa City Cemetery across town from your current residence. I know this because we have a family plot in that cemetery. It is amazing how small the world can be if you take the time to learn the details.


    1. Many thanks, Philip. From the Wikipedia article about “The Day The Music Died:”

      “When Holly learned that Jennings was not going to fly, he said in jest: ‘Well, I hope your ol’ bus freezes up. Jennings responded: ‘Well, I hope your ol’ plane crashes,’ a humorous but ill-fated response that haunted him for the rest of his life.”


  3. On a cross-country trip in the small plane I was flying at the time, we made it a point to land at the Clear Lake, IA airport to refresh and refuel. There was (and probably still is) a small memorial that tells the story in the airport. I was to learn later that there is also a memorial at the crash site. Since my only flying these days is for Civil Air Patrol, I will probably have to drive there.
    They were on their way to Moorhead, Minnesota, just across the river from our town, Fargo, North Dakota. Scheduled to perform at the National Guard Armory, when they didn’t make the appearance, a 15-year-old Fargo born, Robert Velline, made his first singing appearance. He took the stage as Bobby Vee and had a long singing career.


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