Early rocker Buddy Holly blazed business trail

The legacy of rock ’n’ roll icon Buddy Holly’s short and meteoric ascent in the late 1950s goes beyond the music he made.

Holly, who died in a plane crash in Clear Lake, Iowa, 50 years ago today along with Ritchie Valens and J.P. Richardson — The Big Bopper — also blazed trails in the industry’s business side.

"I think Buddy was interested in getting rich but also in growing as an artist and also in controlling his own growth as an artist," Smith said. "And that meant he couldn’t owe his soul to the company store."

Holly’s approach influenced others in the years after his death.

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