The family of the late, great Waylon Jennings is putting a whole bunch of his stuff up for auction next month in Phoenix—and you'll probably want to take out another mortgage or two for this one because among the items up for bid will be Buddy Holly's goddamn motorcycle.
In case you don't know the story, Jennings—who died in 2002—was a pal of Holly's from their early days on the radio in Lubbock, Texas, and was drafted to play bass in Holly's band The Crickets during the notorious 1959 Winter Dance Party tour across the midwest.
The tour—which featured rock and roll stars like Holly, J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson, Richie Valens and Dion and The Belmonts—was, by all accounts, an absolute clusterfuck in virtually every way possible. It was plagued by bad weather, illness and terrible planning that left the acts stuck on an unheated bus on brutally long rides during the coldest part of the year.
Finally, on February 3, 1959, a frustrated Holly decided he had enough and chartered an airplane to take him and his band from Clear Lake, Iowa, to their next gig in Minnesota.
But Jennings famously gave up his seat on the plane to Richardson. According to Jennings, Holly teased him about giving up his seat on the heated airplane to take a frigid bus ride to the next gig instead.
"I hope your ol' bus freezes up," teased Holly.
"Well, I hope your ol' plane crashes," joked Jennings.
A few minutes later, Holly, Richardson, Valens (who took the place of Holly's guitarist Tommy Allsup on the flight) and the pilot were dead, and Jennings was left an understandably haunted man for many decades to follow.
Anyway, Holly's family held on to the motorcycle—an exceedingly rare 650cc 1958 Ariel Cyclone twin—until 1970, when it was sold to a private collector. In 1979, a bunch of Waylon Jennings' friends bought it back as a gift for his 42nd birthday—earning them the distinction as the greatest group of friends in the history of human interpersonal relationships.
The auction also includes, among many other things, a handwritten letter to Jennings from John Lennon, a pair of Hank Williams Sr.'s custom Nudie Cohen cowboy boots, a couple of Willie Nelson's braids, a pair of gloves and a ring robe presented personally as a gift from Muhammed Ali (one of Jennings' personal heroes—and if that doesn't change any preconceived notions you may have about country music, I don't know what to tell you…), guitars, hand-written lyric sheets and more.
The auction is set for October 5th, and I would like to mention that I turn 42 next year in case any of my friends want to do something really special…just sayin' is all…
Image via AP