That'll Be the Day

The Crickets, Buddy Holly

About That'll Be the Day

"That'll Be the Day" is a song written by Buddy Holly and Jerry Allison. It was first recorded by Buddy Holly and the Three Tunes in 1956 and was re-recorded in 1957 by Holly and his new band, the Crickets. The 1957 recording achieved widespread success. Holly's producer, Norman Petty, was credited as a co-writer, although he did not contribute to the composition. Many other versions have been recorded. It was the first song recorded (as a demonstration disc) by the Quarrymen, the skiffle group that evolved into the Beatles. The 1957 recording was certified gold (for over a million US sales) by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in 1969. It was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998. It was placed in the National Recording Registry, a list of sound recordings that "are culturally, historically, or aesthetically important, and/or inform or reflect life in the United States", in 2005. 

Well, that'll be the day, when you say goodbye
Yes, that'll be the day, when you make me cry
You say you're gonna leave, you know it's a lie
'Cause that'll be the day when I die

The Crickets

The Crickets are a rock & roll band from Lubbock, Texas, formed by singer/songwriter Buddy Holly in the 1950s. Their first hit record was "That'll Be the Day", released in 1957. They helped set the template for subsequent rock bands such as the Beatles, with their guitar-bass-drums arrangements and tendency to write their own material. After Holly's death in 1959 the band continued to tour and record with different vocalists, releasing new material into the 21st century. more »

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Written by: Buddy Holly, Jerry Allison, Norman Petty

12 facts about this song

Origination of the Title
The phrase "That'll be the day" is a line that John Wayne's character repeats several times in the 1956 film "The Searchers," which is where Buddy Holly got the inspiration for the song title.
Credited Artists
The song was first recorded by Buddy Holly and the Three Tunes. However, the version that became a commercial success was recorded by Buddy Holly and the Crickets.
Hit on Billboard
"That'll Be the Day" by Buddy Holly and the Crickets made it to number one on the "Billboard" Top 100 charts in the United States in 1957.
First Major Hit
The track is considered Buddy Holly's signature song and his first major hit.
Library of Congress
In 2005, the song was added to the United States National Recording Registry in the Library of Congress, which deems certain songs "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
Beatles Version
The Beatles also recorded a version of "That'll Be the Day." Their rendition was included in the album "Anthology 1" released in 1995.
Early Beatles Recording
The song “That’ll Be the Day" by the Beatles is one of the earliest known recordings of the band, featuring the original line-up of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and their early drummer Pete Best. It was recorded on a primitive equipment when the band still called themselves "The Quarry Men".
Songwriting Credit
Songwriting credits for "That'll Be the Day" are given to Buddy Holly and Jerry Allison, who was the drummer for the Crickets.
Influence on British Rock
Along with other Buddy Holly songs, "That'll Be the Day" had a significant influence on the formation and development of British rock in the 1960s.
Cover Versions
Apart from the Beatles, several other artists have covered "That'll Be the Day", including Linda Ronstadt, Modest Mouse, and James Taylor.
Rolling Stone’s List
Rolling Stone magazine placed "That'll Be the Day" at number 39 on its list of "500 Greatest Songs of All Time" in 2004.
After Buddy Holly’s death in 1959, the song was re-released as a part of the album "The Buddy Holly Story" and again reached the charts, this time peaking at number 11.

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