Buddy Holly’s 1959 Ariel Cyclone is Up For Sale

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
October 5 Guernsey’s Waylon Jennings and Buddy HollyBuddy Holly's Ariel Cyclone Saving Country Music:

“They loved Marlon Brando in 'The Wild One,' and when they got to Dallas…they decided on the spur of the moment to buy motorcycles and drive back home on them.” Waylon recalled. “They took a cab into the city and walked into a Harley-Davidson shop. They had their eyes on a trio of 74-inchers, but the proprietor didn’t think they had any money and treated them like a bunch of bums. ‘Hell, you boys couldn’t even begin to handle the payments on that.’

“Then they went over to Miller’s Motorcycles, which specialized in English bikes. There, Joe B (Maudlin, the Crickets' then-bass player), and J.I. (Allison, the drummer) bought a Triumph each, a TR6 and Thunderbird, respectively, while Buddy picked out a maroon and black Ariel Cyclone, with a high compression 650cc Huntsmaster engine. They paid cash, bought matching Levi jackets and peaked caps with wings on them, and rode home through a thunderstorm.”

Apparently, there's some conflict about who bought what, because some accounts say Joe Maudlin actually bought the Thunderbird motorcycle. while J.I. Allison bought a Triumph Trophy. Regardless, Holly was transfixed by the black Ariel Cyclone 650cc.

Holly’s father ended up keeping the motorcycle until 1970. In 1979, for Waylon’s 42nd birthday, the remaining Crickets — Joe B. Mauldin, J.I. Allison and Sonny Curtis, who also spent time in the Crickets — tracked down the 1959 Ariel Cyclone, bought it, and had it hand delivered to north Texas where Jennings found it sitting there in the middle of his hotel room after walking off stage that night.

“What else could I do?,” Jennings wrote years later. “I swung my leg over it, stomped on the kickstarter, and it burst into roaring life. First kick. It was midnight, and it sounded twice as loud bouncing off the walls of that hotel room. I knew Buddy wouldn’t mind.”

The 1958 Ariel Cyclone and Guernsey's

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