Buddy Wayne Knox passed away St. Valentine's Day, February 14, 1999 after a sudden onset of cancer. Born in Happy, Texas July 20, 1933, Buddy died as he lived, with great spirit and courage. He was a star of the Rockabilly era, a contemporary of Buddy Holly and Elvis Presley with a number of charted hits to his credit. He is survived by his children Wendy, Michael, Wayne, Jesse and Ginger and his fiance Becky Carpenter. Buddy's closest friend, Johnny Vallis, should be included in the list of those survivors, being there for whenever he needed his own "buddy." Buddy Knox will be deeply missed and will continue to inspire us all.
Memorial Service was:
March 2, 1999 - 2:00PM
Evergreen Baptist Church
Port Orchard, WA. 98366
Funeral Service were:
March 6, 1999
Please submit your comments regarding Buddy Knox to:
(August 3, 2005) - When I think of times past, there are two Buddy's to whom my mind turns. In tht past 68, of my years on this earth I was lucky enough to meet both. Two of the greatest Rockabilly stars of all time, and those were times that I will never forget. The best of the best. BUDDY HOLLY and BUDDY KNOX, They were the kings of of the era. Just to have spent any amount of time with them, made you glad to be in the business. These boys deserve to be in Rockabilly Heaven.
Jimmy Lee & The Florida Playboys
(Dec. 21, 2001) - I had the pleasure of meeting Buddy Knox on many different occasions. One of the first times I met him was in Lubbock, Texas in September of 1986 at the Lubbock Music Festival. He was on the show with Bobby Vee, Bo Diddley, Del Shannon, the Crickets, Ace Cannon and Carl Perkins. Now this, was some show. After the show, I drove him to his hotel. There was a party going on in one of the rooms and he invited with to it. I spent the late hours interviewing Buddy along with Joe B. Mauldin of the Crickets. It was a real thrill for me.
Another time, he appeared on the Legends Of Rock N' Roll show at the Greek Theatre in California in October of 1993. I attended the rehearsals and he was just great on the stage at the Greek. I got to interview him again and came to find out that he lived in the same town I live in, West Covina, back in the 1960's. Gene Vincent also lived here for a while. Small world. Buddy was one of the nicest guys that I have met in the music world. I believe the last time I saw Buddy was at the Derby in Hollywood in August of 1996. He was doing a small tour in California with the Blue Caps and Jerry Lee Merritt. I had the pleasure to share the stage with them. And thankfully, I taped the whole show that night. Everytime IY´visited with Buddy Knox he was a true gentleman. I still have the letters he sent me over the years. I treasuredY´Y´his friendship. Buddy, we all miss you.
(Dec, 27, 1999) - I recall the day I wanted to be a rock & roll DJ. I was only 12, but I was hooked. I also recall buying Party Doll and later the Greatest Hits album. I think I wore them out and when I became a DJ in 1965 I always had a Buddy library on hand. When it came time to be a PD for an oldies station in Minneapolis, you can be sure Buddy got plenty of air play. Later, in 1989 I was working at WWTC-AM in Minneapolis and then KKFN-AM in Sioux Falls SD. The GM at KKFN told me I'd work mornings with a guy named Myron Lee. The named meant nothing to me. It didn't take long and we hit it off to do the best year of radio I've ever experienced. Myron (Lee) is a living legend in rock & roll, and we soon started to tell Buddy Knox stories. One night we heard Buddy was appearing near Minneapolis so we headed out to see Buddy. What an experience that was. Like all of us he hadn't put on one pound or had one gray hair (nudge nudge wink wink) and I sat back and watched Myron and Buddy together, a show I wish I had on tape. I recently visited with Myron in Sioux Falls and he told me Buddy died. Yup, another one gone. We still have those records and memories and Buddy left a lot of both. Maybe someday someone will write the great stories of rock & roll like Buddy's and even Myron's. What a time it was.....or can I say IS. Party Doll will play as long as rock & roll is played.
Ugly Del Roberts - email@example.com (Darrell Mulroy) WWTC-KKFN-KDWB, WEBC-etc.
(June 6, 1999) I worked for Buddy off and on for a few years, as did hundreds of other side musicians. The tributes given him on these pages couldn't be more accurate: It mattered not who you were, Buddy was kind and endearing to absolutely everyone. In Minneapolis in 1968 I noticed that he'd drive an old woman and her handicapped son to and from their home to our performances in his brand new white Cadillac because they had no transportation. I bumped into Buddy completely by accident 20 years later in Fort St. John, BC. He saw me on the street and gave me a bear hug that reminded his sincerity is not limited by time. He won't have to pay me a penny to be in his band the next time I catch up to him.
(May 14, 1999) Last night I did a show in town here. I perform every weekend somewhere, mostly doing the 50's & 60's show. Last night was different, it was 3 months since we lost Buddy. Of course I did Party Doll and the floor always packs when it's played. But last night I had a man come up to me and tell me that he saw the story in the newspaper about Buddy Knox and myself. He said "At first I thought, Wow Buddy Knox is going to be on a show with Johnny Vallis, then I read on". He started to cry a little. "We did a show in the early 1980's for 3 days with Buddy.... I am no one special, but everytime Buddy saw me, he'd always say hello pal!" I told him that Buddy was a very down to earth person always. The man started to cry and starting walking away..... I called out to him "Thank you so much, Buddy is the greatest!!" He turned and smiled.
Haloo! This is Will Millar of the Irish Rovers. I knew Buddy over the years, ever since he was a guest on our old C.B.C show back in the early seventies. He was a great entertainer and I'm sad he left so soon. Big Jimmy in the Irish Rovers died this time last year and by God there must be some good parties goin on wherever they went. It is a fragile life this entertainment life and all we have to leave behind is our soul and our music...But what a legacy that really is!! LeeAnn Bowman was an old love of mine as well, she's gone now as well. The Spring is nearly here and time to head out for another Tour...I will have a wee shot of whiskey and sing Party Doll is some Australian Bar next month and remember all those Good old Boys...
I know we will all miss the great Buddy Knox, there will never be another like him.
-Jerry Lee Merritt
I was sad to hear of the passing away of Buddy.My musical preference now is vocal group harmony, but my first love was rockabilly, and still enjoy it today.I remember getting Buddy's greatest hits LP in the early 60's as a Christmas present (always loved that jacket he wore on the cover!!) A lot of my friends were more into the hits of the day, but I would drag out that LP at party's and give them a dose of good ole rock n roll!! Up until a few months ago, a friend of mine and myself hosted an oldies show on the radio featuring vocal group harmony. I talked him into a half hour segment called "The Rockhouse" where we would play rock and roll, rockabilly, and jumpin' R&B. Turned out to be one of the most listened to segments at the station!! We would play Buddy's hits, but I threw in a couple of my favorites like "Swinging Daddy" and the "B" side of "Party Doll", "My Baby's Gone." I guess that's it, I just felt I should drop a line and let you know that Buddy Knox meant a lot to many of us.
Got the word that Buddy passed on today. Very sad to hear it. I had the chance to work with Buddy several times and though he had his own demons, as we all do, he was a hell of a nice guy and in my opinion a great singer and performer. I remember driving down from St. Cloud to Clear Lake for one of the Buddy Holly tribute shows a bunch of years ago during an awful snow storm. The wind was blowing hard from the west and the snow was drifting across the roads leaving the visibility at almost nothing. We were creeping along making as good of time as possible and at one point we passed an old RV with a canoe strapped to the top of it going about 5 miles an hour. I remember thinking to myself that it must have been hell driving that thing in the wind and the ice and snow and felt sorry for the guy driving it. Thought he'd go into the ditch for sure. Well, several hours later were standing back stage at the surf and the door comes flying open and a cold wind along with a bunch of snow blows Buddy into the dressing room. He's standing there looking like some Texas version of frosty the snowman with his big old cowboy hat on shivering with his guitar in one hand and a Hank Williams Sr. looking jacket in the other. We all hurried over to help him with his stuff and to get the door closed and I look outside as the door is closing and there is the RV with the canoe on top. We had many a good laugh over it and to this day no matter where we are if we're heading down the highway and we see an old RV go buy it only takes a second before someone hollers out, "Hay, there goes Knox". I think I'm going to keep doing that. It's always hard to see another one of the originators go. I'll miss ya Buddy.... Travel safe my friend....
(Bobby Vee's Son)
I just heard the news today of the recent passing of my very dear friend and fellow musician. I had the honor and pleasure of working with this sweetheat of a man few times in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada. Since then I had moved to Las Vegas, Nevada and have tried to persuade him to come down and do some apperances here. Unfortunately, and with much regret, that idea did not pan out. He was a living ledgend in his time, a virtual walking Rock-A-Billy encycopedia. I've learned a lot from him, as he taught me how the music industry really was and is. I will miss his companionship and wisdom, for as I mentioned earlier, "He Was My Dear Friend". So until we meet again my friend, the songs that I'll be singing will be with you forever fresh in my mind, as you will always be one of my TRUE musical and intellectual mentor and inspiration.
Your friend and musical follower,
Dory "J.C. Khuel" LeClair
I'd personally like to thank everyone for their love and support through a very tough time. The Buddy Knox Mailing List which Buddy and I started will remain a place where fans and friends can share their interest in the music and also memories of our friend Buddy. Buddy and I met almost 10 years ago, at one of my shows. We stayed in touch and became very close friends. In the last number of years I wen to visit Buddy every 3 months or so. I enjoyed those visits. It was a pleasure to meet Becky. In the years I knew Buddy, I didn't know him to love someone like he did Becky. She was supportive of our friendship as well. Buddy and I often sat back and recorded songs and of course, the interview tapes. I plan on keeping the fan club (list) going. Buddy asked me to on our last call. He always told me he loved his fans. That was important for him to let people know that. At this time I am mourning the loss of my dearest friends. Thank you for your on-going support.
I miss you Buddy.... Thanks for being my friend.
We are so sorry to hear about Buddy's passing. The members of The Bob and Grady Fan Club around the world send their regrets. Sincerely,
President of The Bob and Grady Fan Club
I have always been a fan of Buddy and in fact am a distant cousin by marriage on my father's side, once removed...you know how that goes. While growing up in Texas I finally met him once and spoke on the phone several times back in the 1970s. I was saddened to hear of his death. Thank you,
God bless that first generation of rockers. I can listen to their music and hear Thomas Edison's recordings with one ear and with the other ear Pearl Jam and Matchbox 20. The fifties' sounds will never die as long as chidren need to laugh and cry. All I want is a party doll everyday of my life forever and ever. Rock your little baby to sleep cuz love is all there is to hold onto in this wild, wonderful life. Thanx Buddy for those crazy sounds from wild west Tejas. Tell Buddy Holly and Eddie Cochran Hi for me up there in heaven, plus all the other hepcats.
Even though I did not know Buddy personally, his music has been a big part of my life. The 50's were a great time to live and Buddy made it even greater! You could always tell with the first "strums of the guitar" on the radio, that it was Buddy Knox. There was only ONE BUDDY KNOX! Please accept my Deepest Sympathy and if there is any way that I can be of help, PLEASE let me know.
With Sadness and Shock I write,
(Fair Oaks, Ca.)
It was of sad news to hear about the death of my friend Buddy Knox. He and I spent many days together. And I played the last tour with him, In 1996. it was the California tour, along with the Blue Caps and many of California's best Rockabilly bands. I talked to Buddy two days before he pasted away. Any way I just wanted to tell all the friends at the Rockabilly Hall of fame that we will all miss Buddy - a great rocker and legend of rockabilly Music and a friend to every one.
Jerry Lee Merritt (JLMERR7733@aol.com)
I am extremely saddend by the death of Buddy Knox. I wrote Buddy a fan letter several years ago. He took time to write me a two page letter in response. I communicated with Buddy by mail several times after that. Although I never had the opportunity to meet him in person, it was clear that he was a very kind man who was not only appreciative of his fans, but also cared about them and wanted to know them on a personal level. I'm sure there are people all over the world who were fans of Buddy who were able to correspond with him the way that I did. Buddy was unique in that way. I will miss him. I have lost a friend.
Sioux Falls, SD
To many, Buddy Knox is a forgotten or unknown name. To those of us who were music fans in the fifties and sixties, he was a very special person.I remember Buddy as a recording artist who answered my letters many times. He truly cared about his fans as individuals. Not many stars take the time to correspond with fans like Buddy did. I will miss him greatly.I feel that I have lost a friend. But the music lives on.
Buddy Speaks to his Fans
This short recorded message is taken from the interviews Buddy did with Johnny Vallis. The sound format requires Real Player G2 and may not work with some Macintosh computers.
BUDDY'S FUNERAL PROGRAM courtesy Becky Carpenter
Front and Back
Rockabilly Hall of Fame's Page for Buddy
Buddy Knox Photo Page
Join the Buddy Knox Mailing List
E-mail the HOF