Rave On

Album: The Buddy Holly Story (1958)
Charted: 5 37
Play Video


  • This was written by Sonny West, Bill Tilghman and Norman Petty and recorded in January 1958 at Petty's New Mexico studio where Holly laid down most of his hits. Petty wanted to give it to another act, but Holly protested and persuaded the songwriters to let him record it.
  • This was featured in the 1978 films The Buddy Holly Story and American Hot Wax. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Edward Pearce - Ashford, Kent, England, for above 2

Comments: 19

  • AnonymousFirst rock genius
  • Jennifur Sun from RamonaHave read there is a curse attached to those singers who do this song as they leave the stage, any truth to the fact?
  • Pierre from Chelsea, Quebec, CanadaIt is said that RAVE ON was the very last song Ricky Nelson did as an encore, at the end of his show just before he died in a plane crash in December 1985.
    Une chanson bien prmonitoir.
    Dion DiMucci does a very interesting cover of the song on his album Dion : HEROES - GIANTS OF EARLY GUITAR ROCK (2008).
  • Barry from Sauquoit, Ny'Rave On' was Bruce Springsteen's opening song in his November 14th, 1978 concert in Utica, NY. He has played the song in 16 different concerts.
    He has stated that his bass player, Gary W. Tallent, is a hugh Holly fan and is constantly urges him to play Buddy's music...
  • Reed from New Ulm, MnOne of Buddy's best! what a great rocker.
  • Bill from Rensselaer, NyBruce Springsteen also used to do this song as an encore in the late 70's.
  • Joe from Monroe, NyI know Mike from Berkeley sort of corrected himself, but "I Fought The Law" was written by Sonny Curtis, a sometime Cricket. Sonny was a good friend of Buddy Holly. I believe The Crickets recorded "I Fought The Law" after Buddy passed away, and BEFORE Bobby Fuller. Sonny Curtis also wrote the Mary Tyler Moore Show TV theme. And of course, the music didn't die because Buddy Holly lives every time we play rock and roll !!!
  • Mike from Berkeley, CaOoops... I meant the song "When you're feeling sad and blue, you'll know love's made a fool of you."

    My bad.
  • Mike from Berkeley, CaThis song was later rewritten by the Bobby Fuller Four and covered by the Clash as "I Fought the Law and the Law Won".
  • Swansong200 from Calhoun, GaLed Zeppelin did some pretty incredible covers of this song during their live shows.
  • Tony from Devon, EnglandThis record would have been perfect had not Norman Petty insisted on having his own piano playing in the middle break. A guitar solo would have been far better.
  • Alan from Grande Prairie, Alberta, CanadaTo Tony from Cambridge. Well past his best??? True Love Ways covered by Peter and Gordon, Anka's "It Doesn't Matter Anymore". His Dick Jacob sessions are classic not weak. He didn't get stuck in the same rut as Chuck Berry. Name me one Berry ballad just one. The string sessions were groundbreaking in rock another reason Holly was way ahead of his time. Just look at Holly's influence on British rock its without equal.
  • Kieran from Effort, PaHe was christened Charles Hardin Holley, but his parents decided that 'it was too long a name for such a little boy'. They decided to call him 'Buddy', a popular nickname for the youngest in the family.

    The spelling of Holley to Holly was a result of his name being misspelled on a recording contract in 1956 - he never changed it!
  • Janine from Weaubleau, MoBuddy Holly is spelt Holley. I am named after him. Janine Holley And Janine is after the song by Eddie Rabbit My Sweet Janine.
  • Teresa from Mechelen, BelgiumThis is a very good Buddy Holly song. Too bad it had to happen that way because with his talent I'm sure he still had a lot of beautiful songs to give. Buddy Holly will never die, he'll always stay in our heart.
  • Tony from Cambridge, EnglandBuddy Holly was a key figure in the history of Rocn 'n Roll but the truth is that he was past his best when he died. That'll be the day, Peggy Sue, Rave On, Think it Over etc are among the best ever made but numbers such as Listen to Me and It doesn't matter Anymore are weak pop. Songfact. Norman Petty was credited as co-writer but he didn't actually have much input (in just the same way Elvis was not a songwriter but his name appears as a credit on most of his early work). Buddy Holly influenced nearly everyone including Dylan and The Stones. Rave On has the best start to any record, anywhere, any time and also the best ending
  • Brian from Meriden, CtRave on - Buddy's best.

    As a Beatles fan, I still say that they would have not caught on as fast if Buddy Holly had not left us at 22. He would have stolen the thorny crown.
  • Madeline from Yakima, WaA true classic!
  • Cynthia from Phoenix, Azbuddy holly was and still is one of the best inovaters of the first rock n roll
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Def Leppard Quiz

Def Leppard QuizMusic Quiz

Can you name Def Leppard's only #1 hit in America? Get rocked with this adrenalized quiz.

Narada Michael Walden - "Freeway of Love"

Narada Michael Walden - "Freeway of Love"They're Playing My Song

As a songwriter and producer, Narada had hits with Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey and Starship. But what song does he feel had the greatest impact on his career?

History Of Rock

History Of RockSong Writing

An interview with Dr. John Covach, music professor at the University of Rochester whose free online courses have become wildly popular.

Song Titles That Inspired Movies

Song Titles That Inspired MoviesSong Writing

Famous songs that lent their titles - and in some cases storylines - to movies.

Women Who Rock

Women Who RockSong Writing

Evelyn McDonnell, editor of the book Women Who Rock, on why the Supremes are just as important as Bob Dylan.

Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders

Chrissie Hynde of The PretendersSongwriter Interviews

The rock revolutionist on songwriting, quitting smoking, and what she thinks of Rush Limbaugh using her song.