Flight 505

Album: Aftermath (1966)
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • The common misinterpretation of this song is that Flight 505 was the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper in 1959, but this is not true. It is not officially confirmed by a news source that the plane crash of "The Day the Music Died" was actually flight #505. In any case, the lyrics to this Rolling Stones song have the line "He put the plane down in the sea," which of course, couldn't mean the Holly/Valens/Bopper crash that happened on dry land in Mason City, Iowa in 1959:So it looks like the "flight 505 = Buddy Holly's crash" thing is an urban legend. But a quick "buddy holly flight 505" Google will show that this is a widely circulated rumor on the web.
  • Flight 505 was also coincidentally the flight number of the BOAC (British Airways) plane the Stones took on their first trip to the US in 1964 (according to Bill Wyman, Stone Alone). >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Louie - Middletown, NY
  • That was Ian Stewart on piano. Stewart, one of the founding members of the Stones, later left the group's lineup but stayed on as road manager until his demise from heart attack in 1985. Keith Richards would later say in his autobiography Life that he still considered The Rolling Stones to be Ian Stewart's band.
  • The cover art for "Flight 505"'s album Aftermath has the Stones dressed and posed in suspiciously Beatles-like style; compare the cover work for Beatles For Sale and With The Beatles, and you'll see the importance of packaging when marketing a British group in the States. Aftermath was also the first Stones album recorded entirely in the US.
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 3

  • Bb from Los Banos, CaWhile this song was being recorded, BOAC flight 911 crashed into MT. Fuji on March 4, 1966.
  • Sam from Shanghai, ChinaThe piano bit is nearly the riff to Satisfaction
  • Chelsea from Nyc, OrThe intro has Ian Stewart playing piano. Bill Wyman on Fuzzbass, an effect he used a lot on "Aftermath".
see more comments

Rush: Album by Album - A Conversation With Martin PopoffSong Writing

A talk with Martin Popoff about his latest book on Rush and how he assessed the thousands of albums he reviewed.

Dar WilliamsSongwriter Interviews

A popular contemporary folk singer, Williams still remembers the sticky note that changed her life in college.

Facebook, Bromance and Email - The First Songs To Use New WordsSong Writing

Do you remember the first time you heard "email" in a song? How about "hater" or "Facebook"? Here are the songs where they first showed up.

Chris TomlinSongwriter Interviews

The king of Christian worship music explains talks about writing songs for troubled times.

The Girl in That SongFact or Fiction

Billie Jean, Delilah, Sara, Laura and Sharona - do you know who the girls in the songs really are?

Barney Hoskyns Explores The Forgotten History Of Woodstock, New YorkSong Writing

Our chat with Barney Hoskyns, who covers the wild years of Woodstock - the town, not the festival - in his book Small Town Talk.