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Ritchie Valens

Born: May 13, 1941, Pacoima, California
Died: February 3, 1959 (age 17), Clear Lake, Iowa

Ritchie Valens - Trivia powered by ABERitchie Valens (Richard Steven Valenzuela) was an American singer, songwriter and guitarist. A rock and roll pioneer and a forefather of the Chicano rock movement, Valens' recording career lasted only eight months. During this time, however, he scored several hits, most notably "La Bamba", which was originally a Mexican folk song that Valens transformed with a rock rhythm and beat that became a hit in 1958, making Valens a pioneer of the Spanish-speaking rock and roll movement.

What do you know know about Ritchie Valens?  La Bamba this Rock & Roll Heaven Quick Quiz.

1. When he was sixteen years old, he was invited to join a local band named as a guitarist. What was the band's name?

  • The Beach Boys
  • The Silhouettes
  • The Rimfires

2. Due to his high-energy performances, Valenzuela earned the nickname "The Little Richard of the Valley".

  • Fact or Myth?

3. What was the first single released by Valens and #42 on the charts?

  • The Paddiwack Song
  • Cry, Cry, Cry
  • Come On, Let's Go

4. What was the #2 charting song?

  • Cry Me a River
  • Go to the Waves
  • Donna

5. What is his #3 hit in 1958?

  • Little Girl
  • We Belong Together
  • La Bamba

6. Valens had a fear of flying brought on by a freak accident at his Pacoima Junior High School when two airplanes collided over the playground, killing or injuring several of his friends. Valens was not at school that day as he was attending his grandfather's funeral.

  • Fact or Myth?

7. When did he make his first appearance in Philadelphia on Dick Clark's Bandstand?

  • October 6
  • November 6
  • December 6

8. Valens found himself a last-minute addition on the bill of legendary discjockey Alan Freed's Christmas Jubilee in Cleveland, singing with some of those who had greatly influenced his music, including Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, The Everly Brothers, Duane Eddy, Eddie Cochran and Jackie Wilson.

  • Fact or Myth?

9. Originally, the Holly flight was Buddy, Tommy Allsup, and Waylon Jennings. Jennings gave his seat to The Big Bopper, because the Bopper was ill. Why did Valens get Allsup's seat?

  • Allsup's fear of flying
  • Valens won a coin toss
  • Valens paid Allsup $200

10. Where is Richie Valens buried?

  • San Fernando Mission Cemetery, Mission Hills, California
  • Oakwood Memorial Park, Chatsworth, California
  • Rose Hills Memorial Park, Whittier, California

Ritchie Valens Answers

  1. The Silhouettes
  2. Fact
  3. Come On, Let's Go
  4. Donna
  5. La Bamba
  6. Fact
  7. October 6
  8. Myth. Valens found himself a last-minute addition on the bill of legendary discjockey Alan Freed's Christmas Jubilee in New York City, singing with some of those who had greatly influenced his music, including Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, The Everly Brothers, Duane Eddy, Eddie Cochran and Jackie Wilson.
  9. Valens won a coin toss
  10. Angels on your pillowSan Fernando Mission Cemetery, Mission Hills, California
    Plot: Section C, Lot 248, Grave 2

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