Niki Sullivan was born on June 23, 1937. He was a guitarist with Buddy Holly and the Crickets and he played on 27 of the 32 songs Buddy recorded. He was with the band in 1957. Tired of the Crickets schedule, he left the group before Holly, the Big Bopper, and Ritchie Valens died in a 1959 plane crash. In 2002, he said he still received 30 fan letters a year. He did some recordings on his own. He was raised in Lubbock, Texas, retired from Sony Electronics, enjoyed golfing, was a Kansas City Chiefs fan, and was a Navy veteran.

Niki Sullivan died on April 6, 2004 at the age of 66.