1969 Song of the Day is “Running Bear” by Sonny James. Sonny James had 3 #1 country hits in 1969- “Only The Lonely”, “Running Bear” and “Since, I Met You Baby.” All together in his career James had 26 #1 hit country singles. I wonder why his name is largely forgotten today? The song “Running Bear” was written by Jiles Perry Richardson- also known as The Big Bopper- one of the musicians who died in the plane crash that also took the lives of Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens. The most famous version of Running Bear was by Johnny Preston- a #1 hit in 1959 on the Billboard Hot 100.