B.B KING – King of the Blues 1925 – 14th May 2015

Posted: May 16, 2015 in MUSIC
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The “King of the Blues”, guitarist and singer BB King, has died aged 89. Blues legend B.B. King has died in Las Vegas aged 89, his lawyer confirmed on Thursday. Attorney Brent Bryson said King died peacefully in his sleep at 9:40 p.m. PDT at his Clark County home in Las Vegas.

King, known as the ‘King Of Blues’, sold millions of records worldwide, won 15 Grammys and was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame in 1980 and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

BB King, known for his hits My Lucille, Sweet Little Angel and Rock Me Baby, died in his sleep in Las Vegas. Born in Mississippi, King began performing in the 1940s, going on to influence a generation of musicians and work with Eric Clapton and U2.

Once ranked as the third greatest guitarist of all time, he had been suffering ill health in recent months. He was recently taken to hospital with a diabetes-related illness. Fellow musicians paid tribute to King including blues guitarist Buddy Guy, who often played with him.

“BB King was the greatest guy I ever met,”

“The tone he got out of that guitar, the way he shook his left wrist, the way he squeezed the strings… man, he came out with that and it was all new to whole guitar playin’ world. “He could play so smooth, he didn’t have to put on a show. The way BB did it is the way we all do it now. He was my best friend and father to us all.”

Eric Clapton posted a video tribute on Facebook to express his sadness at the death of his “dear friend”.

“I want to thank him for all the inspiration and encouragement he gave me as a player over the years, and for the friendship that we enjoyed,” he said. “There’s not a lot left to say because this music is almost a thing of the past now, and there are not many left who play it in the pure way that BB did. He was a beacon for all of us who love this kind of music.”

He fused together both jazz and blues on his beloved guitar, a Gibson ES-355 he lovingly dubbed “Lucille”.

In the early part of his career, he played to exclusively black audiences, but his heartfelt vocals and undeniable talent saw him embraced by a much broader fanbase as time went on – touring Europe and topping the charts. Younger musicians such as Clapton and Steve Miller, who admired his work, introduced him to a new generation of fans in the late ’60s with hits like The Thrill is Gone.

Longevity: King (pictured in Tennessee in 1948) was one of the most robust in the music industry, once playing 342 shows in a single year

Albums such as Live at County Cook Jail and BB King in London followed.

His career was reignited in the late 1980s when he duetted with U2 on When Love Comes To Town.

At the turn of the millennium, aged 75, he once again achieved major commercial success with the Eric Clapton collaboration plus the brilliant “Live at the Regal” 

“King’s is now the name most synonymous with the blues, much as Louis Armstrong’s once was with jazz,” critic Francis Davis wrote in his 1995 book The History of the Blues. “You don’t have to be a blues fan to have heard of King.”  A self-taught guitarist, King entered the industry as a disc jockey after serving in World War II and released his first single Three O’Clock Blues in 1949.

He was named BB from being nicknamed ‘Beale Street Blues Boy’ and called each of his guitars ‘Lucille’ after witnessing two men fight over a woman of the same name.Guitarist BB was married twice – both of which ended by the mid-1960s – and succeeded 11 living children and 50 grandchildren. His first marriage to Martha Lee Denton lasted for six years and ended in 1952. While his second wife Sue Carol Hall came along in 1958 but ended in separation again in 1966. He was awarded his 15th Grammy in 2009 in the traditional blues album category for One Kind Favor. His battle with illness has been a long one, though he continued to tour until late 2014.

King’s daughter Patty King recently claimed the blues legend’s long time handler Laverne Toney refused to let her take him to hospital after he’d suffered a heart attack.

According to TMZ, there is an ongoing battle between Patty and Toney. Patty reportedly became worried when her father wouldn’t eat and his urine turned orange, and decided to take him to hospital

But when Toney – who had the power of attorney over the guitarist – refused, his daughter called the police.

Responding officers concurred that he needed medical attention and summoned paramedics, who then brought him to hospital.

Track Listings – 1.Every Day I Have The Blues 2.Sweet Little Angel 3.It’s My Own Fault 4.How Blue Can You Get 6.You Upset Me Baby 7.Worry, Worry 8.Woke Up This Mornin’ 9.You Done Lost Your Good Thing Now 10.Help the Poor.

Comments
  1. earthbalm says:

    Reblogged this on Earth Balm Music and commented:
    Legend!

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