One of the greatest bluesmen ever, B. B. King has died, aged 89. The "King Of Blues" influenced a whole generation of musicians, from Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck to U2 and many, many more. Voted by Rolling Stone magazine as the #3 "Best Guitarist of All Time", his style was unmistakable and he'll be sadly missed by anyone who admired the blues and great, unique guitar playing. Check these Top 5 moments to remember his remarkable career...
"Darling You Know I Love You"
In this early TV appearance from the early 60's, he's described as "the first bluesman of the modern age" and all his trademark licks (and Gibson Semi-Acoustic) are already all there.
"Why I Sing The Blues" (Live in Africa 1974)
B. B. King was one of the first musicians to take the blues back to its roots, performing in Zaire (now Congo) to a crowd of 80,000.
"Into The Night"
By 1985, it's safe to say blues was not high on pop music's agenda. This song, (for the soundtrack of a John Landis film with Jeff Goldblum & Michelle Pfeiffer!) is not his best, but shows an artist willing to adapt to keep the flame alive! His performance, mind, is great as ever.
"The Thrill Is Gone" (Live at the White House)
Here we are, in the 21st century, and the blues is as alive as ever, with new artists such as Joe Bonamassa and sixties legends such as Eric Clapton still filling arenas. We got a lot to thank B. B. King for, and his status was confirmed with this performance in front of Barack Obama and other dignitaries, playing one of his greatest songs.
Blues Jam with Slash, Ron Wood & Others, Royal Albert Hall 2011
Not long ago, the 85-year old B. B. King was still playing up to 100 shows per year, and many rock stars were still lining up to play with him, as seen in this super jam with Slash, Ron Wood & others. B. B. King already seems fragile but his performance is still fantastic.
R.I.P. B. B. King, we'll miss you!