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Born in Mississippi in 1925 to farm labourers,

Riley B. King began performing in the 1940s.

A guitar virtuoso and eolquent singer,

his style was an offering of stirring, soulful blues, which joined

voice and instrument in an emotive, musical language.

Considered one of the greatest guitarist of all time,

B. B. King was an innovator-

blending characteristics of blues and jazz

to create a unique, deep,  lyrical tone.

His guitar was his musical partner.

His was a semi-acoustic Gibson ES- 355 electric guitar,

which he endearingly called “Lucille”.

His first commerical hit

Three O’Clock Blues (1952)

topped the R & B charts for an incredible 15 weeks.

This achievement established the trend of his success

and influence in a career which spanned over 65 years.

Ever the musical risk-taking adventurer

B.B. King collaborated with younger talents in the rock -n- roll genre such as

English musician singer/songwriter and guitarist, Eric Clapton

and Irish rock band U2.

Starting in the 1980s, these partnerships help to introduce B. B. King

to a new generation of appreciative audiences.

For his contributions to the music industry,

he was inducted into the Blues Foundation as well as the

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Playing and making music was his life love.

As recent as 2009, he received his 15th Grammy Award for his album

One Kind Favor.

B. B. King was always quick to credit those muscians who came before

and whose genuis inspired his own.

He will be remembered in the annlas of history

as the man who singularly defined the blues-

an amazing accomplishment for an amazing, yet modest man.

B. B. King

16 September 1925   –  14 May 2015

BB King, portrait

(image from showbiz411)