Riley B. King was an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and record producer. King introduced a sophisticated style of soloing based on fluid string bending, shimmering vibrato and staccato picking. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. King died at the age of 89 in Las Vegas, Nevada, on May 14, 2015.
About B.B. King in brief
Riley B. King was an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and record producer. King introduced a sophisticated style of soloing based on fluid string bending, shimmering vibrato and staccato picking that influenced many later blues electric guitar players. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. King performed tirelessly throughout his musical career, appearing on average at more than 200 concerts per year into his 70s. King died at the age of 89 in Las Vegas, Nevada, on May 14, 2015. He is one of the most influential blues musicians of all time, earning the nickname \”The King of the Blues\”, and is considered one of the \”Three Kings of the blues Guitar\” King was born on September 16, 1925, on the Berclair cotton plantation near the town of Itta Bena, Mississippi, the son of sharecroppers Albert and Nora Ella King. His mother left his father for another man when he was four years old, so he was raised by his maternal grandmother, Elnora Farr, in Kilmichael, Mississippi. He later lived in Memphis, Tennessee, and Chicago, and as his fame grew, toured the world extensively. In 1949, King began recording songs under contract with Los Angeles-based RPM Records. In 1956 alone, he appeared at 342 shows. He performed with Bobby Bland, Johnny Bland, and Ace Earl in a group known as the Beale Street Foresters. King’s first recordings were for a company called Bullet Record Transcription, which did not chart well.
His first single, Miss Martha, was issued on Bullet Records by Nashville-based Sun Records. King had a very different style of playing than that of the other artists he was playing with. He played the guitar with the Famous St. John’s Gospel Singers, performing at area churches and on WGRM in Greenwood, Mississippi,. He was attracted to the Pentecostal Church of God in Christ because of its music. In November 1941, \”King Biscuit Time\” first aired, broadcasting on KFFA in Helena, Arkansas, featuring the Mississippi Delta blues. King listened to it while on break at a plantation. He then wanted to become a radio musician. He worked at WDIA as a singer and disc jockey, where he was given the nickname ‘Beale Street Blues Boy’, later shortened to ‘Blues Boy’ It was there that he first met T-Bone Walker. King said, \”Once I’d heard him for the first time, I knew I’d have to have myself. ‘Had’ to have one, short of stealing!\” King said. In 1943, King left Kilm Michael to work as a tractor driver and play guitar with a gospel group. In 1946, King followed Bukka White to Memphis,. White took him in for the next ten months. However, King returned to Mississippi shortly afterward to prepare himself better for his next visit, and returned to West Memphis.