B.B. King, R.I.P. - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
B.B. King, R.I.P.

Legendary blues guitarist B.B. King passed away last night of complications of diabetes. He was 89.

The son of a Mississippi sharecropper, King’s musical career spanned more than six decades. King was never far from his Gibson guitar, Lucille. He first named his guitar in Lucille after a fight and a fire broke out a club he was playing in Arkansas in 1949. King escaped the fire, but realized he left his guitar behind and risked his life to retrieve it. The following day he found out that two people had perished in the fire and the fight started over a woman named Lucille. He thus christened his guitar Lucille “as a reminder to never do anything as stupid as fight over a woman or enter a burning building again.”

King would rise to fame among black audiences in the 1950s, but it was not until 1969 that he would reach a broader audience when The Rolling Stones invited him to be their opening act on a U.S. tour. It was not long after “The Thrill is Gone” hit the charts. The song would earn him the first of 15 Grammy Awards. I

He actively toured until last October when he fell ill during a performance in Chicago. King’s health deteriorated and earlier this month it was announced he had entered hospice care.

I wish I could find video of King jamming with the late Lee Atwater and George H.W. Bush during his inauguration in 1989. Instead, I leave you with King performing “How Blue Can You Get” during a guest spot on the ’70’s sitcom Sanford & Son.

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