Queen Lucille will miss his king.

As you may have already heard B.B. King born on September 16, 1925 died this Thursday at the age of 89. According to his website, King died peacefully in his sleep at the age of 89 in his Las Vegas Home.

Born under the name Riley B. King, B.B. King became a DJ in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was dubbed “the Beale Street Blues Boy.” That nickname was shortened to “B.B.” and the guitarist cut his first record in 1949. He spent the next several decades recording and touring, playing more than 300 shows a year. Kings world-weary voice and weeping guitar uplifted him from the cotton fields of Mississippi to the peak of American blues as we all know it.

King played a Gibson guitar he fondly named Lucille. With a style that included beautifully crafted single-string runs punctuated by powerful chords, tenuous vibratos and bent notes. One day king was playing at a small club that only had a giant can of kerosene for warmth. Two guys started fighting and eventually knocked the lit kerosene over. This caught the club on fire and sent everyone running. As soon as he got outside B.B. realized his guitar was still inside. He saved it but almost lost his life in the process. He later learned the guys were fighting over a woman named Lucille. So he named his guitar that to remind himself to never do anything like that ever again!

On behalf of Beato’s Blog we’d like to pay homage to one of the greatest blues guitarist of our time. So instead of mourning his death lets celebrate life and take the time to remember and keep his legend alive.

B.B., May your soul be amongst the greats in rock and roll heaven. You will be missed.

-Steve Martinho




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