TrueFire's Guitar Blog

B.B. King, Legendary Blues Guitarist, Dies at 89

Legendary blues guitarist, B.B. King, died early this morning at the age of 89. He is regarded as one of the most significant guitar players of the era, and he will be sorely missed by family, friends, and fans alike.

Generally regarded as the “ambassador of the blues,” Riley B. “B.B.” King, born in Mississippi in 1925, has influenced more blues and rock guitarists than any other guitarist ever. With his immediately recognizable, vocal-like guitar solos, which cover the from sharp intensity to delicate beauty, classic one-of-a-kind vibrato and signature “B.B. box” phrasing, B.B. features his guitar, named Lucille, as the perfect foil for his expressive singing.

B.B. was influenced by blues players such as T-Bone Walker, Bukka White and Robert Jr. Lockwood, but also has an affinity for the jazz sounds of Johnny Moore, Django Reinhardt and Charlie Christian. Recordings such as “The Thrill Is Gone,” “Everyday I Have the Blues,” and “Sweet Little Angel” are prime examples of B.B.’s expertise; countless guitarists, such as Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan, pointed to B.B.’s “Live at the Regal” album as one of the greatest blues albums ever recorded.

As a tribute to B.B. King’s everlasting impact on blues guitar, we are currently offering up a download of the Kings of Blues & Rock: B.B. King course for just $1 (usually $19) because everyone should have the chance to experience and learn about his greatness.

Rest in peace, B.B.