Chuck Berry

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Chuck Berry
Berry in 2007
Berry in 2007
Background information
Birth nameCharles Edward Anderson Berry
Born(1926-10-18)October 18, 1926
St. Louis, Missouri, USA
DiedMarch 18, 2017(2017-03-18) (aged 90)
Wentzville, Missouri, USA
GenresRock and roll
Occupation(s)Musician, songwriter
InstrumentsGuitar, vocals
Years active1951 – 2017
LabelsChess, Mercury, Atco
Chuck Berry, You can't catch me, 1956.
Berry in 1957: publicity photo

Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry (October 18, 1926 – March 18, 2017) was an American singer, guitarist and songwriter. He is one of the original musicians who helped to create rock and roll and is known as the Father of Rock and Roll.

Career[change | change source]

In 1955 Berry met Muddy Waters who told him of a record company that would release his first song. In 1957 he joined the Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly and other popular musicians on a tour around the United States. Over the next few years he became more and more popular and had many popular songs on the radio. "Maybellene" (1955), "Roll Over Beethoven" (1956), "Rock and Roll Music" (1957) and "Johnny B. Goode" (1958) were massive hits.

He has influenced many rock and pop musicians who came after him.[1] Berry has influenced many music artists, like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Beach Boys, and Bob Dylan. Berry tried to help an Apache waitress cross the US-Canadian border, but was caught by police and charged for prostitution. This dented his career: he served 18 months.[2][3] When released, his first recording was "Nadine", (1964) also a huge hit.

Berry was a favorite with The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and The Beach Boys, who adapted and recorded a number of his songs.

In 1986 a documentary film, Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll, was made. It featured a celebration concert for Berry's sixtieth birthday, organized by Keith Richards.[4]

Death[change | change source]

Berry died at his home in Wentzville, Missouri on March 18, 2017 from a congestive heart failure, aged 90.[5][6][7]

Discography[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. M. Campbell (ed) Popular Music in America: And the Beat Goes on (Cengage Learning, 3rd edn., 2008), pp. 168-9.
  2. "The long, colorful history of the Mann Act". NPR. Retrieved February 18, 2010.
  3. Pegg, Bruce (2002). Brown-Eyed Handsome Man: the life and hard times of Chuck Berry. Routledge. pp. 123–24, p. 129. ISBN 978-0-415-93748-1.
  4. Hackford, Taylor (March 16, 2007). "Rock'n'roll fireworks: Keith Richards and Chuck Berry together on stage". The Independent. London. Archived from the original on December 5, 2008. Retrieved June 6, 2010.
  5. Schabner, Dean; Rothman, Michael (March 18, 2017). "Legendary musician Chuck Berry dead at 90". ABC News. Retrieved March 18, 2017.
  6. "Rock and roll legend Chuck Berry dies". BBC News. March 18, 2017. Retrieved March 18, 2017.
  7. Sblendorio, Peter (March 20, 2017). "Chuck Berry 911 audio reveals police responded to congestive heart failure call; death attributed to natural causes". New York Daily News. Retrieved March 20, 2017.

Other websites[change | change source]

Media related to Chuck Berry at Wikimedia Commons Quotations related to Chuck Berry at Wikiquote