B.B. King

Blues Guitarist and Singer-songwriter
Born Sep 16, 1925

Riley B. King, known by the stage name B.B. King, is an African-American blues guitarist and singer-songwriter. Rolling Stone magazine ranked him at No. 6 on its list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time (previously ranked No. 3 in the 2003 edition of the same list), and he was ranked No. 17 in Gibson's Top 50 Guitarists of All Time. According to Edward M.… Read More

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Browse recent news and stories about B.B. King.

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    The Weird And Wonderful Latest All Inclusive Outreach Of Yiddish Soul
    Huffington Post - Jun 22, 2016
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    Talkin' Jaco With Metallica's Robert Trujillo, Chatting With Denise Donatelli, Plus The Nolatet, Svetlana & The Delancey Five And Rolla Olak Exclusives
    Huffington Post - Jan 05, 2016
  • White House Leads Bb King Tributes
    Yahoo News - May 15, 2015
  • Bluesman Bb King 'in Home Hospice Care,' His Website Says Cnn
    Google News - May 02, 2015


Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of B.B. King.


1925 Birth Riley B. King was born on September 16, 1925, on a cotton plantation called Berclair, near the town of Itta Bena, Mississippi, the son of sharecroppers Albert and Nora Ella King. … Read More


1941 15 Years Old In November 1941 "King Biscuit Time" first aired, broadcasting on KFFA in Helena, Arkansas. … Read More
1943 17 Years Old In 1943, King left Kilmichael to work as a tractor driver and play guitar with the Famous St. John's Quartet of Inverness, Mississippi, performing at area churches and on WGRM in Greenwood, Mississippi.


1946 20 Years Old 1 More Event
In 1946, King followed Bukka White to Memphis, Tennessee. … Read More
1948 22 Years Old However, King returned to Mississippi shortly afterward, where he decided to prepare himself better for the next visit, and returned to West Memphis, Arkansas, two years later in 1948. … Read More
1949 23 Years Old 1 More Event
In 1949, King began recording songs under contract with Los Angeles-based RPM Records. … Read More


1956 30 Years Old …  This led to a significant increase in his weekly earnings, from about $85 to $2,500, with appearances at major venues such as the Howard Theater in Washington and the Apollo in New York, as well as touring the entire "Chitlin' circuit". 1956 became a record-breaking year, with 342 concerts booked and three recording sessions. … Read More
1962 36 Years Old In 1962, King signed to ABC-Paramount Records, which was later absorbed into MCA Records, and which itself was later absorbed into Geffen Records.
1964 38 Years Old In November 1964, King recorded the Live at the Regal album at the Regal Theater. … Read More


1969 43 Years Old King gained further visibility among rock audiences as an opening act on the Rolling Stones' 1969 American Tour.
1970 44 Years Old He won a 1970 Grammy Award for the song "The Thrill Is Gone"; his version became a hit on both the pop and R&B charts. … Read More


1980 54 Years Old King was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1980, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, and the Official Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame in 2014. … Read More


1988 - 2005 5 More Events
In 2006, King went on a "farewell" world tour, although he remained active afterward during the last years of his life. … Read More
2007 - 2008 3 More Events
King performed at the Mawazine festival in Rabat, Morocco, on May 27, 2010.
2011 85 Years Old 1 More Event
In 2011, King played at the Glastonbury Music Festival, and in the Royal Albert Hall in London, where he recorded a concert video.
2012 86 Years Old 1 More Event
On February 21, 2012, King was among the performers of "In Performance at the White House: Red, White and Blues", during which President Barack Obama sang part of "Sweet Home Chicago". … Read More
2013 87 Years Old On May 26, 2013, King appeared at the New Orleans Jazz Festival.
On October 3, 2014, not feeling well enough, King had to stop his live performance at the House of Blues in Chicago, Illinois.
From the 1980s to his death in 2015, he maintained a highly visible and active career, appearing on numerous television shows and performing 300 nights a year.
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