(SL) – One of Rock-n-Roll’s greatest pioneers has left us. Chuck Berry gave us the hits Maybellene, Roll Over Beethoven, Johnny B. Goode, and was famous for his duck walk was found dead at his home Saturday afternoon.
St. Charles County Police confirmed they responded to a medical emergency at his home near St. Louis, Missouri, at 12.40 pm.
He was found unresponsive and could not be revived. He was pronounced dead at 1.26 pm.
Real name Charles Edward Anderson Berry, he was a one of kind performer and present in rock’s infancy in the 1950’s, emerging as its first star guitarist and lyricist and breaking color barriers.
Some of the biggest names in Rock expressed their shock and sympathy online as the tributes continue to pour in for the legend.
Respected by all, the Daily Mail reports, Bob Dylan called Berry ‘the Shakespeare of rock’n’roll,’ and he was one of the first popular acts to write as well as perform his own songs.
They focused on youth, romance, cars and good times, with lyrics that were complex, humorous and sometimes a little raunchy.
Both the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, as well as the Beach Boys and scores of others acts – even Elvis – covered Berry’s songs.
Berry released his first album, After School Session, in May 1957.
He went on to record a further 18 studio albums. His 20th album, Chuck, is to be released later this year.
His first number one, My Ding-a-Ling, topped the charts in 1972.
CHUCK BERRY’S TOP 10 HITS
- Promised Land, 1964
- Johnny B Goode, 1958
- Maybellene, 1955
- You Never Can Tell, 1964
- Memphis, 1959
- Back in the USA, 1959
- Nadine (Is It You?), 1964
- Let It Rock, 1960
- School Day, 1957
- Downbound Train, 1956
He leaves behind his wife Toddy and four children.
THAT ONE TIME WHEN CHUCK PUNCHED KEITH RICHARDS
The Daily Mail says Keith Richards, pictured in 1991, once was given a black eye by Chuck Berry
Keith Richards once had his eye ‘painted black’ by Chuck Berry, who believed the rocker was stealing his guitar full of cash.
Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood spilled the beans during The Ronnie Wood Show on Absolute Radio in 2012.
He said: ‘I used to play with him quite a lot, and he’d always have to have the money up front in his guitar case and he’d leap straight from the stage with the guitar case full of money, throw it offstage and into the cab.
‘Once Keith was there in the audience and Chuck came off stage and Keith ran up behind him, tapped him on the shoulder, at which Chuck turned round and went whack and smashed Keith in the eye, gave him a big black eye.
‘He said “What you do that for? I was only trying to say hello, Chuck”‘.
It could have been the start of a nasty fight between the pair, but instead, Wood said, Richards was ‘proud’ of the black eye.
Watch out for my right hook: Chuck Berry, left, once gave Keith Richards, right, a black eye after wrongly believing he was about to steal his money.