Sad day in the rock music world.
Rock legend Little Richard has died at the age of 87.
His son, Danny Penniman, confirmed the musician’s death to Rolling Stone, but said the cause of death was unknown.
In the early ’50s, Little Richard Penniman combined the spirit of church music, the bawdiness of blues and the swing of New Orleans jazz and turned it into something altogether new, rock ‘n’ roll. When the Macon, Georgia native signed to Art Rupe‘s Specialty Records, Little Richard began to develop his signature sound and flamboyant persona.
His legendary debut album, “Here’s Little Richard” (1957), was a bold introduction to the artist, featuring the iconic tracks “Tutti Frutti” and “Long Tall Sally”. His 1958 follow-up, “Little Richard”, found the singer on his rise to superstardom, with hits like “Lucille”, “Good Golly Miss Molly” and the title track of Jayne Mansfield hit flick “The Girl Can’t Help It”, in which Little Richard appeared.
The artist’s third and final album for Specialty, “The Fabulous Little Richard” (1959), was released soon after Richard had traded in a life of fame to focus on spreading the gospel. The LP featured standout tracks from Richard‘s 1955-57 Specialty sessions, including “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Going On”, “Lonesome And Blue” and “Kansas City”.
By the end of his tenure on Vee-Jay, Richard had firmly cemented his status as a rock ‘n’ roll legend.