Little Richard, rock and roll pioneer, dies



Rock music legend Little Richard has died at the age of 87, his family said
The star died of bone cancer in Tullahoma, Tennessee, consistent with his lawyer
His hits included Tutti Frutti, Long Tall Sally, and Good Golly Miss Molly
Once open by the standards of his time about his attraction to men, Richard became a born-again Christian and renounced homosexuality
Tributes quickly poured out Saturday for the late rock king, with co-founder of Chic Nile Rodgers dubbing it 'the loss of a real giant'

Rock music legend Little Richard has died at the age of 87, his son Danny Penniman has confirmed.

The star, whose hits included Tutti Frutti, Long Tall Sally, and Good Golly Miss Molly, inspired a generation of musicians.

Little Richard, born Richard Penniman, died of bone cancer in Tullahoma, Tennessee, consistent with his lawyer Bill Sobel.

He sold quite 30 million records worldwide.

The singer claimed to be the 'architect of Rock' n 'Roll' while receiving a ovation at the 1988 Grammy Awards. 'I am the originator!' he added.

Music icons including Rolling Stone frontman Jagger, Sir Elton John and Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page were among the celebs who paid tribute on Saturday

Sir Mick said he had 'contributed such a lot to popular music', adding that he would 'watch his moves' to find out from them while they toured together.

Little Richard was' the biggest inspiration of my early teens' and his music still has the same raw electric energy once you play it now as when it first shot through the music scene within the mid 50s', he added.

Sir Elton hailed Little Richard as 'without doubt ... my biggest influence', adding: 'Seeing him sleep in my teens was the foremost exciting event in my life at that time.'

He was a serious influence on The Beatles, who first met him once they were an up-and-coming young band playing in Germany.

On Saturday, Beatles drummer Sir Starr described Little Richard together of his 'all-time musical heroes'

And Chic star Nile Rodgers said his death represented 'the loss of a real giant'.

Paying tribute to the singer, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page said that his songs 'pioneered Rock' n 'Roll'.

Elvis Costello urged people to play the song Rip It Up 'very loud' as a tribute to the singer.

He added: 'Then play it again. There's nothing anyone can say, that says it better. '

Little Richard, who was born in Macon, Georgia, during the good Depression, was one among 12 children but was ostracised by his family due to his sexuality.

Richard was a trailblazer for several of the foremost iconic acts in modern music history. Acts like Elvis, Elton John, the Beatles, Prince and more could trace their inspiration from the artist - known for his boisterous personality an androgynous fashion.

With a particular voice that ranged from robust belting to howling falsetto, Richard transfixed audiences and have become an idea for artists including the Beatles as he transformed the blues into the feverish new sort of rock 'n' roll alongside Domino and Berry.

His raunchy 1955 song 'Tutti Frutti,' even with its gay sex theme diluted for radio, became a kind of opening salvo of rock 'n' roll's entry into American life, starting together with his nonsensical but instantly thrilling first line: 'Awop bop a toilet mop / Alop bam boom. '

Following 'Tutti Frutti,' Little Richard dominated with 'Long Tall Sally' and 'Rip It Up' therein the same year. 'Lucille' came in 1957 and was joined by 'Good Golly Miss Molly' in 1958.

'I heard Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis, which was it,' Elton John told Rolling Stone in 1973. 'I didn't ever want to be anything. I'm more of a touch Richard stylist than a Jerry Lee Lewis, I think. Jerry Lee may be a very intricate pianist and really skillful, but Little Richard is more of a pounder. '

But if his contemporaries kept the respectabilities of old-time musicians, Richard stunned buttoned-down post-World War II America with an otherworldly look of blindingly colorful shirts, glass-embedded dinner jackets, a needle-thin moustache and a 15-centimeter ( six-inch) high pompadour haircut.
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