Following the death of Fats Domino today at age 89, another rock ‘n’ pioneer, Little Richard, paid homage the influential musician.
“He’s the greatest entertainer that I ever known,” Richard told Billboard. “Black, white, red, brown or yellow, he’s a just good guy and I thank God for giving me the opportunity to know him. I love him.”
Richard and Domino were part of the inaugural class of artists who were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1986. Sadly, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis and The Everly Brothers‘ Don Everly are the only original inductees who are still alive.
Meanwhile, both the Recording Academy and the Rock Hall have issued statements paying homage to Domino.
“In a career spanning more than five decades, Domino charmed audiences with his smooth vocals, boogie-woogie piano style, and unwavering humility,” writes Recording Academy president and CEO Neil Portnow. “He is widely recognized for influencing artists across all genres, having a number of his hits covered by music industry giants, including John Lennon, Cheap Trick, and Led Zeppelin…He will be greatly missed, but remembered for paving the way for rock and roll.”
In addition, Rock Hall president and CEO Greg Harris writes, “Before Elvis, Jerry Lee, and Chuck Berry there was Fats. His sweet voice, rolling boogie-woogie piano, and delightful charisma made him a top-selling artist, a worldwide rock star and an inaugural member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.”
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