Elmore James (January 27, 1918 – May 24, 1963) was an American blues and rock guitarist, singer, songwriter and band leader. He was known as King of the Slide Guitar, but he was also noted for his use of loud amplification and his stirring voice. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992, for his influential slide guitar techniques, participating in "the birth and flowering" of electric blues, and pioneering blues rock by "energizing primal riffs with a raw, driving intensity."
His band, the Broomdusters, was one of the first electric blues bands in the Mississippi Delta and Chicago. As an electric guitar pioneer, he used techniques such as distortion, power chords and slides in the 1950s to create an "explosive sound" that was "screaming with sustained tones" and was distorted and densely textured. He was one of the prime architects of the Chicago blues school, while his hard driving blues guitar work, the "thunderous blast" of his guitar sound, and his slashing and bottleneck guitar techniques, had a strong influence on the development of modern rock music, particularly heavy metal and hard rock. He had a strong influence on British blues bands such as The Rolling Stones, The Animals, and The Yardbirds, and rock guitarists such as Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Jimi Hendrix.