B.B. King

~ Person

Legal name: Riley B. King


Riley B. King (born September 16, 1925), known by the stage name B.B. King, is an American blues musician, singer, songwriter, and guitarist.

Rolling Stone magazine ranked him at No. 6 on its 2011 list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time (previously ranked No. 3 in the 2003 edition of the same list), and he was ranked No. 17 in Gibson's "Top 50 Guitarists of All Time". According to Edward M. Komara, King "introduced a sophisticated style of soloing based on fluid string bending and shimmering vibrato that would influence virtually every electric blues guitarist that followed." King was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. King was also inducted into 2014 class of the R&B Music Hall of Fame. He is considered one of the most influential blues musicians of all time, earning the nickname "The King of Blues", and one of the "Three Kings of the Blues Guitar" (along with Albert King and Freddie King). King is also known for performing tirelessly throughout his musical career, appearing at 250-300 concerts per year until his seventies. In 1956 it was noted that he appeared at 342 shows. King continues to appear at 100 shows a year.

Over the years, King has developed one of the world's most identifiable guitar styles. He borrowed from Blind Lemon Jefferson, T-Bone Walker and others, integrating his precise and complex vocal-like string bends and his left hand vibrato, both of which have become indispensable components of rock guitarists' vocabulary. His economy and phrasing has been a model for thousands of players. King has mixed blues, jazz, swing, mainstream pop and jump into a unique sound. In King's words, "When I sing, I play in my mind; the minute I stop singing orally, I start to sing by playing Lucille."

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Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1956 Singin' the Blues B.B. King 5 1
1958 The Blues B.B. King 5 2
1960 Sings Spirituals B.B. King 2 2
1960 The Great B. B. King B. B. King and His Orchestra 1
1962 Blues for Me B.B. King 1
1962 Easy Listening Blues B.B. King 5 3
1963 Blues in My Heart B.B. King 5 4
1963 Mr. Blues B.B. King 1
1966 The Soul of B.B. King B.B. King 2
1968 Blues on Top of Blues B.B. King 2
1968 His Best - The Electric B.B. King B.B. King 5 4
1968 Lucille B.B. King 2
1969 Completely Well B.B. King 5 6
1969 Live & Well B.B. King 5 2
1970 Indianola Mississippi Seeds B.B. King 5 5
1971 Better Than Ever B.B. King 2
1971 In London B.B. King 5 3
1972 Guess Who B.B. King 5 1
1972 L.A. Midnight B.B. King 5 1
1972 The Original Sweet Sixteen B.B. King 2
1973 To Know You Is to Love You B.B. King 2
1975 Lucille Talks Back B.B. King 2
1977 King Size B.B. King 5 1
1978 Midnight Believer B.B. King 5 1
1979 Take It Home B.B. King 2
1982 Love Me Tender B.B. King 5 2
1985 Six Silver Strings B.B. King 1
1987 Blues B.B. King 5 1
1987 Introducing B.B. King B.B. King 5 1
1990 King of the Blues Guitar B.B. King 1
1991 Everyday I Have The Blues B.B. King 5 1
1992 Spotlight On Lucille B.B. King 5 1
1993 Blues Summit B.B. King 1
1993 "Rock Me Baby" B.B. King 1
1993 Gold B.B. King 1
1994 B. B. King Wails B.B. King 1
1994 Everyday I Have the Blues B.B. King 1
1994 Got My Mojo Working B.B. King 1
1994 Heart to Heart Diane Schuur & B.B. King 2
1995 Kansas City 1972 B.B. King 5 1
1996 The Revue Collection B.B. King 1
1997 Deuces Wild B.B. King 3
1998 Blues on the Bayou B.B. King 2
1998 King Biscuit B.B. King 1
1999 Let the Good Times Roll: The Music of Louis Jordan B.B. King 3 1
1999 How Blue Can You Get B.B. King 2
1999 Let Me Love You B.B. King 1
2000 Makin' Love Is Good for You B.B. King 5 3
2000 Riding With the King B.B. King & Eric Clapton 2 7
2000 My Kind of Blues B.B. King 2

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