Saturday, May 16, 2015

B.B. King R.I.P.

B.B. King gave his guitar "Lucille" to Pope John Paul II in connection with performing at the 1997 Vatican Christmas Concert, MTV then reported. (A photo of Mr. King and the Pope accompanies this article.) A brief clip from King's performance is included in this complilation at YouTube.

Daniel Silliman recounts 'How the church gave B.B. King the blues' at The Washington Post.

"'There’s a blues for anything that bothers you,' he said. 'I listen to gospel music and, believe it or not, I hear the same thing.'...

"Despite that recognition, King didn’t find his way back to church in his later years. He remembered the Church of God in Christ fondly, and said in interviews that 'the sanctified people are the singingest people.' He also remembered the Rev. Archie Fair [who first taught him guitar chords] fondly, and when he performed for Pope John Paul II in 1997, King said the pope reminded him of the Mississippi pentecostal preacher of his youth. Both men, he said, made you feel like they could get a message to God on your behalf."
On that almost religious note, here was the marquee in Manhattan last December.

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