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Rock 'n' roll pioneer Little Richard dies

May 9, 2020

The self-proclaimed "architect of rock 'n' roll" Little Richard has died at the age of 87. The flamboyant star thrilled millions of fans, and influenced numerous other artists within the music industry.  

Little Richard
Image: picture alliance / Photoshot

Little Richard, the self-proclaimed "architect of rock 'n' roll" who created his innovative music with a mix of boogie-woogie, rhythm and blues and gospel, died on Saturday at the age of 87, Rolling Stone magazine reported. 

The rock star, whose hits thrilled millions, influenced numerous other artists within the music industry, including The Beatles.  

Citing his son, Danny Penniman, Rolling Stone said the cause of Richard’s death was unknown. 

The artist, whose full name was Richard Wayne Penniman, is best known for his groundbreaking, signature 1955 hit "Tutti Frutti," with its gay sex theme toned down for broadcasters. The song began with the unforgettable line: "Awop bop a loo mop / Alop bam boom."

A string of hits followed, including "Lucille,'' "Keep A Knockin','' "Long Tall Sally,'' and "Good Golly Miss Molly.'' 

Tributes quickly poured out Saturday for the late rock king, with co-founder of Chic Nile Rodgers dubbing it "the loss of a true giant." 

js/rc (AFP,Reuters)

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