Rock ‘n’ roll legend Little Richard dies at 87 — Big Joe remembers his legacy
We lost a rock 'n' roll legend today. Little Richard Penniman died at the age of 87 in Nashville, May 9, 2020.
Little Richard was a founding father of rock 'n' roll. He pushed the limits with his magnetic, jaw-dropping performances and hits that created a movement worldwide that defined rock 'n' roll.
He would achieve his stardom in spite of encountering many obstacles, some of his own doing.
He was born in Macon, Georgia and being raised in the heart of the south put on some additional strain on black entertainers, particularity black entertainers who possessed a certain "Flair."
His sexuality would become taboo in the stoic 50s and 60s, a 70s bout with cocaine, and add another scandal or two yet Little Richard still persevered.
I met Little Richard some 20+ years ago when I had the pleasure of hosting a huge oldies show at Madison Square Garden.
He was on fire from the moment we met asking me if I thought he looked beautiful. He did. His aura transcended into his music and on to his millions of fans.
As Little Richard walked off the stage at Madison Square Garden that night he asked me, "Did you like that big man?" Yes I did Little Richard, Yes I did.
So the next time you hear a great rock and roll song think about Little Richard. It was his being that made that song.