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Blues legend B.B. King died peacefully in his sleep in his Las Vegas home yesterday (May 14). Born Riley B. King, he was 89-years-old.

Reported the New York Times:

B. B. King, whose world-weary voice and wailing guitar lifted him from the cotton fields of Mississippi to a global stage and the apex of American blues, died Thursday in Las Vegas. He was 89.

His death was reported early Friday by The Associated Press, citing his lawyer, Brent Bryson, and by CNN, citing his daughter, Patty King.

Mr. King married country blues to big-city rhythms and created a sound instantly recognizable to millions: a stinging guitar with a shimmering vibrato, notes that coiled and leapt like an animal, and a voice that groaned and bent with the weight of lust, longing and lost love.

King famously referred to all his Gibson guitars as “Lucille.”

Rest in power B.B. King.

Photo: Getty Images

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