Even if you vaguely appreciate electrifying guitar or like the blues, everyone - both young and old - can’t help but tap a foot and nod a head when they hear the unmistakable sounds of the King.
The “King of Blues” - Blues Master Hall of Famer B.B. King - is bringing his show to the Fox Theater in downtown Oakland at 8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 28.
Often imitated and emulated, King is listed as No. 6 in Billboard’s Greatest 100 Guitarist of all time. Over the years he has mixed jazz, pop, swing and jump with gut-wrenching blues to produce a rich sound that is uniquely King. His identifiable guitar style, that is said to be mix of Blind Lemon Jefferson, T-bone Walker and others of the old school blues genre, is a model for guitarists across the globe, including such notables as Eric Clapton and George Harrison.
This tireless performer played his beloved guitar, Lucille, in more than 250 concerts per year into his 70's (in 1956 he appeared in 342 shows!). Now at the age of 87, he “ain’t got tired yet,” he says, and still does more than 100 concerts and appearances per year. Who can forget how he brought down the house singing, “Sweet Home Chicago” at the White House with President Barack Obama during “In Performance at the White House: Red, White and Blues,” a celebration of blues music in 2012?
In an interview that same year, B.B. talks about getting older: “There are so many sounds I still want to make, so many things I haven't yet done. When I was younger I thought maybe I'd reached that peak. But I'm 86 now, and if I make it through to next month, I'll be 87. And now I know it can never be perfect, it can never be exactly what it should be, so you got to keep going further, getting better."
As long as he keeps reaching and striving – the King reigns.
To read more about the incomparable B.B. King and see excerpts from a film by Jon Brewer, “The Life of Riley” – on the life and music of Riley “BB” King, visit http://bit.ly/YiRveO.
Another great concert brought to you by our friends at Another Planet Entertainment, apeconcerts.com
If You Go:
Who: Blues Master, B. B. King with special guest Bhi Bhiman
When: Thursday, February 28, 2013, 8:00 pm
Where: The Fox Theater Oakland, 1807 Telegraph Ave., Oakland
Cost: $45.50 to $85.50 - tickets available at TicketMaster or Fox Theater Box Offic