B. B. King Quotes
B.B. King (born Riley B. King), was an American blues singer, electric guitarist, songwriter, and record producer.
He was born on a cotton plantation in Berclair, Mississippi. Attracted to music and the guitar in church, he started his career in juke joints and local radio.
King was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987 and is considered one of the most influential blues musicians of all time.
B. B. King was known for performing tirelessly throughout his musical career, appearing on average at more than 200 concerts per year into his 70s. This trend continued until his death in 2015.
Lucille is the name B. B. King gave to his guitars. He got the name from a girl who two men were fighting over at one of his gigs. The men set the hall on fire with B. B.’s guitar inside. Once the guitar was rescued, he discovered the story and the girl’s name.
I used to play a place in Twist, Arkansas… It used to get quite cold in Twist. And they used to take something that looked like a big garbage pail and set it in the middle of the floor, half-fill it with kerosene. They’d light that fuel and that’s what we’d use for heat… But this particular night, two guys started to fighting and one of them knocked the other one over onto this container. When they did it spilled on the floor. Now, it was already burning so when it spilled it looked like a river of fire. Everybody ran for the front door including yours truly. But when I got on the outside then I realized that I’d left the guitar inside. I went back for it. The building was a wooden building and it was burning so fast that when I got my guitar it started to collapse around me. So I almost lost my life trying to save the guitar. But the next morning we found that these two guys who were fighting were fighting about a lady. I never did meet the lady but I learned that her name was Lucille. So I named my guitar Lucille to remind me not to do a thing like that again.
I’ve known people that was a part of a family and always feel that the family liked everyone else but them. That hurts, and that’s as deep a hurt as you can possibly get. I’ve known people that would have problems with their love life. This is kind of how blues began – out of feeling misused, mistreated. Feeling like they had nobody to turn to. Blues don’t necessarily have to be sung by a person that came from Mississippi as I did, because there are people having problems all over the world.
I always liked the steel guitar. I also love the guys that play the bottleneck. But I could never do it; I never made it do what I want. So every time I would pick up the guitar, I’d shake my hand and trill it a bit. For some strange reason my ears would say to me that sounds similar to what those guys were doing. I can’t pick up the guitar now without doing it. So that’s how I got into making my sound. It was nothing pretty. Just trying to please myself. I heard that sound.
I remember Elvis as a young man hanging around the Sun Studios. Even then, I knew this kid had a tremendous talent. He was a dynamic young boy. His phraseology, his way of looking at a song, was as unique as Sinatra’s. I was a tremendous fan, and had Elvis lived, there would have been no end to his inventiveness.