There are a great many reasons to esteem blues legend B.B King. One that stands out, though, is a tireless work ethic that is paralleled by very few other professional musicians, especially when it comes to touring. He was a bona fide troubadour, and has routinely played between 250 and 300 concerts a year during a career that began in 1948 and is still going today. In fact, he was still performing live around 100 times a year when he was well into his eighties, and at 89 years of age he is only just starting to slow down.
He took the influences of Blind Lemon Jefferson, T Bone Walker, and others, and he developed a signature style characterized by a wailing vibrato.
He also has his signature guitar as well—Lucille. Here´s how that name came about: it was at a performance in Twist, Arkansas back in the 1950s. Two men got into an argument over a woman, a fist fight broke out, and in the ensuing scuffle a kerosene lamp was kicked over. The dancehall quickly went up in flames, and B.B King, his band, and everyone else who was inside quickly made for the door. They all managed to escape, but once outside, B.B realized he had left his prized acoustic guitar inside. Ignoring his bandmates who urged him not to do so, he ran back into the burning building to retrieve his guitar. He narrowly escaped death in the process. Afterwards, when he found out the name of the girl the two men were fighting over was Lucille, he pledged to give that name to his guitar as a reminder to never do anything crazy, like get into a fight over a woman.
Since 1982, the official B.B King signature model, or ¨Lucille¨, has been manufactured by Gibson. It´s a very interesting guitar. It´s a semi hollow body electric, with a shape that´s somewhat similar to a Gibson E335, but it doesn´t have any F holes. The tailpiece has fine tuners, an ebony fretboard with square, pearl fret markers, gold hardware, two Alnico humbucking pickpups, and a six position varitone in addition to its three position toggle.
- I’ve Got A Right To Love My Baby – 00:00
- What Way To Go. – 3:16
- Long Nights.- 6:24
- Feel Like A Million.- 9:58
- I’ll Survive – 13:30
- Good Man Gone Bad. – 16:14
- If I Lost You. – 19:03
- You ‘re On The Top.- 21:45
- Partin’ Time.- 24:37
- I’m King.- 27:39