WWE Highlights Little Richard's Wrestling Contributions To Honor His Passing
May 11 2020
Although he fathered no children of his own, Little Richard adopted a son, Danny Jones, after the death of Jones's mother.
Little Richard, born Richard Wayne Penniman in Macon, Georgia and known internationally as one of the founders of what would become rock'n'roll, passed away Saturday of bone cancer, at the age of 87.
"From "Tutti Frutti" to "Long Tall Sally" to "Good Golly, Miss Molly" to "Lucille", Little Richard came screaming into my life when I was a teenager", McCartney wrote.
He built his ground-breaking sound with a boiling blend of boogie-woogie, rhythm and blues and gospel.
His music influenced generations of musicians and was covered by contemporaries like Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly and Bill Haley, while numerous artists including the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Rod Stewart and Lemmy cited Little Richard as an inspiration. I grew up listening to his music and performing his songs onstage in high school.
"Little Richard was a genius, pure and simple", Midler tweeted.
Actress Viola Davis called Little Richard the innovator.
"I served soul food brunch to Little Richard every Sunday for a year while waitressing at Aunt Kizzy's Back Porch in LA", the "When They See Us" filmmaker tweeted following news of Richard's passing. "Little Richard's music will last forever".
Latterly, following a hip replacement operation, Little Richard lived in Lynchburg, southern Tennessee, where visitors would encounter a large group of burly minders before meeting the man himself.
George Takei also gave Little Richard a heartfelt sendoff. In a 1984 interview on "Today", he told Bryant Gumbel his "joyful music" "brought the races together". "We were lucky to have him, and he knew it".
Richard was included in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's inaugural class of inductees in 1986, alongside fellow pioneers Chuck Berry, James Brown, Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, and Fats Domino, among others. In his presence he was always the same Little Richard that I first heard and was awed by growing up and I always was the same little boy.