Nicknamed the “Father Of Rock and Roll”, the late Chuck Berry was an iconic artist on every level. He took rhythm and blues, transforming it into the sounds of rock and roll and capturing it's essence along the way.
First hitting our radio stations with “Maybellene” in July 1955, Chuck released his first single with Chess Records, of Chicago. It was an instant sensation, reaching number 1 on Billboard's Rhythm and Blues chart and number 5 on the Hot 100.
With such huge success, Chuck went on to release “Roll Over Beethoven” in 1956, “Rock and Roll Music” in 1957 and "Johnny B. Goode” in 1958, which is considered to be one of the most popular songs ever, despite only reaching number 8 on the Hot 100.
And it’s easy to see why with this performance alongside The Boss, Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band at Rock Hall in 1995. With 60,000 people in the audience, a cheer roared as Chuck belted out those first few chored. Fans were eager to join in with the chorus, encouraged by Chuck and his iconic duck walking.
As always, his presence lit up the stage, as well as the hearts of both band members and audience alike. Throughout the performance, Springsteen can be seen looking on with respect and admiration for the wonder that Chuck became. Even at the grand age of 68, the legend rocked out riffs like he was in his 20s, basking in the spotlight where he belonged.
“Johnny B. Goode” was originally based on Chuck’s own life, and his dream to escape the rural life and join the big city. He wanted to see his name in lights, and he made it happen. Though some details were changed to make it more commercially friendly, many were kept, including the title, named after his home on Goode Avenue in St. Louis.
To date, the huge hit has been played 4572 times by 586 artists worldwide, and was even included in the film Back to the Future in 1985. And in 2008, Rolling Stone gave it the well-deserved number 1 spot in 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time.