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Barack Obama pays tribute to the late BB King: "America has lost a legend"

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Barack Obama pays tribute to the late BB King: "America has lost a legend"
 

US president Barack Obama is paying tribute to the late BB King by crediting him with spreading "the gospel of the blues" worldwide.

The blues guitarist passed away at his home in Las Vegas on Thursday (May 14), a week after entering hospice care for high blood pressure and diabetes complications.

BB King

His life and legacy was honored on Friday (May 15) with a statement released by the White House on behalf of President Obama.

Obama wrote: "The blues has lost its king, and America has lost a legend. BB King was born a sharecropper's son in Mississippi, came of age in Memphis, Tennessee, and became the ambassador who brought his all-American music to his country and the world. No one worked harder than BB. No one inspired more up-and-coming artists. No one did more to spread the gospel of the blues.

"Three years ago, Michelle and I hosted a blues concert at the White House. I hadn't expected that I'd be talked into singing a few lines of 'Sweet Home Chicago' with BB by the end of the night, but that was the kind of effect his music had, and still does. 

"He gets stuck in your head, he gets you moving, he gets you doing the things you probably shouldn't do - but will always be glad you did."

Barack Obama on The Colbert Report

The passing of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee has led to remembrances from fans and friends the world over on social media.

Fellow blues guitarist Buddy Guy also reacted to the musician's passing today, promising to keep "these damn Blues alive" in King's passing.

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