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A Memphis Tribute to B.B. King

Memphis said a final farewell to B.B. King on Wednesday morning with a musical tribute at Handy Park and a processional down Beale Street. The Beale Street Blues Boy launched his musical career on those same cobblestones nearly 70 years ago. Last week, King died in his Las Vegas home at the age 89.

Many showed up at the event despite the rain to say goodbye. Remarks were given from civic leaders like Mayor A C Wharton Jr., Kevin Kane of the Convention and Visitors Bureau and Jay Sieleman of the Blues Foundation.

Also making an appearance were Tony Coleman, King’s touring band drummer and the musical director at B.B. King Blues Club, and Floyd Newman, the last living member of King’s original group.

The crowd heard performances from Keb’ Mo’, John Nemeth, Ghost Town Blues Band, Will Tucker and the B.B. King Allstars. The tribute ended with a harmonica solo from Bobby Rush of “When the Saints Go Marching In.”

Scroll down to view tweets and photos from the event.

Posted: 5/27/2015 3:39:55 PM | with 0 comments
Filed under: BB, Beale, Blues, Boy, King, Memphis, Music, Musical, Processional, Street, Tribute

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The latest news from the Greater Memphis Chamber. For more information, contact Director of Communications Christina Meek at (901) 543-3504 ( or Communications Specialist Jenny C. Fish at (901) 543-3558 (