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Little Richard

Source: Gie Knaeps / Getty

Sadly, another legend has been taken away from us.

According to Rolling Stone, Little Richard has passed away at the age of 87. Born Richard Wayne Penniman, he was one of the most influential and colorful performers and vocalists. Most of his hits were born in the 1950s as he laid the groundwork for what is now known as rock and roll.

He got his start in jump blues, but once he released hits like Tutti Frutti,” “Long Tall Sally,” and “Good Golly Miss Molly” and they began to grow in popularity, he was looked at as a figure that others would try to emulate.

When Elvis covers your songs, Jimi Hendrix joins your band, and The Beatles open up for you on tour, your status in music lore lives on forever. He’d abandon rock and roll several times over his career when he’d choose his faith over fame to become a secular artist. He even sang the theme song for the hit PBS show The Magic School Bus.

“I didn’t feel right anymore. I would sing and do things, but I wasn’t a part of the in-crowd anymore. I started thinking about Jesus. I started thinking about the world ending soon and the troubles of the world,” he said in a 2017 interview. “I’d rather have Jesus than anything the world could afford today.”

Penniman would break new ground again when he became part of the first group of talent inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986. He was joined by other legendary inductees like Chuck Berry, Bob Dylan, Al Green, Jerry Lee Lewis, Aretha Franklin, Bruce Springsteen, and Iggy Pop.

The news of Little Ricard’s passing comes just hours after fellow music industry great Andre Harrell was also pronounced dead at the age of 59. May they both rest in peace.