Rock Innovator Bo Diddley Dies at 79

Bo  Diddley
Bo Diddley
Bo Diddley died Monday, June 2 of heart failure at his home in Archer, Florida. He was 79 years old. He’d been in ill health for much of the past year, having suffered a stroke and a heart attack in 2007. "One of the founding fathers of rock ‘n’ roll has left the building he helped construct," said a statement by his management agency, Talent Consultants International. The veteran musician had suffered a stroke on Sunday, May 13th 2007 which left him hospitalized.

 "A Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, Bo Diddley was one of rock ‘n’ roll’s true pioneers. He inspired legions of musicians with his trademark rhythm and signature custom-built guitar, and his song "Bo Diddley" earned a rightful place in the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame. He leaves an indelible mark on American music and culture, and our deepest sympathies go out to his family, friends and fans. The ‘Bo Diddley beat’ surely will continue on….," said Neil Portnow President/CEO of the Recording Academy.

Bo Diddley was an artist with legendary stature and a remarkable five-decade career. Called “The Originator” for his role in the birth of rock ‘n roll and his effect on the direction of popular music over the decades. His influence reached musicians from The Beatles and The Who to Bruce Springsteen. His hits included “Bo Diddley,” “I’m a Man,” “Who Do You Love,” and “Roadrunner.”

In the 1950s the “Bo Diddley Beat” (bomp, ba-bomp-bomp, bomp-bomp), became a cornerstone rhythm of rock and roll, and drove audiences wild.