Bo Diddley


Apportioning credit for the invention of rock 'n' roll among Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis and a few other pioneers has always been a challenge. Suffice it to say that Bo Diddley, who died at 79 in his home in Archer, Fla., never thought he got enough--and he was right.

Born Otha Ellas Bates in Mississippi, Diddley moved to Chicago as a child and learned to make violins and guitars in vocational school before dropping out to play music. When Chess Records showed an interest, a harmonica player supposedly suggested the stage name Bo Diddley, slang for a bowlegged...

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