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Black & Blues: B.B. King

blackandblues

Origin

  • BB King was born Riley B. King on a plantation in Itta Bena, Mississippi on September 16, 1925
  •  As a child, he played locally in his town for money
  • King moved to Memphis, TN in 1947 to pursue his music career
  • King was able to grow as an artist when he moved in with his cousin and fellow artist, Bukka White.

Career

Legacy

  • BB King started recording in the 1940s and has put out over 40 albums
  • In 1948, King performed on Sonny Boy Williamson’s radio program
  • His first number one hit was “Three O’Clock Blues”
  • King averaged over 250 concerts in a year
  • In 1991, King opened BB King’s Blues Club in Memphis, TN
  • BB King is known as the King of Blues.
  • He went from playing music on the street for money to being labeled the King of R&B
  • King was known for his unique guitar style
  • King was inducted into the Blue’s Foundation Hall of Fame in 1984 and the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame in 1987
  • King passed away on May 14, 2015

Discography

Studio albums

YearOriginal album
and alternate reissues
Peak chart positionsCertifications
USUS R&BUS JazzUS BluesSWI
1956

Singin’ the Blues

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5020)
  • Format:
 
1958

The Blues

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5063)
  • Format:
 
1959

B.B. King Wails
– The Incredible Soul of B.B. King (LP, 1965)
– I Love You So (LP, 1970)

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5115)
    Modern/Kent (KST-539)
    United Superior (US-7711)
  • Format:

 

Sings Spirituals
– Swing Low Sweet Chariot (LP, 1970)

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5119)
    United Superior (US-7721)
  • Format:
 
1960

The Great B. B. King

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP–5153)
  • Format:
 

King of the Blues
– Better than Ever (LP, 1966)

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5167)
    Modern / Kent (KST-561)
  • Format:
 
1961

My Kind of Blues

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5188)
  • Format:
 

More B.B. King
– Blues for Me (LP, 1970)

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5230)
    United Superior (US-7708)
  • Format:
 
1962

Twist With B.B. King

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5248)
  • Format:
 

Easy Listening Blues

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5286)
  • Format:
 

Blues in My Heart
– A Heart Full of Blues (LP, 1970)

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5309)
    United Superior (US-7703)
  • Format:
 
1963

B.B. King
– The Soul of B.B. King (LP, 1970)

  • Released:
  • Label: Modern / Crown (CLP-5359)
    United Superior (US-7714)
  • Format:
 

Mr. Blues

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC-Paramount (456)
  • Format:
 
1966

Confessin’ the Blues

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC-Paramount (528)
  • Format:
 
1968

Blues on Top of Blues

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC / Bluesway (BLS-6011)
  • Format:
46 

Lucille

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC / Bluesway (BLS-6016)
  • Format:
192 
1969

Live & Well

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC / Bluesway (BLS-6031)
  • Format:
561117 

Completely Well

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC / Bluesway (BLS-6037)
  • Format:
385 
1970

Indianola Mississippi Seeds

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (ABCS-713) / MCA (MCAD-31343)
  • Format:
2687 
1971

B.B. King in London

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (ABCX-730)
  • Format:
5715 
1972

L.A. Midnight

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (ABCX-743)
  • Format:
5321 

Guess Who

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (ABCX-759)
  • Format:
6514 
1973

To Know You Is to Love You

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (ABCX-794)
  • Format:
7113 
1974

Friends

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (ABCX-825)
  • Format:
15327 
1975

Lucille Talks Back

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (ABCD-898)
  • Format:
 
1977

King Size

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (AB-977)
  • Format:
15434 
1978

Midnight Believer

  • Released:
  • Label: ABC (AA-1061)
  • Format:
12427 
1979

Take It Home

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-3151)
  • Format:
11222 
1981

There Must Be a Better World Somewhere

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-5162)
  • Format:
13126 
1982

Love Me Tender

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-5307)
  • Format:
17945 
1983

Blues ‘N’ Jazz

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-5413)
  • Format:
1723821 
1984

Better Than Ever

  • Released:
  • Label: Kent Legendary Blues Label (KLP-2003)
  • Format:
    
1985

Six Silver Strings

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-5616)
  • Format:
3123 
1988

King of the Blues: 1989

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-42183)
  • Format:
 
1991

There Is Always One More Time

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-10295)
  • Format:
76 
1993

Blues Summit

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCA-10710)
  • Format:
1826493 
1994

Heart to Heart

  • Released:
  • Label: GRP (GRD-9767)
  • Format: CD, Cassette
6 
1995

Lucille & Friends

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCD-33008)
  • Format:
 
1997

Deuces Wild

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCD-11711)
  • Format:
73133
  • CN: Platinum
  • US: Gold
1998

Blues on the Bayou

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (MCD-11879)
  • Format:
1862 
1999

Let the Good Times Roll

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (088 1120422)
  • Format:
2 
2000

Riding with the King

  • Released:
  • Label: Reprise Records (9 47612-2)
  • Format:
33
  • AUS: Gold
  • CAN: Platinum
  • US: 2x Platinum

Makin’ Love Is Good for You

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (112 299-2)
  • Format:
2 
2001

A Christmas Celebration of Hope 
– 
20th Century Masters – The Christmas Collection: The Best of B.B. King (2003)

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (088112756-2)
    (000070702)
  • Format:
1511 
2003

Reflections

  • Released:
  • Label: MCA (000053202)
  • Format:
1652 
2005

B.B. King & Friends: 80

  • Released:
  • Label: Geffen (B000526302)
  • Format:
45178 
2008

One Kind Favor

  • Released:
  • Label: Geffen (B0011791-02)
  • Format:
37178 
“—” denotes releases that did not chart.

Live albums

YearAlbumPeak chart positions
USUS R&BUS BluesUS Jazz
1965Live at the Regal78
1967The Kings’ Jam (Live Bootleg) (with Jimi Hendrix Live from the Generation Club, NY)
1970The Incredible Soul of B.B. King193
1971Live in Cook County Jail2513
1974B.B. King and Bobby Bland Together for the First Time… Live432
1976Bobby Bland and B.B. King Together Again…Live739
1980Now Appearing at Ole Miss1624521
1982Royal Jam144
1990Live at San Quentin
1991Live at the Apollo
1999Live in Japan
2007Forever Gold: B.B. King Live11
2008Live at the BBC1
“—” denotes releases that did not chart.

Notable compilations[

YearAlbum
1968His Best – The Electric B. B. King
1973The Best of B.B. King
1983Why I Sing the Blues
1986Ambassador Of The Blues (UK & Europe Only)
1987You Done Lost Your Good Thing Now
1992King of the Blues
My Sweet Little Angel
1995Lucille & Friends
Jazz & Blues Collection
1998Greatest Hits
199920th Century Masters – The Millennium Collection: The Best of B.B. King
His Definitive Greatest Hits
2005The Ultimate Collection
2007The Best of the Early Years
2012Ladies and Gentlemen…Mr. B.B. King

Singles

YearTitleSingle informationPeak chart positionAlbum
US R&BUSUS Rock

UK

1949

“Miss Martha King”

c/w “When Your Baby Packs Up and Goes”

  • Bullet Records
  • “Miss Martha King” – 309-A
  • “When Your Baby Packs Up and Goes” – 309-B
    N/A

“Got the Blues”

c/w “Take a Swing with Me”

  • Bullet Records
  • “Got the Blues” – 315-A
  • “Take a Swing with Me – 315-B
    
1950

“Mistreated Woman”

c/w “B.B. Boogie”

  • September 1950
  • RPM
  • “Mistreated Woman” – 304A-MM-1404
  • “B.B. Boogie” – 304B-MM-1405
    

“Walkin’ and Cryin'”

c/w “The Other Night Blues”

  • c. December 1950
  • RPM
  • “Walkin’ and Cryin'” – 311A-MM-1439-1
  • “The Other Night Blues” – 311B-MM-1438-2
    
1951

“Don’t You Want a Man Like Me”

c/w “My Baby’s Gone”

  • c. June 1951
  • RPM
  • “Don’t You Want a Man Like Me” – 318A-1470
  • “My Baby’s Gone” – 318B-1469
    

“B.B.’s Blues”

c/w “She’s Dynamite”

  • c. June 1951
  • RPM
  • “B.B.’s Blues” – 323
  • “She’s Dynamite” – 323
    

“She’s a Mean Woman”

c/w “Hard Workin’ Woman

  • September 1951
  • RPM
  • “She’s a Mean Woman” – 330-1604
  • “Hard Workin’ Woman – 330-1605
    

“3 O’Clock Blues”

b/w “That Ain’t the Way to Do It” (from The Blues”)

  • December 1951
  • RPM
  • “3 O’Clock Blues” – 339-1682
  • “That Ain’t the Way to Do It” – 339-1683
1Singin’ the Blues
1952

“Fine Lookin’ Woman”

c/w “She Don’t Move Me No More”

  • c. March-April 1952
  • RPM
  • “Fine Lookin’ Woman” – 348-1491
  • “She Don’t Move Me No More” – 348-1752
    N/A

“Shake It Up and Go”

c/w “My Own Fault, Darlin'” (re-recorded for My Kind of Blues)

  • c. April-July 1952
  • RPM
  • “Shake It Up and Go” – 355-1805
  • “My Own Fault, Darlin'” – 355-1806

“Some Day Some Where”

c/w “Gotta Find My Baby”

  • c. July 1952
  • RPM
  • “Some Day Some Where” – 360-1843
  • “Gotta Find My Baby” – 360-1844
    

“You Know I Love You”

c/w “You Didn’t Want Me” (non-album track)

  • c. August 1952
  • RPM
  • “You Know I Love You” – 363-1865
  • “You Didn’t Want Me” – 363-1866
    Singin’ the Blues

“Story from My Heart and Soul”

c/w “Boogie Woogie Woman” (from The Blues)

  • December 1952
  • RPM
  • “Story from My Heart and Soul” – 374-1924
  • “Boogie Woogie Woman” – 374-1925
9N/A
1953

“Woke Up This Morning” (My Baby She Was Gone)

c/w “Don’t Have to Cry” (“Past Day” from The Blues)

  • March 1953
  • RPM
  • “Woke Up This Morning” – 380-1940
  • “Don’t Have to Cry” – 380-1941
3Singin’ the Blues

“Please Love Me”

c/w “Highway Bound” (non-album track)

  • June 1953
  • RPM
  • “Please Love Me” – 380-1960
  • “Highway Bound” – 380-1961
1

“Please Hurry Home”

c/w “Neighborhood Affair”

  • August 1953
  • RPM
  • “Neighborhood Affair” – 391-2014
  • “Please Hurry Home” – 391-2015
4N/A

“Blind Love”

c/w “Why Did You Leave Me”

  • November 1953
  • RPM
  • “Why Did You Leave Me” – 395-2024
  • “Please Hurry Home” – 395-2025
    Singin’ the Blues
1954

“Please Help Me”

c/w “Praying to the Lord”

  • February 1954
  • RPM
  • 403
    N/A
“Love You Baby”/
  • April 1954
  • RPM
  • “Love You Baby” – 408-2069
  • “The Woman I Love” – 408-2070
    
“The Woman I Love”31B.B. King Wails

“Everything I Do Is Wrong”

c/w “Don’t You Want a Man Like Me” (from The Blues)

  • June 1954
  • RPM
  • “Everything I Do Is Wrong” – 411-2090
  • “Don’t You Want a Man Like Me” – 411-2091
    N/A
“Bye! Bye! Baby”/
  • July 1954
  • RPM
  • “When My Heart Beats Like a Hammer” – 412-2100
  • “Bye! Bye! Baby” – 412-2101
    
“When My Heart Beats Like a Hammer”8The Blues

“You Upset Me Baby”

c/w “Whole Lotta Love”(later appeared on The Great B.B. King)

  • September 1954
  • RPM
  • “You Upset Me Baby” – 416-2121
  • “Whole Lotta Love” – 416-2122
1Singin’ the Blues
1955“Every Day I Have the Blues/
  • January 1955
  • RPM
  • “Sneakin’ Around” – 421-2139
  • “Every Day I Have the Blues” – 421-2140
8Singin’ the Blues
“Sneakin’ Around”14The Great B.B. King

“Lonely and Blue”

c/w Jump with You Baby”

  • April 1955
  • RPM
  • “Lonely and Blue” – 425-2062
  • “Jump with You Baby” – 425-2063
    N/A

“I’m in Love”

c/w “Shut Your Mouth” (from More B.B. King)

  • June 1955
  • RPM
  • “Shut Your Mouth” – 430-2188
  • “I’m in Love” – 430-2189
    

“Talkin’ the Blues”

c/w “Boogie Rock”

  • July 1955
  • RPM
  • “Talkin’ the Blues” – 435-2206
  • “Boogie Rock” – 435-2207
    N/A
“Ten Long Years”c/w “What Can I Do” (from The Blues)
  • September 1955
  • RPM
  • “What Can I Do” – 437-2212
  • “Ten Long Years” – 437-2213
9Singin’ the Blues

“I’m Cracking Up Over You”

c/w “Ruby Lee” (from The Blues)

  • November 1955
  • RPM
  • “I’m Cracking Up Over You” – 450-2264
  • “Ruby Lee” – 450-2265
    N/A

“Crying Won’t Help You”

c/w “Can’t We Talk It Over” (non-album track) and “16 Tons” (non-album track) on different releases

  • December 1955
  • RPM
  • “16 Tons” – 451-2268
  • “Crying Won’t Help You” – 451-2269
  • “Can’t We Talk It Over” – 451-2270
15Singin’ the Blues
1956

“Let’s Do the Boogie”

c/w “Did You Ever Love a Woman” (from Singin’ the Blues)

  • March 1956
  • RPM
  • “Let’s Do the Boogie” – 457-2281
  • “Did You Ever Love a Woman” – 457-2282
    N/A

“Dark Is the Night (Part I)”

c/w “Dark Is the Night (Part II)”

  • May 1956
  • RPM
  • “Part I” – 459-3006
  • “Part II” – 459-3007
    
“Sweet Little Angel”/
  • July 1956
  • RPM
  • “Sweet Little Angel” – 468-3057
  • “Bad Luck” – 468-3058
6Singin’ the Blues
“Bad Luck”3

“On My Word of Honor”

c/w “Bim Bam”

  • November 1956
  • RPM
  • “On My Word of Honor” – 479-3084
  • “Bim Bam” – 479-3085
    N/A
1957

“Early in the Morning”

c/w “You Don’t Know” (non-album track)

  • January 1957
  • RPM
  • “Early in the Morning” – 486-3123
  • “You Don’t Know” – 486-3124
    The Blues

“How Do I Love You”

c/w “You Can’t Fool My Heart”

  • March 1957
  • RPM
  • “How Do I Love You” – 490-3139
  • “You Can’t Fool My Heart” – 490-3140
    N/A
“I Want to Get Married”/
  • April 1957
  • RPM
  • “I Want to Get Married” – 492-3151
  • “Troubles, Troubles, Troubles” – 492-3152
14The Blues
“Troubles, Troubles, Troubles”13
“Quit My Baby”/
  • June 1957
  • RPM
  • “Quit My Baby” – 494-3163
  • “Be Careful with a Fool” – 494-3164
    The Great B.B. King
“Be Careful with a Fool”95

“I Wonder”

c/w “I Need You So Bad”

  • September 1957
  • RPM
  • “I Wonder” – 498-3173
  • “I Need You So Bad” – 498-3174
    N/A

“The Key to My Kingdom”

c/w “My Heart Belongs to Only You”

  • November 1957
  • RPM
  • “The Key to My Kingdom” – 501-3179
  • “My Heart Belongs to Only You” – 501-3180
    
1958

“Why Do Everything Happen to Me”

c/w “You Know I Go for You”

  • March 1958
  • Kent
  • “You Know I Go for You” – 301-1
  • “Why Do Everything Happen to Me” – 301-2
    The Blues

“Don’t Look Now, But I’ve Got the Blues”

c/w “Days of Old” (from The Great B.B. King)

  • July 1958
  • Kent
  • “Don’t Look Now, But I’ve Got the Blues” – 307-1
  • “Days of Old” – 307-2
    N/A
“Please Accept My Love”
  • October 1958
  • Kent
  • “Please Accept My Love” – 315-1
  • “You’ve Been an Angel” – 315-2
9
“You’ve Been an Angel”16
1959

“I Am”

c/w “Worry Worry”

  • February 1959*
  • Kent
  • “I Am” – 317-1
  • “Worry Worry” – 317-2
    

“Come by Here”

c/w “The Fool”

  • April 1959
  • Kent
  • “Come by Here” – 319-A
  • “The Fool” – 319-B
    B.B. King Wails

“A Lonely Lover’s Plea”

c/w “Woman I Love”

  • c. June 1959
  • Kent
  • “A Lonely Lover’s Plea” – 325-A
  • “Woman I Love” – 325-B
    N/A

“Everyday I Have the Blues”

c/w “Time to Say Goodbye” (from B.B. King Wails)

  • September 1959
  • Kent
  • “Everyday I Have the Blues” – 327-A
  • “Time to Say Goodbye” – 327-B
    N/A/original version on Singin’ the Blues

“Mean Ole Frisco”

c/w “Sugar Mama”

  • c. October-November 1959
  • Kent
  • “Mean Ole Frisco” – 329-A
  • “Sugar Mama” – 329-B
N/A

“Sweet Sixteen, Pt. 1”

b/w “Sweet Sixteen, Pt. 2”

  • December 1959
  • Kent
  • “Pt. 1” – 330-1
  • “Pt. 2” – 330-2
2The Great B.B. King
1960

“Got a Right to Love My Baby”

c/w “My Own Fault” (from My Kind of Blues)

  • c. May 1960
  • Kent
  • “Got a Right to Love My Baby” – 333-1
  • “My Own Fault” – 333-2
    King of the Blues
“Good Man Gone Bad”
  • July 1960
  • Kent
  • “Good Man Gone Bad” – 346-1
  • “Partin’ Time” – 346-2
    
“Partin’ Time”8
“You Done Lost Your Good Thing Now”/
  • September 1960
  • Kent
  • “You Done Lost Your Good Thing Now” – 350-1
  • “Walking Dr. Bill” 350-2
    My Kind of Blues
“Walking Dr. Bill”23

“Things Are Not the Same”

c/w “Fishin After Me” (from My Kind of Blues)

  • November 1960
  • Kent
  • “Things Are Not the Same” – 351-2
  • “Fishin Time” 351-2
    N/A
1961“Someday” 16
“Peace of Mind” 7More
1962“My Sometime Baby” 24Blues in My Heart
1963“The Road I Travel” Sings Spirituals
1964“How Blue Can You Get” (ABC) 2197Blues in My Heart
“You’re Gonna Miss Me” (Kent) 107
“Beautician Blues” 1582Rock Me Baby
“Help the Poor” (ABC) 2498
“The Worst Thing in My Life” (Kent) 
“Rock Me Baby” 1234
“Never Trust a Woman” 2990N/A
“Please Send Me Someone to Love” Confessin’ the Blues
1965“I Need You” 
“Blue Shadows” (Kent) 2597Rock Me Baby
1966“Eyesight to the Blind” 31
“Ain’t Nobody’s Business” N/A
“Don’t Answer the Door, Pt. I” (ABC) 272Blues Is King
“I Stay in the Mood” (Kent) 45
“Waitin’ for You” (ABC) 
1967“It’s a Mean World” (Kent) 49N/A
“The Jungle” 1794The Jungle
1968“I Don’t Want You Cuttin’ Off Your Hair” (Bluesway) His Best – The Electric B. B. King
“Paying the Cost to Be the Boss” (Bluesway) 1039
“I’m Gonna Do What They Do to Me” 2674Blues on Top of Blues
“The B. B. Jones” 98His Best – The Electric B. B. King
“You Put It on Me” 2582
“The Woman I Love” 3194
1969“I Want You So Bad” 34127Live & Well
“Get Off My Back Woman” 3274
“Why I Sing the Blues” 1361
“Just a Little Love” 1576
1970“The Thrill Is Gone” 315Completely Well
“So Excited” 1454
“Hummingbird” 2548Indianola Mississippi Seeds
“Worried Life” 48
“Ask Me No Questions” (ABC) 1840
“Chains and Things” 645
1971“Nobody Loves Me But My Mother” 
“Help the Poor” (re-recording) 3690L.A. Midnight
“Ghetto Woman” 2568N/A
“The Evil Child” 3497
1972“Sweet Sixteen” (re-recording) 3793L.A. Midnight
“I Got Some Help I Don’t Need” 2892
“Ain’t Nobody Home” 2846B. B. King in London
“Guess Who” 2162Guess Who
1973“To Know You Is to Love You” 1238To Know You Is to Love You
1974“I Like to Live the Love” 628
“Who Are You” 2778
“Philadelphia” 1964Friends
1975“My Song” 
“Friends” 34
1976“Let the Good Times Roll” 20101Bobby Bland and B. B. King Together Again…Live
1977“Slow and Easy” 88King Size
1978“Never Make a Move Too Soon” 19102Midnight Believer
“I Just Can’t Leave Your Love Alone” 90
1979“Better Not Look Down” 30110Take It Home
1981“There Must Be a Better World Somewhere” 91There Must Be a Better World Somewhere
1985“Into the Night” 15107Six Silver Strings
“Big Boss Man” / “My Guitar Sings The Blues” 62
1988“When Love Comes to Town” (with U2) 6826Rattle and Hum
1992“The Blues Come Over Me” 63There is Always One More Time
“Since I Met You Baby” (with Gary Moore) 59After Hours
2000“Riding with the King” (with Eric Clapton) 26Riding with the King
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