Charles Edward Berry (* 18. October 1926 in St. Louis, Missouri, USA), better known as Chuck Berry, is an American pioneer of rock ‘n’ roll. Berry was the first member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1986) and was also included in the Blues Hall of Fame in 1985.
Chuck Berry starts at the high school with the singing and guitar game. Unfortunately, he gets in bad society and must be in the youth prison for a few small passes for three years. After his release he works in an automobile factory and marries in 1948. From 1951 he is a porter at the radio station WEW and buys a musician an electric guitar there. In addition, he acquires a tape device and begins to record his music. In 1952 Chuck Berry already has his first public performances in the Huff’s Garden, a club in St. Louis. By an appearance as a substitute in Johnnie Johnson Trio began his almost twenty-year cooperation with the pianist and composer Johnnie Johnson. At the end of the year he changes to the Cosmopolitan Club. There he first plays almost exclusively black audiences. But it quickly talks about that there is a black Hillbilly, and soon almost half of the spectators are white.
In May 1955, together with a school friend, he does a trip to Chicago to see Howlin ‘Wolf, Elmore James and Muddy Waters live there. When he gets an autograph at Muddy Waters, he asks him where he could make shots himself. The refers to Chess Records. After a few days of work, a demo ball was recorded and Chuck Berry is at Chess in front of the door. The producer Leonard Chess is impressed by the play Ida May and Berry gets a recording session promised. On 21. May then the pieces Ida May, rapted in Maybellen, and Wee Wee Hours were recorded. On the right place with Maybelle, a number 1 hit in the billboard charts. At the same time he gets a three-year contract. During the subsequent tour, he also puts his well-known Duckwalk (duck) to the parquet, which has since become one of his trademarks. In April 1956 Chuck Berry takes up one of his most famous hits with Roll Over Beethoven. In the following years, well-known songs such as Sweet Little Sixteen, Memphis Tennessee, Carol and Johnny B. GOODE, where Johnson left his rights to the compositions Berry. The latter Johnson dedicated title, was as a representative of the rock music part of the Sounds of Earth, which were sent to the Voyager 1 into space.
Towards the end of the 1950s the success leaves. In October 1961 Chuck Berry is sentenced to three years in prison for alleged offenses against the so-called man act. Although he manages to take a foot again after he was released after two years, and under others with No Particular Place to Go again has some hits, but then the success remained.
In 1972 Berry succeeds with the Single My Ding-A-Ling a last success. Since then, Chuck Berry, who has not moreoniously developed into the living legends of the Rock’n’Roll. His riffs and licks still characterize the rock’n’roll. Many of his hits were also played by rock sizes like the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton.
Despite his high age Chuck Berry accompanies accompanied by his son still regularly in the legendary Blueberry Hill in St. Louis and fascinates with his rhythms and his personality. In addition, he continues to take tour, mostly along with Jerry Lee Lewis, which lead him to Europe.