May 9, 2020
Photo by Ben Rose/WireImage for NARAS
Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Little Richard, known for his hits like Good Golly Miss Molly and Tutti Frutti has died. He was 87.
“Little Richard passed away this morning from bone cancer in Nashville. He was living with his brother in Nashville. He was battling for a good while, many years. I last spoke to him about two or three weeks ago. I knew he wasn’t well but he never really got into it, he just would say ‘I’m not well.’ He’s been suffering for many years with various aches and pains. He just wouldn’t talk about it much,” his agent Dick Alen said in a statement to PEOPLE.
With a career spanning over 60 years, Richard Penniman rose to fame in the 1950s and almost instantly became a prominent, larger than life figure in the rock and roll scene for his energized performances on stage. He is without a doubt responsible for the fusion of R&B and rock and roll, despite having never received the credit for his role the latter.
As news of his death surfaced online, so did the many tributes from celebrities and friends.
This is a crazy morning for me, just heard about the passing of Little Richard we just lost another giant. I directed the film about his life story starring Leon. May God bless his artistic soul,he truly was “THE ARCHITECT OF ROCK AND ROLL” pic.twitter.com/68fdxQRNAC
— Robert Townsend (@Robert_Townsend) May 9, 2020
So sad Little Richard passed away. He married my husband and I. He was really one of the truely great rock and roll singers and one of the rock and roll pioneers. He will be missed💜🙏🏻🌷
— Cyndi Lauper (@cyndilauper) May 9, 2020
Dust To Digital is such a incredible site and curated dedication. Since we are in the era of social distancing please RT this as the ultimate tribute to The Quasar Of Rick and Roll!!! RT RT lets get a million RT on the Incredible Little Richard. My FTP lyric was a 1989 nod to him https://t.co/0ZL7V0z7kc
— Chuck D (@MrChuckD) May 9, 2020
— Tamron Hall (@tamronhall) May 9, 2020
— Billy Idol (@BillyIdol) May 9, 2020
In 2017 the world got a rare glimpse at Little Richard when he made a television appearance on Southern Illinois’ Three Angels Broadcasting Network to talk all about his relationship with God. Watch!
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the iconic musician.