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Home > Blogs > Lists > April 2017 > 10 Fascinating Facts About Chuck Berry
10 Fascinating Facts About Chuck Berry

10 Fascinating Facts About Chuck Berry

26 April 2017

It’s been one month since rock ‘n’ roll icon Chuck Berry passed away, so here’s our tribute to the legend himself.

As a tribute, here’s 10 fast facts about the man who was described by Rolling Stone magazine as one of the “greatest artists of all time”:
1. Berry was one of the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.
2. His guitar riffs and style of showmanship were inspired by T-Bone Walker.
3. The Beach Boys’ Surfin’ USA is so similar to Berry’s Sweet Little Sixteen that they ended up having to give Berry co-writing credit to avoid a lawsuit.
4. Before he achieved success, he worked as a janitor in an apartment building, a freelance photographer, a factory worker in an automobile assembly plant, and he trained as a beautician at a cosmetology college.
5. His famous ‘duck walk’ dance is imitated by Marty McFly in Back to the Future. The move was originally created after Berry tried to hide wrinkles in his suit by shaking them out.

6. As a teenager, he misbehaved (ahem) and was sent to a reformatory where he created a singing quartet. The group became so good, authorities allowed them to perform outside the facility.
7. He opened his own St. Louis nightclub called Berry’s Club Bandstand.
8. Every time he performed live, he’d choose a venue near an Indian restaurant.
9. Berry wrote My Ding-a- Ling as a novelty song – but it was the one that achieved No. 1 status. Many radio stations refused to play it because it was too bawdy.
10. By the time he was nearly 60, he was still playing 70-100 shows a year, travelling solo and getting local bands to back him.
Thank you for your contribution to the music scene, Chuck. You won’t be forgotten.