Rock and roll legend Little Richard’s ties to Nashville

Posted at 10:35 AM, May 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-10 06:41:58-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Music icon Little Richard, who died Saturday at age 87, may have been known as one of the founding fathers of rock and roll, but the legend also had ties to Music City.

Rolling Stone reported his death Saturday morning, saying his “fervent shrieks, flamboyant garb, and joyful, gender-bending persona embodied the spirit and sound of that new art form.”

His career spanned decades, starting with “Tutti Frutti” in 1956. Other hits like "Long Tall Sally" and "Good Golly, Miss Molly” soon followed.

Like so many pioneering artists, Little Richard had extensive ties to Nashville. In his early years, he played the iconic Jefferson Street at the Club Baron, which is now Elks Lodge. One of his band members happened to be a young musician who would soon blaze his own path in rock – Jimi Hendrix.

Little Richard also called Nashville home and lived in the penthouse of the downtown Hilton, located between Broadway and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Fans would often see him in the elevator, and he attended music industry events around town over the past several years.

He was inducted into the Music City Walk of Fame in 2008.