Very few, if any, would disagree that Rock & Roll starts here. With Chuck Berry. He IS Rock & Roll. He laid out the blueprint for how to play it, and how it should sound from the beginning, and everyone who came later built off of that.

Chuck passed away at the age of 90 from undisclosed causes. Paramedics found him unresponsive, and tried to revive him, but to no avail. 

This is truly the end of an era. Who knows if we'd even HAVE a Rolling Stones without Chuck, since his music is reportedly the first thing Mick Jagger & Keith Richards bonded over as youngsters (most of their first few albums were Chuck Berry covers for goodness sake.)

Here's a great review of his life and music [Rolling Stone Magazine obit here]

The one song I point to as the ultimate Chuck Berry sound is Johnny B. Goode

Eric Clapton does a great job of explaining how Chuck's guitar playing IS Rock & Roll...

Ironically, Chuck Berry's biggest chart hit was the one furthest from his signature sound. A novelty tune called "My Ding-A-Ling" 

When you idolize someone THIS much, they can apparently do no wrong, as evidenced by this Chuck story from Keith Richards... 

For my money this is Chuck at his finest. Changing the lyrics to one of his tunes "Reelin' & Rockin" to much naughtier ones and showing off at Wembley Stadium in London. 

And of course the tributes came pouring in...