Jackie Brenston

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Ike Turner and Jackie Brenston | Michael Ochs Archives | tc031

Jackie Brenston was born on August 15, 1930 and died on December 15, 1979 of a heart attack, aged 49.

The Chess recording “Rocket 88”, which features a young man called Ike Turner, is often regarded as the first true rock and roll record of all time. It was made and released in 1951. B. B. King recommended the band to Sun studio owner Sam Phillips in Memphis, Tennessee, where the band made several recordings in early March 1951, including “Rocket 88”, on which Brenston sang lead and which he was credited with writing. Phillips leased their tapes to Chess for national distribution.

Shortly after these sessions, Brenston’s band disbanded and Brenston joined Lowell Fulson’s band. He subsequently gave up music and became a truck driver.

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