Little Richard, a Rock ’n’ Roll Pioneer Who Provided a Blueprint for Generations of Musicians, Dies

The Four Percent


Little Richard, a rock ’n’ roll pioneer whose ecstatic performances, flamboyant showmanship and cacophony of shrieks, screams and shouts provided a blueprint for generations of soul, funk and rock artists from Otis Redding to Prince, died early Saturday morning at the age of 87.

The cause was cancer, according to his son, Dan Penniman. Born Richard Wayne Penniman in Macon, Ga., in 1932, Little Richard performed well into his 70s, having survived hip surgery and a heart attack, though he was confined to a wheelchair in recent…


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