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Insightful News

Descendants of an icon: Five bands that wouldn’t exist without the late Chuck Berry



The world lost one of popular music’s most important and influential musical architects on Saturday, as Chuck Berry died at the age of 90. Berry’s profound lyrics, melodies, and guitar stylings are the very bedrock of all rock-influenced music made in the past six decades. Without the iconic St. Louis-born musician, the sounds coming out of your radio, streaming service, or record player would be profoundly different.

“If you tried to give rock and roll another name,” said The Beatles’ John Lennon, “You might call it ‘Chuck Berry’.”


A virtuosic guitarist who helped bring a fiery, blues-laden sound to usher in a revolutionary musical era, Berry motivated musicians to think beyond the very basic song structures of early rock, pushing the genre to new heights with his songwriting.

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While virtually all modern rock artists owe a debt of gratitude to Mr. Berry, below we’ve outlined five major artists — each universally influential musical figures in their own right — who drew directly (and heavily) from Chuck Berry’s music. Whether covering Berry outright, or simply synthesizing the sounds into their own take on musical concepts he pioneered, it’s not an exaggeration to say that each of these famed bands artists likely would never have made it big without Berry’s music to inspire them.

The Beatles