Influential Blues singer and guitarist Otis Rush dead at 84

Rodolfo Vieira
Sep 30, 2018
04:16 A.M.
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Otis Rush, one of the pioneer guitarists of the Chicago Blues scene, passed away at the age of 84 following complications from a stroke.


The charismatic musician drew his last breath on Saturday, September 29, 2018, mostly due to issues related to the stroke that he suffered back in 2003.

The news of his death was shared by his wife, Masaki Rush, on her late husband's website, along with a particularly descriptive tribute to the Blues legend.

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Otis was regarded as a true icon of the Chicago scene in the late 50s and early 60s. Born in Philadelphia, Mississippi, in 1935, he started playing the guitar when he was eight years old.


14 years later, in 1949, Rush moved to Chicago, where he was inspired by Muddy Waters after seeing him live in concert. That was the moment Rush knew that he wanted to become a full-time musician.



He released his first single on Cobra Records, "I Can't Quit You Baby," and it was a tremendous success, so much that it remained his most praised piece under the record label.

The late 84-year-old was seen as a totem for countless rock artists and even managed to be placed at Number 53 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 Great Guitarists.



“Known as a key architect of the Chicago ‘West Side Sound’ Rush exemplified the modernized minor key urban blues style with his slashing, amplified jazz-influenced guitar playing, high-strained passionate vocals and backing by a full horn section."

Rush Family, Otis Rush's Website, September 29, 2018

The music world seems to be losing some of its greatest at a speedy race; aside from Rush, Tom McBride, a country singer known for being the frontman of The Mainliners in the late 60s, died earlier this year.

McBride passed away peacefully at the age of 81, surrounded by family and friends, leaving behind a legacy that only a selected few have the luck to brag about.

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