Fri, 30 Nov 2012 22:33:18 GMT | By Francis Whittaker
Little Richard turns 80: His life in pictures

Chart success



Little Richard (© Rex Features)
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In 1955, Richard eventually hit upon his signature sound when he hooked up with Specialty Records producer Art Rupe, who had been seeking a charismatic, piano-playing bandleader for a group of New Orleans musicians. In September of that year he went into the studio and recorded a storming rendition of his classic 'Tutti Frutti', which became an instant Billboard hit and reached number 17 in the US charts. In the following 18 months, the hits kept coming with 'Long Tall Sally', 'Good Golly Miss Molly' and 'Send Me Some Lovin'' all becoming big-sellers.

His high-octane piano playing, suggestive lyrics and screaming vocals were like nothing anyone had heard before, and Richard's music went on to directly influence that of bands such at The Beatles.

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