The bluesman passed away on Friday (May 14), aged 89

The Rolling StonesKeith Richards has paid tribute to BB King, who passed away on Friday (May 14).

The blues guitarist and singer died aged 89, after suffering poor health for a number of months. King was forced to cancel the remaining eight dates of his 2014 tour in order to recuperate.

Today, Richards paid tribute to the bluesman, saying: “The passing of BB King is a great loss for me and everyone who loves music. At least we have his recordings. Farewell BB.”

Previously, Mick Jagger wrote on Twitter: “So sad to hear of BB King’s passing, he was someone we all looked up to…”

The Stones toured with BB King in America in 1969. Former bassist Bill Wyman spoke to the BBC about his admiration for the guitarist. “It was just the way he played, he could do that tremolo thing beautifully… He was really sweet actually, he had a lot of humour.

“He just influenced so many guitarists because of that style he played, particularly Eric [Clapton] and many others… he was unique in that way. If you think of BB King, he was a giant in the 20th century, a giant – like Ray Charles, like Louis Armstrong, like Duke Ellington and people like that.”

King received 15 Grammy awards during his long career, and was inducted into both the Blues Hall Of Fame and the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.

Photo: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images