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The American rock legend died at the age of 87


Rock and roll musician Jerry Lee Lewis has died at the age of 87. The picture shows him in concert at the Cerritos Performing Arts Center in Cerritos in 2018. © photo alliance/dpa

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The last king of rock ‘n’ roll, Jerry Lee Lewis, who gained worldwide fame with the songs “Great Balls of Fire” and was one of the four kings of rock, along with Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry and Little Richard, has died. n’Roll died on Friday at his home in Mississippi at the age of 87, his agent told the German Press Agency. Lewis was considered one of the most influential artists in music history. “Elvis was the greatest,” Jerry Lee liked to say. “I was the best.”

But more recently, the musician nicknamed “The Killer” has had to deal with health issues, including back pain and a stroke in 2019 and its aftermath. Every time he went on stage, he looked very weak. About a week ago, a picture of musician Kris Kristofferson presenting him with a certificate of induction into the Country Hall of Fame was published on Lewis’ Instagram profile. Lewis is lying in a hospital bed with his medicine on the bedside table, looking weak.

Sex, drugs, violence and death

On Wednesday, the American “TMZ” portal already announced the death of Lewis, citing the representative of the musician, but the message was contradicted by reliable persons. TMZ apologized for the error.

Born in Louisiana in 1935, Lewis’ rock was a wild mix of jazz, country, R&B and boogie. He was one of the first to be inducted into the Rock Hall of Fame. Among his fans were also many famous musicians who were influenced by his music; for example, Beatles singer John Lennon is said to have kissed her feet when they first met.

Born into a Christian fundamentalist family, Lewis’ rocker life was marked by drugs, violence, sex, debt and death. The straw-colored rocker was famous for canceling concerts at the last minute. Most of the time, Jerry Lee “pumped” his piano while standing, sitting, or standing on it. In several live performances, he lit the grand piano after the performance.

Lewis’ personal life was hardly less dynamic than his career. The son of poor farmers, whose brother died young, he married seven times, the first time at the age of 16. He had just come of age as a father, albeit with a second wife. In total, she had six children, two of whom predeceased her. His seventh wife, Judith Coughlan Lewis, was by his side at the time of his death.

At the age of 22, she married her 13-year-old cousin

The third marriage was the death knell of his profession. He was 22 years old when he married his 13-year-old cousin Myra Gale Brown. This behavior caused a storm of indignation in Britain and forced Lewis to leave his tour on the third night. He would never achieve another US top 20 hit.

Lewis and Myra’s son drowned in a swimming pool in 1962 when he was three years old. Wife number four met the same fate. In 1973, a 19-year-old boy died in a car accident, and a fifth woman died in 1983, apparently of a heroin overdose. Lewis’ eventful life was filmed in 1986 with the title Big Balls of Fire starring Dennis Quaid.

The fear of being condemned to hell for his music was something Lewis stated many times on the record. “I’ve always been worried about whether I’ll end up in heaven or hell,” he told the Guardian in 2015. “I continue to worry before going to sleep at night. It is a very serious situation. Where shall I go after my last breath?’

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