Obituary: Bo Diddley 1928-2008

Read the tribute to the guitar legend

Bo Diddley, who has died of heart failure aged 79, was a rock ‘n’ roll pioneer and creator of arguably the first great electric guitar riff.

Taking a lead from African tribal music, his distinctive 5/4 time signature was a trademark of most of his songs – a sound he once boastfully described as “the rhythm that shook the world”.

It was a typical remark from a man whose tongue-in-cheek self-aggrandisement became a running motif throughout his career.

In addition to the self-titled 1955 single that introduced his famous riff, he also cut records with titles like ‘Diddley Daddy’, ‘Hey! Bo Diddley’, ‘Bo Diddley Is Loose’, ‘Bo’s A Lumberjack’ and ‘The Story Of Bo Diddley’

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Bo Diddley was inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame in 1987.