The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum's annual American Music Masters series will pay tribute to Chuck Berry starting on October 22 with seminars, lectures, special programs, and an all-star concert.
"Roll Over Beethoven: The Life and Music of Chuck Berry" will celebrate the rock & roll pioneer (and also water-sports fan, though he was never a fan of paying taxes) with a week-long tribute that will culminate in a concert at the State Theatre on October 27.
This is the Rock Hall's 17th American Music Masters program. In the past, it's honored everyone from Woody Guthrie to Bessie Smith to Hank Williams to Aretha Franklin. Berry is one of the top rock & roll architects. His familiar guitar riffing has anchored thousands of songs (including 75 percent of everything Keith Richards has ever played).
Details on this year's outing are still being worked out, but some of the performers for the big concert have been announced, and they're a wide range of artists, including soul man Ernie Isley, Darryl McDaniels (the D.M.C. part of Run-D.M.C.), cool-ass bluesman Joe Bonamassa, New York Doll David Johansen, Motorhead's Lemmy Kilmister, journeyman singer-songwriter Chuck Prophet, and the kinda-annoying, hipster-approved indie rocker M. Ward.
Concert tickets are $30 to $80 and will go on sale to Rock Hall members on September 17 at 10 a.m. here. Public tickets go on sale two days later at 11 a.m. at the same location, by phone, or at the PlayhouseSquare box office.
The Rock Hall promises additions to the schedule within the next few weeks.
No word on whether or not the 85-year-old Berry will be there, but seeing that he still plays out in St. Louis regularly, we think it's a pretty good bet he will be, barking orders at the backing band. —Michael Gallucci