Chuck Berry’s relatives have debuted the first song from his forthcoming final album, just four days after the rock ‘n’ roll legend’s death.
The Johnny B. Goode hitmaker, who passed away on Saturday (18Mar17), celebrated his 90th birthday in October (16) by announcing plans to unveil his first album in 38 years, and on Wednesday (22Mar17), his family members shared Big Boys, the first posthumous single from the project, simply titled Chuck.
They also confirmed Chuck’s release for 16 June (17).
The album features 10 new tracks, some of which were “originally conceived as far back as the 1980s”, reports Entertainment Weekly.
There is also a song called Lady B. Goode, which has been described as “a spiritual sequel to the iconic Johnny B. Goode featuring ripping solos from three generations of Berry guitarists”.
Berry recorded and produced much of the music in his native St. Louis, Missouri with his longtime backing group, before ill health promoted him to take a step back in 2014. He continued to oversee the project until his death.
“While our hearts are very heavy at this time, we know that Chuck had no greater wish than to see this album released to the world, and we know of no better way to celebrate and remember his 90 years of life than through his music,” his loved ones explained in a statement issued on Monday (20Mar17), as they vowed to press ahead with Chuck’s release as a “tribute” to the music icon.