“Scotty Moore, Elvis Presley’s longtime guitarist and a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, died Tuesday at his home in Nashville,” reports Rolling Stone, sourcing the Memphis Commercial Appeal newspaper.
Rolling Stone continues, “No cause of death was provided, but Moore had been in poor health in recent months. He was 84. Karen Fontana, the wife of Presley drummer D.J. Fontana, also confirmed Moore’s death to Rolling Stone.”
The article also wrote this about Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards: “”When I heard [Presley’s] ‘Heartbreak Hotel,’ I knew what I wanted to do in life. It was as plain as day. All I wanted to do in the world was to be able to play and sound like that. Everyone else wanted to be Elvis, I wanted to be Scotty.”
Writes Bob Mehr in the Commercial Appeal, Scotty Moore “was the man behind “The Man,” the one producing the signature licks amid the screams and hysteria and history making moments. Scotty Moore was one of the foundational figures in rock and roll, a profoundly influential guitarist, and the musician who helped Elvis Presley become The King.”
Mehr adds, “As Commercial Appeal music critic Bill Ellis once noted, ‘Moore’s style really had no precedent. His sophisticated yet economical use of the fretboard, combined with alternating flat and finger-picking techniques, may have drawn from jazz and blues, but how it was put to use — on Sun classics such as “That’s All Right,” “Good Rockin’ Tonight” and “Mystery Train” — was something utterly new.'”
In this short video that we found on YouTube, Moore talks about Presley and the legendary recordings Presley made with Moore and the late bassist Bill Black at the Sun Studio in Memphis in the mid-1950s: