CHUCK BERRY: Rocks Out, But Senses His Own Mortality in Cleveland
Chuck Berry capped the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's American Music Masters salute with a brief but energetic set.
Chuck Berry capped the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's American Music Masters salute with a brief but energetic set. Saturday night at Cleveland's Playhouse Square State Theater, the octogenarian belied his years performing "Johnny B. Goode" and "Reelin' and Rockin'." He then told the audience, "Good night sweetheart, I'm too old now. We gotta go now. Tears are filling my eyes ladies and gentlemen. I'm 86 years old. I'm glad to be anywhere."
Berry returned to the stage for an official presentation, and then joined the all-star finale, a jam session of "Rock and Roll Music."
It was a night full of big names ranging from Rick Derringer and Ernie Isley to Merle Haggard and David Johnasen who performed Berry's songs and honored his place as one of rock music's founding fathers.
Berry also seemed to sense his own mortality. Earlier Saturday, he told the Saint Louis Post-Dispatch, "I'm wondering about my future... My singing days have passed. My voice is gone. My throat is worn. And my lungs are going fast."