Fats Domino, best known for his iconic hits “Blueberry Hill” and “Ain’t That a Shame,” has passed away at the age of 89. Domino was one of the earliest rock and roll stars, coming up alongside Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry, and was a member of the very first class of artists inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
He had a number of massive hit songs in the 1950’s that also included “I’m Walkn’,” “Blue Monday” and “Walking to New Orleans.” According to Billboard, Domino sold more records than any other rocker of his era, aside from Elvis. As a Louisiana native, Domino brought the New Orleans sound, especially his unique piano style, into rock. He wrote many of his hits alongside producer and musical partner Dave Bartholomew.
Fats Domino was born Antoine Domino in 1928 and earned his nickname playing in the New Orleans club scene in the ’40s. His lead single “The Fat Man” was released in 1949 and became an R&B hit, kick-starting his run of smashes in the ’50s. He toured extensively throughout his career but essentially retired to New Orleans after a health scare in 1991.
Domino was married at age 20 and had eight children. He made the news during Hurricane Katrina in 2005 when his home was flooded and the musician was briefly reported missing, then had to be rescued with his wife and one of their children.