Mar 04, 2021
By Andy Johnson
He’s being described as a jazz giant who laid the foundations for the skiffle music scene in England in the ’60s.
It all began when trombonist Chris Barber released a cover of the “The Rock Island Line” in 1954, sung by Lonnie Donegan.
That song sold a million copies and popularized “skiffle” which in turn inspired the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton.
Barber is considered a leading figures in British and European jazz.
Lyricist Sir Tim Rice paid tribute, acknowledging Barber’s “formidable influence” and calling him a “star player.”
On this side of the ocean, the E Street Band’s Steve Van Zandt called Barber “the Godfather of British Rock.”
Chris Barber had been battling dementia. He was 90.