McComb native and rock ‘n’ roll pioneer Bo Diddley is among five Mississippi entertainers who have been named to the Hall of Fame at The Mississippi Arts + Entertainment Experience in Meridian.
The four other honorees are Tammy Wynette, Jerry Lee Lewis, poet and writer Margaret Walker and bluesman John Lee Hooker.
They will join 23 past honorees and be featured in the Hall of Fame rotunda at The MAX.
“These five individuals have enriched our culture through their talents as performers and writers, and we are proud to honor them in this way,” said Mark Tullos, Executive Director of The MAX. “They join a very distinguished group as Hall of Fame members of The MAX.”
Bo Diddley was a singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer who played a key role in the transition from the blues to rock ‘n’ roll.
His signature rhythms became the cornerstone of modern hip-hop, rock and pop music.
Many artists have named him as a musical inspiration including Elvis Presley, The Beatles and the Rolling Stones.
He is a Grammy winner, member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Rockabilly Hall of Fame and the Blues Hall of Fame. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation. One of Diddley’s musical inspirations was John Lee Hooker, also a 2019 honoree.
The 2019 Hall of Fame inductees were nominated by a statewide committee and voted on by a panel of 18 electors appointed by The MAX Board of Directors and fans who cast votes as part of a nationwide election.
Since its opening, two previous Hall of Fame classes have been designated.
The five new inductees join current Hall of Fame members Jimmy Buffett, Willie Morris, Charley Pride, William Eggleston, Howlin’ Wolf, Walter Anderson, William Faulkner, Morgan Freeman, John Grisham, Jim Henson, Robert Johnson, James Earl Jones, B.B. King, George Ohr, Elvis Presley, Leontyne Price, Jimmie Rodgers, Sela Ward, Muddy Waters, Eudora Welty, Tennessee Williams, Oprah Winfrey, and Richard Wright.