As tragic as the news is, Antoine Dominique Domino Jr. or better known by his stage name, Fats Domino passed away in his New Orleans home on October 24th, 2017 due to natural causes. Domino has been an architect for the early rock and roll community since the 1950’s, he was one of the first few musicians to bring both the black and white races together through his music. He reportedly sold more records than any other 50’s-era rockers outside of Elvis and hit Billboard pop and R&B charts from the mid-1950s through the late 1960’s, notching more hits than such fellow rock godfathers as Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, and Little Richard.
Antoine Dominique Domino Jr. was born on February 26, 1928, in New Orleans to a large musical family. He was discovered by arranger Dave Bartholomew in 1949 and Domino released his first single “The Fat Man” under Imperial records in 1963.This track is rumored to be the first rock and roll record to emerge on the scene of music and sell over one million copies.
From “The Fat Man” in 1963 to gold platinum singles such as “Ain’t it a shame” To number 2 in the pop charts “Blueberry Hill” to other hits such as Valley of tears, The big beat, Whole lotta loving and Walking to New Orleans. These all highlighted his career and his signature Dixieland genre of music.
Domino had a steady series of hits for Imperial through early 1962, including “Walking’ to New Orleans” and “My Girl Josephine” in the same year. He did a tour in Europe in 1962 and met the Beatles who later mentioned Domino as an inspiration. Imperial Records was sold in early 1963, and Domino left the label. He recorded over 60 singles for Imperial, placing 40 songs in the top 10 on the R&B chart and 11 in the top 10 on the Pop chart.
In 1986 he was one of the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He also received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award that year.
Domino lived in a mansion in a predominantly working-class neighborhood, where he was a familiar sight in his bright pink Cadillac. He was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1987.
His last tour was in Europe, for three weeks in 1995.In 1998, President Bill Clinton awarded him the National Medal of Arts. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked him number 25 on its list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time”
Domino’s persona, dancehall piano playing, and tales of love made him Elvis Presley’s top rival. By the end of his career, Domino had sold more records than any other 1950s rocker except Presley.
And Antoine Dominique Domino Jr. shall be remembered in the hearts of many Rock, Blues and Jazz enthusiasts as one of the most influential musicians to surface and leave behind a beautiful legacy for the masses to enjoy.