Last Source Evaluation: B.B. King – Life of Riley

life of Railey
Last but not least, my final source is a documentary, directed by Jon Brewer, named B.B. King – Life of Riley. I watched the whole movie last about 2 hours. It tells the story of B.B.’s life and the journey of him creating his blues. This movie also focuses on people that influenced his career.
The documentary tells the story from his born till the his later years. B.B. is the initial of blues boy came by Beale Blue Boys which described B.B. King. Looking back from the whole movie, I find it particularly interesting that he had influenced by women around him the most. The first one was his mother who inspired him and made him going to church every week. B.B. loved his mother a lot even she had passed away since he was only nine years old. She taught him always trying to show people the love he had. Another interesting point, BB’s twice marriage both ends with divorce, influenced by his career and influenced his lyrics of music at the same time. Discussing about segregation, B.B. fought as most of the colored people did. He bought a bus for his band not only to have a special transportation for his peers but also preparing boxed food for them in case they don’t have time to eat because some of the white only restaurants.
This source is the most helpful one which gives me a clearer sense of B.B. King’s life timeline. It gives me the inspiration of thesis and helps me confining my research area on the important women appear in his life. Including different aspects from his family members, friends and fans, this source personates as a more complete and authority piece. Lots of the informations, not occurred in other source, are more precise and effective.
B.B. King – Life of Riley. Dir. Jon Brewer. Perf. Morgan Freeman. MVD Visual, 2014.

Second Source Evaluation: The Arrival of B.B. King


The Second source I found helping with my research is a book called The Arrival of B.B. King by Charles Sawyer which is authorized by B.B. King. I focused on a chapter named “The arrival of B.B. King” under part two and the whole part three. The Appendices also interest me. I wish to focus on “The arrival of B.B. King” specifically. Related to my last source, this one also focused on his early life experience and the influence.

King’s character development fascinates me a lot. In this particular part, the author tells stories about King’s harsh childhood. Under a circumstance of being a poverty colored person, King had a tough early life. Nevertheless, he shows his positive attitude towards his life. King was worried about people’s comments about him. He was afraid to be called “illiterate”. So he started reading book when he had time. He was insecure about lots of things. But his positive attitude influenced him to get improvements. Winning the Grammy Award for 15 times, he discovered his own style of Blues. The key concept of the self-improving was discussed through the whole process. Discussing King’s morality, the understanding of King went deeper.

Even better than the last source, this one gives me a better sense of the stories and backgrounds of B.B. King. It’s a form of description instead of autobiography. It helps me narrowing my topic into Riley (B.B.)’s early life. I definitely need more investigation on B.B.’s particular songs and their inspiration. Drawing some connections between his terrible status early days and his later masterpieces. I suppose I will read more chapters of the book and research particular songs that B.B. wrote. This source helps me massively to get into the right direction of making a arguable thesis statement. I think self-improvement is one of the best details I can get for my research paper.

For further research, in order to find my thesis, I think I need change some aspects, find some video or musical datas that helps me investigate the project in a different way. I have an idea that my thesis would be something like, “B.B. King’s music pieces was influenced by his harsh childhood and an opposite attitude of life”, or even something more specific. The book source is not diverse enough. So I will try to watch some documentaries the next time.

Sawyer, Charles. The Arrival of B.B. King: The Authorized Biography. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1980. Print.

First Source Evaluation: Blues All Around Me


My first source is BB King’s autobiography: Blues All Around Me. His autobiography tells most part of his life. Lots of chapters are very valuable for me. However, I draw my focus on the chapters “Heavenly music” and “Her words are music”. My blog is mainly about “Her words are music”. This chapter focuses on his Mama and how she influenced BB’s music life.

The first chapter of the book talks about BB King’s early life and how it influenced him in music. He talks mostly about his mother. How she acts like a angel and other good impressions people would had for her. His mother influenced his attitude towards life and music. He writes about his poor childhood that spending with his mama. He and his mother ate the entrails which white people did not. The race problem is brought up and it gives a sense of the relationship between blacks and blues. BB King said, “I believe my early childhood nourished me.” This is a summery of the chapter’s context. Inspired by Mr Henson, BB has developed a mind status. Slowing down which echo with the blues style.

This book has lots of information that needs to be discovered. It is meaningful and significant that the book is actually written by BB King. It is the best way to get a sense of BB King. And it is being really helpful from the beginning. It helps with confining the focus and interest of BB King’s music to narrow the topic and get a better sense of the paper. This chapter is a precious opinion from himself, also a good start of the thesis.


King, B. B., and David Ritz. “Her Words Are Music.” Blues All around Me: The Autobiography of B.B. King. London: Sceptre, 1997. Print.