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Little Richard

Little Richard

Pounding the piano, howling his lyrics and screaming in a wild falsetto, Little Richard &8212; the so-called Quasar of Rock &8212; was integral to the birth of rock & roll. His unhinged performance style, mascara-coated eyelashes, and high pompadour were exotic and androgynous, and in many ways he personified the new pop music genre's gleeful sexuality and spirit of rebellion. In his own way &8212; and as he is wont to exclaim to anyone in earshot &8212; he is the king of rock & roll.

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Photo by Michael Ochs Archive/Getty Images

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