Rock’n’Roll icon Jerry Lee Lewis has died at the age of 87.

The ‘Great Balls of Fire’ singer’s team released a statement on Friday which said: “Lewis, perhaps the last true, great icon of the birth of rock ‘n’ roll, whose marriage of blues, gospel, country, honky-tonk and raw, pounding stage performances so threatened a young Elvis Presley that it made him cry, has died.”

The piano-playing Lewis is considered one of the first true rock ‘n’ roll musicians, rising to fame back in 1957 with his first hit, ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On’.

He was born in Ferriday, Louisiana, and taught himself to play the piano at the age of nine.  Having quit school to focus on music, he found himself in Memphis, where he signed with Sun Studios in 1956, jamming with Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash before releasing his first single and becoming a star himself.

Lewis was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame just this year, but was unable to attend the ceremony due to being ill with the flu.  Kris Kristofferson accepted the award on his behalf and drove it to him to present it in person.

Tributes to Lewis have been made by many artists including Elton John, Keith Richards and Ringo Starr.

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