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Gainesville (August 29, 2007) - 78-year-old Bo Diddley, often referred to as the “Originator” of Rock n’ Roll, is in the hospital for the second time this year. He suffered a heart attack after a routine checkup last Friday. Diddley underwent surgery to have a stent implanted to improve blood flow to his heart. He spent the weekend in North Florida Regional Medical Center’s intensive care unit and was last reported as being stable. It is not yet known if the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame member will suffer any long-term effects from this heart attack. His speech and his ability to recognize speech were impaired earlier this year when he suffered a stroke. Diddley has diabetes and has lost several toes in recent years.
Diddley scored hits with songs like “Bo Diddley,” “I’m a Man” and others but is best known for his signature “ham bone” lick (chunk-a-chunk-a-chunk, a-chunk-chunk) that is a cornerstone of rock and blues music. His riffs and songs have been borrowed and covered endlessly, from early Chicago blues players to British Invasion rockers to modern day blues and rock performers. Diddley’s legacy is well-respected among musicians and fans alike but somehow commercial success has always escaped him. Nonetheless, he and his rectangle guitar remain cultural icons. Diddley has received lifetime achievement awards from the Grammy’s, The National Recording Arts and Sciences and the Rhythm and Blues Foundation.