Arguably one of the most important musical figures of the 20th century, blues legend B.B. King died last night in Las Vegas at the age of 89. In early October, the tireless bluesman, who in 1956 had performed an astonishing 342 times, was forced to cancel the remainder of his 2014 tour when he fell ill following a performance at the House of Blues in Chicago, and just two weeks ago he entered home hospice care. The“King of the Blues” had lived with type 2 diabetes for more than 20 years and during that time frequently used his celebrity to raise awareness about the disease that took the lives of both his mother and one of his daughters. Though he is survived by two ex-wives, 15 children and some 50 grandchildren, it is his distinctive, lyrical guitar playing and his unique blend of the blues with other musical styles that are his greatest legacy. Read more on Biography.com
Günter Wilhelm Grass was a German novelist, poet, playwright, illustrator, graphic artist and sculptor.
Grass is best known for his first novel, The Tin Drum (1959), a key text in European magic realism. It was the first book of his Danzig Trilogy, the other two being Cat and Mouse and Dog Years. His works are frequently considered to have a left-wing political dimension, and Grass was an active supporter of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD). The Tin Drum was adapted as a film of the same name, which won both the 1979 Palme d'Or and the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. In 1999, the Swedish Academy awarded him the Nobel Prize in Literature, praising him as a writer "whose frolicsome black fables portray the forgotten face of history".
Grass died of a lung infection on April 13, 2015, in a Lübeck hospital at the age of 87. He was buried in a private family observance April 25 in Behlendorf, 15 miles south of Lübeck, where he had lived since 1995.