BB King - The Thrill is Gone - 1969


BB King - The Thrill is Gone - 1969

BB King and his iconic song "The Thrill is Gone" (1969) represent a significant milestone in the history of blues music. This song not only showcases BB King's exceptional talent but also marks a pivotal moment in the evolution of blues into a mainstream genre.


BB King, born Riley B. King, was an American blues singer, electric guitarist, songwriter, and record producer. King introduced a sophisticated style of soloing based on fluid string bending, shimmering vibrato, and staccato picking that influenced many later electric blues guitarists.

The Song: "The Thrill is Gone"

"The Thrill is Gone" is one of BB King's most famous songs. Released in 1969, it became a major hit and won a Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance in 1970. The song is a slow blues tune, showcasing King's soulful and expressive singing and guitar playing.

Musical and Cultural Impact

"The Thrill is Gone" played a crucial role in bringing blues music to a broader audience. Its crossover appeal helped bridge the gap between blues and the mainstream music scene. The song's success paved the way for future generations of blues musicians.

Lyrics and Composition

The song's lyrics speak of a lost love and the end of a relationship. Its composition features a blend of blues and jazz elements, characterized by King's expressive guitar solos.

BB King's Legacy

BB King's impact on music was immense. He is often referred to as "The King of the Blues" and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. His style of playing and his approach to blues music continue to influence musicians worldwide.

Further Reading

For more in-depth information about BB King and his music, you can explore:

  1. BB King's Biography
  2. History of Blues Music
  3. Guitar Techniques in Blues Music
  4. Grammy Awards History

For more about the song "The Thrill is Gone," check out:

  1. Song Analysis
  2. Music of the 1960s
  3. Jazz and Blues Fusion in Music

MOOCit offers a variety of resources for learning more about blues music and its impact on culture and history.

Interactive Tasks

Quiz: Questions on the song

What year was "The Thrill is Gone" released? (1969) (!1975) (!1960) (!1982)

Which award did "The Thrill is Gone" win in 1970? (Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance) (!American Music Award for Favorite Soul/R&B Single) (!Billboard Music Award for Top Blues Song) (!MTV Video Music Award for Best Blues Video)

What style of music is "The Thrill is Gone"? (Slow blues) (!Funk) (!Rock) (!Soul)

What is the main theme of the song's lyrics? (Lost love and the end of a relationship) (!Celebration and joy) (!Political activism) (!Travel and adventure)

Which instrument is most prominently featured in "The Thrill is Gone"? (Guitar) (!Piano) (!Saxophone) (!Drums)

Quiz: Questions on the Performer

What is BB King's real name? (Riley B. King) (!Robert Johnson) (!Muddy Waters) (!John Lee Hooker)

In which year was BB King inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? (1987) (!1990) (!1983) (!1995)

What nickname is BB King commonly known by? ("The King of the Blues") (!"The Blues Master") (!"The Guitar Hero") (!"The Soulful Singer")

What distinctive feature is associated with BB King's guitar playing? (Fluid string bending and shimmering vibrato) (!Fast-paced strumming) (!Heavy distortion) (!Use of slide guitar)

What was the name of BB King's famous guitar? (Lucille) (!Betty) (!Rosie) (!Sally)

Quiz: Questions on the lyrics

Complete the lyric: "The thrill is gone, the thrill is gone away... (For good) (!And it's here to stay) (!But I will find another) (!And I'll be okay)

Which of the following is a recurring line in "The Thrill is Gone"? ("You know you done me wrong") (!"I'll find somebody new") (!"Love was never true") (!"Gone like yesterday")

How does the song's narrator feel about the end of the relationship? (Relieved yet sorrowful) (!Angry and vengeful) (!Happy and excited) (!Indifferent and unemotional)

What metaphor is used in the song to describe the lost love? (The thrill is gone) (!The fire is out) (!The ship has sailed) (!The light is dimmed)

Which emotion is predominantly conveyed through the song's lyrics? (Regret) (!Joy) (!Confusion) (!Hope)


Create a memory game with matching pairs for this topic.

BB King The King of the Blues
1969 The Thrill is Gone Release Year
Grammy Award Won by The Thrill is Gone in 1970
Lucille Name of BB King's Guitar
Lost Love Main Theme of The Thrill is Gone

Open Tasks


  1. Explore BB King's Music: Listen to three different songs by BB King and describe how they make you feel.
  2. Blues Music Origins: Research the origins of blues music and write a short paragraph about its history.
  3. Musical Instruments in Blues: Identify the instruments commonly used in blues music.


  1. BB King's Guitar Style: Watch videos of BB King playing guitar and try to identify his unique techniques.
  2. Blues and Emotion: Write a poem or a short story inspired by the themes of blues music.
  3. Analyze "The Thrill is Gone": Listen to "The Thrill is Gone" and analyze its musical structure and lyrics.


  1. Interview with a Blues Musician: Interview a local blues musician about their influences and experiences.
  2. Create a Blues Song: Write and perform your own blues song, drawing inspiration from BB King's music.
  3. Blues Music and Social Context: Write an essay on the role of blues music in social and cultural movements.

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Oral Exam

  1. Discuss BB King's Influence: Talk about how BB King influenced modern music genres.
  2. The Evolution of Blues Music: Describe how blues music has evolved over the decades.
  3. The Role of Emotion in Blues: Discuss the importance of emotion in blues music and its expression.
  4. Comparing Blues Artists: Compare and contrast BB King with another blues artist.
  5. Music as a Reflection of Society: Discuss how "The Thrill is Gone" reflects the societal context of its time.

OERs on the Topic


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