Blues legend 'Lil' Howlin' Wolf' dies at 87

Updated: Jun. 20, 2018 at 3:58 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Blues legend Jessie Sanders died Wednesday in his Memphis home at the age of 87.

Sanders, better known as Lil' Howlin' Wolf, was born in Florence, Mississippi, on June 26, 1930. He grew up in Chicago and was mentored by Chester Burnett, better known as Howlin' Wolf.

When Burnett died in 1976, Sanders took his stage name as a tribute to his mentor.

Sanders worked for 50 years with the City of Chicago to organize and perform at special events for the city. He did that all while touring the United States and the world.

Sanders moved to Memphis in 1992 to marry his love, Diane Sanders. He continued to perform, becoming a staple on Beale Street and major blues festivals in the area.

He retired from performing in 2007. His last performance took place at the Chicago Blues Festival, where he played to a crowd of over 30,000 people.

Funeral arrangements for Sanders have not been finalized at this time.

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