Jerry Lee Lewis dead: ‘Great Balls Of Fire’ Singer dies at 87, agent confirms


Jerry Lee Lewis has died at the age of 87.

The rock n roll pioneer known as “The Killer” was best known for singing the famous track Great Balls of Fire. The star’s publicist has now confirmed the news of the singer’s death. 

Publicist Zach Farnum 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.

"He was there at the beginning, with Elvis, Johnny Cash, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Carl Perkins, Fats Domino, Buddy Holly, and the rest, and watched them fade away one by one till it was him alone to bear witness, and sing of the birth of rock 'n' roll."

Jerry’s seventh wife Judith was by his side when he died at his home in Mississippi.

The star’s other hits include Shakin’ and High School Confidential.

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He is survived by his wife, Judith Coghlan Lewis, his children Jerry Lee Lewis III, Ronnie Lewis, Phoebe Lewis and Lori Lancaster, sister Linda Gail Lewis, cousin Jimmy Swaggart and many grandchildren, nieces and nephews. 

Jerry was one of the first musicians inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame back in 1986. 

He was also the subject of the 1989 film Great Balls of Fire, where Hollywood actor Dennis Quaid portrayed him.  

On Wednesday, US publication TMZ falsely reported that the musician had died at his home in Memphis, Tennessee.  

When asked if Mr Lewis was aware his death had been wrongly reported, Mr Farnum sighed and said: “I think so."

Tributes have come pouring for the late star on social media, as fans took to Twitter to say goodbye.

James Leighton wrote: “RIP JERRY LEE LEWIS. One of the original trailblazing Rock n Rollers, who more than earned his nickname ‘THE KILLER.’”

Eric Alper penned: “The Killer. The greatest. The wildest. The one that changed rock and roll. And country. 

“And influenced a whole lotta piano players. Jerry Lee Lewis has died at the age of 87.”

Steven Hyden added: “RIP Jerry Lee Lewis. Genuine rocker, genuine mad man, genuine monster, genuine genius. 

“So many examples of all four but I’m thinking now of the opening scene from Nick Tosches’ brilliant bio HELLFIRE, in which Jerry Lee tries to murder Elvis Presley.” (sic)

Back in 2014, Jerry kicked off his "80th Birthday Tour" with shows across the US and in Europe.

The same year he released a biography with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Rick Bragg, titled: Jerry Lee Lewis - His Own Story.

At the time, he told Rolling Stone magazine: "This is a rock 'n' roll record... That's just the way it came out".

He once said of his career: "I just think it's a blessing from God that I'm still living... and I'm still rocking."

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