Big Joe Turner

Boss of the Blues
Birth Name:
Joseph Vernon Turner Jr.
Birth Date:
May 18, 1911
Birth Place:
Kansas City, Missouri
Death Date:
November 24, 1985
Place of Death:
Daniel Freeman Hospital, Inglewood, California
Cause of Death:
Heart failure
Cemetery Name:
Roosevelt Memorial Park Cemetery
Claim to Fame:
Big Joe Turner, a 300-pound legend who learned to sing the blues as a Kansas City junkman and transformed decades of urban black music into the roots of rock ‘n’ roll. Turner sang rhythm and blues songs such as “Shake, Rattle and Roll,” “Corrine Corrina” and “Lucille” that became the foundation of a new genre of music when white singers such as Elvis Presley and Bill Haley and the Comets popularized them for audiences of white teen-agers in the mid-1950s. The music took the name rock ‘n’ roll because those words appeared in the lyrics of several blues songs.

Cemetery Information:

Final Resting Place:

Roosevelt Memorial Park Cemetery

18255 S Vermont Avenue

Gardena, California, 90248


North America

Grave Location:

Section 3358, Space 4

Grave Location Description

As you enter the cemetery from the Vermont Street entrance, drive into the cemetery and stay to the right. Drive 300 feet and park at Marker 3355 (as seen on the right-hand curb). Walk four rows into the section on your right to the final resting place of the Boss of the Blues.

Grave Location GPS




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