Willie Dixon

The Poet Laureate of the Blues
Birth Name:
William James Dixon
Birth Date:
July 1, 1915
Birth Place:
Vicksburg, Mississippi
Death Date:
January 29, 1992
Place of Death:
St. Joseph Medical Center, Burbank, California
Cause of Death:
Heart failure
Cemetery Name:
Burr Oak Cemetery
Claim to Fame:
Willie Dixon was an American blues musician, vocalist, songwriter, arranger and record producer proficient in playing both the upright bass and the guitar. However he is best known as one of the most prolific songwriters of his time. Next to Muddy Waters, Dixon is recognized as the most influential person in shaping the post–World War II sound of the Chicago blues. Dixon's songs have been recorded by countless musicians in many genres as well as by various ensembles in which he participated. A short list of his most famous compositions includes "Hoochie Coochie Man", "I Just Want to Make Love to You", "Little Red Rooster", "My Babe", "Spoonful", and "You Can't Judge a Book by the Cover". These songs were written during the peak years of Chess Records, from 1950 to 1965, and were performed by Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Little Walter, and Bo Diddley. Dixon was an important link between the blues and rock and roll, working with Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley in the late 1950s. During the 1960s, his songs were adapted and/or stolen by numerous rock artists including Rod Stewart, Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones, Jeff Beck and, of course, Led Zeppelin. Dixon received a Grammy Award and was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Fun Facts

Let’s talk about Led Zeppelin. In 1987, after a lengthy and protracted legal dispute with Led Zeppelin over the band’s refusal to credit Willie Dixon on its 1969 hit “Whole Lotta Love” (which the band lifted note for note), Dixon settled for a large 7-figure settlement and future royalties. Funny thing is if you listen to Led Zeppelin’s first two albums, they basically stole a small portion of the Willie Dixon catalog. And whether or not Jimmy Page and Robert Plant stole “Stairway to Heaven,” their catalog is full of blatant musical swipes including “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You”, “Dazed and Confused”,  “Whole Lotta Love”, “The Lemon Song”, “Bring It on Home”, “Since I’ve Been Loving You” and the list goes on …

When Willie Dixon retired, he made his home at 1541 Ard Eevin Avenue in Glendale, California 91202

Cemetery Information:

Final Resting Place:

Burr Oak Cemetery

4400 West 127th Street

Alsip, Illinois, 60803


North America

Grave Location:

Acacia Lawn, Lot 18, Grave 1

Grave Location Description

Upon entering the cemetery, park your car at the office and walk up the center road directly across from the office entrance. Walk about 200 feet and look to your left as you approach the fork in the road to see the final resting place of blues legend Willie Dixon.

Grave Location GPS

41.662978141321666, -87.73074315776223



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