Fats Domino. Picture: Bang Showbiz

The legendary rock 'n' roll musician  Fats Domino — whose real name was Antoine — passed away at the age of 89 on Wednesday morning, WWL-TV Anchor Eric Paulson reported.

According to the news outlet, his daughter said the 'Blueberry Hill' singer passed away peacefully, surrounded by family and friends.

US TV star Wendell Pierce led tributes to the rocker.

He said: "Words fail me in this moment of deep heartache and sadness. We have lost a legend.

"One of my heroes. New Orleans' Fats Domino is dead."

The 'Ain't That a Shame' hitmaker - who was honoured with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1987 - was a rock 'n' roll pioneer who inspired the likes of Elvis Presley and The Beatles.

He was born and raised in New Orleans and was famously feared dead in 2005, when he refused to leave his home when Hurricane Katrina hit the state in 2005, but it was later revealed he had been rescued by a Coast Guard helicopter.

The iconic musician was given his nickname by New Orleans bandleader Billy Diamond in 1947, after he heard him play and was reminded of pianists Fats Waller and Fats Pichon. 

He released his first single, 'The Fat Man' - which was co-written by Dave Bartholomew - in 1950, with his debut album, 'Carry on Rockin' coming out in 1955.

In 2012, Fats appeared as himself in HBO show 'Treme', which was set in New Orleans and featured several local musicians.

He was inducted into the Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame in August 2016.

Fats had eight children, Antonio, Andre, Anatole, Adonica, Andrea, Antoine III, Antoinette, Anola, with late wife Rosemary, who died in 2008.



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