Academy Award and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman paid tribute to multiple Grammy Award-winning American blues guitarist and jazz singer Buddy Guy, who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2005, stating, “I first heard the blues sitting on my grandmother’s porch in Mississippi – we called it “gut bucket music. You mastered the soul of that gutbucket music and used that as your starting point. You found a new music in it that no one had ever seen before. And without the Internet, without YouTube, without even FM radio, you went viral. You went viral, Buddy Guy. And you made a bridge from roots to rock and roll.” Freeman continued, “But there’s Buddy. Sitting up there with the best – a pioneer, a Queen, a King and a President – the best rock and roll band, a pioneer of acting, a queen of dance, king of late night and the President of the United States. So when you hear the blues, you don’t know if it’s white, black, yellow, purple or blue. Buddy Guy, your blues brought us together. Now that’s something to sing about.”
The tribute to Buddy Guy commenced with a performance by the Rob Mathes Band of “Every Day I Have the Blues,” which was quickly followed by a medley of “Things I Used to Do,” “I’m Ready” and “Hoochie Coochie Man,” performed by multiple Grammy Award-winning guitarist and singer Jimmie Vaughan, along with American guitarist Gary Clark, Jr. Next, multiple Grammy Award winner Tracy Chapman took the stage to perform “Hound Dog,” followed by “I’d Rather Go Blind,” performed by multiple Grammy Award winner Jeff Beck and American jazz and blues singer Beth Hart. The tribute concluded with an upbeat medley of “My Time After a While” and “Sweet Home Chicago,” led by multiple Grammy Award-winning musician Bonnie Raitt.