Joe Edwards looks back upon Chuck Berry’s influence

UNIVERSITY CITY, MO (KTVI) – A sunny day but some might have had a downbeat mood in the Delmar Loop.

Fans flocked to see the Chuck Berry statue, his star on the walk of fame and Blueberry Hill, Chuck`s second home for the last few decades.

'The fact that Chuck played once a month for 209 consecutive months is mind blowing,' says Joe Edwards, Owner Blueberry Hill & Friend.

Blueberry Hill holds the largest collection of Chuck Berry memorabilia in the world.

Here you can see and hear firsthand how this guitar player and songwriter hit the top ten in 1955 with Maybelline.

'Well it had country taste because I had a lot of country western taste from St. Louis where I was raised at,' says Chuck Berry from a 2001 interview.

The normally media shy Berry sat down with me for an interview in October 18th 2001, on his 75th birthday.

He was considered rock royalty but Monday morning Joe Edwards was remembering rehearsals for 'Hail Hail Rock N` Roll, the 1987 concert documentary filmed at the Fox Theatre.

'I would get off work here and drive out to Berry Park where rehearsals were going on and there was everyone.  Keith Richards was his band leader and Robert Cray and Etta James and you name it,' says Edwards.

In our 2001 interview Chuck talked about his early career when he added the letter `N` to his name out of respect for his father.

'You read that book or didn`t you,' says Berry.  'Okay, really that was before I knew how the system worked.'

'It was difficult, even though you know sometime it`s going to happen,' says Edwards.  'He was 90 years and five months old but sometimes it`s very difficult.  It`s the finality what hit me and the family.'