For 28 years legendary piano player Johnnie Johnson worked as a sideman to one of rock & roll's most prominent performers, Chuck Berry. Berry joined Johnson's band, the Sir John Trio, on New Year's Eve 1953, and afterward Berry took over as the group's songwriter and frontman/guitar player. On the strength of a recommendation from Muddy Waters and an audition, Berry got a deal with Chess Records. Johnson's rhythmic piano playing was a key element in all of Berry's hit singles, a good number of which Johnson arranged. Although Berry has been reluctant to admit as much, Johnson is widely regarded to be the inspiration for one of Berry's biggest hits, "Johnny B. Goode." The pair's successful partnership lasted a lot longer than most rock & roll partnerships last these days.