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Robert "Bumble Bee Bob" Novak


1931 - 2015 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Robert "Bumble Bee Bob" Novak Obituary
Oak Park - "Bee" as he was known to his friends, was born on November 17th, 1931 , and passed away on the morning of Tuesday, July 14th from congestive heart failure. Many of us knew Bee as a triple-threat bluesman that played guitar, harmonica and sang. His raw style and approach to the blues was something to be seen! His incendiary "harp" playing certainly put him among the best in Chicago where there is no shortage of great players - Little Walter, Big Walter, James Cotton among others. Over his long career, Bee mentored countless musicians, and has played with a veritable "who's who" of famous artists himself. Oddly enough, Bee maintained that music was secondary to his first love - art. A graduate of the Chicago Art Institute, he was a prolific painter. His colorful style and subject matter made him as unique in the art world as his playing was in the blues world. He was commissioned to do the poster for the 1989 Chicago blues festival, as well as for several other fests in Europe. His art has also appeared in multiple movies. His legacy will be his recognition as one of the great Chicago artists and bluesmen. He will surely be missed by his many friends and fans. The music and art worlds have truly lost a creative force! Rest in Peace Bee.
Published in a Chicago Tribune Media Group Publication from July 18 to July 20, 2015
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