All Articles Tagged "etta james"
For many of us, Leela James first appeared on our radars when she debuted her song, “Music,” a track about the lack of substance in contemporary music. Now, she’s releasing a new album honoring legendary blues singer Etta James. Madame Noire had a chance to speak to this talented soul singer about how she got her start, her latest project and future endeavors.
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R&B singer Ne-Yo made headlines recently when he revealed that he turned down the chance to play Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. because he didn’t want to gain 30 pounds. He may have passed on a career defining opportunity, but after his role in Red Tails, maybe not…
In the acting world, getting the chance to play someone famous in a biopic is sure to take a career to the next level, and these days, everybody is doing it. Usher has already spoken out about the high expectations he has for his upcoming role as Sugar Ray Leonard. He wants an Oscar. He’d be following in the footsteps of fellow entertainers and actors who have stepped into the shoes of iconic public figures and created a path towards podiums in doing so.
Denzel was robbed of an Oscar for his portrayal of slain civil rights activist Malcolm X in 1993. Denzel assumed the identity of the complex man with ease and grace. He spoke the way Malcolm spoke. He carried himself the way Malcolm did and he made people feel as passionately about the Nation of Islam as the leader did with his nuanced performance. Denzel thoroughly inhabited the role of Malcolm through his cadence, posture and every inflection to the point where it felt he was no longer acting. He became Malcolm Little turned unconventional hero. Denzel may not have won the Oscar for the biopic, but the universal praise for his performance should be a fitting consolation.
Tags:Angela Bassett, beyonce, biopic, cadillac records, denzel washington, Dorothy Dandridge, dr. martin luther king jr, etta james, halle berry, ike turner, Jamie Foxx, jennifer lopez, laurence fishburne, malcolm x, morgan freeman, Muhammad Ali, Ne-Yo, Nelson Mandela, oscar, Ray Charles', Selena, sugar ray leonard, tina turner, Usher, Will Smith
This morning, I was reading my Twitter timeline and a friend posted: “If today is your birthday or 9-11, you no longer have a birthday…sorry.”
My first thought was, “What’s today?”
Then I remembered: Today is the third anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death. Oops. I’d already forgotten about that.
When Michael Jackson died, the whole nation (and parts of the world) immediately went into mourning. Twitter was still fairly new back then, but my entire Timeline was flooded with tears. Facebook was the same way and television networks immediately launched into All Michael Jackson, All the Time. Each network preempted their previously scheduled programming to air packages and programs they’d undoubtedly prepared a long time ago in anticipation of his inevitable fate. Bloggers foamed at the mouth reliving the King of Pop’s greatest moments and writing about the catastrophic loss our country endured.
Me? I was indifferent.
To be fair, I may have responded to Michael Jackson’s untimely death differently had my father not been killed in a murder-suicide, literally, the day before. I don’t know though. I was a total zombie that day, but I do remember finding some comfort in the fact that the world was crying with me – even if we were crying over two different events.
The day Whitney Houston died was the day before my wedding (apparently, I have a strange relationship with celebrity deaths). Michael Jackson’s passing had prepared me for the decidedly tamer (but still hysterical!) reaction. I loved Whitney Houston’s music and “The Preachers Wife” and “Bodyguard” are two of my favorite movies. It was genuinely sad the way she died and I was really hoping she would turn her life around for one last hurrah, but you would have thought people lost their family’s matriarch the way they were carrying on when the news broke.
I’m just not a person who becomes emotionally invested in another person whom I’ve never even met. Basically, the people I see on TV are one step away from being fictional characters. I don’t want any of them to die, but I can’t imagine soaking the carpet in tears if one did.
Don’t get me wrong, I love celebrities! I love the gossip, the breakups, the makeups, the fake hair, fake marriages and fake pregnancies. I read all about it. But I don’t think there is any celebrity death I would mourn like it’s someone I know. It’s always sad when people die, but honestly, after having experienced a real tragedy I don’t get how others can truly be broken up over someone who didn’t affect their lives in any tangible way.
When I think back to the 60′s and the civil unrest that took place then and all of the assassinations and untimely deaths of people important to the progress of this nation, I think that certainly called for a national time of mourning.
Now, we fly the flag half mast for people like Penn State coach Joe Paterno and equate a tragedy like 9/11 to Michael Jackson’s death? Many people over the age of 30 can’t name a single Etta James song besides, “At Last” but were nearly calling off sick in order to mourn after she passed. It’s crazy.
Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Etta James and others are certainly icons whom affected the entertainment industry in immortal ways, but I can’t think of a single celebrity whose death would warrant even the kind of mourning reserved for a third cousin.
So if today’s your birthday, let me be the first to say: Happy Birthday.
Am I the only one who is near indifferent about celebrity deaths? Are there any celebrities whose passing is (or would be) cause for true mourning?
Alissa Henry is a freelance writer living in Columbus, OH. Follow her on Twitter @AlissaInPink
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Remember big haired soul singer, Leela James? Well she’s back with a tribute to blues legend, Etta James. In a remake of Etta’s hit song, “Something’s Got a Hold of Me,” Leela takes us back to the ’60s and then up to present day. Leela James said she’s always looked up to Etta James as an inspiration: “Etta James sang from real pain, which truly made the blues and soul of her music special.” As someone who’s always been impressed with Leela James’ vocals, this song and the subsequent video did not disappoint.
Check it out below and let us know what you think.
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Today in Southern California, the funeral for legendary singer - Etta James – whose earthy vocals bridged genres from blues to rock, will take place in Southern California.
The Rev. Al Sharpton is set to preside over the private service for family and friends at Greater Bethany Community Church City of Refuge in Gardena.
Fans got the opportunity Friday to bid farewell to James during a public viewing at the Inglewood Cemetery Mortuary. Hundreds of people waited for hours to sign registers and attend the viewing for James, who died last Friday at the age of 73 from complications due to leukemia.
James was diagnosed with leukemia in 2010, and also suffered from dementia and hepatitis C. She died at a hospital in Riverside, California. She would have turned 74 on Wednesday.
Throughout her career, James overcame a heroin addiction, opened for the Rolling Stones, won six Grammys and was voted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Despite her ups and downs — including a number of health problems — she maintained an optimistic attitude.Through it all, she was a spitfire beloved by contemporaries and young up-and-comers. British songstress Adele named James as one of her favorite singers, along with Aretha Franklin.
Etta James was born Jamesetta Hawkins in Los Angeles to a teen mother and unknown father. She suspected her father was Rudolph Wanderone Jr., the famous pool hustler known as Minnesota Fats.
Whether you watched “Cadillac Records,” or read her biography, it’s clear that Etta James’ life was no walk in the park.
The tumultuous nature of her life and particularly her love life are reflected in her lyrics and in her passionate delivery.
Find out what lessons she taught us in her music at Your Tango.com.
Legendary rhythm and blues singer Etta James has died. The news comes from her longtime manager and friend, Lupe De Leon. James was 73 years old.
James was diagnosed with leukemia in 2010 and died from complications of the disease with her husband Artis Mills and her two sons by her side.
The artist who passed away in a hospital in Riverside, California would have turned 74 next week Wednesday.
This is what her manager and friend had to say about her death:
” This is a tremendous loss for the family, her friends and fans around the world. She was a true original who could sing it all – her music defied category.”
Our thoughts and prayers are with her family during this time of bereavement.
Happy New Year!! Well, 2012 is finally here and that means that your favorite celebs will be giving us yet more things to talk about. But let’s give them another week to before ratchet season starts, shall we? Here are a couple of gems you may have missed, including an engagement that just happened last night, during the last week of 2011!
Etta James’ live-in doctor is asking for prayers for the blues singer, saying she is now terminally ill.
James’ health has been on a steady decline over the past few years, and although people knew she was sick, her doctor says people didn’t know just how sick. Two weeks ago, her chronic leukemia was declared incurable, and the singer also suffers from dementia and kidney failure.
The doctor says she’s spreading the word about her condition so fans can send prayers her way.
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic
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I know what you’re thinking. It’s April. And you know what that means.
It’s jazz appreciation month ya’ll! Okay, so maybe that’s not what you had in mind, but if you weren’t aware of this out of nowhere novelty holiday, it’s not too late to celebrate the smoothest virtuosos and jazz singers of now and then. But that’s the thing. When you talk about jazz, first thing that comes out of people’s mouths is Miles, Coltrane, Louis, and Thelonius. The men. But if you’re looking to expand your iTunes playlist, represent for the ladies and finish up Jazz Appreciation Month to the backdrop of a dope soundtrack, then here’s a list of some of the best female jazz singers who expressed our joy, pain and strife best, before we even felt it.