The Madeleine Brand Show for January 20, 2012

Remembering the soulful life of blues and jazz great Etta James

Vince Bucci/Getty Images

Etta James honored on The Hollywood Walk of Fame

Rhythm and blues legend Etta James, who lived in Riverside, Calif., has died after a struggle with leukemia. She was 73.

James early life was the stuff of the blues: She was born Jamesetta Hawkins to an unwed teenage prostitute in Los Angeles. James never knew her father.

Later her hits like "At Last," "The Wallflower," and "Something's Got a Hold on Me" defined her career. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, James influenced a new generation of singers — including Beyonce Knowles, who depicted James in a 2008 film about the Chess years called “Cadillac Records.”

blog comments powered by Disqus