Becoming a Gospel singer in her church choir, she stood out from the crowd of black singers, although she looked like she had black heritage she dyed her hair bright blond for much of her life. Luckily, she was discovered one day by simply singing on the street by a band leader and talent scout Johnny Otis who heard her as he passed her by walking. Incidentally or coincidently or ironically he also died the same week she died. Maybe they are together forever now. Who knows we are still here.
In the 60’s Etta had a string of hits. Her signature song became “At Last.” She should have been rich and much more famous but as usual that happens to way too many singers, Etta became friends with drug addiction and had legal troubles that took most of her money. Until, in the 1990’s she won her first Grammy, By then she was fit and drug free and managed to have some money left.
At the ceremony, she said, ”I wish my Mother had been here to see me here today.”
She had an unforgettable voice pushed on by real talent. Thank goodness her child mother decided to keep her and not get a back alley abortion which was the only thing offered to women in those days or we wouldn’t have had her music that the world still can enjoy even after her death.