Etta James Research Paper

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Etta James was born Jamesetta Hawkins in Los Angeles and had a very tumultuous childhood as she was brought up by foster parents who ill-treated her. By the age of 5, she was known as a gospel prodigy, gaining fame by singing in her church choir and on the radio. At 12, she moved north to San Francisco, formed a trio and was soon working for band leader Johnny Otis. Four years later, she recorded, Roll with Me Henry, with the Otis band. James’ solo career was a slow starter, and she spent several years cutting low-selling singles for Modern and touring small clubs until 1960, when Leonard Chess signed her to a new record deal. James would record for Chess Records and its subsidiary labels Argo and Checker into the late ‘70s and, working with producers Ralph Bass and Harvey Fuqua, she embraced a style that fused the passion of R&B with the polish of jazz, and scored several hits for the label, including “All I Could Do Was Cry,” “My Dearest Darling,” and “Trust in Me.” While James was enjoying a career resurgence, her personal life was not faring as well; she began experimenting with drugs as a teenager, and by the time she was 21 she was a heroin …show more content…

James “Trust in Me”, “I’d Rather Go Blind”, and “All I Could Do Was Cry”. These were very emotional songs that she sang for a man she was in love with and whom was in love with her but in that time, they could not be together due to the race war and because he was already married. It was a very complicated yet heavy love story. This was a woman with a message for a man that she was deeply in love with and a man who shared the same feelings for her and better than that a message for the world. “I want to show that country, gospel, blues, rhythm, jazz, rock and roll and are all just really one thing. It is all American music and that is American culture.” Mrs. James sang with some of the most prominent people of our time who were trailblazers for what we can do

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