Etta James passed away today at 73 years old. The "At Last" singer had been battling leukemia for years. Her friend and manager Lupe De Leon confirmed the news saying, "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. I worked with Etta for over 30 years. She was my friend and I will miss her always." Etta won four Grammys over her career, is a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, and was portrayed by Beyoncé Knowles in Cadillac Records. Etta's legendary career will always be remembered.
Beyonce Knowles had the world watching on inauguration night when she performed "At Last" for Barack and Michelle Obama's first dance as president and first lady. Over the past year, Beyonce has sung the famous tune many times — including in front of Etta James — before playing the legend in Cadillac Records. This week at a concert in Seattle, Etta James went off on Beyonce and denounced President Obama for inviting her to sing. James said:
"You guys know your president, right? You know the one with the big ears? Wait a minute, he ain't my president, he might be yours, he ain't my president. You know that woman he had singing for him, singing my song — she's going to get her ass whipped. The Great Beyonce. I can't stand Beyonce. She has no business up there, singing up there on a big ol' president day, singing my song that I've been singing forever."
Beyonce was asked to perform it and Etta wasn't the first one to make it famous, but she is the most well-known performer of "At Last." Listen to Etta's rant here. When it comes to these two feuding divas whose side are you on — Beyonce's or Etta's?
There's plenty wrong with director Darnell Martin's biopic about Chicago's famous record label Chess Records, including the confusing title: Cadillac Records. What with the production quality that makes the film look like a sound stage, amateurish editing, and a script that bites off too many legends than it can chew, this movie's got issues.
But you know what? I forgive it these faults for two reasons: the performances are out-of-this-world good (Beyonce actually sets the screen on fire), and the awesome music is prominently on display with most of the actors doing most of the singing. The resulting experience is less a cerebral one (it is awfully formulaic) and more primal. The music moved me, and the performances are so powerful they got under my skin and stayed with me for days.
To see what else I so enjoyed about this ensemble cast (including what might be my favorite Mos Def performance ever), read more
Hollywood got a little more old school last night for the premiere of Cadillac Records. Beyonce Knowles looked glamorous solo showing off her enormous diamond ring on the red carpet and posing with the legendary Etta James who B portrays in the film. As one half of the number one top earning celebrity couples, Beyonce didn't need her other half by her side to command attention. Adrien Brody cozied up with his girlfriend Elsa Pataky sticking with the all black dress code right down to Adrien's hair. Gabrielle Union also stars in the film, which hits theaters December 5.
To see more from the premiere including Etta James, Beyonce, Adrien and more just read more
There is news today that Beyonce will return to the big screen to play legendary songstress Etta James in a movie about the music scene in 1950's Chicago. Other music legends that will be brought to life include Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf and Elvis Presley.
I enjoyed Beyonce in Dreamgirls when she played a beautiful lead doo-wop girl, but Etta James is known more for her powerful voice than "it-girl" good looks. What do you think about this casting choice? Can you see a stunner like Beyonce playing a young Etta James?
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- Singer Etta James has been hospitalized due to complications after having abdominal surgery last month. We wish her a speedy recovery. - Reuters
- Mindy McCready was arrested again in Nashville yesterday for violating her probation and the judge has refused to set bail. Some people never learn. - TMZ
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- An announcement about the new co-hosts of The View will be made any day now, and it is most likely that 2 of the 3 potential candidates (Whoopi Goldberg, Kathy Griffin & Sherry Shepherd) will be chosen. The real question is, can new hosts save this dying show? - Page Six