Etta James touched the lives of many artists, some obvious (Beyonce, Adele) and some not so much (Flo Rida) before and after she lost her battle with Leukemia.
Kelly Clarkson covered “I Go Blind” at Radio City Music Hall four days ago and Adele sang “Fool That I Am” at Somerville Theatre in Massachusetts after learning her idol was ill on January 14, then took to her blog to comment on the loss.
“What a lady Etta James was. She was the ultimate original. Her voice was breath taking and her songs are reflections we all recognise in some way or another. Its an honour every time I hear her voice.”
Beyonce, whose portrayal of James in 2008’s Cadillac Records was not received well by critics or Etta herself, unsurprisingly commented on the tragedy as well:
“This is a huge loss…Playing Etta James taught me so much about myself, and singing her music inspired me to be a stronger artist. When she effortlessly opened her mouth, you could hear her pain and triumph…She was fearless, and had guts.” Flo Rida’
s current chart-hit “Good Feeling” is even influenced by Etta, with a hook straight from “Something’s Got A Hold On Me.” He told Rolling Stone
that her death really touched him and that he would have loved a chance to meet her.
A public funeral service will be held for the singer, who died January 20, at the Inglewood Cemetery on Friday from 5 to 10 p.m. with a private ceremony for closer friends and family taking place on Saturday.
Stars like Rihanna
, Alyssa Milano, Questlove and Roseanne Barr
all remembered her on their Twitter accounts and Jen Miller, semi-undiscovered YouTube genius and one of my favorites covered “At Last” with her own unique bird/Spektor-like twist. “My favorite singers are Etta James and Aretha Franklin. If you were to look up the word singer in the dictionary, you’d see their names.”
-Adele, to Cosmopolitan