What a sad way to start the year, it’s been confirmed by various news outlets that singer Natalie Cole has passed away. After enjoying an illustrious career for over 30 years, releasing music within the genres of pop, soul and jazz, Natalie suffered ill health recently after being diagnosed with hepatitis C, a sad consequence of years of drug abuse.
The daughter of the legendary Nat King Cole, many believe that Natalie never received the commercial success she deserved despite being a Grammy Award winning artist. That said, she was duly celebrated on Black British radio and heralded as one of the greats. Her more soul-orientated music was frequently played at house parties and clubs during the late ’80s and early ’90s, I mean, how many times have you danced/sung along to the jazz/pop classic This Will Be (An Everlasting Love) at a wedding, christening or house party? But perhaps her most revered record among clubbers during the ’80s was I Wanna Be That Woman. Produced by Reggie Calloway in 1988, the mid-tempo groover was originally a B Side to the pop smash Pink Cadillac, and was embraced by underground DJs and subsequently fans of the burgeoning rare-groove sound that was creating waves across London. A survivor. Goddess. Musical royalty. May Natalie’s soul soar with the angels and forever rest in peace.
Natalie wrote about her tumultuous life in showbiz and subsequent recovery in her memoir, Love Brought Me Back, for details click here.
I recall Natalie killing it at the Mandela Concert in Wembley in 1988