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Etta James


LA84

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I had never heard of Etta James prior to the LA84 opening because her career was pretty much over. Massive heroin addiction and other errors had pretty much tanked her career.

She wrote to David Wolper after she cleaned herself up and said she wanted to sing in the Olympics. As chance would have it, David Wolper was looking for someone who sounded like Etta James for the New Orleans/Gospel section of the Opening.

And then she came and sang "When The Saints Go Marching In" and I was like "Who is this diva?" (sorry - no YouTube video available that I can find). And she sort of renewed her career after that.

I have been a fan since and this week, a movie is coming out that touches on her beginnings. Getting great reviews so far - apparently Beyonce Knowles is awesome as James:

Cadillac Records

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I had never heard of Etta James prior to the LA84 opening because her career was pretty much over. Massive heroin addiction and other errors had pretty much tanked her career.

She wrote to David Wolper after she cleaned herself up and said she wanted to sing in the Olympics. As chance would have it, David Wolper was looking for someone who sounded like Etta James for the New Orleans/Gospel section of the Opening.

And then she came and sang "When The Saints Go Marching In" and I was like "Who is this diva?" (sorry - no YouTube video available that I can find). And she sort of renewed her career after that.

I have been a fan since and this week, a movie is coming out that touches on her beginnings. Getting great reviews so far - apparently Beyonce Knowles is awesome as James:

Cadillac Records

Actually Etta James was supposed to play a show in Halifax, Nova Scotia about a decade ago at a gospel festival as one of the headline acts . Her Tour bus came to the back of the 10000 seat Metro Centre .They got off the bus , wanted the brief case of Cash per the Contract for the performance fee. The Promoter tried to give a Certified Cheque and Etta James basically said " No Brief Case with the cash no performance" . They refused to play and left unpaid going back to Los Angeles.

Performers like Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley had the very same policy for decades. Too many rip offs by club owners and want a be promoters sneaking out the backdoor or bouncing cheques. Both Berry and Diddley would carry the Brief cases on stage and place in near the drum kit having full view of where the money was at all Times. Both those artists Would walk into the venue Managers office on arrival to basically say pay me now and I go on stage. The Arrival Time would be very close to show time with a full club. If they were not paid then the owner would have a full room of people that could be very upset that the performer was not playing.

Both artists would have House Bands provided per their contracts. Bruce Springsteen and the E street band in the early 70s was the house band one night for Chuck Berry at an Ashbury Park Gig. Springsteen meeting an idol on stage that night asked Berry "What songs are we going to Tonite Mr Berry"

Chuck berry Said "son we are going to play some Chuck Berry Songs tonite"

Yes that narrowed down for Springsteen to nearly 20 years of Chuck Berrys career.

Jim jones

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