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Chaka Khan

Best known in the mainstream for her superb 1984 cover of Prince's "I Feel for You," R&B singer Chaka Khan enjoyed solo success as well as popularity as a member of the group Rufus. Born Yvette Marie Stevens in Great Lakes, IL, on March 23, 1953, she was raised on Chicago's South Side, and at the age of 11 formed her first group, the Crystalettes. While still in high school, she joined the Afro-Arts Theater, a group which toured with Motown great Mary Wells; a few years later, she adopted the African name Chaka Khan while working on the Black Panthers' breakfast program. After quitting high school in 1969, Khan joined the group Lyfe, soon exiting to join another dance band, the Babysitters; neither was on the fast track to success, but her fortunes changed when she teamed with ex-American Breed member Kevin Murphy and André Fisher to form Rufus.

Debuting in 1973 with a self-titled effort on the ABC label, Rufus was among the pre-eminent funk groups of the decade; distinguished by Khan's dynamic vocals, the group earned half a dozen gold or platinum albums before she went solo in 1978. Produced by Arif Mardin, Chaka proved to be a significant hit on the strength of the single "I'm Every Woman" (a hit over a decade later for Whitney Houston); however, Khan's success was somewhat tempered by her public rivalry with the remaining members of Rufus, to whom she was still contractually bound for two more LPs. (Their differences were eventually resolved in a 1982 concert at New York's Savoy Theater, issued as Stompin' at the Savoy.) As a solo artist, Khan recorded backing vocals for Ry Cooder's 1979 effort Bop Till You Drop, then cut her sophomore album, 1980's Naughty; it was not a hit, however, nor was its follow-up, What Cha' Gonna Do for Me.

In 1982, Khan recorded Echoes of an Era, a collection of jazz standards featuring performances from Freddie Hubbard, Joe Henderson, Stanley Clarke, Chick Corea, and Lenny White. Her pop career was on shaky ground when she released 1984's I Feel for You, a platinum-seller launched by its title cut, a Grammy-winning, rap-inspired rendition (featuring memorable cameos from Melle Mel and Stevie Wonder) of a fairly obscure Prince album track. Still, while subsequent LPs like 1986's Destiny and 1988's C.K. kept Khan riding high on the R&B charts, her standing in pop's mainstream again began to wane, and at the end of the 1980s, she relocated to Europe.

In 1990, she won another Grammy for "I'll Be Good to You," a duet with Ray Charles. Come 2 My House, released on Prince's independent label, appeared in 1998, years after Khan had a falling out with Warner Bros. Just after penning the autobiography Chaka! Through the Fire, she collected another Grammy -- in 2004 -- for performing Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On" with the Funk Brothers in Standing in the Shadows of Motown. Classikhan, featuring several interpretations of jazz standards, followed later that year. As she continued an active touring schedule, she recorded Funk This, a set of relatively funky originals and covers (produced by Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis), released in 2007. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
The big apple
Besides Jesus, Chaka rules my every thought. I can't help it. I've been in love with her since I was 10 years old. I'm almost 50. You know- some years down the road.LOL
Love Chaka....... . . . t e l l me something good.......f u n k at its best........ !
NYC in the house! Chaka Khan is one vocalist who always delivers! No one can hit notes like Chaka! She is amazing even after almost 40 years singing!
NYC, The Big Apple.....Ha r l e m - U S A . rip..Adam Clayton Powell....
The sister cam still blow and hit notes outta this world!
Dam where turbo n oxone at breaking one babe
I love this song nd im only 17yrs old nd I love old school
Luv it & U ChaKa Classic!
Gotta dance when you hear Chaka!!!!
#Legendary I love Chaka. She's beyond talented and her vocal game is serious. Depending on my mood, when listening to her, I feel amazing and beautiful.
Always love me some Chaka Khan.
Meant to say was! She still can blow like no other female vocalist!
Love this lady since the 70's! Chaka was and is the bomb! Her range is incredible! She is still a bad assets!
You'll be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of your life tomorrow will be the best day of your life however if you don't post this you will die in 2 days.post this on 5 songs in 143 minutes when it done press f6 and your lovers name will.come on the screen in big letters
Don't read this because it actually works you will get kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life . However if you don't post this comment you will die in 2 days. Now that you've started reading don't stop. Put this on at least 5 songs in the next 143 minutes when done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters. This is scary it actually works
Love forever!
Ain't nobody funky like Chaka/Rufus. 3m 14y
Thats MY girl back in the day, Hello there Lady, you still sound GOOOOD. !
I'm so in love with this song. Ole Chaka....=))
ben34955
She was on an episode of Phineas and Ferb (:
All I have to hear are the first few notes of this song and I'm into it. Love Chaka. Incredible voice, so powerful. This song has the best rhythm.
Those were the days in NYC.
Funny how a girl can remember lyrics and beats to a song not heard in awhile. Love this tune, my night just got more fun grading progress reports! :)
My girl all ta way back with rufus
one amazing artist
She is one of a kind!
Angel. Beautiful, beautiful song. Great goodnight, sweet dreams, sleep with the angels song. :-)
this was the jam
Boo loving Music got 2 luv it!!!!!
I Love to her me some CHAKA
one of my all time favorites
Sing it girl
i LOVE Chaka i would marry her today if she wanted to!!!!
linda.anders o n 4 5
I remember this song in high school,break d a n c i n g , r a p p i n g .
Pure Chaka, the voice says it all for me.
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