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Roberta Flack

Classy, urbane, reserved, smooth, and sophisticated -- all of these terms have been used to describe the music of Roberta Flack, particularly her string of romantic, light jazz ballad hits in the 1970s, which continue to enjoy popularity on MOR-oriented adult contemporary stations. Flack was the daughter of a church organist and started playing piano early enough to get a music scholarship and eventually, a degree from Howard University. After a period of student teaching, Flack was discovered singing at a club by jazz musician Les McCann and signed to Atlantic.

Her first two albums -- 1969's First Take and 1970's Chapter Two -- were well received but produced no hit singles; however, that all changed when a version of Ewan MacColl's "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face," from her first LP, was included in the soundtrack of the 1971 film Play Misty for Me. The single zoomed to number one in 1972 and remained there for six weeks, becoming that year's biggest hit. Flack followed it with the first of several duets with Howard classmate Donny Hathaway, "Where Is the Love." "Killing Me Softly with His Song" became Flack's second number one hit (five weeks) in 1973, and after topping the charts again in 1974 with "Feel Like Makin' Love," Flack took a break from performing to concentrate on recording and charitable causes.

She charted several more times over the next few years, as she did with the Top Ten 1977 album Blue Lights in the Basement -- featuring "The Closer I Get to You," a number two ballad with Hathaway. A major blow was struck in 1979 when her duet partner, one of the most creative voices in soul music, committed suicide. Devastated, Flack eventually found another creative partner in Peabo Bryson, with whom she toured in 1980. The two recorded together in 1983, scoring a hit duet with "Tonight, I Celebrate My Love."

Flack spent the remainder of the '80s touring and performing, often with orchestras, and also several times with Miles Davis. She returned to the Top Ten once more in 1991 with "Set the Night to Music," a duet with Maxi Priest that appeared that year on the album of the same name. Her Roberta full-length, featuring interpretations of jazz and popular standards, followed in 1994. As she continued into the 21st century, Flack recorded infrequently but released albums like 2012's Let It Be Roberta: Roberta Flack Sings the Beatles, which showed that her poise and balanced singing had aged well. Varese Sarabande released a lovingly remixed version of Flack's fine 1997 holiday album Christmas Songs (it had originally appeared from Capitol Records under the title The Christmas Album) that same year, adding in an additional track, "Cherry Tree Carol." ~ Steve Huey, Rovi
full bio

Comments

cobban.barne t t
I was fortunate to see Ms. Flack live at an AIDS charity benefit in 1992 or 1993. I have rarely been so impressed with the level of professional i s m and talent on display that night -- she is truly an amazing performer.
I love her voice no one like miss Roberta !! ��
Timeless piece,Love this song, ....back down memory lane in more ways than one...
if you knew growing up in d.c. in this time of my life you knew a great music teacher in my d.c. jr. high school
Making Love, warms my heart! RQ/rlh
This song The Closer I Get To You say's it all. RQ/rlh
I remember hearing this in the basement at a party at my uncle kims as a kid and i tell ya it made me wanna fall in love
nmbtm25
Such a nice and romantic song.
Another one who died too early(Donnie Hathaway)
I love this music?
This song Making Love will never grow old. What a powerful song. One of Roberta Great! RQ/rlh
731103081
You used to hum this Mama<3<3<3
Simply beautiful!
Thanks to"My 6Grade Teacher-Miss Fox"..LoL-I Was Introduce to"Ms Roberta Flack"and I"Bless":)). . H e r and Donny Hathaway Duets..Then Peabo Bryson are"Memorabl e " . . T h a n k You"Miss Fox"..Teache r s Do"Have Influence-Th a t Carry Thru A LiFE Time"Rest in Peace-My 6Th Grade Teacher:))
ROBERTA FLACK & DONNY HATHAWAY MUSIC AT TIMES MAKE THINK OF A PAST RELATESHIP. BUT I LOVE THEY MUSIC SMILE....
You can never go wrong with this song. ...
mutchersonca r o l y n
My favorite female vocalist. 'Let It be me' is the most beautiful song I think she's done. First Take and Chapter 2 are timeless.
Timeless!!!! - B o t h ! - W a s n ' t even. A teenager!Lov e It!!!
tamyabonet2
I love this lady, her music is out of this world, One of the few whose music that truly moves me
Making Love-can sure move a person. I miss her and Donny's music. However, Roberta voice can make me---------- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ! ! ! ! ! R Q / r l h
I love this song
Romantic mmmm your face the first time ♥
Beautiful and romantic duo
Nothing can be said about Roberta other than GREAT.RQ/rlh
Roberta and Donny Hathaway made beautiful music together... Nothing but classics... SIP Donny
I strongly believe that your soul mate, whoever that person may be, makes you feel these very lyrics. That is the one God meant for you to be with. There will never be anyone else EVER that can make you feel the same.
The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face. I LOVE THIS SONG. THIS IS MY FAVORITE BY ROBERTA FLACK. I FELT THIS VERY THING WITH JUST ONE MAN SO FAR AND THAT WAS SP. PEACE. I can't express this to that person. I still love this song.
this song reminds me of my first love in Detroit Michigan. every time I hear this song it reminds me of thermon Jordan . I was so in love with him and probably still is. such a beautiful song
geenote126
Classic!!!!
leslie.morse 6
N
I am so glad ....I heard about Pandora ... I had to try it for me ... I loving it... That old memories .... wow.... I am in love
Brings back childhood memories.
I love songs like this makes me wanna have a girl and share all my love with her :/
In the late 70's I studied and worked at a University. At the lab (english as a second language) I would que up music before instructions . Roberta was a favorite with students of all nations. It struck me as profound that she had instant appeal across such a broad cultural array.
mmalvesti
The truth often hurts :- (
Just a beautiful classic .....
Great voice!
ben3452
She still got it .
What a beautiful song!! I could listen to this over & over again!! ❌⭕❌⭕
Very Smooth and Beautiful ❤
mollyopter
As a young man in the1970s and a household that was crazy. I will always feel comfort with the voice of Roberta Flack. Her voice has such a soothing affect on me!
malakai911
My father (God rest his soul) turned me on to Roberta Flack in the early '70s, when I was just 7. I remember being struck by how beautiful her voice was, and still is. She is a master of music composition and arrangement. In this day of auto tune (hate it) and American Idol, young artists would be wise to follow her path. Thank you Roberta for keeping my memory of my father alive is such a lovely way. Bless you. - Katie K, Woodinville, WA
I have seen her in concert
Them were the good ole days
wonder music true vocals from gods blessing
rnbabydoll
There is only one like Roberta Flack......
I am blessed to have had Roberta as a friend, in fact, she is the God-mother of my daughters. My ex and I were fans since her first album. Years later my wife said, i have been a fan for long enough it's time to be friends. Long story but she made it happen. That allowed backstage access to some of the biggest stars in R&B. She let us dog sit/adopt two of her dogs - Tupac and Maxi (Priest). Roberta was loving and welcoming to my family. I cherish the memories.
Hampton U in the 70's rocked and so did Roberta.
tvictor59
closer if get you is a timeless classic that anyone will enjoy who is in love.
I love Trade Winds its a song that fit the conditions of our time here on earth
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