Beloved Soul Singer Betty Wright Dies

By Ben Hamill - May 12 2020
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Beloved Soul Singer Betty Wright Dies

Beloved soul singer Betty Wright has lost her fight against cancer, her family has confirmed. Wright was only 66 at the time of her passing at her Miami home. The beloved artist was diagnosed with endometrial cancer a little less than a year ago and on May 2 suddenly took a turn for the worst. Singer Chaka Kahn at the time reached out to her fans on Twitter, asking for prayers of healing for her friend and beloved sister.

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Wright loved singing especially gospel and soul and had started out singing gospel as part of family gospel music and choir group, the Echoes of Joy. She released her debut album when she was only 14 and became an instant hit with her rendition of Girls Can’t Do What Guys Can Do. She was perhaps best known in later years for her song Clean Up Woman which eventually climbed the charts all the way into the Top 5.

The Year Everything Changed

Echoes of Joy eventually disbanded in 1985, after which Wright created her own label named Ms. B Records. Her big break came about 3 years later when according to her social media biography, she in 1988 became the first woman to have reached gold-record status on her own label. Her music became popular and eventually drew the attention of some big-time stars. Mary J. Blige, for one, incorporated some of Wright’s songs into her own music repertoire, remixing some of what Wright had composed into perhaps most famously, her all-time hit, Real Love.

Other stars to have incorporated some of Wright’s music and lyrics into their own music include Sublime and Afrika Bambaataa. Steve Greenberg, one of the entertainment personalities to have posted tributes to her music and career on social media, described working with the soul singer as a truly magical and absolutely professional experience. Greenberg is the president of music label S-Curve Records.

Wright is described by the majority of her friends and industry colleagues as a typical “can-do” person and someone that could be trusted and relied upon to do whatever it was that needed doing. But Betty Wright is also remembered fondly as a person of true character. Musician Joss Stone recalls having experienced immense trouble singing in front of a live band.

Wright was in charge of Stone’s very first recorded album and having realised Stone’s fear, did not think twice about performing his entire debut album himself, hopping onto a plane to New York, and there recording Joss Stone’s vocals over the already-finished musical tracks she had recorded herself earlier on. Betty Wright, say those who knew her, was as self-less at what she had been talented.

She Touched All Who Knew Her

Wright was throughout the course of her celebrated and successful career nominated for a total of 6 Grammy Awards. She did end up winning a Grammy Award for her 1975 hit, “Where is the Love”. She will forever be remembered by those whose lives she had touched in her own unique and powerful way, by her fellow musicians, her family, her friends, and of course, her beloved fans.

Why did Betty Wright die?

Wright was diagnosed with cancer a little under a year ago.

How old was Betty Wright when she died?

She was only 66.

Was Betty Wright married at the time of her death?

No. She was previously married to Jamaican D.J. Noel George Williams. The couple filed for divorce in 2015.

How much was Betty Wright worth at the time of her death?

About $5 million.

What is her ex-husband most famous for?

Noel Williams co-wrote Bob Marley’s famous hit Buffalo Soldier.

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