Legendary Soul singer, Betty Everett, passed away in her home in Beloit Wisconsin over the weekend. Her body was found by her family on Sunday.
Cause of death has yet to be determined.
Born in Greenwood Mississippi on November 23, 1939, Betty Everett is remembered primarily for one huge hit in the 60s, but she was also one of the very best soul singers and actually recorded many songs. Starting at age nine she played the piano and sang in church. She continued to sing in gospel choirs, and eventually moved to Chicago in 1957. While there she continued to sing.
She recorded songs on some of the local Chicago labels such as C.J., Cobra and OneDerful in the late 50s and early 60s, coming up with local hits such as Ill Be There and Ive Got A Claim On You. She signed a contract with VeeJay, a label that was issuing some hits by the Beatles at around the same time. Her release of "Youre No Good" just missed the top fifty late in 1963 and was covered in the UK by the Swinging Blue Jeans.
Then she hit big. Betty Everett recorded "The Shoop Shoop Song [its In His Kiss]" in the Spring of 1964 and it soared to Billboards Top-10. Other records, such as "I Cant Hear You" and "Getting Mighty Crowded" extended her fan base. She then did a duet with another prominent Chicago-area singer, Jerry Butler, and their single, "Let It Be Me" also made the top ten that year. Other Betty Everett/Jerry Butler duets came along, such as their single "Smile" and their LP "Delicious Together."
Betty Everett made a wildly successful tour of England in the mid-60s in support of these releases. After Vee Jay folded in 1967, Betty went to ABC without success before coming back on Uni in 1969 with "Therell Come A Time," her last top forty hit. This song was her first entry in the soul charts where it went to number two. Betty had five more entries in the soul charts on Uni and Fantasy by 1971. "Youre No Good" was covered by Linda Lewis in 1975 and went top ten in the UK, and went to number one in the United States in a version released by Linda Ronstadt. The song that Betty Everett is remembered for, however, is one that everybody knew in 1964, "The Shoop Shoop Song [its In His Kiss]." Betty most recently appeared on DOO WOP 51 (PBS) with Jerry Butler. It was her last public performance.