Natalie Cole has died. I heard it mentioned on the radio yesterday and was immediately saddened. We may have come to associate fandom with its extreme expression like crying and pulling at your blond hair when you see your favourite idol, I am not of that. But I am a fan of Natalie Cole.
I can't help but say that some of us have long denounced the idea of 'monarchy': we shun dynastic inheritance that precludes some from achieving the pinnacle of greatness, that place on the throne. Well in my mind the very place that inverted that has as well appropriated it quite well in that we now have thanks to them, The King of Pop, The King of Rock and Roll, The Queen of Soul, a couple Queen B's and a host of other royals. The fact is the entire court of Uncle Sam is of blue blood, trust me.
I came to like Natalie Cole before I came to hate the rights of succession now seemingly owed to the kids of great actors and singers. Its as if through lineage these offspring have improved on the talents of their parents and are here to command an even greater place in the world as leaders, most of them wealthy already. I believe Natalie Cole was a real talent though and a woman of grace despite her much reported on drug use.
It was in the early 90's while I lived in New York than I would again fall in love with her having had a fond memory of her hits in the late 70's into 80's. It was at a night club called Sugar Babies. It was at restaurant that was at the time called Sugar Reef, a colorful almost gawdy little spot where the best of the best at the time gathered on a Monday night to party hard and sweat.
There would also be performances...drag performances. One night the gorgeous and effervescent Lambert, stage name Ebony Jet, performed the song I posted above. To my memory it was lip-synced to perfection even the difficult scatting towards the end seemed more exciting to me that night than anything. I went on to buy Ms Cole's Best Of because of that night and it featured many of her songs, many of which I loved.
I have a thing for female vocalists, I have noticed, most of my favourite songs have been sung by women, for what it's worth Natalie Cole is naturally among them.