James was reared by foster parents until her mother who was 14 when James was born took her year-old daughter to San Francisco. There James formed a girl doo-wop trio called the Creolettes, who were renamed the Peaches after bandleader Johnny Otis discovered them when James was She continued to perform into the early 21st century.
Who Was Etta James?
James's powerful, deep, earthy voice bridged the gap between rhythm and blues and rock and roll. Although her father has never been identified,  James speculated that she was the daughter of pool player Rudolf "Minnesota Fats" Wanderone , whom she met briefly in James referred to her mother as "the Mystery Lady". James received her first professional vocal training at the age of five from James Earle Hines, musical director of the Echoes of Eden choir at the St. Under his tutelage, she suffered physical abuse during her formative years, with her instructor often punching her in the chest while she sang to force her voice to come from her gut. As a consequence, she developed an unusually strong voice for a child her age.
Etta James was a gospel prodigy. In , she moved to Los Angeles to record "The Wallflower. In , she released the album All the Way. James died in Riverside, California, on January 20, , and continues to be is considered one of the most dynamic singers in music. James was born Jamesetta Hawkins on January 25, , in Los Angeles, California, to a year-old mother, Dorothy Hawkins, who encouraged her daughter's singing career. James would later say, "My mother always told me, even if a song has been done a thousand times, you can still bring something of your own to it. I'd like to think I did that. By the age of 5, James was known as a gospel prodigy, gaining fame by singing in her church choir and on the radio.
She was Her manager, Lupe De Leon, said that the cause was complications of leukemia. James, who died at Riverside Community Hospital, had been undergoing treatment for some time for a number of conditions, including leukemia and dementia. She also lived in Riverside. James was not easy to pigeonhole. Regardless of how she was categorized, she was admired. For all her accomplishments, Ms. James had an up-and-down career, partly because of changing audience tastes but largely because of drug problems. She developed a heroin habit in the s; after she overcame it in the s, she began using cocaine. Her mother, Dorothy Hawkins, was 14 at the time; her father was long gone, and Ms.