Patti LaBelle, or Patti LaBelle and the Blue Belles as they were initially known, rose to fame with their music, but it was when Cindy Birdsong left to sing with Diana Ross and the Supremes that the fiery songstress really made headlines.
However, LaBelle didn’t gain widespread attention until the original “Lady Marmalade” was released in 1975. She also made headlines after landing on the cover of Rolling Stone that year.
She has expanded her career now that she is a well-known R&B superstar. In 2015, social media personality James Wright Chanel recorded a video praising LaBelle’s “Patti Pies,” and the video went viral.
Gaining LaBelle a whole new fan base and making her an LGBTQIA+ icon in addition to her already impressive acting career, which took her from Broadway (in “Fela!”) to primetime (thanks to her role in “Empire”).
When the video went viral, retailers from Walmart to Omaha Steaks suddenly had a new reason to sell LaBelle’s wares.
History and Development
On May 24, 1944, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the world welcomed Patricia Louise Holte into the world. She is the fourth of Henry and Bertha Holte’s five children.
Her parents both had jobs outside the home; her dad was a railroad worker and her mom was a club performer. At the age of twelve, she saw the separation of her parents.
Beginnings in One’s Profession
When LaBelle was ten, she joined the choir at Beulah Baptist Church, where she sang her first solo barely two years later. At the age of sixteen, she competed in and won the John Bartram High School talent competition.
After she won, in 1960, she got together with her other students to form a singing group called the Ordettes. With their growing popularity, the band was soon invited to audition for local record label owner Harold Robinson.
Following their signing, Robinson had the ladies make some music as the Blue Belles. The group’s name was changed to Patti LaBelle and the Blue Belles, and their first successful single, the slow dance “Down the Aisle,” was released in 1963.
After a third unsuccessful album with Warner Bros. Records, the Labelle changed record companies once again. The band joined Epic Records in 1974. Nightbirds, the album, and its accompanying single, Lady Marmalade, became the band’s most commercially successful effort to date the same year.
With over 100 million copies sold, the song was unstoppable at the top of the Billboard charts.
In October of 1974, LaBelle made history as the first rock and roll vocal group to play in the Metropolitan Opera House, and their single was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.
Rolling Stone featured both LaBelle and the Nightbird’s records on its cover the following year.
The sisters had frequent arguments about what they should do next, and Patti finally advised they all go their separate ways in 1976. Nona Hendryx’s injury from a nervous breakdown ultimately led to their divorce.
The Wealth of Patti LaBelle
Patti LaBelle’s fortune is said to be $60 million. A.K.A. “The Godmother of Soul,” Patti LaBelle is a legendary African-American singer and actress.
Some of her most well-known songs are “If Only You Knew,” “New Attitude,” and “Stir It Up.” Most of her money comes from selling albums, playing live, and monetizing her songs online.
Rock and soul music have often been compared to Patti LaBelle, an actress, and singer. Many of her songs, such as “Lady Marmalade,” “When You Talk About Love,” and “New Attitude,” have been critically acclaimed.
She got her start in the industry in 1959 when she joined the Ordettes, who later changed their name to the Bluebelles the following year. She first found commercial success in 1983 with the release of her album I am in Love Again.
LaBelle wed her longtime friend Armstead Edwards in 1969. After she went solo, he took over as her manager.
They divorced in 2003 after separating in the late 1990s. A son, Zuri Kye Edwards (born 1973), who is now her manager, was born to the couple. She is a grandmother to two adorable little ones.