Iconic singer Bettye LaVette releases new album “Blackbirds”

One of music’s most distinct voices is longtime New Jersey resident Bettye LaVette, who recently released a new album.

News 12 Staff

Sep 12, 2020, 1:09 AM

Updated 1,314 days ago

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One of music’s most distinct voices is longtime New Jersey resident Bettye LaVette, who recently released a new album.
“Blackbirds” may be new, but LaVette says that the songs - most originally made famous by singers including the late Nina Simone and Billie Holiday – bring her back to her very beginnings.
“I keep trying to convince these young children today that they did not create rhythm and blues. They came across on me and I came across on those women,” LaVette says.
LaVette calls those earlier singers her bridge. The five-time Grammy nominee has cultivated her own place in music through her unmistakable sound, describing her voice to be like James Brown.
Recorded last year, the release of "Blackbirds" was delayed several months due to the pandemic. LaVette says recording the songs she learned as a beginning artist in her hometown of Detroit is like seeing her life's work come full circle.
The album's title is inspired by the Beatles song "Blackbird," which LaVette performs on the album.


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