Gladys Maria Knight (born May 28, 1944) is an American performer, songwriter, actress, and businesswoman known as the “Empress of Soul.” During the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, she was a member of Gladys Knight & the Pips, a musical group that included her brother Merald “Bubba” Knight, and cousins William Guest and Edward Patten.
They published “Letter Full of Tears,” which went on to become another top-40 hit in early 1962. Langston George left the group in 1962 after a string of single releases on Fury Records.
That same year, Knight took a sabbatical from singing to raise a family with her musician husband, Jimmy Newman. She rejoined the band in 1964, and they signed with Larry Maxwell’s Maxx label. They released numerous minor singles under Maxx, including “Lovers Always Forgive” and the original version of “Giving Up.”
The band has released singles such as “(There Will Never Be) Another Love.” “Either Way, I Lose,” “Go Away, Stay Away,” “Maybe Maybe Baby,” “Stop and Get a Hold of Myself,” “Who Knows,” and “If I Should Ever Fall in Love.”
Gladys Knight’s rise from church choir singer to “Empress of Soul” is a testament to her extraordinary talent, dedication, and long-term success in the music industry. Her contributions to soul music, as well as her successes as a singer, songwriter, actress, and businesswoman, have cemented her position as a true icon of her generation.
Is Aaliyah related to Gladys Knight?
Yes, Aaliyah is related to the legendary soul singer Gladys Knight through her marriage to Barry Hankerson, her uncle, who is well-known for his work with the Pips on numerous singles. Aaliyah was born in 1974, five years after Knight and Hankerson wed.