Beyonce had the privilege and honor to play the role of Etta James in the musical biopic ‘Cadillac Records’ in 2008. The pop star also had the distinguished honor to sing one of Etta’s greatest songs ‘At Last’ at President Barack Obama’s inauguration. So it is not surprising when news that Etta James died today of complications from Leukemia that Beyonce released an official statement offering her condolences through her official website.
“Etta James was one of the greatest vocalists of our time. I am so fortunate to have met such a queen.”
“Her musical contributions will last a lifetime. When she effortlessly opened her mouth, you could hear her pain and triumph. Her deeply emotional way of delivering a song told her story with no filter. She was fearless, and she had guts. She will be missed.”
This is Beyonce’s first statement since giving birth to her first child Blue Ivy Carter.
Condolences poured in from other celebrities including Aretha Franklin who stated, “Etta James was one of the great soul singers of our generation. An American original! I loved ‘Pushover,’ ‘At Last’ and almost any and everything she recorded. When Etta SUNG, you heard it!”
Donto James Recalls Etta’s Last Moment
We remembered Etta James with a touching tribute to her life and now her son Donto James has provided details on how he remembers her last moments.
“It’s been quite a day but I’m very grateful. She basically passed in my arms, and I was able to share everything I needed to say to her, from praying to listing her accomplishments as a mother,” said Donto, 43, to People magazine.
Donto revealed that while his mother couldn’t speak she did make subtle movements to indicate she understood.
“I asked her if she heard what I said, and she’d flutter her eyes and look at me very quickly. And she had been nonreactive before that.”
“I told her that I loved her. I said, ‘You were a wonderful mother, you did a wonderful job, your seven grandchildren love you, and they will be okay.’ ”
Donto and his brother Sametto were by her side and confirmed what many already knew, “For sure, the world lost a legend today. I am very proud of her, and very thankful.”
You will be missed, Etta James.