Etta James - "I'd Rather Go Blind"
She was able to bring her soul out through her voice. She could phrase a simple sentence so that you understood the immense intensity of what was being said, then turn around a giggle and make the world seem simple.
Hers was the kind of voice that imbued magic in anything she sang. Starting her career in 1954, she gained fame with hits such as "The Wallflower", "At Last", "Tell Mama", "Something's Got a Hold on Me", and "I'd Rather Go Blind". She faced a number of personal problems, including heroin addiction, severe physical abuse, and incarceration, before making a musical comeback in the late 1980s with the album Seven Year Itch.
James's powerful, deep, earthy voice bridged the gap between rhythm and blues and rock and roll. She won six Grammy Awards and 17 Blues Music Awards. She was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, the Blues Hall of Fame in 2001, and the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999. Rolling Stone magazine ranked James number 22 on its list of the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time; she was also ranked number 62 on its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
So today, with squinted eyes looking to the sky, I choose Etta James’ "I'd Rather Go Blind" as my, feel it in your soul, from the depths of your being, with your heart on your lips, song for a, press into the pain, find the flower in the concrete, look to light that’s shining out of all your flaws, Thursday.