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By Mangosuthu Buthelezi
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Johnny Otis
Neil Armstrong would always be taking that first step onto the moon, and Dick Clark was forever "the world's oldest teenager." Some of the notables who died in 2012 created images in our minds that remained unchanged over decades.
Etta James' performance of the enduring classic "At Last" was the embodiment of refined soul: Angelic-sounding strings harkened the arrival of her passionate yet measured vocals as she sang tenderly about a love finally realized after a long and patient wait.
Etta James, the feisty rhythm and blues singer whose raw, passionate vocals anchored many hits and made the yearning ballad "At Last" an enduring anthem for weddings, commercials and even President Barack Obama, died Friday. She was 73.
Johnny Otis, the "godfather of rhythm and blues" who wrote and recorded the R&B classic "Willie and the Hand Jive" and for decades evangelized black music to white audiences as a bandleader and radio host, has died. He was 90.
He wrote and recorded the R&B classic "Willie and the Hand Jive" and for decades evangelized black music to white audiences as a bandleader and radio host.
When Otis heard it, he told James to get her mother's permission to accompany him to Los Angeles to make a recording.