BAAS Entertainment Podcast

Nona Hendryx - LaBelle's Secret Weapon

Nona Hendryx - LaBelle's Secret Weapon

Episode 67. Six Degrees of Patti LaBelle. The Queen. The Legendary Godmother of Soul. Hosted by Troy Saunders, Wanda T., and Arif St. Michael.

Our series on the career and music of the legendary Patti LaBelle wraps up by featuring LaBelle’s secret weapon, the great Nona Hendryx. In addition to being an amazing performer, she was the prolific songwriter for many of LaBelle’s biggest hits, including "You Turn Me On," "Nightbird," "Going Down Makes Me Shiver," "Space Children," "Messin' with My Mind," "Gypsy Moths," and "Who's Watching the Watcher". This episode touches both on her work with LaBelle as well as her solo work.

Nona Hendryx gained fame with Patti LaBelle and the Bluebells in the 1960s. A singer in a female band in the era of the Supremes and the Shirelles, she could have been a footnote in music history for the hit “Lady Marmalade” and other soul and R&B hits. But Hendryx, a cousin of Jimi Hendrix (her family changed the spelling), didn’t stop there. She wrote and recorded for film soundtracks and, in the early '80s, fronted her own progressive art group, Zero Cool. Hendryx has collaborated with many musicians from Keith Richards to Talking Heads, written songs for Dusty Springfield and others, produced albums, and done some acting. Her own albums include The Heat (1985), You Have to Cry Sometime with Billy Vera (1992), and Mutais Mutandis (2012).

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