This week, Ira spoke with Rita Coolidge.
Two-time Grammy® Award winner Rita Coolidge, who will perform many of her top hits at the Suncoast Showroom June 21-22, began her career as a backing vocalist in Memphis in the 1960s.
Shortly thereafter, she relocated to Los Angeles and became the first call background singer for performers like Ray Charles, Jackie Wilson and The Temptations. After establishing her dominance as a backing vocalist, Coolidge was asked to join the ensemble band Delaney and Bonnie, and toured with Joe Cocker and Leon Russell on the “Mad Dogs and Englishmen” tour in 1970.
Following the tour, Coolidge worked with high profile rock artists, including tours and recordings with Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Leon Russell and Stephen Stills.
Later, Coolidge began her solo career with her self-titled debut album in 1971. Since then, she has released 15 albums and charted several hit songs, including “Fever,” “We’re All Alone,” “One Fine Day,” “(Your Love Has Lifted Me) Higher & Higher,” “The Way You Do The Things You Do,” “All Time High” and “Superstar.”
Coolidge has appeared in numerous movies, including “A Star Is Born,” “Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid,” “Vanishing Point” and “Christmas in the Clouds.”