I AM...

I am whatever YOU think I am until YOU get to KNOW me. This is true for everyone else too, of course.. so don't make assumptions about anyone or pass judgment; ask questions. You might just make a new friend.


Monday, January 23, 2012


refusal to behave in a manner that is inconsiderate will result in my unhappiness.
This warning applies to people I love, people I work with, friends, relatives,
strangers who wander through my personal narrative, and folks in faraway lands
whose thoughtless actions upsets me to NO end! 

As of this notice, all behavior will be required to pass an HWTAK test ("How will this affect Kishna?"). Failure to do so will result in
me having a bad day. And nobody wants that, right? Thank you for your
consideration. You may now return to your regular activities.


ETTA James, whose powerful, versatile and emotionally direct
voice could enliven the raunchiest blues as well as the most subtle love songs,
most indelibly in her signature hit At Last, has died, aged 73.

Her manager said the cause was complications of leukaemia.

James was not easy to pigeonhole. She is most often referred
to as a rhythm and blues singer, and that is how she made her name in the 1950s
with records such as Good Rockin' Daddy.

She was also convincing singing pop standards, as she did in
1961 with At Last. And among her four Grammy awards was one for best jazz
vocal performance, which she won in 1995 for the album Mystery Lady: Songs
of Billie Holiday.

Regardless of how she was categorised, she was admired. Jon
Pareles of The New York Times wrote in 1990 that she had ''one of the
great voices in American popular music, with a huge range, a multiplicity of
tones and vast reserves of volume''.

For all her accomplishments, James had an up-and-down career,
partly because of changing audience tastes but largely because of drug
problems. She developed a heroin habit in the 1960s; after she overcame it in
the 1970s, she began using cocaine.

Etta James was born Jamesetta Hawkins in Los Angeles in 1938.
Her mother, Dorothy Hawkins, was 14 at the time; her father was long gone, and
James never knew for sure who he was, although she recalled her mother telling
her that he was the celebrated pool player Rudolf Wanderone, better known as
Minnesota Fats.

She was 15 when she made her first record, Roll With Me
Henry. When some disc jockeys complained that the title was too suggestive, the
name was changed to The Wallflower. The song rose to No. 2 on the R&B
charts in 1954.

In 1960 James was signed by Chess Records, home to Chuck
Berry, Muddy Waters and other leading lights of black music. She quickly had a
string of hits, including All I Could Do Was Cry, Trust in Me and At

She remained with Chess well into the 1970s, reappearing on
the charts after a long absence in 1967 with the funky and high-spirited Tell
Mama. In the late '70s and early '80s she opened for the Rolling Stones in

After decades of drifting in and out of the public eye, James
found herself in the news in 2009 after Beyonce Knowles recorded a version of At

James' is survived by her husband of 42 years, Artis Mills;
two sons, Donto and Sametto James; and four grandchildren. Though her life had
its troubles to the end, James said she wanted her music to transcend
unhappiness rather than reflect it.

''A lot of people think the blues is depressing,'' she said
in 1992, ''but that's not the blues I'm singing. When I'm singing blues, I'm
singing life. People that can't stand to listen to the blues, they've got to be


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