9-time Grammy Award-winning singer Natalie Maria Cole passed yesterday at the young age of 65. Daughter of the legendary Nat King Cole, Natalie sang on her father’s Christmas album at the age of 6 and began performing at age 11. In addition to her Dad playing a key role in Natalie’s rise to stardom, she was greatly influenced by the sensational singing success of the “Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin.
Natalie’s early start in the entertainment industry allowed her to experience a career of both peaks and valleys spanning almost 6 decades. Over the course of her stellar career, she established herself as a well renowned singer-songwriter and actress with the unique ability to manage success across numerous genres; Rhythm & Blues, Soul, Pop, Soft Rock, Jazz, Quiet Storm and Adult Contemporary. The only real dark side to her life stemmed from her addiction to drugs at an early age. She eventually entered herself into rehab in 1983, but by that time had contracted Hepatitis-C which led to Natalie receiving a kidney transplant.
She will be best remembered for her 1991 award winning and best-selling album, Unforgettable with Love which showcased her singing duet with her father’s recorded voice complimented by a masterful vocal arrangement she wrote with piano accompaniment by uncle Ike Cole.
In addition to Natalie’s Grammy Awards, she is a 3-time American Music Award recipient, multiple winner of the NAACP Image Awards, Society of Singers and Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee, and recipient of The George and Ira Gershwin “Lifetime Musical Achievement” Award.
Cole’s death is reported to have been due to congestive heart failure…born – February 6, 1950; earthly death – December 31, 2015.
May you rest in perfect peace.