Sunday, February 5, 2017

Celebrating Black History Month: The Pointer Sisters

The rules of the lesson said to avoid performance artists because it would be easy to complete your list with rap artists, actors, athletes and anyone who has been overhyped by the media, but I had to include the Pointer Sisters.  No other group has had such an effect on me and my personality.   Of course, I heard the Pointer Sisters in the late 70’s when they came out with such hits as Slow Hand and Fire, but it was their album Break Out in 1983 that was what finalized their permanent position in my life.

They started as a duet with June and Bonnie performing in clubs in 1969.  Anita joined the group and in 1972 Ruth became a member.  They won a Grammy in 1975 for Best Country Vocal Performance for Fairytale, a song written by Anita Pointer, a first for an all African-American female group.  They were also the first all African-American female group to perform at the Grand Ol’ Opry. 

Bonnie left the group in 1978, but the other three carried on and enjoyed immense success in the late 70’s and early 80’s.  They won two Grammys in 1985 for Jump, Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal and Automatic for Best Vocal Arrangement for Two or More Vocals.  They were nominated for six more Grammys, including one for Contact, Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.

Their last studio albums was Only Sisters Can Do That in 1993.  June, the baby sister, left the group in 2004 and passed away in 2006 from cancer.

The Pointer Sisters continue to perform today with Ruth, her daughter Issa and her granddaughter Sadako.

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