Sarah Dash, singer of Labelle and cohort of the Rolling Stones, died at 76
Sarah Dash, the singer known for her work alongside Patti Labelle, Keith Richards and the Rolling Stones, has died at the age of 76.
Dash’s death was confirmed by Reed Gusciora, mayor of his hometown of Trenton, NJ
âToday I mourn the city of Trenton and a global community of fans. Our resident legend and Trenton’s very first music ambassador, Sarah Dash, has passed away, âGusciora told Facebook. âMy thoughts are with his family and friends. “
The mayor congratulated Dash not only for his work in music, but also for his lasting contribution to the community of Trenton. “Although she has passed from this life to the next, her star will never fade from this city and the hearts of its inhabitants.”
Born in 1945, Dash was the seventh of 13 children. Her father was a pastor, exposing the girl to gospel music from a young age. Years later, the aspiring singer would move to Philadelphia where she would meet another promising talent named Patricia Holte.
Dash would join Holte in The Bluebirds quartet in 1962. However, the group was quickly renamed Patti Labelle and the Bluebirds after Holte adopted their now famous stage name. The band recorded a handful of hits in the years that followed, including popular R&B tracks “I Sold My Heart to the Junkman,” “Down the Aisle (The Wedding Song)” and a doo-wop rendition of “You. ‘ll Never Walk Alone. “It was during this period that the group also found itself in the opening act of the Rolling Stones.
Following some lineup turnover, Patti Labelle and the Bluebirds rebranded themselves as Labelle. Their self-titled 1971 album featured covers of “You’ve Got a Friend” by Carole King and “Wild Horses” by the Rolling Stones. Later versions of Labelle would include other R&B renditions of rock tracks, including material written by The Who and Cat Stevens.
In 1974 the group – now a trio – achieved huge success with “Lady Marmalade”. The song reached number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, earning platinum sales. Decades later, it would be listed in the Library of Congress as a “culturally, historically or artistically significant” work of art.
Watch Labelle play ‘Lady Marmalade’
Labelle broke up in 1976, all of the members embarking on solo careers. Dash’s debut solo album, the eponymous 1978 release, recorded a disco hit with the song “Sinner Man”. She continued to publish material until the mid-1980s, but met with minimal success with the general public.
In 1988, Keith Richards recruited Dash to contribute to his solo material. The singer would be a duet on the song “Make No Mistake”, which appeared on Richards’ Talking is not expensive LP. She will soon join her support group, the X-Pensive Winos, on tour around the world. Dash contributed to the Rolling Stones 1989 album Steel wheels and later lent his voice to another version of Richards, 1992 Principal offender.
Dash was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2003. As news of her death became public, her friend and bandmate Patti Labelle took to Instagram to pay tribute to her.
âWe were just on stage together on Saturday and it was such a powerful and special moment!â The singer wrote. âSarah Dash was an incredibly talented, beautiful and loving soul who has blessed my life and the lives of so many others in more ways than I can tell. And I could always count on her to support me! Sarahâ¦ a loyal friend and a voice for those who didn’t have one She was a true giverâ¦ always at service, always sharing her talent and her time.
In Memoriam: 2021 deaths
In memory of the musicians, actors, producers and others who died in 2021.