Gladys Knight is an American singer, songwriter, actress, and businesswoman who is mostly known for her no.1 Billboard Hot 100 singles “Midnight Train to Georgia” and “That’s What Friends Are For”. She is also known as “The Empress of Souls”. She has won seven Grammy Awards in her music career. She also was a member of her group “Gladys Knight & the Pips” with which she recorded many hits songs in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. She also ranked among the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time by Rolling Stone.
She is active in the social media platform with around 373k followers on her Twitter: @MsGladysKnight
Besides on 13th September 2020, Knight of 77 and Patti LaBelle of 76 became the artists to be featured in the Sunday’s versus “battle” on Instagram Live organized by Swizz Beatz and Timbaland. The events bring together two artists to square off against each other and have been one of the favorites of the audiences. The two legends on Sunday’s battle spread the love without roasting each other. The pair together sang Knight’s hit with the Pips “Midnight Train to Georgia” in the Instagram live. There was no battle between them but the only thing that rose up that night was love between two legends.
What is Gladys Knight famous for?
- Famous as an American singer, songwriter. and actress
- Known for her singles “Midnight Train to Georgia” and “That’s What Friends Are For”.
Where is Gladys Knight from?
Gladys Knight was born on May 28, 1944, in Atlanta, Georgia, United States. Her birth name is Gladys Maria Knight. American is her nationality/ Her ethnicity is White while African-American is her zodiac sign.
She was born to Merald Woodlw Knight Sr.(father) and Sarah Elizabeth(mother). She has a sister, Brenda, and had two brothers, Merald Jr., and David. Her older brother, David is dead. Her brother, Merald is also an American R&B singer. She was raised in her hometown, Georgia with her siblings. She was interested in singing since her childhood. As a child, she took part in many singing competitions.
While growing up, she sang in the church choir. At a very young age of 8, she won Ted Mack’s The Original Amateur Hour TV show contest. In the year 1952, she formed a musical group called the Pips with her brother Merald, her sister Brenda and her cousins, William and Eleanor Guest. They continued performing in small programs and later, her sister was replaced by her cousin Edward Patten and Eleanor was replaced by Langston George.
Her group recorded their first single “Every Beat of My Heart” in the year 1961 which got released on Atlanta Huntom Label. From their single, many labels got impressed and wanted to sign the group. The group’s name changed to Gladys Knight & the Pips. Then, they signed with Bobby Robinson’s label and Fury Records. The follow up of their debut single also got good success. The group’s first full-length album “Letter Full of Tears” got released under the Fury Labels.
Gladys Knight’s Career: Highlights
- Gladys Knight continued her music career with her group “Gladys Knight & the Pips” under the Motown Records.
- The group went on to give several hit singles like “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” (1967), “Take Me in Your Arms and Love Me” (1967,) and “If I Were Your Woman” (1970)”
- In the year 1972, the group won their first Grammy award for their single “Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye”.
- After signing with Buddah Records in 1973, the group went on to win their second grammy award for the single “Midnight Train to Georgia” which ranked at no.1 on the pop and R&B chart.
- In the year 1980, her group signed with Columbia Records and released two albums “About Love (1980) and Touch (1981)”.
- The group released a single “Save The Overtime For Me” in 1983 which ranked no.1 on the R&B.
- She and her group recorded their last album “All Our Love” in 1987.
- The album’s lead single “Love Overboard” won a Grammy award and ranked no.1 on the R&B.
- The group got expired and she started pursuing a solo music career in the 1990s.
- In 1989, her group got inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame and in 1996, the group inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
- While in the group, Knight joined with Dionne Warwick, Stevie Wonder, and Elton John and went on to release a Grammy Award-winning single “That’s What Friends Are For”.
- In the year 1991, she released her third album “Good Woman” which ranked no 45 on the Billboard Album chart
- She became one of the board directors of Saints Unified Voices(SUV) in 1992.
- SUV is a Grammy Award-winning American music choir.
- She also performed two songs “His Eye Is On The Sparrow” and “The Lord’s Prayer” at the funeral service for Michael Jackson.
- In the year 2014, she released her 30th top 40 R&B album “Where My Heart Belongs”.
- She also was invited to play at the 100th Anniversary of Delaware State Fair in 2019.
- Gladys Knight ranks number eighteen on the VH1 network’s list of the 100 Greatest Women of Rock.
- She has won 7 Grammy awards(three with her group and four as a solo singer) in her career.
- Prior to her music career, she is also an actress who debuted with the movie “Pipe Dreams” in 1976.
- She received a Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year – Actress for her role in the movie.
- She has appeared in many Television series such as ‘Benson’, ‘The Jeffersons’, ‘A Different World’, ‘Living Single’, ‘The Jamie Foxx Show’, and ‘New York Undercover’.
- In the year 1985, she co-starred on the CBS sitcom “Charlie & Co” alongside Flip Wilson.
- She also competed on the 14th season of Dancing with the Stars in 2012.
- In February 2019, she placed third on “The Masked Singer”.
Gladys Knight Husband
The American singer and actress, Gladys Knight has been married four times in her life. She is currently married to William McDowell. The couple tied the knot in 2001. At present, the couple resides in North Carolina where they own a community center that was attended by her husband as his school. They together have no child. But from their previous marriage, they have seventeen grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren.
Her first marriage was with James “Jimmy” Newman. Newman was a musician. Knight became pregnant at the age of 16 and then, she married Newman in 1960. She had a miscarriage but they went on to have a son, Jimmy Gaston Newman III, and a daughter, Kenya. Newman left the family when she was just 20 and they later got divorced in 1973. Then a year after, she got married to Barry Hankerson. Hankerson is a record producer. They together have a son, Shanga Hankerson. The couple later got divorced in 1979.
Then, she married Les Brown in 1995. Brown is a motivational speaker. Their marriage didn’t last long and they got divorced in 1997. In the late 1980s, she suffered from a gambling addiction and later joined a rehabilitation center. She also helped to raise $400,000 for the Children’s Learning Centers of Fairfield County. Furthermore, her second son, Shanga owns a chain of chicken and waffles named “Gladys Knight & Ron Winans’ Chicken & Waffles”.
Gladys Knight Net Worth
The American singer and actress, Gladys Knight has made a handsome amount of money from her profession since debuting with her group “Gladys Knight and the Pips”. She has an estimated net worth of $30 million as of 2020. Her net worth includes all her property and her present earnings. At present, she is living a luxurious lifestyle with her earnings.
Gladys Knight Height
Gladys Knight has maintained her body very well at the age of 77. She has a brown complexion with black hair and a pair of black eyes. She stands at a height of 5ft 5inches and has a bodyweight of 70kg.