Flack was the first and remains the only, solo artist to win the Grammy Award for Record of the Year on two consecutive years
Grammy-winning singer Roberta Flack turns 83 today
Roberta Flack was born on February 10, 1937, in Black Mountain, North Carolina and is the daughter of a church organist. She began taking piano lessons at an early age and eventually received a music scholarship to Howard University. After graduation, she taught music and sang in clubs, where she was discovered by jazz musician Les McCann who helped her land a record deal with Atlantic. She is known for her #1 singles “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face”, “Killing Me Softly with His Song” and “Feel Like Makin’ Love”, and for “Where Is the Love” and “The Closer I Get to You”, two of her many duets with Donny Hathaway. Flack would team up and tour with Peabo Bryson in 1980s, the duo scored a hit in 1983 with “Tonight, I Celebrate My Love.” She spent the remainder of the 1980s touring and performing, and returned to the Top Ten once more in 1991 with “Set the Night to Music,” a duet with Maxi Priest. In 1997, Flack released an anthology of Christmas standards simply titled “Christmas Album”. Flack was the first, and remains the only, solo artist to win the Grammy Award for Record of the Year on two consecutive years: “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” won at the 1973 Grammys as did “Killing Me Softly with His Song” at the 1974 Grammys.
Roberta Flack – “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” 1972
By Ken Warren, 2017/18
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