Chaka Khan
Black to the Music - english version

MARCH  23rd,  1953

Black to the Music - Chaka Khan logo header
Biography
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan 01

Chaka Khan is one of the world’s most gifted and celebrated musicians, with a rich musical legacy, the 10-time GRAMMY Award-winner is looking forward to a celebration of a lifetime. A songwriter, actor, author, philanthropist, entrepreneur and activist, Chaka Khan has influenced generations of recording artists. She has the rare ability to sing in seven music genres, including R&B, pop, rock, gospel, country, world music and classical. Affectionately known around the world as Chaka, she is revered by millions of fans as well as her peers for hertimeless, classic and unmatched signature music style and ability. The late, great Miles Davis often said,

She [Chaka] sings like my horn. And the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin says, [Chaka] is a one- of- a -kind, premier vocalist.

Throughout her legendary career, Chaka has released 22 albums and racked up ten #1 Billboard magazine charted songs, seven RIAA certified gold singles and ten RIAA certified gold and platinum albums. Chaka’s recorded music has produced over 2,000 catalogue song placements.

I am honored and blessed to celebrate 40 years in music and entertainment says Chaka. I am so humbled by the love, support and gracious spirit of my fans worldwide and the continuous support my peers have shown over the years. Throughout my 40-year career, I have been through the fire a few times over and I’m still here as a living testament to God’s love and grace. Next year, I will be celebrating 40 years in the business and 60 years on earth, which equals one hundred percent Chaka.

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Early on, she caught the attention of music icon Stevie Wonder, who penned her first smash hit with Rufus, “Tell Me Something Good.” The single from the group’s 1974 platinum-selling album, Rags to Rufus, earned Chaka her first GRAMMY Award.

With Chaka as the group’s dynamic center, Rufus became one of the most popular acts around selling out shows throughout the country and dominating the airwaves with hit after hit with songs such as “You Got the Love,” which Chaka co-wrote, “Once You Get Started,” “Sweet Thing,” “Everlasting Love,” “Do You Love What You Feel?” and “Ain’t Nobody,”

Chaka’s second GRAMMY Award-winning song with Rufus. Rufus and Chaka Khan racked up five RIAA certified gold and platinum albums during their time together.

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It was inevitable that a singer with Chaka’s star power would eventually venture out on her own. In 1978, Chaka blazed onto the music scene as a solo artist with the release of the smash hit “I’m Every Woman” written by Ashford & Simpson.

Paired with the late producer extraordinaire, Arif Mardin (Aretha Franklin, Bette Midler), her catalog grew even more impressive with hits such as “Clouds,” “Papillon,” and “What Cha’ Gonna Do For Me?”

It was during this time that Chaka began pursuing her love of jazz. She and Arif brilliantly re-worked the classic song “Night in Tunisia” with the song’s originator, Dizzy Gillespie, on trumpet. Chaka also recorded an album of jazz standards titled Echoes of an Era, which featured such luminaries as Chick Corea, Freddie Hubard, Joe Henderson, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White.

Her crowning achievement in jazz was the GRAMMY Award-winning tune, “Be Bop Medley.” The song’s album, titled Chaka Khan, also won a GRAMMY for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.

Black to the Music - Chaka Khan 10 - Dizzy Gillespie - Arif Mardin - Chaka Khan
Dizzy Gillespie, Arif Mardin and Chaka Khan in 1981 - (c) Joe Mardin

However, the song that made Chaka Khan a household name and propelled her to superstardom the world over was “I Feel For You,” written and first performed by Prince. This chart-topping, GRAMMY Award-winning song also made music history. Released in 1984, it was the first R&B song to feature a rap, which was performed by Grandmaster Melle Mel.

Chaka also topped the charts with “This Is My Night” and the instant classic, “Through The Fire.” Now in top demand, Chaka lent her voice and producer skills to two of the biggest hits of 1986, Steve Winwood‘s “Higher Love” and Robert Palmer‘s “Addicted to Love.” Both were GRAMMY-winning songs.

In 1995, she made her musical theater debut on London’s West End, where she starred in Mama I Want to Sing. In 2002 she traveled to Las Vegas, where she starred in Signed, Sealed Delivered”, a critically-acclaimed musical based on the music of Stevie Wonder. Her Broadway debut came in 2008, when she took over the role of Sofia in Oprah Winfrey’s musical The Color Purple.

Chaka’s emotive vocals can also be heard on a number of soundtracks, including Clockers, Set It Off, To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar, Miami Vice, White Knights, Moscow on the Hudson, Disappearing Acts, Waiting to Exhale and Standing In The Shadows Of Motown, as well as Tyler Perry hits Madea’s Family Reunion and Meet The Browns.

Black to the Music - Chaka Khan 10 - film Waiting to Exhale 1995
Waiting to Exhale - 1995
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan 12 - film Set It Off 1996
Set It Off - 1996

During her career, she has collaborated with a long list of artists in diverse genres. Collaborators have included Miles Davis, Quincy Jones, Dizzy Gillespie, Stevie Wonder, Prince, Steve Winwood, Mary J. Blige, George Benson, Larry Graham, the London Symphony Orchestra and countless others. Chaka has received a steady stream of accolades for both her artistry and philanthropy. In June, 2012, she was inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame, joining previously inducted music greats such as Frank Sinatra, Liza Minnelli, Stevie Wonder, Garth Brooks, Bonnie Raitt, George Harrison, B.B. King, Carlos Santana, Donna Summer and Kathleen Battle. In 2011, she was honored for her legendary career with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. During the same year, Chaka was honored with the United Negro College Fund’s An Evening of Stars Tribute. The program, which was televised on cable networks and broadcast stations in more than 40 cities nationwide, featured tribute performances by Stevie Wonder, Fantasia, Ledisi, El Debarge, Faith Evans, Angie Stone, Ginuwine, Chaka’s brother, Mark Stevens, and her daughter, Indira Khan, among others. In recent years, Chaka also received the Soul Train Legend Award (2009), the BET Lifetime Achievement Award (2006), the GRAMMY® Honors Award from the NARAS Chicago Chapter (2006) and the World Music Award Lifetime Achievement Award (2003). In 2004, Chaka received an Honorary Doctorate of Music from Berklee College of Music. Chaka’s autobiography, Through the Fire, was published by Rodale Books in 2003 and is currently being adapted into a screenplay.

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Despite her busy schedule, Chaka has always made time to support and uplift her community. She has a deep commitment to women and children at risk, which led her to establish the Chaka Khan Foundation in 1999. Initially, the foundation focused primarily on public awareness campaigns around the diagnosis, intervention, and available family resources and the search for a cure for autism. Her efforts were particularly aimed at communities of color and other underserved communities, where awareness about this disorder is low. Her work in this area was inspired by her nephew who has autism and who Chaka describes as “gifted and beautiful and so full of life.” She later expanded the mission of the foundation to focus more broadly on women and children at risk. In July 2012, Chaka received the McDonald Corporation’s 365Black Award, honoring her for her leadership of the Chaka Khan Foundation.

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Chaka also is an entrepreneur. In 2004, her line of gourmet chocolates, Chakalates, was sold in 20 Neiman Marcus stores around the country. Plans are underway to re-launch her signature brand of chocolates nationally and internationally. She currently is introducing Khana Sutra, a fragrance line for men, women and the home. The line also includes candles, and room and linen sprays. With a new svelte look, a new album, and a great enthusiasm for her new and expanding activities in music, philanthropy and entrepreneurial ventures, the 10-time GRAMMY Award-winner is looking forward to a celebration of a lifetime.

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Discography

1978 - CHAKA

Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1978 Chaka

A1. I’m Every Woman
A2. Love Has Fallen On Me
A3. Roll Me Through The Rushes
A4. Sleep On It
A5. Life Is A Dance

B1. We Got The Love
B2. Some Love
B3. A Woman In A Man’s World
B4. The Message In The Middle Of The Bottom
B5. I Was Made To Love Him

1980 - NAUGHTY

Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1980 Naughty

A1. Clouds
A2. Get Ready,Get Set
A3. Move Me No Mountain
A4. Nothing’s Gonna Take You Away
A5. So Naughty

B1. Too Much Love
B2. All Night’s All Right
B3. What You Did
B4. Papillon (Aka Hot Butterfly)
B5. Our Love’s In Danger

1981
WHAT CHA' GONNA DO FOR ME
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1981 What Cha' Gonna Do For Me

A1. We Can Work It Out
A2. What Cha’ Gonna Do For Me
A3. I Know You, I Live You
A4. Any Old Sunday
A5. We Got Each Other

B1. And The Melody Still Lingers On (Night In Tunisia)
B2. Night Moods
B3. Heed The Warning
B4. Father He Said
B5. Fate
B6. I Know You, I Live You (Reprise)

1982 - ECHOES OF ON ERA
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1982 Echoes Of An Era

A1. Them There Eyes
A2. All Of Me
A3. I Mean You
A4. I Love You Porgy
A5. Take The A Train

B1. I Hear Music
B2. High Wire – The Aerialist
B3. All Of Me (Alternate Take)
B4. Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most

1982 - CHAKA KHAN
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1982 Chaka Khan

A1. Tearin’ It Up
A2. Slow Dancin’
A3. Best In The West
A4. Got To Be There

B1. Be Bop Medley
  B1.1. Hot House
  B1.2. East Of Suez (Come On Sailor)
  B1.3. Epistrophy (I Wanna Play)
  B1.4. Yardbird Suite
  B1.5. Con Alma
  B1.6. Giant Steps
B2. Twisted
B3. So Not To Worry
B4. Pass It On (A Sure Thing)

1984 - I FEEL FOR YOU
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1984 I Feel for You

A1. This Is My Night
A2. Stronger Than Before
A3. My Love Is Alive
A4. Eye To Eyelman
A5. La Flamme

B1. I Feel For You
B2. Hold Her
B3. Through The Fire
B4. Caught In The Act
B5. Chinatown

1986 - DESTINY
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1986 Destiny

A1. Love Of A Lifetime
A2. Earth To Mickey
A3. Watching The World
A4. The Other Side Of The World
A5. My Destiny

B1. I Can’t Be Loved
B2. It’s You
B3. So Close
B4. Tight Fit
B5. Who’s It Gonna Be
B6. Coltrane Dreams

1988 - CK
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1988 C.K

A1. Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours)
A2. Soul Talkin’
A3. It’s My Party
A4. Eternity
A5. Sticky Wicked

B1. The End Of A Love Affair
B2. Baby Me
B3. Make It Last
B4. I’ll Be Around

1992 - THE WOMAN I AM
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1992 The Woman I Am

A1. Everything Changes
A2. Give Me All
A3. Telephone
A4. Keep Givin’ Me Lovin’
A5. Facts Of Love
A6. Love You All My Lifetime

B1. I Want
B2. You Can Make The Story Right
B3. Be My Eyes
B4. This Time
B5. The Woman I Am
B6. Don’t Look At Me That Way

1998 - COME 2 MY HOUSE
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 1998 - Come 2 My House

01. Come 2 My House
02. (Intro)
03. This Crazy Life Of Mine
04. Betcha I
05. Spoon
06. Pop My Clutch
07. Journey 2 The Center Of Your Heart
08. I’ll Never B Another Fool
09. Democrazy
10. I Remember U
11. Reconsider (You Betta)
12. Don’t Talk 2 Strangers
13. Hair
14. The Drama

2007 - FUNK THIS
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 2007 Funk This

01. Back In The Day
02. Foolish Fool
03. One For All Time
04. Angel
05. Will You Love Me?
06. Castles Made Of Sand
07. Disrespectful (feat. Mary J. Blige)
08. Sign ‘O’ The Times
09. Pack’d My Bags
10. You Got The Love (feat. Tony Maiden)
11. Ladies Man
12. You Belong To Me (feat. Michael McDonald)
13. Super Life

2019 - Hello Happiness
Black to the Music - Chaka Khan - 2019 Hello Happiness

A1. Hello Happiness
A2. Like A Lady
A3. Don’t Cha Know

B1. Too Hot
B2. Like Sugar
B3. Isn’t That Enough
B4. Ladylike

Radioshow
The Black Music Live #21 - Rufus & Chaka Khan (Live - Stompin' At The Savoy - 1983)
  • Black to the Music - radioshow The Black Music Live #21 with Rufus & Chaka KhanYou Got Me
  • Once You Get Started
  • Dance With Me
  • Sweet Thing
  • Tell Me Something Good
  • Stop On By
  • Pack’d My Bags
  • I’m A Woman (I’m A Backbone)
  • At Midnight (My Love Will Lift You Up)
  • Ain’t That Peculiar
  • Stay
  • What Cha’ Gonna Do For Me
  • Do You Love What You Feel