Entertainment
Celebrity Then And Now
Publication: RidiculouslyExtraordinary.
Posted by Ryan Neal
760a631d0dea2ae92cb6e9f7b157b927
Entertainment
Celebrity Then And Now
Publication: RidiculouslyExtraordinary. Posted by Ryan Neal
760a631d0dea2ae92cb6e9f7b157b927
Minnie Riperton

Birthdate:
November 8, 1948
Famous Years:
1967-1979
Currently Known For:
Deceased
Networth:
$3 Million
Famous For:
Lovin' You, Inside My Love, Stick Together
Minnie Riperton



  Birthdate:
November 8, 1948

  Famous Years:
1967-1979

  Currently Known For:
Deceased



  Networth:
$3 Million

  Famous For:
Lovin' You, Inside My Love, Stick Together


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There were many songs that throughout the years have become synonymous with the 1970s, and one of them belonged to Minnie Riperton. Above all, Riperton was known for her 1975 smash hit “Lovin’ You” that would reach the top of the Billboard charts. It allowed Riperton to showcase her unique vocal range, and appeared that she was going to be set up for a long career. Unfortunately, cancer would take her too early, but she’s still remembered for that song and her now-famous daughter, Maya Rudolph.

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Riperton was born on November 8, 1948 in Chicago, Illinois into a large family that all had an interest in music. RIperton was more concerned with wanting a career in dancing at a young age, but discovered that she had singing chops that would impress her family. With that, Riperton started to take singing classes to improve her abilities, and had considered being an opera singer. However, she decided to shift paths and ended up focusing on more popular styles of music such as soul, and went to college for a brief time before she had dropped out, choosing to focus primarily on building her musical career.

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It didn’t take long for Riperton to find an audience with her music, performing with a group called The Gems when she was in her teenage years. The group would perform along with some of the more notable acts of the 1960s, and also had a few darkhorse hits of their own. In 1967, The Gems had finally released their own album, releasing a few more before the 1970s came around.

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Then, Riperton had embarked on a solo career, coming out with the album “Come to My Garden” in 1970. The album was very critically acclaimed during the time, but barely cracked the top 200 on the Billboard charts. Shortly thereafter, Riperton decided to step away from music for a while, focusing on her life at home as she started a family with her husband.

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Riperton hadn’t recorded an album in three years at the point where she was re-discovered by a member of Epic Records, and convinced Riperton to give her music career another shot. The label was willing to sign Riperton, and she moved back to Los Angeles to re-start her career. In 1974, she came out with “Perfect Angel” that would put her back on the map. The song reached the top of the charts in the R&B albums category, while also cracking the top five of the pop charts.

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The biggest hit on the album, of course, was “Lovin’ You” that really showcased Riperton’s wide vocal range. That song would become number one in the mainstream charts, helping “Perfect Angel” to become certified gold with more than a half million copies sold. Over the course of the next six years, Riperton would continue to release albums with Epic Records and then Capitol Records until 1980.

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Though her other four albums wouldn’t achieve the success that she found with “Perfect Angel”, they all still reached the top 75 of the Billboard charts. This included a top 02 spot with her follow-up “Adventures in Paradise”. Several of her songs would reach the top 100, but it was only “Inside My Love” that made it on the mainstream charts.

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In 1976, when Riperton’s children were just a few years old each, she went to the doctor because of an illness and had it checked out. It turned out that Riperton was suffering from breast cancer, and that it had spread to other parts of her body. Because of that, Riperton was given a grim diagnosis that she had only a few months to live. Instead of stepping away from the spotlight, though, Riperton continued to perform for fans and also became a spokesperson of the American Cancer Society.

When the disease started to take a severe toll on her health, Riperton could no longer perform. She ended up passing away peacefully on July 12, 1979 in her home at the young age of 31. Many mourned the loss of the talented singer, as hundreds gathered for her funeral a few days later. Now, her legacy lives on in the form of her son Marc who works as a music engineer, and daughter Maya that has been known for her roles on shows such as “Saturday Night Live”, “Up All Night” and “Big Mouth”.

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In fact, it was Rudolph that served as the inspiration for her mother’s biggest hit, as Riperton would use the song to help her fall asleep. “I always had a sense that my mom was doing something different and special, because I saw how people responded to her,” she said. “Her energy just had something to it that made people so happy. I remember people coming to our house as a kid and there was such a good feeling. Plus I had heard my mom sing, even as a kid I knew it was really good.”

She added that “It’s amazing to me, though not surprising that it’s such an iconic song and record. It was the debut of this special quality my mother had and people were just blown away...It just sounds like a perfect example of that time and everything coming together in the right way.”


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