Natalie Cole, Grammy Award-winning singer and daughter of jazz great, Nat King Cole, died Dec. 31 at a hospital in Los Angeles, according to her family. She was 65. Earlier in her life, Cole had suffered from drug addiction and had contracted hepatitis. She underwent a kidney transplant in 2009.
Cole learned to sing using a tape recorder given to her by her father, riffing on the jazz standards that her father knew so well, but in an earlier interview in The Washington Post, Cole said that she had to learn R&B on her own because her father ‘didn’t like that kind of stuff.’
Queen Natalie was one of an exclusive club of legendary soul divas that included the likes of Patti LaBelle, Roberta Flack, Gladys Knight, Mavis Staples, Chaka Khan, Minnie Riperton and Aretha Franklin.