Yvonne Staples dead: The Staple Singer​s member dies aged 80

She rose to fame as a part of the family band

Ilana Kaplan
Tuesday 10 April 2018 19:53
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Yvonne Staples of The Staple Singers. Credit: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for NAACP Image Awards
Yvonne Staples of The Staple Singers. Credit: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for NAACP Image Awards

Yvonne Staples of soul trio The Staple Singers has died.

The baritone powerhouse passed away at the age of 80 at home in South Shore, the Chicago Sun Times reports.

Yvonne's cause of death has not yet been revealed.

The Staple Singers included Yvonne, alongside her sisters Mavis and Cleotha and their father Pops Staples.

Staples helped the group rise to the top of the music charts and get inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999.

Yvonne was known for contributing to hits "Respect Yourself," "I'll Take You There" and "Heavy Makes You Happy."

Born to Pops and Oceola Staples in Chicago, Yvonne began singing with Mavis and brother Pervis at church in the 1940s.

The Staple Singers formed in 1945, but Yvonne didn't join the family group until her brother was drafted into the military in 1970.

During their career, The Staple Singers made over 30 records and found their greatest chart hits in the early 1970s.

In a 1972 documentary of a Los Angeles concert called "Wattstax" - also known as "Black Woodstock" - their performance stood out.

The Staple Singers received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2005 and the recording academy declared that they "left an imprint of soulful voices, righteous conviction and danceable message music across the decades."

Pops Staples passed away in 2000, while Yvonne's sister Cleotha died after a 12-year battle with Alzheimer's in 2013.

Mavis Staples is the only surviving member of the group.

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