1957 Ruth Brown – Lucky Lips
Ruth Brown grew up in Portsmouth, Virginia. Her father led their church choir, and teenaged-Ruth moved on from there to sing in local clubs and USO shows. When she turned 17, she left home and moved in with trumpet player Jimmy Brown. She and Jimmy were soon married.
Ruth soon sang in clubs on Washington, D.C., and signed with Atlantic Records in 1949. Her first recording session that year yielded the hit So Long, which reached #4 on the R&B chart. By 1957, Ruth charted 16 more top ten R&B records, five of which topped the chart.
In 1957, Ruth finally reached the Hot 100 chart. She recorded Lucky Lips, a song written by the team of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. The single peaked at #25 on the Hot 100 and #6 on the R&B chart.
A few more hits followed, but by 1960, Ruth stepped away from her singing career to stay home with her husband and raise their son.
Redd Foxx convinced Ruth to return to performing in 1975. She not only sang in clubs, but started an acting career as well. She became a regular in the second season of Hello, Larry and appeared in the John Waters film Hairspray. Roles in the Broadway plays Amen Corner and Black and Blue followed.
They inducted her into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993.
Her public appearances only ended with her death from a heart attack and a stroke in 2006.
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