Hello, Betty Everett was born on November 23, 1939 in Greenwood, Mississippi. She was an R&B singer and pianist. Betty performed in gospel choirs. She moved to Chicago in the late 1950s. She recorded for various small Chicago soul labels. She was discovered in 1963 by A&R musical director Calvin Carter who was with the independent Vee -Jay Records label.
Betty charted her first hit on November 23, 1963, the song was YOU’RE NO GOOD a bluesy version of the song that would become a huge hit for Linda Ronstadt in 1974. Betty’s original version on Vee Jay Records charted at #51 on the Billboard Hot 100. In February of 1964 she would be back with another hit record. THE SHOOP SHOOP SONG (It’s In His Kiss) became a huge hit climbing the Hot 100 to #6 and crossing over to the Billboard R&B chart, there it became a #1 hit record.
Betty’s next big hit was a duet with the great Jerry Butler. The song is the classic LET IT BE ME. The single made its Hot 100 debut on September 5, 1964. The wonderful blend of voices and the emotion of the song took it all the way to #5 on the Hot 100 and crossing over to the R&B chart it became Betty’s second #1 hit. The single also became a #1 hit record on the Cashbox R&B chart.
After LET IT BE ME, Betty charted a few other records, but none could duplicate the success of her previous hits. Vee Jay folded in 1966. Betty signed with Uni Records and charted a hit in 1969 with the single THERE’LL COME A TIME, climbing to #26 on the Hot 100. She would leave Uni Records and record for Fantasy Records in 1970 where she would have R&B hits with, I GOT TO TELL SOMEBODY a #22 R&B hit and in 1971 she would chart, AIN’T NOTHING GONNA CHANGE ME a #32 R&B hit.
In 2000 she made her last public appearance on the PBS special “Doo-Wop 51” along with her former duet partner, Jerry Butler. Betty Everett died in August of 2001, she was 61 years old. Her legacy is the wonderful music she has left for all of us to enjoy over and over again. Her music and those two solid gold hits…THE SHOOP SHOOP SONG (It’s In His Kiss) and LET IT BE ME remain favorites on oldies radio. Her music is a part of the great hits found in the “GOLDEN ERA OF ROCK AND ROLL”.
CLICK A SONG TITLE BELOW TO HEAR…BETTY EVERETT SING ONE OF HER CLASSIC HITS.
Till the next time—Joe