Gladys Knight’s career has spanned decades since singing lead with The Pips at the tender age of 16.
Her vocals along with the harmonies and choreography that made them one of the biggest groups of that era produced some of the most memorable songs of the 60s, 70s and 80s including “I Heard it Through the Grapevine” and “Best Thing to Ever Happen to Me.”
Knight will perform at 8 p.m. Thursday at the Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center.
This seven-time Grammy winner has enjoyed No. 1 hits in Pop, Gospel, R&B and Adult Contemporary, and has performed in film, television and live.
Her website stated that in the fall of 2015 she released her first mainstream dance record, “Just A Little” in nearly 20 years. The song serves as lead single from her 12th studio album that she is currently on.
Knight is a two-time Grammy winner in the gospel category, and released her inspirational album “Where My Heart Belongs”, in September 2014. The album won an NAACP Image Award for “Outstanding Gospel Album.”
Along with her music, she is also an established actress who returned to the small screen in the Lifetime original movie “Seasons of Love” for Christmas 2014. In the story about two lovers as they journey through life, love and family, Knight stars alongside Oscar-nominee Taraji P. Henson and fellow Grammy winner Cliff “Method Man” Smith. She has also guested “Empire” opposite Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson.
She also put on her dancing shoes in the spring of 2012. She joined the cast of ABC’s hit reality competition “Dancing with the Stars” for season 14, partnering with Tristan MacManus.
The year of 2011 was a year of much recognition as Knight was both honoring and being honored, first at a Michael Jackson tribute concert, and then at the 2011 Soul Train Awards. At the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales, Knight joined such performers as Jennifer Hudson, Beyonce, and Smokey Robinson in a tribute to the legendary King of Pop in a concert event called “Michael Forever.” Following that, Knight was honored with a “Legend Award” alongside fellow recipients Earth, Wind & Fire on the BET broadcast of the 3rd annual Soul Train Awards, hosted by Cedric the Entertainer.
In February 2011, Knight reunited with Elton John, Dionne Warwick, and Stevie Wonder for the first time in 25 years to perform their Grammy-winning song, “That’s What Friends Are For” at an AIDS research benefit at the downtown Cipriani in New York. Adored the world over, Knight then toured across the UK, performing at packed arenas that included a sold-out performance at Wembley Stadium.
Knight has recorded more than 38 albums over the years, including four solo albums during the past decade: “Good Woman” (1991); “Just for You” (1994); the inspirational “Many Different Roads” (1999); and “At Last” (2001). “At Last” showed the world that she still has what it takes to record a hit album, employing the talents of contemporary producers like Randy Jackson, Gary Brown and James D.C. Williams III, Jon John, Jamey Jaz, Keith Thomas, Tom Dowd and Tiger Roberts.
In 1995, Knight earned her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and the next year, Gladys Knight & The Pips were inducted into the Rock ‘N’ Roll Hall of Fame. Knight published an autobiography, “Between Each Line of Pain and Glory” (a line taken from her million selling recording “Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me”), in 1997, and the next year, she and The Pips were presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame.
If you go:
- What: Gladys Knight in concert.
- When: 8 p.m. Thursday.
- Where: Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center.
- Tickets: wagnernoel.com
- “Every Beat of My Heart.”
- “Letter Full of Tears.”
- “I Heard it Through the Grapevine.”
- “If I Were Your Woman.”
- “Neither One of Us (Wants to be the First to Say Goodbye).”
- “I’ve Got to Use My Imagination.”
- “Best Thing to Ever Happen to Me.”
- ”Midnight Train to Georgia.”