First Ladies of Disco LIVE in New York, October 2015 by Photojournalist Lisa Pacino
First Ladies of Disco: Martha Wash, Evelyn Champagne King, and Linda Clifford, LIVE at Joe’s Pub, New York, October 16th and 17th, 2015.
Martha Wash is a two-time Grammy Award nominated Disco, R&B, Pop, Soul, and House music singer and songwriter. She has a distinctive and powerful voice, and is a dramatic soprano. She first achieved fame as part of the duo Two Tons O’Fun with the late Izora Armstead; together they sang back-up for Sylvester, known as the “Queen of Disco”. After gaining their own record contract and releasing several commercially successful songs the duo was renamed The Weather Girls. In 1982, they released their multi-platinum single “It’s Raining Men”, one of the most successful disco-dance songs of all time. The Weather Girls disbanded in 1985, going their separate ways, Martha successfully transitioned into House music, giving her the name, The Queen of Clubland. She sang lead vocals on hits from the Italo House group Black Box, “Everybody Everybody”, “Strike It Up”, “I Don’t Know Anybody Else”, “Fantasy”, and more. She did not appear in the videos after being labeled “unmarketable” due to her weight. Martha is noted in the 1990s after legal action making vocal credits mandatory on CDs, Records, Music Videos, etc., after being denied name credit and royalties for the #1 song “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)” released by C+C Music Factory. In 1992, she released her debut solo album, which earned three top ten Dance/Club hits “Carry On”, “Give It to You”, and “Runaround”. In 1994, she covered Jean Knight’s “Mr. Big Stuff” for the Disney soundtrack D2: The Mighty Ducks; and two years later, in 1996, covered Elton John’s “I’m Still Standing” for the film soundtrack The First Wives Club. She continues to perform and record hits. Her former group member Izora Armstead passed away in 2004.
Evelyn Champagne King is from the Bronx NY. She is an R&B, Soul, Pop, House, and Disco singer known for her hits “Shame” 1978, “I’m in Love” 1981, and “Love Come Down” 1982. Evelyn is also an accomplished bongo musician, playing the instrument at most of her concerts. On September 20, 2004, her hit “Shame” became one of the first records to be inducted into the Dance Music Hall of Fame in New York.
Linda Clifford is a former Miss New York State, and was the lead singer for the trio Jericho Jazz Singers before becoming a Disco, R&B, and House music singer, and actress. Her notable hits are “If My Friends Could See Me Now” and “Runaway Love” both in 1978, other hits include “Red Light”. Linda has collaborated with many artists including Curtis Mayfield.
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All Photographs by Celebrity Photojournalist Lisa Pacino of Under The Duvet Productions, NY. All Rights Reserved.
REMINDER: If you wish to share any of our photographs for Social Media and/or personal use they are not to be altered in any way. They must be used “as is”, with photo name credit, not cropped, no filters, or adjusted. They are not to be used in collages or any other formats. If needed for commercial and/or promotional use please email us to license. Thank you. Email: UnderTheDuvetProductions@gmail.com
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