In the past, Beyonce upset Aretha Franklin and now she ticked off Etta James!
In case you don’t know, Etta James is gangsta. She was the Remy Ma of 1955 – an old school bluesy broad who was “hood” before being “hood” was popular.
As we all know, Beyonce played Etta James in Cadillac Records and covered James’ most famous song “At Last.” All was well until the blues diva saw Bey performing her signature song (although Etta wasn’t the originator, it was recorded first in 1941) to President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama during one of the Inaugural Balls. The audio of Etta saying she is going to give Sasha Fierce a good beating was floating around the internet yesterday, but has since been pulled.
Etta James declared at a Seattle show, “She gonna get her ass whipped! The great Beyonce!” She continued with a growl, “I can’t stand Beyonce. She has no business up there singin’, singin’ up there on ah big ole’ — ah big ole President day gon’ be singin’ my song that I been singin’ forever!”
Etta also said Obama isn’t her President, “The one with the big ears.” Lawd, Miss Etta offended the President and the loyal followers in the Church of Beyonce—I don’t know which one suffers more consequences!
I must admit, when I saw Beyonce singing “At Last” to Barack and Michelle Obama I did say to myself, “Why didn’t they just get Etta James to sing it? Couldn’t Beyonce sing one of her own songs?” Then I realized, what song could Beyonce sing? She surely can’t have the First Lady doing the “Single Ladies” dance and we all know Obama isn’t the best dancer so busting out with “Crazy In Love” wasn’t going to work!
What is contradictory is that Etta’s son told the New York Daily News that she thought Beyonce singing “At Last” was” great.”
Who knows… but Beyonce better be careful. Etta ain’t one for idle threats. She might surprise Beyonce backstage—chain smoking and drinking straight bourbon-no chaser—and beat her senseless with some brass knuckles and a copy of the Cadillac Records soundtrack!
Honestly, she might’ve been joking and everyone is taking this so serious. Bottom line, Etta is a lil’ too street for Beyonce. She has lived through Jim Crow, racism, sexism and a struggle with addiction. Plus, mama might’ve been a lil’ tipsy on that stage — you have to give Etta a lil’ pass.
Do you think Etta James is overacting or just protective of her legacy?
Update: Ms. James admits she was joking, but says she would’ve sang better than Beyonce. Click here for details.