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Denise LaSalle (1939–2018), legendary singer was called the “Queen of the Blues”

by Kirk Fox

Known for her hit song “Trapped by a Thing Called Love”…

Denise LaSalle, singer known as the “Queen of the Blues,” has died at the age of 78, according to The Jackson Sun

Family spokesman Howard Ramsby reported the news in an email. 


LaSalle was born Ora Denise Allen in Mississippi in 1939. She sang in church choirs and then moved to Chicago. She performed with top musicians in Chicago and wrote songs. She was signed to the legendary Chess Records in 1967. Her first single “A Love Reputation” was a regional hit. 

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She wrote and recorded her 1971 hit song “Trapped by a Thing Called Love.” It was released by Westbound Records in Detroit. The track reached No. 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 1 on the Billboard R&B chart. The song was included on President Obama’s 2016 Summer Nights playlist. 

LaSalle continued to chart hit songs in the 1970’s for Westbound Records and ABC Records. In the 1980’s, she signed with Malaco Records and released a string of critically acclaimed soul-blues records. 

Her last record was released in 2010 and she continued with live performances. 

In 2015, she was inducted into the Rhythm and Blues Music Hall of Fame. 

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