Candi Staton: From Gospel to Disco: The Unstoppable Rhythm


Candi Staton- one of the greatest soul singers of her generation: performing for over six decades.

Best known for her soulful hits such as her remake of Tammy Wynette’s ‘Stand by Your Man’, and disco anthem ‘Young Hearts Run Free’, Candi Staton has also recorded gospel, house and country music, earning the title of ‘First Lady of Southern Soul’.

Singer-songwriter, Candi Staton has had a remarkable journey in the music industry. She was born in Hanceville, Alabama and rose to fame as a prominent gospel, soul, and disco artist. 

Candi grew up in a gospel music environment and her early career involved singing with the Jewell Gospel Trio and The Jewel Gospel Singers. In 1968, she transitioned to secular music, signing with Rick Hall’s Fame Records.  

Candi Staton: Versatile and Resilient

That same year she launched her solo career as a Southern soul stylist, working with producers such as Rick Hall and Clarence Carter, whom she married and later divorced. In the late 1970s, she became a disco diva, scoring hits on both sides of the Atlantic.

The Rise to Success

Candi’s breakthrough came in 1969 with her hit single “I’m Just a Prisoner (Of Your Good Lovin’),” which topped the Billboard R&B charts. She followed up with successful soul albums like “Stand By Your Man” and “Candi” in the early 1970s.

It's Lonely at the Top

In 1976, Candi Staton achieved international acclaim with her disco anthem “Young Hearts Run Free.” Despite facing personal struggles, including an abusive marriage and substance abuse issues, she continued to make music, exploring different genres.

Her enduring legacy

The late 1980s and early 1990s saw a resurgence in Staton’s popularity in the UK’s dance and club scene. Her collaboration on “You Got the Love” with The Source became a dance classic, reaching the UK Top 10. In the 1980s, she returned to gospel music and became a born-again Christian. In the 1990s, she experienced a revival when her song ‘You Got the Love’ was remixed by the Source, and became an anthem for the rave generation.

Well deserved Accolades

Throughout the 2000s and 2010s, Candi Staton remained active in music, receiving critical acclaim for her soulful performances. Inducted into the Christian Music Hall of Fame, she also earned a Grammy nomination for her gospel album “His Hands” in 2006.

Beyond her music career, Candi Staton is involved in charity work, advocating for women’s rights and supporting domestic violence victims. Take a look at her non-profit organization, A Veil of Silence

Surviving Breast Cancer and beyond

Candi Staton has been married six times and has five children. Today she is happily married to Henry Hooper since 2017. In 2018, Candi announced that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer.

Candi Staton’s life story exemplifies resilience and talent, overcoming adversity and leaving a lasting impact on the music industry with her powerful voice and timeless music. I hope you will enjoy her story as she looks back over the last 83 years. Please check out her latest albums, ‘Unstoppable’ and the upcoming ‘Roots’ album as well as her website here.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. DMK

    I just love her Ms Staton’s sound regardless the genre of music she feel like doing! If she can sing it, she can sing it. No one else has that sound. Luv it!!!! Also so glad she’s still beautiful inspite of all adversity some call life hiccups🙏🏾🙏🏾

  2. Linda Milligan

    Candi Staton is my all time favorite and the most inspiring artist I have ever heard! She is in my favorites list so I can get inspiration whenever I want or need to!

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