Image by AP
Jean Knight, a New Orleans-born soul singer known for her 1971 hit “Mr. Big Stuff,” has died at 80.
Family, friends, fans and veterans of the music world mourned the loss of the Grammy-nominated singer who was considered a musical powerhouse and an integral part of New Orleans’ music legacy.
Knight died Wednesday of natural causes in Tampa, Florida, where she was residing, said family representative Mona Giamanco. She confirmed the death to the Associated Press on Monday afternoon.
“Jean Knight’s legacy is not just a musical one; it is a testament to the enduring love between an artist, her hometown and the fans who adored her,” the singer’s family said in a statement.
Knight got her start in her hometown of New Orleans by singing in her cousin’s bar shortly after graduating from high school. In the 1970′ she recorded “Mr. Big Stuff” – a sassy and soulful chart-topping anthem that became known for the infectious refrain of “Who do you think you are?”
That song has been sampled more than 50 times for other songs and heard in numerous films and commercials.