NONA HENDRYX, American singer (LaBelle) vocalist, record producer, songwriter, musician, author, and actress, born. Hendryx is known for her work as a solo artist as well as for being one-third of the trio Labelle, who had a hit with “Lady Marmalade.” Her music has ranged from soul, funk, dance and rhythm and blues to hard rock, art rock and new age. Labelle had emerged from the traditional “girl group” Patti LaBelle and the Bluebells, a quartet that became a trio with Cindy Birdsong’s departure for The Supremes.
It was manager Vicki Wickham who re-imagined the group as Labelle; as glam rock/space age divas, Labelle created a sound and look previously unheard of for a black, all-female crew, what with the “girl group” pigeon-holing of the time. Hendryx embraced the new concept whole-heartedly (much more so than Patti LaBelle, in particular, who stated her own adoration for “big ballads”; bandmate Sarah Dash remained fairly neutral throughout their time together).
Hendryx and Wickham paired off on a creative level. Other artists with whom Hendryx has recorded with over the years include: David Johansen, Yoko Ono, Cameo Talking Heads (3 albums, 80’s band, Our Daughter’s Wedding, Garland Jeffreys, Dan Hartman, Afrika Bambaata (performing a duet of “Giving Him Something He Can Feel” with Boy George), Canadian band Rough Trade, Curtis Hairston, and Graham Parker on the hit single, “Soul Christmas.” In 2001 she discussed her bisexuality in an interview with the Advocate magazine and has appeared as herself on three episodes of the Lesbian hit show, The L Word.”