Funk and soul heroine Vicki Anderson has died.
News of the American artist’s passing was confirmed by her goddaughter Margie Randle, who wrote a tribute on Facebook:
A large part of my heart is missing my Godmother Vicki Anderson Byrd my bestie my sidekick. It’s going to be hard walking past your bedroom and you are not there the selfish part of me wanted you not to go but God was ready for his Angel to come home what a beautiful reunion with your husband Bobby Byrd and James Brown 🤎 you Mommieo
Vicki Anderson was born in Houston, Texas, earning local praise before gaining her big break. Joining James Brown’s revue she became the lead female vocalist for three years, earning her stripes alongside Mr Dynamite himself.
Meeting – and marrying – band mate Bobby Byrd, she played a pivotal role in soul’s evolution into funk. Recording some fantastic solo cuts, her 1970 song ‘Message From A Soul Sister’ remains one of the era’s finest.
As tastes shifted Vicki Anderson’s music career took a backseat, becoming a mother to Carleen Anderson – herself a formidable recording artist.
The British rare groove scene restored her reputation, and Norman Jay’s memoir contains a moving story about a sold out London show in 1986 – her first for some considerable time, with the audience ready to sing each word to even her rarest songs.
The show kickstarted a second chapter for Vicki Anderson, who toured the world and won recognition for her art.