“I want to be remembered as a woman who was fair and always gave 150 percent, no matter what I did,” LaBelle says.
2 of 11Courtesy of Patti LaBelle
1021 Patti Labelle Mariah Carey
Patti and Mariah Carey show their whip appeal on a girl’s night out.
3 of 11Courtesy of Patti LaBelle
1022 Patti Labelle Black Web
“I never feel pressured to have a more youthful sound,” LaBelle says. “I just do what I do best, and people have an appreciation for it. What I do is good enough that Wyclef, DMX and OutKast ask me to work with them.”
4 of 11Carlo Dalla Chiesa
1032 Patti Labelle Fur
“The important thing about getting any award is always making sure you deserve it and that you maintain the standard that earned you the honor in the first place,” LaBelle says.
5 of 11Carlo Dalla Chiesa
1041 Patti Labelle Paisley Poncho
“I will always do what’s best for Patti and nothing that makes me feel less than my years,” LaBelle says. “If I tried to do anything other than that, it wouldn’t be real.”
6 of 11Courtesy of Patti LaBelle
1042 Patti Labelle Sings In Blue
“Although I admire all the younger artists, I never try to emulate them or sing young music,” LaBelle says.
7 of 11Carlo Dalla Chiesa
1052 Patti Labelle Blue Suit
“I was talking to Nina Simone about a week before she died. She told me I was going to have to learn how to be mean,” LaBelle says. “I can’t be mean, but I have learned to demand what’s rightfully mine. When I put my foot down and say, ‘This is mine,’ I mean it.”
8 of 11Courtesy of Patti LaBelle
33311 Patti Labelle And Son
LaBelle and her only child Zuri.
“My biggest accomplishment is my son, Zuri. Hair, clothes, music—all that other stuff makes me feel good temporarily, but they come at a cost, financial or otherwise. Not my son; his love is free,” she says. “If I wasn’t so old and I had the right man, I would have another child. I would even adopt. I missed out on raising my son in his younger years. I was always on the road, and my husband took care of him and went to all the PTA meetings. But I have to tell myself I did my best and make peace with it. I suppose there is still a void there. But if Zuri would have some kids, then I could just take my grandbabies and raise them.”
9 of 11Courtesy of Patti LaBelle
1072 Patti Nona Hendrix Sara Dash
LaBelle: Patti, Nona Hendryx and Sarah Dash are ready to take the stage.
“The streets are correct Nona Hendrix, Sara Dash and myself are working on a reunion!” LaBelle says.
10 of 11Courtesy of Patti LaBelle
1081 Patti Black And White
“A favorite of mine is a song I did with a friend called “Two Steps Away” which talks about how close we get to achieving our goals," LaBelle says. “We are in this world and just steps away from finding cures for sudden death syndrome and autism; two steps away from your last paycheck, last day on this planet. We take everything for granted from getting someone great in the White House to finding true romance.”
11 of 11Courtesy of MCA Records
1091 Patti White Blouse
“By my definition I [consider myself a diva],” LaBelle says. “A diva is a person who has been here for a long time and is pressing on to do more pressing work and not waiting around for someone to count you in.”
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