Marva Whitney, James Brown’s Soul Sister No. 1, Dies at 68
Jordi Vidal/Redferns

R&B-funk singer Marva Whitney has died due to complications from pneumonia, according to the Rolling Stone.

Whitney is best known for her songs “It’s My Thing (You Can’t Tell Me Who to Sock It To) and “Unwind Yourself.” From 1967 to 1970 she toured with James Brown and he nicknamed her “Soul Sister Number 1.”

The Kansas-born singer’s music has been sampled many times, including by Public Enemy for “Bring the Noise,” DJ Kool on “Let Me Clear My Throat” and by Mac Miller on “Party on Fifth Ave.” 

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According to her Facebook page, Whitney passed away on Sunday. “We’re saddened to inform you that Soulsister #1 Marva Whitney passed away last night,” it read. 

She was 68 years old.