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The American singer Irma Thomas (Ponchatoula, February 18, 1941) is originally from Louisiana and specializes in Louisiana music. She began her career in New Orleans in the early sixties and is known under the nickname The Queen of New Orleans, the Queen of the Spirit of New Orleans.
Born under the name Irma Lee, contemporary with Aretha Franklin and Etta James, it did not have the same fame as the two colleagues, especially in terms of economic success. As a child she played in the Baptist church choir and at the age of thirteen she auditioned for Specialty Records. Under the name of her second ex-husband, she started working as a waitress in New Orleans and occasionally performed with bandleader singer Tommy Ridgley, who helped her record a record for the local label Ron Records.
His first single was entitled (You Can Have My Husband but) Don't Mess with My Man, released in the spring of 1960, which reached 22nd place in Billboard's 1996 Billboard Sales Charts on Rhythm and Blues Records. Then he started recording for Minit Records and worked with singer-songwriter and record producer Allen Toussaint on the songs It's Raining und Ruuler of my Heart, which were later played by Otis Redding under the title Pain In My Heart. Listening to the songs, he was able to record a number of songs for Minit Records.
In 1963 Imperial Records founded Minit Records and launched Thomas with a number of successful tracks: I Wish Someone Would Care with the B-side Break-a-Way (later recorded on the Tracey Ullman and other singer's covers), Anyone Who Know What Love Is und Time Is On My Side already recorded by Kai Winding and later a bestseller in the Rolling Stones version).
Nevertheless, especially in the years 1967-1968 he recorded singles with good results (among others for Chess Records, the track by Otis Reding Good To Me, which was placed in the R&B charts). After a few years without recording, Thomas signed a contract with Rounder Records and had a first Grammy nominee for Live! in 1991.
On the wave of this success he recorded more albums. He continues to perform in concert and participates annually in the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. She was queen of the circle du Vieux of the year 1998 for the carnival time in New Orleans. When Hurricane Katrina severely damaged his New Orleans team, Thomas moved for some time to Gonzales, a town a hundred kilometres from New Orleans.
"The song "Anyone Who Knows What Love Is ( Will Understand)" appears several times in the TV series Netflix "Black Mirror". John Sinclair with Irma Thomas, su bluesaccess.com. "NPR: Visiting the Soul Queen of New Orleans", su npr.org.