Betty Wright is an American R&B songwriter, background vocalist, Songwriter. She started her career as a professional in her teenage and the late 1960s. She came into the major limelight in the 197s when she released few big hits such as ‘Tonight is the Night’ and ‘Clean Up Woman’. She was mainly popular for using the whistle register in her singing which is the highest register of the human voice. There are very few artists in the world who use whistle register, which makes Betty a bit different from others.
Betty Wright was born on 21st December 1953 in Miami, Florida. Her full name is Bessie Regine Norris, and she is the youngest of her six siblings. Her father’s name is McArthur Norris, and her mother is Rosa Akins Braddy-Wright. She was interested in singing from her childhood and started singing when she was two years as some of her siblings formed a gospel group and named it Echoes of Joy. The group’s first album was released in 1956, and she gave her vocal contribution to it. She gave several performances with her siblings till 1965, and at that time, she was 11 years old.
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After leaving the group, Betty shifted to rhythm and blues from Gospel music style and started performing at different local talent shows. It was then when she was seen by a Miami record label owner while performing at an event, and he signed her to the label in 1966. She released her first singles at the age of 12, and it helped her gain a lot of fame. In the year 1967, she discovered some other artists such as Gwen McCrae and George and enabled them to get a contract from the TK records. Her first major hit, ‘Clean Up Woman,’ was released one year later when she turned 17. It was written by Clarence Reid, and it was ranked at the 2nd position in the R&B charts. It was a huge hit and gained the sixth position on the Billboard Hot 100 and stayed there for over 14 weeks.
It was a gold-certified album that sold over 1 million copies. In 1972, she released ‘Let Me Be Your Lovemaker’, which ranked at 55 number in the Hot 100, and it was the first track in which she showcased her fantastic whistle register vocals. The albums that Wright released in the late 1970s were not too successful, and then in the year 1981, she signed with a bigger music label, ‘Epic’. She released several albums under the album, and most of them were big hits. In 1987, she became the first black female artist to have a gold-certified album under her won label.
Betty married thrice and had five children. Her first marriage was with Jerome McCray in 197, and they both have a daughter. They got divorced in 1981, and then she married Patrick Parker, but they both also separated in 1983. In the end, she married Noel Williams, and they stayed together till her death in 2015.
The net worth of Betty Wright is around $5 million.