Blues queen Koko Taylor passed away Wednesday, June 3, 2009, in Chicago. She was 80 years old. Taylor earned world-wide acclaim over her 50+ year career, receiving seven Grammy nominations — with a win in 1984 — appearing on television numerous times, and performing at least 100 concerts a year. She was the subject of a PBS documentary, and appeared in David Lynch movie, Wild At Heart.
Taylor was born in Tennessee, was orphaned at 11, moved to Chicago at 18, and soon after achieved her dream of being a blues singer. In 1962, Willie Dixon helped her get a contract with Chess, and also produced recordings for her, including her million-selling hit “Wang Dang Doodle.” In addition to her career as a singer, she operated a Chicago nightclub until 2001.