Patti LaBelle Celebrates Black History Month at the Arsht Center

You've got to be pretty slick to rock the nickname “Godmother of Soul,” but you've got to be even slicker to go by “High Priestess of Good Vibrations.” Miss “Lady Marmalade” Patti LaBelle goes by both, and for good reason. Her voice is iconic, both smooth and fiery. It could cook you pancakes and then melt the butter on top of them.

Leave the breakfast stacks at home, but definitely head to the Adrienne Arsht Center tomorrow, February 5, to catch LaBelle's golden pipes in action. The two-time Grammy Award winner and five-time NAACP Image Award recipient will fill the air with resplendent song as the Jazz Roots series celebrates Black History Month and a people's incredible impact on the genre and music at large.

“We are thrilled to be presenting the iconic Patti LaBelle on our Knight Concert Hall Stage,” says John Richard, president and CEO of the Arsht Center, in a news release. “Not only does she embody the spirit of our Jazz Roots program, she is truly is one of the greatest artists of our time.”

LaBelle first broke through with her band, the Blue Belles, in 1974 with her timeless ode to New Orleans' working women, "Lady Marmalade," a track that continues to be a favorite among newer generations, thanks in part to a 2002 cover by Pink, Missy Elliott, Christina Aguilera, Lil' Kim, and Mya. LaBelle's voice continued to touch hearts when she went solo in 1986, releasing the chart-topping LP Winner in You, spurred by the success of heartbreak anthem “On My Own” with Michael McDonald. 

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Her dramatic soprano has been a gift to the worlds of disco, R&B, soul, pop, and more. She's been honored by the American Music Awards, the Soul Train Awards, and the Apollo Theater, just to scratch the surface. She continues to inspire those who seek truth in melodies and love in a song. Her positive role in the public eye and dedication to her community make her the perfect artist to honor the struggles of so many this February.

LaBelle's performance is the fourth in the tenth season of the Arsht Center's Jazz Roots series. This season is specially dedicated to Jazz Roots founder Larry Rosen, a man who devoted his life to keeping the spirit of America's finest genre alive and is in many ways responsible for bringing its light back to the heart of Miami.

“Many of us at the Arsht Center were blessed to know Larry and experience his genius,” says Arsht Center President and CEO John Richards. “His joie de vivre will live on our stage at each and every Jazz Roots concert this season and well beyond. Our joyful work caused a very personal friendship – one that I will cherish and miss with fond memories.”

LaBelle will be joined by Sarah Vaughn Vocal champion Ashleigh Smith. The Georgia singer represents a new generation of classic grace, a perfect combination to LaBelle's sultry style. It's sure to be a magical evening. With the Godmother of Soul around, you're guaranteed to catch a good vibe.

Patti LaBelle, with special guest Ashleigh Smith. 8 p.m. Friday, February 5, at the Adrienne Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; 305-949-6722; arshtcenter.org. Tickets cost $25 to $130 plus fees via arshtcenter.org. 

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