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For Rock Hall’s Consideration: The Pointer Sisters

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Of all the numerous acts that hailed from the San Francisco Bay Area, Oakland’s the Pointer Sisters are one if not most musically diverse groups of all time, known for incorporating everything from R&B and pop to country and soul.

Initially comprising of sisters Ruth, Anita, Bonnie and June Pointer, the group released their self-titled debut album in 1973, which was a top twenty album that garner critical acclaim, while the breakout song “Yes We Can Can” (also a to twenty hit) became an R&B classic. The following year, while continuing their jazz and bebop style from their debut, they hit both the pop and country charts with the song “Fairytale”, which would win a Grammy for Best Country Performance, as was even covered by Elvis Presley.

By the mid-1970s, they scored their first number one R&B hit, “How Long(Betcha Got a Chick on the Side), as well as a cult hit “Don’t It Drive Your Crazy”. But as the 1970s was raching its end, the Pointer Sisters became a trio (with Bonnie leaving for a solo career), and took a more contemporary turn, resulting in freater commercial success while demonistarting their musical versatility. TThat period resulted in more top forty albums including 1978’s Energy, and 1983’s Break Out (the sister’ biggest album), as well as a string of hits including a cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Fire”, “Slow Hand”, and “I’m So Excited”.

In the years following their successful peak, the Pointer Sisters’ music had continued to be staples on classic pop and R&B radio stations, and have been heard in numerous films and TV shows. Also, in addition to Elvis Presley with “Fairytale” their songs have been covered and sampled from numerous artists including Salt-n-Pepa, Queen Latifah, and Conway Twitty.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: The Pointer Sisters, eligible since 1998.


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