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Ruth Brown
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    (January 12, 1928-November 17, 2006)
    Recorded 'So Long,' 'Teardrops from My Eyes,' 'I'll Wait for You,' 'I Know,' 'Love Has Joined Us Together,' 'Why Me,' '5-10-15 Hours' and 'Lucky Lips'
    Played Leona Wilson on 'Hello Larry'
    Nicknamed 'Miss Rhythm'
    She starred in 'Hello Larry,' which is not a well respected sitcom.
    As a teen, she snuck out and lied to her parents and performed at a local USO.
    As a teen, she declined to play at the Harlem Theater for a week because she feared her father's wrath.
    She got married at sixteen.
    Her first marriage was annulled because her husband was already married, yet still kept the surname.
    She divorced at least 4 times.
    She did many odd jobs after her career faltered in the 60s, like drive a school bus and wash dishes.
    She suffered from depression.
    She is said to have been fully responsible for starting the Atlantic record label.
    She never read music, and learned her songs by ear.
    She nearly died in a car wreck in 1949, which left her legs to endure much pain.
    She was only paid $69 for each single she released in her heyday.
    After writing a letter to Atlantic Records in the 60s, she got a $1,000 check when ends could not meet.
    She would later fight a successful battle in the 80's to get royalty payments back to her and other Atlantic artists of the era.
    Her initials also stand for rhythm & blues.
    She helped Redd Foxx get a fresh start in the 1950s by lending him money.
    She ranked #60 on VH1's Top 100 Women of Rock & Roll.

Credit: Eric Hartman

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