Monday, April 22, 2024

Legendary Singer Merry Clayton Lost Both Legs in 2014 Car Accident, But Is Prevailing


Merry Clayton– it’s been well known in the music world that she lost both of her legs in a terrible auto accident in June 2014. I’ve known about it for some time but didn’t write it because Clayton was recovering and in rehabilitation.

Today, the news is buried in a short piece in the New York Times because Merry is receiving the Clark and Gwen Terry Award this week at the Apollo Theater. She will accept on a video, and not in person.

Merry is one of the most amazing people in the world, as well as a terrifyingly gifted singer. Of course, Merry was featured in the Oscar winning film “20 Feet from Stardom.” Prior to that a lot of people didn’t know it was she who sang on the Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter” and had lent her voice to dozens of hits as a back up singer.

Over the last year I have heard of the many friends in the music biz who’ve helped her including Carole King. Now that the news is out, I hope everyone– everyone including MusiCares and the Grammys– will celebrate Merry’s life and career. I know she will overcome this obstacle and come roaring back with that wonderful spirit and voice.

Viva Merry Clayton!

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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