Introduction to Betty Everett
Betty Everett was an American R&B and soul singer as well as pianist. Everett released the best-performing song in her career, “The Shoop Shoop Song (It’s In His Kiss).” She released further singles on Vee-Jay and other following labels Uni, Fantasy and United Artists but none of them matched the success of “The Shoop Shoop Song”, although 1969’s “There’ll Come A Time” reached the Top 40 pop chart. The 1990s saw some resurgence in her career; “The Shoop Shoop Song” was included for the end credits of the film Mermaids, and topped the UK charts in 1990. Everett gained some exposure through performing in such events and engagements, such as the 1991 Chicago Blues Festival. She had played at other venues including Donald Trump’s Taj Mahal in Atlantic City and Greek Theater in Los Angeles. However, her poor health forced her to cancel other bookings. She died in Beloit, Wisconsin in 2001, aged 61.
Betty Everett was an American R&B and soul songer and pianist. She was born in Greenwood, Mississippi on November 23, 1939.
At a young age, she started singing gospel as well as playing the piano at a local church. Everett moved to Chicago in 1967 to further her singing career. After recording for several small labels, she signed up to Vee-Jay Records in 1963. Her first single failed to chart, but the follow-up “You’re No Good” entered the Hot 100 at #51, and #5 on the R&B singles chart. “You’re No Good” was to become a #1 hit for Linda Ronstadt several years later.
Everett’s biggest hit with “The Shoop Shoop Song (It’s in His Kiss)”
Everett attained her biggest hit in her career with “The Shoop Shoop Song (It’s in His Kiss)” in 1964. It was written by Rudy Clark, and also released on Vee-Jay label. It reached #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on the R&B singles chart that year.
However, the song was to be Everett’s only significant hit. Following releases weren’t able to match the success of “The Shoop Shoop Song,” although a few of them were decent hit charters including “I Can’t Hear You,” “Getting Mighty Crowded,” “There’ll Come a Time,” (#26 pop, #2 R&B), “It’s Been a Long, Long Time,” (#96 pop, #17 R&B), “Unlucky Girl,” “I Got to Tell Somebody,” and “Ain’t Nothing Gonna Change Me,” among many others. After Vee-Jay folded in the mid-1960s, Everett recorded for a few more labels. She had also recorded in duets with Jerry Butler, including “Let It Be Me,” which became a #5 Billboard pop hit and #1 R&B hit in 1964.
“There’ll Come a Time,” one of Everett’s moderately successful hits, was released on ABC in 1969. Shortly afer ABC, she moved to Uni where she remained until 1970. Afterwards, she recorded for Fantasy label until 1974. She also had a brief stint at United Artists in the late 1970s. Her final recording came out in 1980.
Later career and final years
Everett had been living with her sister in South Beloit, Illinois from the 1980 until the former’s death. Aside from serving at her local church, Everett was fairly busy in her singing career, even when she was past her prime. Everett recorded a new single “Don’t Cry Now” for an indie label; however, it remained unreleased.
Everett was booked to star at the Chicago Blues Festival in 1991 which was aired live on the radio; it was to be Everett’s last radio performance. She was also slated to perform in two consecutive weekend concerts: one at Trump’s Taj Mahal in Atlantic City and another at the Greek Theater in Los Angeles. It would have been factors for her career revival, but Everett declined because of health issues. In 2000 she made her last public appearance on the PBS television special music documentary Doo Wop 51, whose cast also included her former duets partner Jerry Butler.
Betty Everett died in South Belois, Illinois on August 19, 2001, aged 61. She was inducted into the Rhythm and Blues Foundation’s Hall Of Fame in 1996.