Baby Washington

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Baby Washington
Baby Washington 2014.jpg
Baby Washington in 2014
Background information
Birth nameJustine Washington
Also known asJeanette Washington
Born (1940-11-13) 13 November 1940 (age 78)
OriginBamberg, South Carolina, United States
GenresSoul, R&B
Years active1956–present
Associated actsThe Hearts
The Jaynetts
Don Gardner

Justine Washington (born November 13, 1940), usually credited as Baby Washington, but credited on some early records as Jeanette (Baby) Washington, is an American soul music vocalist, who had 16 rhythm and blues chart entries in 15 years, most of them during the 1960s. Her biggest hit, "That's How Heartaches Are Made" in 1963, also entered the US Top 40.

Life and career[edit]

Washington was born in Bamberg, South Carolina, and raised in Harlem, New York. In 1956, she joined the vocal group the Hearts, and also recorded for J & S Records as a member of the Jaynetts ("I Wanted To Be Free"/"Where Are You Tonight", J&S 1765/6). She first recorded solo, as Baby Washington, in 1957, on "Everyday" (J&S 1665).[1]

In 1958 she signed to Donald Shaw's Neptune Records as a solo performer, and established herself as a soul singer with two hits in 1959: "The Time" (U.S. R&B #22) and "The Bells" (U.S. R&B # 20). She followed up with the hit "Nobody Cares" (U.S. R&B # 17) in 1961. Several of her singles on the Neptune and ABC labels were credited to Jeanette (Baby) Washington, which later led to confusion with an entirely different singer known as Jeanette Washington.[2]

She signed with ABC Paramount in 1961, but her two releases for the label were not hits, although the self-written "Let Love Go By" later became a notable Northern Soul single. Washington then moved to Juggy Murray's Sue Records in 1962, scoring her only entry on the U.S. Billboard Top 40 with "That's How Heartaches Are Made" in 1963. Two years later, she hit again on the U.S. R&B Top 10 with "Only Those In Love". Among her other Sue recordings were "I Can't Wait Until I See My Baby's Face", co-written by Chip Taylor and Jerry Ragovoy, and "Careless Hands", penned by Billy Myles.[3]

Washington revived her career in the early 1970s covering the Marvelettes' "Forever" (# 30 R&B) as a duet with Don Gardner. Her solo release, "I've Got To Break Away", made number 73 on the R&B charts, after which the advent of disco led to a decline in her popularity. She has never experienced great crossover recognition, although Dusty Springfield once cited Washington as her all-time favorite singer and recorded "That's How Heartaches Are Made" and "I Can't Wait Until I See My Baby's Face".[3]

Washington is still active as a live performer, appearing several times a year on the East Coast and performing on cruise ships. She also performed at the Prestatyn Soul Weekender festival in Wales in 2004.[4] She performed with the Enchanters at a Philadelphia-area show in March 2008, and in Baltimore in June 2008. Washington was among the 2008 honorees in Community Works' Ladies Singing the Blues music series.[3]


Chart singles[edit]

Note: Credited as Baby Washington unless stated otherwise.

Year Single Chart Positions
US Pop[5] US
1959 "The Time" - 22
"The Bells (On Our Wedding Day)" - 20
1960 "Work Out" 105
1961 "Nobody Cares (About Me)"
(Jeanette (Baby) Washington)
60 17
1962 "Handful of Memories" 116 16
"Hush Heart" 102
1963 "That's How Heartaches Are Made" 40 10
"Leave Me Alone" 62 21
"Hey Lonely One" 100 n/a[7]
1964 "I Can't Wait Until I See My Baby"
(Justine Washington)
93 n/a[7]
"The Clock" 100 n/a[7]
"It'll Never Be Over For Me" 98 n/a[7]
1965 "Only Those In Love" 73 10
1969 "I Don't Know" - 35
1973 "Forever"
(Baby Washington & Don Gardner)
- 30
"Just Can't Get You Out Of My Mind" - 76
"I've Got To Break Away" - 32
1975 "Can't Get Over Losing You" - 88

Original studio albums[edit]

  • That's How Heartaches Are Made (1963) Sue Records
  • Only Those In Love (1965) Sue Records
  • With You In Mind (1968) Veep Records (VPS 16528)
  • Lay A Little Lovin' On Me—duet album with Don Gardner (1973)
  • I Wanna Dance (1978) AVI Records (AVI 6038)

Compilation albums[edit]

  • I've Got A Feeling (June 2005) Released by Stateside Records [1] [Many songs featured are on CD for the first time with this release.]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Justine "Baby" Washington at Soulful Kinda Music
  2. ^ Baby Washington recorded several songs early in her career under the name "Jeanette Washington", which has led her to be confused with a younger funk vocalist who recorded under the same name. Early in her career, Washington also recorded a song as a member of The Jaynetts. Below are singles recorded under the name Jeanette Washington:
    • The Jaynetts (feat. Jeanette Washington & the Hearts): "I Wanted To Be Free" / "Where Are You Tonight" (1958 J&S, 1765/6)
    • Baby Washington: "The Time"/"You Never Could Be Mine" (1959, Neptune 101)
    • Jeanette B. Washington: "Medicine Man"/"Tears Fell" (August 1960, Neptune 120)
    • Jeanette (Baby) Washington: "Too Late"/"Move On" (December 1960, Neptune 121)
    • Jeanette (Baby) Washington (with background vocals by the De Vaurs): "Nobody Cares (About Me)"*/"Money's Funny" (March 1961, Neptune 122)
    • Jeanette (Baby) Washington: "Let Love Go By"/"My Time To Cry" (May 1961, ABC Paramount 10223)
    • Jeanette (Baby) Washington: "There You Go Again"/"Don't Cry, Foolish Heart" (September 1961, ABC Paramount 10245)
  3. ^ a b c Biography at MLC Cruises. Retrieved 18 January 2013
  4. ^ Prestatyn Soul Weekender: Historic highlights. Retrieved 18 January 2012
  5. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2003). Top Pop Singles 1955-2002 (1st ed.). Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin: Record Research Inc. p. 755. ISBN 0-89820-155-1.
  6. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1996). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-1995. Record Research. p. 468.
  7. ^ a b c d Billboard did not publish an R&B chart between November 1963 and January 1965

External links[edit]