Candi Staton

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Candi Staton
Candigf (cropped).JPG
Staton, 2012
Canzetta Maria Staton

(1940-03-13) March 13, 1940 (age 82)[1][2][3][4]
  • Singer
  • songwriter
Joe Williams
(m. 1960; div. 1968)

(m. 1970; div. 1973)

Jimmy James
(m. 1974; div. 1977)

John Sussewell
(m. 1980; div. 1998)

(m. 2010; div. 2012)

Henry Hooper
(m. 2017)
Musical career
Years active1953–present

Canzetta Maria "Candi" Staton (/ˈsttən/, STAY-tən) (born March 13, 1940)[1][4][5][6][2] is an American singer–songwriter, best known in the United States for her 1970 remake of Tammy Wynette's "Stand by Your Man" and her 1976 disco chart-topper "Young Hearts Run Free". In Europe, Staton's biggest selling record is the anthemic "You Got the Love" from 1986, released in collaboration with the Source. Staton was inducted into the Christian Music Hall of Fame and is a four-time Grammy Award nominee.


Early life and career[edit]

Born in Hanceville, Alabama, Staton and her sister Maggie were sent to Nashville, Tennessee at around age 11 or 12 for school. While attending Jewell Christian Academy, Staton's vocal abilities were soon noticed by her peers and the school's pastor. Amazed by her voice, the pastor paired Staton and her sister with a third girl, Naomi Harrison, and they formed the Jewell Gospel Trio.[7] As teenagers, the group toured the traditional gospel circuit during the 1950s with the Soul Stirrers, C. L. Franklin and Mahalia Jackson.[8] They recorded several sides for Nashbro, Apollo and Savoy Records between 1953 and 1963.[citation needed]

Solo career[edit]

In 1968, Staton was introduced to Rick Hall by Clarence Carter and launched her solo career as a Southern soul stylist,[8] garnering 16 R&B hits for Rick Hall's Fame Studios and gaining the title of "First Lady of Southern Soul" for her Grammy-nominated R&B renditions of the songs "Stand by Your Man" and "In the Ghetto".[9] Staton appeared on the September 23, 1972, edition (Season 2, Episode 1) of Soul Train.

In 1976, Staton began collaborating with producer David Crawford on disco songs such as "Young Hearts Run Free", which reached No. 1 on the US R&B charts, No. 2 in the UK Singles Chart and went Top 20 on the Pop Hot 100[10] during the summer of 1976. It was remixed and re-released in 1986, reaching the UK Top 50.[10] Follow up song "Destiny" hit the Top 50 in the UK.[10] and her version of "Nights on Broadway" hit the UK Top 10 in 1977;.[10] In 1978, Staton scored another Top 50 hit in the UK with "Honest I Do Love You".[10] In 1979 from her album Chance, Staton released the single "When You Wake Up Tomorrow" (co-written by Patrick Adams and Wayne K. Garfield) and the title song "Chance", a top 20 R&B charted record. Other dance club chart hits included "When You Wake Up Tomorrow" and "Victim". In 1982, Staton again hit the UK chart with a version of Elvis Presley's "Suspicious Minds".[10][11]

In 1982, Staton returned to gospel music. Staton and her then-husband, John Sussewell, founded Beracah Ministries in Atlanta, Georgia, with help from Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker's PTL Ministries.[9] Staton has since recorded twelve gospel albums, two of which received Grammy Award nominations. Staton appears on the United Nations Register of Entertainers, Actors And Others Who Have Performed in Apartheid South Africa.[12]


In 1991, Staton returned to UK popular charts by lending her vocals to the Source's British hit, "You Got the Love".[13] Staton signed with Intersound Records in 1995. In 2000, she released her eleventh album, Here's a Blessing. In 2004, the British record label Honest Jon's released a compilation album of her soul work from the late 1960s and early 1970s, the self-titled Candi Staton. Staton followed it up with a secular project in 2006 entitled His Hands, produced by Mark Nevers of Lambchop and with the title track written by Will Oldham. Two of Staton's children, Cassandra Williams-Hightower (background vocals) and Marcus Williams (drums), joined her on the album. A second studio album for Honest Jon's, titled Who's Hurting Now?, appeared in 2009. She and Rick Hall reunited to make a half dozen more tracks for Staton's 2014 southern soul album, Life Happens. The lead Americana radio single, "I Ain't Easy to Love", featured Jason Isbell and John Paul White (formerly of The Civil Wars). The trio performed the track on The Late Show with David Letterman. Staton's television show New Direction aired on TBN. Staton has also made appearances on the Praise the Lord telecast with the late Paul Crouch and his late wife Jan Crouch, as well as regularly performing on Robert Tilton's Success-N-Life show.[11] In August 2018, Staton released her 30th album, "Unstoppable," which has been touted as a retro psychedelic R&B project. NPR music journalist, Alison Fensterstock, wrote that it, "Delivers the kind of forthright confidence and soul-girding power that can only be summoned by a grown woman who has learned a thing or two. And Staton has lived many lives. Creatively, the quadruple Grammy nominee and Christian Music Hall of Famer has moved between soul and R&B, gospel, disco and even EDM before returning to her roots as an elder stateswoman."[14]

Personal life[edit]

Staton has been married six times and has five children. Staton first married Pentecostal minister[15] Joe Williams from 1960 until 1968. Together they have four children: Marcus Williams, Marcel Williams, Terry Williams and Cassandra Williams-Hightower. In 1970, Staton married singer Clarence Carter and together they had one child; Clarence Carter Jr. They divorced in 1973. Staton was married to Jimmy James[which?] from 1974 until 1977. Two years after divorcing James, Staton married John Sussewell (who was a drummer for Ashford & Simpson and also Dory Previn's sixth album) in 1980, they divorced in 1998 after 18 years of marriage.[16] From 2010 until 2012, Staton was married to former baseball player Otis Nixon.[17] Staton has been married to Henry Hooper since 2017. On October 30, 2018, Staton announced that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer.[18][19]


Studio albums[edit]

  • I'm Just a Prisoner (1970)
  • Stand By Your Man (1971)
  • Candi Staton (1972)
  • Candi (1974)
  • Young Hearts Run Free (1976) UK No. 34[10]
  • Music Speaks Louder Than Words (1977)
  • House of Love (1978)
  • Chance (1979)
  • Candi Staton (1980)
  • Nightlites (1982)
  • Make Me an Instrument (1983)
  • The Anointing (1985)
  • Sing a Song (1986)
  • Love Lifted Me (1988)
  • Stand Up and Be a Witness (1990)
  • Standing on the Promises (1991)
  • I Give You Praise (1993)
  • It's Time! (1995)
  • Cover Me (1997)
  • Outside In (1999)
  • Here's a Blessing (2000)
  • Christmas in My Heart (2000)
  • Glorify (2001)
  • Proverbs 31 Woman (2002)
  • His Hands (2006)
  • I Will Sing My Praise to You (2008)
  • Who's Hurting Now? (Release: spring 2009)
  • Life Happens (2014)
  • It's Time to Be Free (2016)
  • Unstoppable (2018)


  • The best of Candi Staton Featuring Young Hearts Run Free (1995 Warner Archives) Originals (not re-recorded)
  • The Ultimate Gospel Collection (2006)
  • Evidence: The Complete Fame Records Masters (2011) – For the first time ever all 48 of the tracks she made for Rick Hall's label between 1969 and 1974 are together in one place. 22 have never been on CD before and 12 are previously unreleased.

Singles (non comprehensive)[edit]

  • "I'd Rather Be an Old Man's Sweetheart (Than a Young Man's Fool) (1969) R&B No. 9 US No. 46
  • "I'm Just a Prisoner (Of Your Good Lovin')" (1969) R&B No. 13 US No. 56
  • "Sweet Feeling" (1970) R&B No. 5 US No. 60
  • "Stand by Your Man" (1970) R&B No. 4 US No. 24
  • "He Called Me Baby" (1971) R&B No. 9 US No. 52
  • "In the Ghetto" (1972) R&B No. 12 US No. 48
  • "Do It in the Name of Love" (1973) R&B No. 17 US No. 80
  • "As Long as He Takes Care of Home" (1974) R&B No. 6 US No. 51
  • "Young Hearts Run Free" (1976) US No. 20 UK No. 2 R&B No. 1 (1986 re-release No. 47, 1999 re-release #29)
  • "Destiny" (1976) UK No. 41
  • "Nights on Broadway" (1977) UK No. 6 R&B No. 16 US No. 102
  • "Honest I Do Love You" (1978) UK No. 48 R&B No. 77
  • "Victim" (1978) R&B No. 17
  • "When You Wake Up Tomorrow" (1979) R&B No. 13
  • "Suspicious Minds" (1982) UK No. 31
  • "You Got the Love" (1986) UK No. 95 R&B No. 88
  • "You Got the Love" (The Source featuring Candi Staton – 1991) UK No. 4 (1997 re-release UK No. 3 (Now Voyager Mix), 2005 import release UK No. 60, 2006 "You Got the Love (New Voyager Mix)" (featuring Candi Staton – re-release) No. 7 UK)
  • "Love On Love" (1999) UK No. 27
  • "Young Hearts Run Free" (re-recording) (1999) UK No. 29
  • "I Just Can't Get to Sleep at All" (2000) Energise Records, UK; limited release
  • "Love Sweet Sound" Groove Armada featuring Candi Staton (2007)
  • "Wilder Side" Rasmus Faber & Alf Tumble featuring Candi Staton (2010)[10]
  • "Hallelujah Anyway" (2012)[20][21][22][23][24][25]
  • "It's Your Season (B.W.Ø Remix)" (2016)


  1. ^ a b "Candi Staton on Instagram: "My family surprised me for my birthday with a party, they kept this a secret for almost 2 weeks. How thankful I am that I have lived to see…"". Instagram. Archived from the original on December 26, 2021.
  2. ^ a b Carpenter, Bil (April 2, 2019). Uncloudy Days: The Gospel Music Encyclopedia. Hal Leonard Corporation. ISBN 9780879308414 – via Google Books.
  3. ^ Hardy, Phil (April 2, 1995). The Da Capo Companion to 20th-century Popular Music. Da Capo Press. ISBN 9780306806407 – via Google Books.
  4. ^ a b "Candi Staton | Biography & History". AllMusic.
  5. ^ Hildebrand, Lee (October 1, 1994). Stars of soul and rhythm & blues: top recording artists and showstopping performers, from Memphis and Motown to now. Billboard Books. ISBN 9780823076338 – via Internet Archive. candi staton 1943.
  6. ^ Taylor, Marc (April 2, 2019). A Touch of Classic Soul 2: The Late 1970s. Aloiv Pub. ISBN 9780965232876 – via Google Books.
  7. ^ "Candi Staton Stops at Nothing To Create". NPR.
  8. ^ a b from an interview on episode 191 of the Americana Music Show, published May 12, 2014.
  9. ^ a b "Divastation: Candi Staton". Archived from the original on January 12, 2008. Retrieved February 2, 2008.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 525. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  11. ^ a b "Candi Staton". Retrieved February 2, 2008.
  13. ^ Songfacts. "You Got The Love by Source featuring Candi Staton – Songfacts".
  14. ^ Christian Music Hall of Fame Archived December 25, 2009, at the Wayback Machine Staton inducted into the Christian Music Hall of Fame
  15. ^ Evidence:The Complete Fame Records Masters
  16. ^ "Candi Staton Page". March 13, 1943. Retrieved April 26, 2012.
  17. ^ Staton, Candi. "Candi Staton's Divorce from Otis Nixon". Archived from the original on April 21, 2013.
  18. ^ "Candi Staton diagnosed with breast cancer". BBC. October 30, 2018.
  19. ^ "Singer Candi Staton says she has breast cancer". October 30, 2018.
  20. ^ Resident Advisor. "RA: Larse". Resident Advisor. {{cite web}}: |last= has generic name (help)
  21. ^ "27th May – Essential Mix – Floorplan".
  22. ^ "Calvin Harris Takeover – Annie Mac Show (BBC Radio 1)". October 3, 2012.
  23. ^ "Release : "Hallelujah Anyway" by Candi Staton – MusicBrainz".
  24. ^ "Candi Staton Live Review: MIF 2011". Manchester Confidential.
  25. ^ "Tiesto – Club Life 284 : 09-09-2012". September 11, 2012. Archived from the original on December 22, 2017. Retrieved December 21, 2017.

External links[edit]