Still very much an integral part of Rufus, Chaka Khan set the charts on fire with her debut solo release. The first single was the R&B chart-topper "I'm Every Woman," an Ashford & Simpson track with Khan lighting up the lyric with her tantalizing vocals. Although Khan had much credibility from her association with Rufus, this album demonstrated that the dynamic vocalist could hold her own ground alone.
Two singles were released from Chaka, the first being her anthemic solo debut "I'm Every Woman", one of Khan's signature tunes alongside "Ain't Nobody" (1983) and "I Feel For You" (1984). The song has over the past three decades been re-released, remixed and covered a number of times, most notably by Whitney Houston in 1992 for the soundtrack album The Bodyguard, then featuring guest vocals by Khan herself and topping Billboard's Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart. A remix of Khan's original recording was also a Top Ten hit in the U.K. in 1989. The remix was included on the compilation Life is a Dance - The Remix Project, the title track of which was the second single release from the Chaka album in early 1979 (US R&B #40). The album also features the ballad "Roll Me Through the Rushes", never commercially released as a single but still receiving considerable airplay in 1979, as well as Khan's cover version of Stevie Wonder's "I Was Made To Love Her", re-titled "I Was Made to Love Him".
Following the release of the Chaka album Khan reunited with Rufus for the recording of 1979's Masterjam, produced by Quincy Jones. Her second solo album Naughty followed in 1980.