Loleatta Holloway

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Loleatta Holloway
Holloway in 1976
Holloway in 1976
Background information
BornNovember 5, 1946
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
DiedMarch 21, 2011(2011-03-21) (aged 64)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Years active1967–2011
Associated acts
WebsiteOfficial MySpace page

Loleatta Holloway (/lɒlˈtə/, lo-LEE-tə; November 5, 1946 – March 21, 2011) was an American singer known for disco songs such as "Hit and Run" and "Love Sensation". In December 2016, Billboard named her the 95th most successful dance artist of all time.[1] According to the Independent, Holloway is the most sampled female singer in popular music, used in house and dance tracks such as the 1989 single "Ride on Time".[2]


Holloway began singing gospel with her mother in the Holloway Community Singers in Chicago and recorded with Albertina Walker in the Caravans gospel group between 1967 and 1971.[3][4][5][6] Holloway was also a cast member of the Chicago troupe of Don't Bother Me, I Can't Cope. Around this time, she met her future producer, manager, and husband Floyd Smith, and recorded "Rainbow ’71" in 1971,[3] a Curtis Mayfield song that Gene Chandler had recorded in 1963. It was initially released on the Apache label, but was picked up for national distribution by Galaxy Records.

In the early 1970s, Holloway signed a recording contract with the Atlanta-based soul music label Aware, part of the General Recording Corporation (GRC), owned by Michael Thevis.[3] Holloway recorded two albums for the label, both of them produced by Floyd Smith — Loleatta (1973) and Cry to Me (1975). Her first single from the second album, the ballad, "Cry to Me" rose to No. 10 Billboard R&B and No. 68 on the Hot 100,[3] but before the label could really establish Holloway, it went out of business.

Top Philadelphia arranger and producer Norman Harris signed Holloway in 1976 for his new label, Gold Mind, a subsidiary of New York's Salsoul Records. The first release from the album Loleatta was another Sam Dees ballad, "Worn Out Broken Heart," which reached No. 25 R&B, but the B-side, "Dreaming," climbed to No. 72 on the pop chart and launched her as a disco act.[3][7]

She contributed vocals to "Relight My Fire" for Dan Hartman, who then wrote and produced the title track of her fourth and final album for Gold Mind, Love Sensation (1980). 18 of her songs charted on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart, including four #1s. However, it was a ballad that proved to be another big R&B hit for her. "Only You" was written and produced by Bunny Sigler, who also sang with Holloway on the track, and it reached No. 11 in 1978.

In the early 1980s, she had another dance hit with "Crash Goes Love" (#5 on the U.S. Dance chart, No. 86 on the US R&B Chart).[3] She also recorded one single, "So Sweet," for the fledgling house-music label DJ International Records. In the late 1980s, her vocals from "Love Sensation" were used in the UK No. 1 hit "Ride on Time" by Black Box. Holloway, however, was uncredited for her vocals.[8] She successfully sued the group, which led to an undisclosed court settlement in her favor.[2]

In 1992, she had a hit with dance band Cappella. There, she appeared billed as Cappella featuring Loleatta Holloway on the single "Take Me Away" (UK #25). Holloway's fortunes dramatically improved, however, when she had her first US No. 1 hit when Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch featured her vocals in the chart-topping "Good Vibrations" (1991). According to Andrew Barker in Variety (March 22, 2011), Holloway performed with Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch to promote the single and she received full vocal credit as well as a share of the royalties.[9] This was shortly after the backlash against various acts such as Milli Vanilli and the groups that used the vocals of Martha Wash, but refused to give her credit until she sued.

More recent dance chart entries included "Share My Joy" (Credited to "GTS Featuring Loleatta Holloway"), "What Goes Around Comes Around" (credited to "GTS Featuring Loleatta Holloway") in 2000, and "Relight My Fire" (credited to "Martin featuring Holloway"), which hit No. 5 in 2003. While not a single, "Like a Prayer", a Madonna cover, was a track on the Madonna tribute album Virgin Voices. The song "Love Sensation '06" and reached No. 37 on the UK Singles Chart.


Holloway died aged 64 on March 21, 2011, from heart failure. She was survived by her four children.[10][11][12]


Studio albums[edit]

Year Album Peak chart positions Record label

1973 Loleatta Aware
1975 Cry to Me 47
1977 Loleatta Gold Mind
1978 Queen of the Night 187 47
1979 Loleatta Holloway
1980 Love Sensation
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

Compilation albums[edit]

  • Greatest Hits (1996, The Right Stuff)
  • Queen of the Night: The Ultimate Club Collection (2001, Salsoul)
  • The Greatest Performance of My Life: The Best of Loleatta Holloway (2003, Salsoul)
  • The Anthology (2005, Suss'd)
  • A Tribute to Loleatta Holloway: The Salsoul Years (2013, Salsoul)
  • Dreamin': The Loleatta Holloway Anthology 1976–1982 (2014, Big Break)


Year Single Peak chart positions Album


1971 "Rainbow "71"" N/A
1973 "Part Time Lover, Full Time Fool" Loleatta (1973)
"Mother of Shame" 63
"Our Love" 43
1974 "H•e•l•p M•e M•y L•o•r•d" Cry to Me
1975 "Cry to Me" 68 10
"I Know Where You're Coming From" 69
1976 "Worn Out Broken Heart" 25 Loleatta (1977)
1977 "Dreamin'" 72 3
"Hit and Run" 56
"Ripped Off"
"We're Getting Stronger (The Longer We Stay Together)"
1978 "Only You" (with Bunny Sigler) 87 11 9 Queen of the Night
"I May Not Be There When You Want Me (But I'm Right on Time)"
"Catch Me On the Rebound" 92
1979 "That's What You Said" 30 Loleatta Holloway
1980 "Love Sensation" 1 Love Sensation
"I've Been Loving You Too Long"
1983 "Love Sensation" (re-release) 45 N/A
1984 "Crash Goes Love" 86 5
1992 "Strong Enough" 35
1993 "Love Sensation" (remix) 32
1994 "Stand Up!" 68
"The Queen's Anthem" 77
1995 "I Survived" 178
2000 "Chocolate Sensation" / "Ride On Time" (remix) 9
"Dreamin'" (remix) 1 59
2005 "Stand Up" (remix) 44
2006 "Love Sensation '06" 37
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

As featured performer[edit]

Year Title Artist Peak chart positions Album


1977 "Run Away" Salsoul Orchestra 84 3 Magic Journey
1982 "Seconds" 22 Heat It Up
1991 "Good Vibrations" Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch 1 64 10 14 Music for the People
"Take Me Away" Cappella 25 N/A
1994 "Keep the Fire Burnin'" Dan Hartman 49 Keep the Fire Burnin'
1998 "Shout to the Top" Fire Island 1 23 N/A
1999 "(You Got Me) Burnin' Up" Cevin Fisher 1 14
"No Apology" Love to Infinity 140
2000 "Share My Joy" GTS 5 Re-Birth 2
2001 "What Goes Around Comes Around" 3 01
2003 "Relight My Fire" Ricky Martin 5 N/A
"A Better World" AgeHa w/
Jocelyn Brown
3 Mix the Vibe: Past–Present–Future
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

Video games[edit]

TV series[edit]

  • Re-Micks (2011) – Herself (archive footage)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Greatest of All Time Top Dance Club Artists". Billboard.
  2. ^ a b "Loleatta Holloway: Much-sampled disco diva who sued Black Box over 'Ride on Time'". The Independent. March 2, 2011. Retrieved August 8, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Colin Larkin, ed. (1997). The Virgin Encyclopedia of Popular Music (Concise ed.). Virgin Books. p. 612. ISBN 1-85227-745-9.
  4. ^ Simmonds, Jeremy (2012). The Encyclopedia of Dead Rock Stars: Heroin, Handguns, and Ham Sandwiches. Chicago Review Press. ISBN 978-1-61374-478-9.
  5. ^ Arena, James (June 1, 2013). First Ladies of Disco: 32 Stars Discuss the Era and Their Singing Careers. McFarland. ISBN 978-0-7864-7581-0.
  6. ^ Bronson, Fred (2003). The Billboard Book of Number One Hits. Billboard Books. ISBN 978-0-8230-7677-2.
  7. ^ Leland, John (January 1988). Singles. SPIN Media LLC.
  8. ^ Laing, Dave (March 24, 2011). "Loleatta Holloway obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved November 22, 2015.
  9. ^ Barker, Andrew (March 22, 2011). "Loleatta Holloway, soul singer, dies". Variety.
  10. ^ Parales, Jon (March 23, 2011). "Loleatta Holloway, Gospel and Disco Singer, Is Dead at 64". The New York Times. p. A27.
  11. ^ "Soul singer Loleatta Holloway dies aged 64". New York Post. March 22, 2011. Retrieved November 22, 2015.
  12. ^ "Disco Diva Loleatta Holloway Has Died". Retrieved August 29, 2020.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h "US Charts > Loleatta Holloway". Billboard. Retrieved November 18, 2015.
  14. ^ a b "UK Charts > Loleatta Holloway". Official Charts Company. Retrieved November 19, 2015.

External links[edit]