Anita Baker

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About Anita Baker

One of the leading figures of the Quiet Storm movement, Anita Baker brings sophistication, emotion, and powerhouse vocals to every song she sings. Born in Toledo, OH, in 1958, Baker grew up in Detroit, where she sang in a gospel choir while listening to vocal greats like Sarah Vaughan and Ella Fitzgerald. She joined the soul group Chapter 8 in 1975, and although they were successful in Detroit, they had an abortive record-business experience that led to Baker turning away from music for a while. Eventually Otis Smith, a legendary R&B executive who had worked with Chapter 8, approached Baker about recording for his upstart label, and she released her debut full-length, The Songstress, in 1983. That got the attention of Elektra Records, which signed her and issued her breakout album, Rapture, in 1986. Rapture combined Baker’s delivery with lush production on romance-minded tracks like “Sweet Love” and “Caught Up In the Rapture,” establishing her as one of R&B’s superstar ’80s vocalists. She built on that reputation with the albums that followed, including 1988’s Giving You the Best That I Got and 1994’s Rhythm of Love. Contract disputes and studio setbacks limited Baker’s recorded output until 2004, when she released the concert album A Night of Rapture Live and the studio album My Everything; in the years since, she’s toured tirelessly, playing festivals like the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival as well as more intimate theaters, asserting her vocal power and passion to audiences around the world.

Toledo, OH, United States
January 26, 1958
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