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Taken from Toledo Blade (Sep 21, 2019)

Chaka Khan lights up Promenade Park

by Precious Fondren, The Blade

Chaka Khan lights up Promenade Park. PhotoCredit: THE BLADE/REBECCA BENSON

Legendary singer/songwriter Chaka Khan graced the Promenade Park stage in Toledo more beautiful and regal than ever before. When the first few notes of "Do You Love What You Feel?" played across the park, fans rushed back to their seats to capture a glimpse of the icon in action.

The queen of funk's performance closes out the 2019 ProMedica Summer Concert Series, and old and new fans alike couldn't wait for the songstress to hit the stage.

With beers in hand and cigarettes to share, fans stormed the park hours before Ms. Khan took the stage to mark their territory with lawn chairs and towels.

Denise Chaplan recalls the Saturday mornings when her mother used to play "Through the Fire" all throughout the house.

"That was the first song I ever heard from her," she said. "It's been my favorite song ever since."

Lareine Kemp was also introduced to Ms. Khan's music by her mother at 10 years old, a memory she'll never forget.

"I remember hearing "I'm Every Woman" all around the house," Ms. Kemp shared. "I'm looking forward to her show because she's a legend. She laid the groundwork for all the singers today."

As one of the most dynamic women in music ever, Ms. Khan has a career spanning nearly five decades. Earlier this year she released her 12th studio album, Hello Happiness.This was her first album since leaving rehab last year, deciding to go after the death of her close friend Prince.

Ms. Khan rose to fame in the 70s as the lead vocalist of Rufus, a band blending soul, funk,and rock together with songs like "Tell Me Something Good" and "Ain't Nobody."

As Rufus remained active, Ms. Khan launched her solo career with female empowerment anthem "I'm Every Woman" in 1978. It was 1984's "I Feel For You," written by Prince, that would solidify Ms. Khans' legacy in music forever.

Even if you weren't around at the height of Ms. Khan's career you probably grew up on her music. Such is true for Joy Stephenson.

"My parents are over 60, so that's how I heard her music," Ms. Stephenson said.

Like many others, Ms. Stephenson's favorite song is "Through The Fire" and she couldn't contain her excitement to hear it live.

"To me that song has transcend genres, you know?" she gushed. "Like when Kanye sampled her. It's always good to mix the old with the new, so I feel like she's just great music."


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