59 Facts About Chaka Khan


Chaka Khan's career has spanned more than five decades, beginning in the 1970s as the lead vocalist of the funk band Rufus.


Chaka Khan has won ten Grammy Awards and has sold an estimated 70 million records worldwide.


Chaka Khan has collaborated with Steve Winwood, Ry Cooder, Robert Palmer, Ray Charles, Quincy Jones, Guru, Chicago, De La Soul, Mary J Blige, Ariana Grande, among others.


In 2023, Chaka Khan was picked as an inductee in the Musical Excellence category.


Chaka Khan was raised in the Hyde Park area, "an island in the middle of the madness" of Chicago's rough South Side housing projects.


Chaka Khan's only brother, Mark, who formed the funk group Jamaica Boys and was a member of Aurra, became a successful musician.


Chaka Khan has two other sisters, Zaheva Stevens and Tammy McCrary.


Chaka Khan attended the elementary school of Saint Thomas the Apostle Church in Hyde Park.


Chaka Khan attributed her love of music to her grandmother, who introduced her to jazz as a child.


Chaka Khan became a fan of rhythm and blues music as a preteen and at eleven formed a girl group, the Crystalettes, which included her sister Taka.


Chaka Khan began to perform in small groups around the Chicago area, first performing with Cash McCall's group Lyfe, which included her then-boyfriend Hassan Khan.


From 1974 to 1979, Rufus released six platinum-selling albums including Rufusized, Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan, Ask Rufus, Street Player and Masterjam.


Chaka Khan has been noted for being an instrumentalist playing drums and bass; she provided percussion during her tenure with Rufus.


In 1979, Chaka Khan reunited with Rufus to collaborate on the Jones-produced Masterjam, which featured their hit "Do You Love What You Feel", which Chaka Khan sang with Tony Maiden.


In 1980, while Rufus released Party 'Til You're Broke, again without Chaka Khan, she released her second solo album, Naughty, which featured her on the cover with her six-year-old daughter Milini.


Also in 1980, Chaka Khan had a cameo appearance as a church choir soloist in The Blues Brothers starring John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd.


Chaka Khan released two albums in 1981, the Rufus release, Camouflage and the solo album What Cha' Gonna Do for Me.


In 1984, Chaka Khan released her sixth studio album, I Feel for You.


Chaka Khan's version featured a harmonica solo by Stevie Wonder and an introductory rap by Grandmaster Melle Mel.


Chaka Khan was featured in Steve Winwood's 1986 number-one hit, "Higher Love".


Chaka Khan was still credited for the vocal arrangements in the album's liner notes, and the song became an international hit.


Chaka Khan followed up the success of the I Feel For You album with 1986's Destiny and 1988's CK.


Chaka Khan found more success in the late 1980s with a remix album, Life Is a Dance: The Remix Project, which reached the top ten on the British albums chart.


Around this time, Chaka Khan did a duet with Peter Cetera on the song "Feels Like Heaven," which was a minor success.


Chaka Khan contributed to soundtracks and worked on a follow-up to The Woman I Am she titled Dare You to Love Me, which was eventually shelved.


In 1998, Chaka Khan signed a contract with Prince's NPG Records label and issued Come 2 My House, followed by the single "Don't Talk 2 Strangers", a cover of a 1996 Prince song.


Chaka Khan later went on a tour with Prince as a co-headlining act.


Chaka Khan covered "Little Wing" with Kenny Olson on the album Power of Soul: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix.


In 2006, Chaka Khan was a featured vocalist on Arif Mardin's All My Friends Are Here album of his life's work, appearing in the companion documentary The Greatest Ears In Town.


Chaka Khan performed a jazz vocal for "So Blue", composed by Mardin in the '60s with lyrics written for the project by Roxanne Seeman.


The album was notable for Chaka Khan's covers of Dee Dee Warwick's "Foolish Fool" and Prince's "Sign o' the Times".


In 2008, Chaka Khan participated in the Broadway adaptation of The Color Purple playing Ms.


In December 2004, Khan was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Music from Berklee College of Music during the inauguration of its president, Roger H Brown.


In 2009, Chaka Khan was guest singer with the song "Alive" on jazz drummer Billy Cobham's album Drum ' n voice 3.


Chaka Khan continues to perform to packed audiences both in her native United States and overseas.


On May 19,2011, Chaka Khan was given the 2,440th Hollywood Walk of Fame star plaque on a section of Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles.


Chaka Khan's family was present when the singer accepted the honor, as was Stevie Wonder, who had written her breakout hit "Tell Me Something Good".


On December 6,2012, Chaka Khan performed at a benefit for the Israeli Defense Forces.


Chaka Khan performed at Millennium Park's Pritzker Pavilion on the 28th.


Chaka Khan later went on to promote the single on the Ellen show.


Chaka Khan served as Grand Marshal in the 2019 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade on January 1,2019, in Pasadena, California.


In October 2019, Chaka Khan was an honoree at Variety's "Power of Women" luncheon for supporting Little Kids Rock.


In November 2019, Chaka Khan collaborated with Ariana Grande on the song "Nobody" from the soundtrack Charlie's Angels.


In 2020, Chaka Khan competed in season 3 of The Masked Singer as "Miss Monster".


Chaka Khan was eliminated and unmasked in the third episode.


Chaka Khan was invited to sing the National Anthem at the 2020 NBA All-Star Game.


Chaka Khan's rendition was heavily criticized on Twitter, drawing comparisons to Fergie's rendition in 2018.


In May 2021, Chaka Khan appeared at the season 19 American Idol finale, where she performed a medley of her hits alongside the contestants.


In June 2021, Chaka Khan joined YouTuber and performer Todrick Hall on his album Femuline for the song "Fabulosity".


In November 2021, Chaka Khan participated in a Verzuz battle with singer Stephanie Mills, at which both singers performed hits from their discography.


In July 2022, Chaka Khan announced her new single "Woman Like Me", which was released on July 29.


Chaka Khan has been married twice and has two children, daughter Indira Milini and son Damien Holland.


Chaka Khan lived in Germany for a while "in a little village in the Rhine Valley" and in Mannheim.


Chaka Khan is vegan, saying she adopted the diet to lose weight and combat high blood pressure and Type-2 diabetes.


Chaka Khan had an on-and-off struggle with alcoholism until 2005, declaring herself sober.


Chaka Khan was acquitted in the criminal trial and found liable in the civil suit.


Chaka Khan was featured in a 2013 episode of Celebrity Ghost Stories where she told the story of a shadow man who followed her on tour for years, until she met a guardian angel who admonished her to change her life or die.


Chaka Khan was inducted as an honorary member of Zeta Phi Beta sorority in November 2020.


Chaka Khan has received 22 Grammy Award nominations, including three as a member of Rufus.