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30 September 2020 08:31

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Helen Reddy: Australian singer of feminist anthem I Am Woman dies

Helen Reddy: Australian singer of feminist anthem I Am Woman dies Published duration 1 hour ago image copyright Getty Images image caption Helen Reddy shot to fame in the 1970s Helen Reddy, the Australian singer behind feminist anthem I Am Woman, has died aged 78. Reddy died on Tuesday in Los Angeles, her family said in a statement on Facebook. Her children Traci Donat and Jordan Sommers described her as a "wonderful mother, grandmother, and a truly formidable woman". Reddy, who had Addison's disease and was diagnosed with dementia in 2015, spent the last years of her life in a celebrity care home in Los Angeles. She had a string of pop-rock hits in the 1970s, but is best known for the 1972 anthem I Am Woman - which became prominent in the women's liberation movement.

image copyright Getty Images image caption Helen Reddy became a feminist icon for her trailblazing song A sleeper hit, it went on to sell millions of copies worldwide, making Reddy the biggest-selling female artist globally for two years running. But it was her second hit, I Am Woman, which catapulted her to international fame and became a defining song for a generation of women. Among those to pay tribute on Wednesday was Unjoo Moon, who directed a biopic about Reddy - titled I Am Woman - which was released earlier this year. "She paved the way for so many and the lyrics that she wrote for I Am Woman changed my life forever like they have done for so many other people and will continue to do for generations to come," Moon said. Actress Jamie Lee Curtis shared a clip of Reddy singing her anthem at a Women's March protest in Los Angeles in 2017, part of global rallies which directed anger at US President Donald Trump.

image copyright Getty Images image caption Reddy with celebrities including Jamie Lee Curtis at a Women's March in 2017 She hosted a season of the Helen Reddy Show on NBC TV in 1973, and a year later was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Helen Reddy, who shot to stardom in the 1970s with her feminist anthem "I Am Woman" and recorded a string of other hits, had died. Reddy's children Traci and Jordan announced that the actress-singer died Tuesday in Los Angeles "She was a wonderful Mother, Grandmother and a truly formidable woman" they said in a statement. The Australian-born singer enjoyed a prolific career, appearing in "Airport 1975" as a singing nun and scoring several hits, including "I Don't Know How To Love Him" from "Jesus Christ Superstar," "Ain't No Way To Treat a Lady," "Delta Dawn," "Angie Baby" and "You and Me Against the World." Two years later she won the best female vocal pop performance Grammy Award for "I Am Woman," quickly thanking her then-husband and others in her acceptance speech. "I only have 10 seconds so I would like to thank everyone from Sony Capitol Records, I would like to think Jeff Wald because he makes my success possible and I would like to thank God because she makes everything possible," Reddy said, hoisting her Grammy in the air and leaving the stage to loud applause.

Reddy's death comes less than three weeks after the release of a biopic about her life called I Am Woman. Helen Reddy, the singer best-known for feminist anthem I Am Woman, has died aged 78, her family said. Australia-born Reddy died in Los Angeles on Tuesday, according to a statement. "It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved mother," the singer's daughters, Traci and Jordan, said. Australian singer Helen Reddy has died at the age of 78, her family said in a statement (Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File) Her other hits include Ain't No Way To Treat A Lady, Delta Dawn, Angie Baby and You And Me Against The World.

But it was I Am Woman for which Reddy is best known. The song became a feminist anthem and won her the best female vocal pop performance Grammy in 1973. I Am Woman was also the name of the biopic about Reddy's life, which was released in Australia last month. Thank you Helen for teaching me to be stong & invincible as an artist a woman & a mother. The lyrics that you wrote for #Iamwoman changed my life like they have done for so many people and will continue to do for generations to come #RIPHelenReddy pic.twitter.com/utuoGa71ky — Unjoo Moon (@unjoomoon) September 30, 2020 She said: "Thank you Helen for teaching me to be strong & invincible as an artist a woman & a mother.

"The lyrics that you wrote for #Iamwoman changed my life like they have done for so many people and will continue to do for generations to come." In her tribute, actress Jamie Lee Curtis said introducing Reddy at the 2017 Women's March in Los Angeles was the "honour of my life". A message posted by the official Twitter account of 1970s R&B group The Pointer Sisters said: "We are so sad to hear that #HelenReddy has passed away. Helen Reddy's ex-husband Jeff Wald has broken his silence following her death at the age of 78. The Australian singer - who was best-known for her hit I Am Woman - died following a battle with dementia after being diagnosed five years ago. And now film producer Jeff, who was married to the feminist icon from 1966 until 1983, has released a statement on Twitter following his ex-wife's passing. He tweeted: "I am v sad to announce that my first wife of 18 years and the mother of my two oldest Traci & Jordan. Helen's death was confirmed by her children Traci Donat and Jordan Sommers in a joint statement on the star's official Facebook page. "It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved mother, Helen Reddy, on the afternoon of September 29th 2020 in Los Angeles," the family wrote. "She was a wonderful Mother, Grandmother and a truly formidable woman. Helen went on to become the world's top-selling female singer in 1973 and then again in 1974. The singer was also well-known for her hits Delta Dawn and Ain't No Way To Treat A Lady. Australian music legend Helen Reddy has sadly passed away today in Los Angeles. Reddy's children, Traci and Jordan, confirmed the news via a statement on the 'Helen Reddy Official Fan Page' on Facebook. "It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved mother, Helen Reddy, on the afternoon of September 29th 2020 in Los Angeles," they wrote. "She was a wonderful Mother, Grandmother and a truly formidable woman. Statement from Traci and JordanIt is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved mother, Helen… Posted by Helen Reddy Official Fan Page on Tuesday, September 29, 2020 "Helen was as proud of Traci and Jordan as any mother could ever be of their children," Keaton wrote. "I am so very thankful to Traci and Jordan for sharing their mother with me," he continued. The trailblazing artist and feminist icon, most famous for her 1972 hit 'I Am Woman', was diagnosed with dementia in 2015 and moved into the Motion Picture and Television Fund's Samuel Goldwyn Center, a nursing home for retired talent in Los Angeles. Also famous for other hits like 'Delta Dawn', 'Leave Me Alone (Red Ruby Dress)' and 'You and Me Against the World', Reddy's life was immortalised last year in a biopic titled I Am Woman, directed by Unjoo Moon and starring Tilda Cobham-Hervey. The biopic, which became available to watch in Australia on Stan earlier this year, marked notable moments in Reddy's long career, including her famous GRAMMYs acceptance speech, where she thanked God "because she makes everything possible".

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