Jean Knight, “Mr. Big Stuff” Singer, Dies at 80

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Jean Knight, the New Orleans soul singer who topped the R&B chart in 1971 with her Stax Records single “Mr. Big Stuff,” has died. Knight’s family confirmed the news in a statement. She was 80.

Knight’s recording career began in the 1960s with a series of singles on the labels Tribe and Jetstream, including a 1965 recording of Jackie Wilson’s “Stop Doggin’ Me Around.” Her big breakthrough, “Mr. Big Stuff,” was one of the best-selling singles in Stax’s storied history.

While she continued to release singles throughout the ’70s, her next hit was a 1985 recording of the zydeco standard “My Toot Toot.” She was inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2007. Knight served on the Louisiana Music Commission and, according to her family’s statement, she “loved cooking delicious Creole dishes for family and friends.”

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