She has a new solo recording out this month, At Last. Knight began her singing career at age 4. Since that modest start, she went on to lead one of the most successful vocal soul groups in America, Gladys Knight and The Pips. The group stayed together for 39 years before disbanding.Among, the group's most notable songs include: I Heard It Through The Grapevine, Neither One of Us, and Midnight Train to Georgia. Knight then launched a solo career. Terry interviewed Knight before a live audience in San Francisco in 1996.
In the 1960s she was a member of the girl group, The Ronettes. They were already making records with a different label when producer Phil Spector signed them and turned them into hit makers. Their songs include Be My Baby, Baby, I Love You, and Walking in the Rain. Ronnie married Phil Spector, but the marriage ended in divorce.
Ronstadt recently revealed that she has Parkinson's disease and can no longer sing. Her memoir, Simple Dreams, reflects on a long career. In this conversation with Fresh Air's Terry Gross, she offers frank insights on sex, drugs, and why "competition was for horse races."
This interview was originally broadcast on Sept. 17, 2013.