Taylor, Koko

Taylor, Koko, 1928–2009, African-American blues singer and songwriter, b. Bartlett, Tenn., as Cora Walton. Growing up, Taylor absorbed gospel music in church and the blues at local events. In 1952 she moved to Chicago and married Robert Taylor. A decade later she was discovered by bluesman Willie Dixon and signed by Chess records. A raucous, powerful, and passionate blues belter, she was widely known as “Queen of the Blues.” Her greatest hit, “Wang Dang Doodle,” was recorded in 1965. She won (1985) a Grammy, was inducted (1997) into the Blues Hall of Fame, and ran (1994–99) her own blues club.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Music: Popular and Jazz: Biographies