EXPIRED: 09/22/11 – Vesta Williams, 53, was the the daughter of a disc jockey, so of course music was in her blood. In 1977, she sang in the girl group Wild Honey but left her home in Ohio to give it a go in LA as a session singer, and got work singing backup for Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight, Stephanie Mills, Gordon Lightfoot, Bobby Womack, The Commodores, Jermaine Jackson, Ray Parker, Jr., and Anita Baker.
Her reputation got her signed to A&M Records, who released her debut album, Vesta, in 1986. It gave her a Top 10 R&B hit “Once Bitten, Twice Shy”, which was all about vampires, strangely.
Top 10 R&B hits included “Sweet Sweet Love,” “Congratulations” and “Special,” although she never made it past #55 on the Hot 100 charts.
Subsequent albums, Vesta 4 U, Special, Everything-N-More, and 1998’s Relationships were modest successes but she was dropped by her label in 2000.
After being dropped from her label Williams went into a deep depression and filled the hole with food. She ballooned to a size 26. Thinking that her image was the problem, not her voice, she went on a crazy diet regime in the late 2000’s and dropped back to a size 6.
Her last recording was “Dedicated,” released via YouTube in 2010. Her label was not very dedicated to promoting it and it died a quick death.
Less than a year later, Williams was found dead in a hotel room in El Segundo, California, the victim of an accidental drug overdose.