Helen Reddy Dead At 78
Helen Reddy, the Australian singer best known for her feminist anthem “I Am Woman,” has died. In a statement on Facebook, her children write, “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. She was a wonderful Mother, Grandmother and a truly formidable woman. Our hearts are broken. But we take comfort in the knowledge that her voice will live on forever.” Reddy was 78.
Born in Melbourne in 1941, Reddy began singing publicly at age 4. By 1966, she won an Australian TV singing contest called Bandstand. After stints living in Chicago and Los Angeles, her career began to build steam, and by the ’70s she was scoring big hits around the world. In the US she topped the Billboard Hot 100 three times, with “I Am Woman” sandwiched by a 1972 cover of Tanya Tucker’s “Delta Dawn” and 1974’s “Angie Baby.” At the peak of her fame she hosted the variety program The Helen Reddy Show on American TV. She later acted in movies and TV and became a musical theater mainstay in the ’80s.
Reddy retired from showbiz in 2002 but made a brief comeback within the past decade before being diagnosed with dementia in 2015. In her last public appearance, she sang “I Am Woman” at the women’s march in 2017. The trailer for a Reddy biopic called I Am Woman was released last month.