New Orleans blues and gospel singer Marva Wright passed away March 23, 2010 from complications from a 2009 stroke. She was 62. She came into prominence in the 1980s and became known as the "Blues Queen of New Orleans". She recorded and toured frequently, and won over audiences in the US and Europe with her energy-filled performance and her kind personality.
Although she made a career out of music late in life, Wright actually began to sing nine years old. Like many artists, her first public singing efforts were heard in church, with her mother as her accompanist.
Later in life, she credited her mother, a piano player and singer in a gospel quartet, as one of her main influences. Mahalia Jackson, the esteemed gospel singer, was an early friend of the family. Early in 1989 during a live set at Tipitina's in New Orleans, Wright made her first recording, "Mama, He Treats Your Daughter Mean." She made her debut on national television in 1991 when her hometown was the setting for a special that revolved around the Super Bowl.
She has sung backup for such artists as Allen Toussaint, Glen Campbell, and Joe Cocker. The long list of others Wright has performed with includes Harry Connick Jr., Bobby McFerrin, Aaron Neville, Fats Domino, Lou Rawls, and Marcia Ball.