The Dixie Cups' Joan Marie Johnson Dead At 72
Wed, 12 Oct 2016 09:56:59
Joan Marie Johnson, of New Orleans pop trio The Dixie Cups, has passed away at the age of 72, reports The New York Times. "The cause was congestive heart failure; Johnson had also long-suffered from sickle cell anemia, according to former bandmate Barbara Ann Hawkins," reports Rolling Stone.
In 1964, the trio released their first single "Chapel of Love", which unseated The Beatles' "Love Me Do" from the top of the Billboard 100. The song was later featured in films Full Metal Jacket and Father of the Bride, and was also covered by the Beach Boys. Dixie Cups went on to release multiple other hits, including "Iko Iko" and "People Said".
The New York Times explains, "The Dixie Cups began when Ms. Johnson invited Barbara Ann Hawkins to sing with her in a high school talent show in New Orleans. "I was on my way to the grocery store and she stopped me and said, 'I heard you sing,'" Ms. Hawkins said.
"Barbara Ann's sister, Rosa Lee Hawkins, soon joined them. Ms. Johnson later discovered that the Hawkins sisters were her cousins. All had grown up in the city in the Calliope housing project." Johnson left the band only a few years after its formation due to her battle with sickle-cell anemia and frustration with management.
—The ARTISTdirect Staff