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Linda Ronstadt

With roots in the Los Angeles country and folk-rock scenes, Linda Ronstadt became one of the most popular interpretive singers of the '70s, earning a string of platinum-selling albums and Top 40 singles. Throughout the '70s, her laid-back pop never lost sight of her folky roots, yet as she moved into the '80s, she began to change her sound with the times, adding new wave influences. After a brief flirtation with pre-rock pop, Ronstadt settled into a pattern of adult contemporary pop and Latin albums, sustaining her popularity in both fields.

While Ronstadt was a student at Arizona State University, she met guitarist Bob Kimmel. The duo moved to Los Angeles, where guitarist/songwriter Kenny Edwards joined the pair. Calling themselves the Stone Poneys, the group became a leading attraction on California's folk circuit, recording their first album in 1967. The band's second album, Evergreen, Vol. 2, featured the Top 20 hit "Different Drum," which was written by Michael Nesmith. After recording one more album with the group, Ronstadt left for a solo career at the end of 1968.

Ronstadt's first two solo albums -- Hand Sown Home Grown (1969) and Silk Purse (1970) -- accentuated her country roots, featuring several honky tonk numbers. Released in 1971, her self-titled third album was a pivotal record in her career. Featuring a group of session musicians who would later form the Eagles, the album was a softer, more laid-back variation of the country-rock she had been recording. With the inclusion of songs from singer/songwriters like Jackson Browne, Neil Young, and Eric Anderson, Linda Ronstadt had folk-rock connections as well. Don't Cry Now, released in 1973, followed the same formula to greater success, yet it was 1974's Heart Like a Wheel that perfected the sound, making Ronstadt a star. Featuring the hit covers "You're No Good," "When Will I Be Loved," and "It Doesn't Matter Anymore," Heart Like a Wheel reached number one and sold over two million copies.

Released in the fall of 1975, Prisoner in Disguise followed the same pattern as Heart Like a Wheel and was nearly as successful. Hasten Down the Wind, released in 1976, suggested a holding pattern, even if it charted higher than Prisoner in Disguise. Simple Dreams (1977) expanded the formula by adding a more rock-oriented supporting band, which breathed life into the Rolling Stones' "Tumbling Dice" and Warren Zevon's "Poor Poor Pitiful Me." The record became the singer's biggest hit, staying on the top of the charts for five weeks and selling over three million copies. With Living in the U.S.A. (1978), Ronstadt began experimenting with new wave, recording Elvis Costello's "Alison"; the album was another number one hit. On 1980's Mad Love, she made a full-fledged new wave record, recording three Costello songs and adopting a synth-laden sound. While the album was a commercial success, it signaled that her patented formula was beginning to run out of steam. That suspicion was confirmed with 1982's Get Closer, her first album since Heart Like a Wheel to fail to go platinum.

Sensing it was time to change direction, Ronstadt starred in the Broadway production of Gilbert & Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance, as well as the accompanying movie. Pirates of Penzance led the singer to a collaboration with Nelson Riddle, who arranged and conducted her 1983 collection of pop standards What's New. While it received lukewarm reviews, it was a considerable hit, reaching number three on the charts and selling over two million copies. Ronstadt's next two albums -- Lush Life (1984) and For Sentimental Reasons (1986) -- were also albums of pre-rock standards recorded with Riddle.

At the end of 1986, Ronstadt returned to contemporary pop, recording "Somewhere Out There," the theme to the animated An American Tail, with James Ingram; the single became a number two hit. She also returned to her country roots in 1987, recording the Trio album with Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris. That same year, Ronstadt recorded Canciones de Mi Padre, a set of traditional Mexican songs that became a surprise hit. Two years later, she recorded Cry Like a Rainstorm - Howl Like the Wind -- her first contemporary pop album since 1982's Get Closer. Featuring four duets with Aaron Neville, including the number two hit "Don't Know Much," the album sold over two million copies.

Ronstadt returned to traditional Mexican and Spanish material with Mas Canciones (1991) and Frenesi (1992). She returned to pop with 1994's Winter Light, which failed to generate a hit single, as did 1995's Feels Like Home. In 1996, she released the children's album Dedicated to the One I Love; We Ran followed in 1998. Two years later, Ronstadt delivered the holiday collection A Merry Little Christmas. Another collection of standards, Hummin' to Myself, arrived in 2004, followed by Adieu False Heart, a collaboration with Ann Savoy of the Savoy-Doucet Cajun Band in 2006.

As it turned out, Adieu False Heart would be Ronstadt's last studio album. She supported it with a tour in 2007, including an appearance at the Newport Folk Festival, and although it didn't rise above 146 on the Billboard charts, it did receive a Grammy nomination for Best Traditional Folk Album. In 2010, she appeared on the Chieftains San Patricio album, but a year later, she told the Arizona Daily Star she was retired. Three years later, she published her autobiography Simple Dreams: A Musical Memoir and, in its pre-release publicity, Ronstadt confessed that she had Parkinson's disease, explaining that it was a factor in her retirement. Early in 2014, she was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame; although she wasn't able to attend, an inter-generational all-star group performed in her honor, including Emmylou Harris, Stevie Nicks, Bonnie Raitt, Sheryl Crow, and Carrie Underwood. Around the time of her induction, the compilation Duets was released on Rhino. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography


wild about your lovin stone poneys
Dise q soy una ilusa. De la bida loca y boy a seguir. Adelante de buy contodo y con tra la jente. Q me humilla. Y cómo. Dijo jeni. Ribera q también. Tenemos derecho. Q tiene. Los ovario y y los q el no cree. En mi soy mas mujer. Q el se de donde bengo y no meda vergüenza. Y grasias donde. Estuve. Comiendo con mis hijos. A riba esta el ma s grande. Q se q el Comfia. En mi
you ,only you..
I have this weeping in my heart ,for you, only you.
My favorite female singer. She's beautiful and her voice is amazing
voice so sweet, face so pretty. love to love Linda Ronstadt
gosh i hate to break it to you but she never reads listener comments. too many people have been rude over the years, probably because they wanted harder music. or something stupid.
but she wont be here to read your comments... sorry
I love Canciones de mi Padre!!!! I sing along with you every time one of these remarkable songs are sung by only you! Thank you, Linda!!
My greatest regret Linda: I didn't hear you live. I'm forever a fan!
I have her full circle of music in vinyl. & cd s .i especially like her voice w the Nelson Riddle orchestra & her Mexican songs. Take care Lady .
My prayers are with you Linda. I was raised on your amazing superb voice and I'm glad you have left this legacy of great songs. God bless you my dear! Love you!
So sad
luciluandsis s i 2
Linda is one of the best ever and I was so saddened when I heard of the Parkinson's and could not sing no more. I love here 2 pieces and forever hold her close 2 my heart and hope she is coping and also thrilled that she supports the LGBTQ community. I love u dearly Linda and pray 4 u and your children.
I love Linda Ronstadt She is the best singer of all time I love her voice She is #1!!!
Agree, She sings Desperado much better than Eagles, such a good voice!
and her Desperado is the BEST.
Love Linda's music. Her take on Little Feat's Willing is just about the best road song ever...
Love Ms. Ronstadt! A voice like no other ever! Super talented!
One of the Great Ones.
Big fan. From the 60's thru to the 2000's. Always enjoy listening to her.
Her Songs, Her Voice, Her Expressive Ways of
Interpretati o n ... No One Like Her, in this GENERATION.

Muy bonita voz
Linda was actually from Tucson, she went to Catalina High School and her family is still a big part of Tucson! Get it right!
Que Siempre VIVA La Mujer, Que VIVA Linda, she Has Crossed and Set Barriers from WOMEN of All Colors. Dios Te Bendiga MUJER, Con Todo Mi Respecto, Elizabet
I Would Like to see Linda Singing an Mexican Charreada an Big Mariachi ImShure My People Will Like herThe Way she is Doing it, personalOpin i o n S h e i s D O I N G G O O D O U R L O L A B E L T R A N I S G O I N G F O R E V E R WeHaveGreatV o i s e s b u t n o o n e W a n t T o S i n g T h i s K i n d O f M u s i c S o n e s c o u s e A r e N o t E a s y T o S i n g T h e m , , a UmbleMexican O p i n i o n , ,
I've had a crush on Linda since I first heard her in 1967. Stay strong Linda, your fans still love you!
Linda el toro Relajo y La charreada is a Big Test for a good singer & you R TheBest Linda you R In The Rigth Track I Would LikeTo hear More Songs Like ThoseOnes A (((100% MEXICAN COMMENT)))
Esta mujer canta muy bonito está si es artista y con esta rolota mucho mejot
I'll always remember laying on my moms green shag carpet,playi n g on repeatplay blue bayou on vinyl l.p. on my dads old wooden console with mom in the background singin.I remember was so proud to find out all this time she was a latina,wow whatt a heavenly voice,bless you always,i know you dislike mp3s.and i totally agree.
I would sing blue bayou,and when my sister left my side to get married .I do
don't know, but I never trusted him for some reason.
I remember belting out When Will I Be Loved on road trips with my mom as a kid. Allentown PA to Burlington VT. Summers at grandaddy's. Fishing in Lake Champlain. Winters in Stowe. The harpsichord at Duncan Mcdonald's house and Mrs. Von Trapp telling us stories. Long ago but the music brings it all back like yesterday :-)
Linda , you had my heart when you sang Blue Bayou. Congrats on your induction to the Rock and Roll hall of fame . I was very touched when Emmylou, Stevie ,Bonnie Sheryl and Carrie sang a tribute to you. I also love your album Canciones de mi Padre. I'LL say a prayer for your battle with Parkinson's.
One of my favorito Song Ever by

Ronstadt id blue bayou
HOF Baby!!! About Damn Time!!!!!!
Take a good look at my face....��
I'm am a mature adult woman (70) with my almost 73 husband, May 7th, married 51 years in Aug. in Green Valley sitting on my small back patio enjoying your beautiful music. Stop by some will always be in our hearts. Hugs
Cantas Bonito
simply the best !! congrats finally !!! newest RRHOF member !
Well derseved inductee to the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. Just an angelic and harmonious voice!
Thank you for all the wonderful music Linda!! Keep strong in your battle.
My idea of heaven is to have you, Dolly, and sweet Emmy Lou sing to me forever..... . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Her ROOTS are Tucson, AZ.
She still takes me to a place in the Universe where there is no pain or sorrow. I miss her SO MUCH.
Viva la Mexicana
Beautiful harmony and song!
What can I say that hasn't been said. Look at those eyes .I DO LOVE HER
Where is the Love This Artist icon? I Like This Artist is terribly insufficient for someone like Linda Ronstadt.
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