At the dawning of this new year, we have lost an incomparable artist and entertainer. LaMonte McLemore reminisces with me, “The 5th Dimension and Natalie Cole worked together on stage in my hometown of St. Louis in the ’80’s. Suddenly, a large gust of wind came from nowhere, knocking every bit of sheet music off the stands–even some of the musician’s stowed away hot dogs hit the deck–but we all laughed about it and still had a great time! Natalie was a very kind person.” Former 5th member Joyce Wright Pierce adds, “I recall it was at the Gateway Arch on fourth of July, and it was magical! Natalie was as humble as it gets.” LaMonte continues, “Back in the day, I not only took her dad, Nat King Cole’s photograph for JET magazine, but daughter and Natalie’s sister, Carole “Cookie” Cole’s, for her cotillion. And who should show up for that event, to pay respects, but President Kennedy! I look back on the Cole family with the fondest of memories.”
Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr. posted on Twitter:
Another Great Talent gone from us. RIP Natalie in the arms of our Lord.
Love you, Billy & Marilyn
I’d like to personally share that it was Natalie Cole’s self-penned liner notes for the “Unforgettable…with Love” project and the tone of her autobiography, “Angel on My Shoulder” that greatly inspired both the style of my liners for “The Ultimate 5th Dimension” CD and my co-authorship of LaMonte’s memoir, “From Hobo Flats to The 5th Dimension.” Like with her singing, Natalie’s writing was elegant yet down to earth–real, witty, and even “cozy”…she talked to “one person at a time,” truly bringing us in. I want to remember these beautifully transcendent attributes here at FOREVER 5th DIMENSION, not only her musical influence but the literary muse she was for me. Ms. Cole’s spirit of excellence is eternal, forever in our hearts…as we now look “Up-Up and Away, ” toward heaven itself.
Biographer, The Original 5th Dimension and LaMonte McLemore