Hopkins, Linda [Matthews, Helen Melinda]
- Howard Rye
[Matthews, Helen Melinda]
(b New Orleans, Nov 9, 1925; d Milwaukee, WI, April 10, 2017). American singer. From the ages of eight to 18 she was a member of the Southern Harp Spiritual Singers. After moving to Richmond, California, she performed in 1950 at Slim Jenkins’s club in Oakland, where she was noticed by Johnny Otis, with whom she made her first recordings in January 1951. Hopkins made further recordings under her own name in May 1951, 1953 (with Red Callender’s orchestra), 1954, 1956, and 1957. She was resident at the Baby Grand in Harlem in early 1957 and that June embarked on a nationwide tour with Arnett Cobb and his orchestra. In 1960 she was featured in the show Jazz Train, with which she toured the USA and Canada and then Europe, where it was known as Broadway Express; she recorded in Basel in April of that year. From 1960 to 1965...