Fontella Bass, the singer who topped the R&B music charts in 1965 with her song “Rescue Me,” died Wednesday evening. She was 72.

Bass co-wrote "Rescue Me" with Raynard Miner and Carl William Smith. In addition to topping the R&B charts, the song reached #4 on the pop charts. Her success was short lived as she gained the reputation of being difficult to work with after haggling over the rights to the song, a fight that would last well into the 1980’s. In her later years, she would put out Gospel albums, such as 1995’s No Ways Tired.

Bass also came from a musically talented family. Her mother was Martha Bass, one of the Clara Ward Singers. Her brother was David Peaston, a noted R&B singer. He died in February of this year from diabetes at the age of 54.

Her husband, jazz trumpeter Lester Bowie, died in 1999. Bass is survived by her four children.

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