Ledisi Pays Tribute to Diana Ross

Come Saturday, believe it or not, Diana Ross will receive her first ever Grammy Award. Despite receiving a number of nominations over the years, the “Supreme” diva has never held the coveted golden gramophone. Paying tribute to Ross this week, Ledisi put into words exactly why Ross is an “icon.”

“Ms. Ross is, of course, the ultimate supreme diva, but she extends far beyond that in my opinion. She so clearly loves doing what she does — singing, acting, performing on stage — while at the same time being a trailblazer, fusing all of her talents into one amazing vessel. And she did it during a time that not many black people, especially black women, were doing it,” Ledisi told the LA Times. “Like a fairy godmother, she made little girls dare to dream once they experienced her songs or films — little girls like Ms. Oprah Winfrey. And of course, I was one of them — a shy, skinny, awkward, big-eyed, brown girl watching ÔLady Sings the BluesÕ for the first time at a friendÕs house on a plastic-covered sofa.”

Slated to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award during a special ceremony, Ross will be honored for her body of work. A body of work, Ledisi, who is also a leading Grammy nominee this year, says crossed color lines, inspiring others to love and dream.

“Through her artistry, she crossed color lines, embracing all people, inspiring others to love and dream,” said Ledisi. “ThatÕs what makes her the icon she is today. Without her body of work, many of us wouldnÕt be here. Her influence is everywhere today.”