I don’t know if you know it, but I’m a complete Minnie Riperton stan. From the first time I heard “Lovin’ You” on the local R&B station when I was 10, I’ve been completely hooked. And over the years, it’s been great to know that I’m not the only Minniephile out there in the world.
A little more 10 years ago, I stumbled on what had to be the most amazing community of Minnie Riperton fans at http://www.MinnieRiperton.com. Folks like Michelle Traylor and George Gates hipped me to the musical legacy Minnie left behind, the one that went way beyond the ubiquitous “Lovin’ You” and “Memory Lane”. And there were pictures. Oh. My. God. There were pictures! Minnie with her husband, Dick Rudolph. Minnie with her kids, Marc and Maya. Minnie with colorful birds. Minnie talking shop with Michael and LaToya Jackson. Minnie with Stevie Wonder!
Let’s not even start with the audio clips of albums I never knew existed that caused me to scour Ebay looking for vinyl and CD copies of whatever solo or Rotary Connection albums I could get my hands on either domestically or from Japan. Yes kids, Japan! I won’t mention how George hooked a sister up with Minnie’s first Soul Train performance, her Sammy & Company interview alongside Sammy Davis Jr. and Richard Pryor, or what had to be one of her final performances on the Soul Beat Network. Seriously, my mind was BLOWN!
Over time, MinnieRiperton.com became less active and even the Minnie Riperton Legacy Preservation Society fell by the wayside (yes, there was one and it was freaking AWESOME), but the Minniephiles remain. They’re out there in smaller contingencies, but they’re there. One place where many of them are congregating again is the Perfect Angel: Minnie Riperton Site here on WordPress. I don’t know the blog owner or any of the other writers, but I was pleased to learn that George Gates from my MinnieRiperton.com/MRLPS days is one of their newest and probably most prolific contributors. And aside from her friends and family, George is probably THE biggest Minnie Riperton fan in the world, if not the most devoted.
So, if you want to know more about Minnie’s views on life and take a gander at some great photos and memorabilia, check out Perfect Angel now. For a thorough introduction to her music, get a copy of Petals: The Minnie Riperton Anthology from Amazon.com or iTunes or wherever you cop your musical fixes.
Wanna see Minnie in motion? Check out her episode of TV One’s Unsung, courtesy of YouTube user Kaysing84.