Singer Etta James hospitalized with a serious infection [Updated]
Singer Etta James is in a hospital in Riverside, battling sepsis caused by a urinary tract infection. Donto James, one of the 72-year-old's two sons, also told KTLA that his mother had entered a treatment program about a month ago to shake a dependence on painkillers.
[Updated at 2:20 p.m.: Donto James tells CNN that Etta is also suffering from Alzheimer's disease, and "right now she is very confused." She was diagnosed last year, he says.]
The music legend's tunes turn up frequently as audition pieces among the "American Idol" generation -- including earlier this week when leukemia survivor Christian Spear pleased the judges with her rendition of"All I Could Do Was Cry."James popped up on the gossip scene early last year when, during a concert in Seattle, she threw out a few choice comments about Beyonce's performance of Etta's song "At Last" for Barack and Michelle Obama during his inauguration.
She later said that she was going for a laugh while introducing "At Last" and was "feeling left out of something that was basically mine, that I had done every time you look around."
"Dancing With the Stars" invited her in April to perform her signature tune for its audience.
Best wishes for a quick and complete recovery. Check out a performance of "I'd Rather Go Blind" with Dr. John, embedded below.
-- Christie D'Zurilla
Photo: Etta James performs at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival last spring. Credit: Rick Diamond / Getty Images.
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