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Koko Taylor, Blues Great, Dead At 80

Blues great Koko Taylor has died at age 80 following surgery, according to reports out of Chicago. No doubt there'll be many blues lovers in Chicago and elsewhere pitching "a wang dang doodle all night long" in her honor.

The Associated Press reports:

CHICAGO (AP) - Koko Taylor, the Grammy-winning "Queen of the Blues," has died after complications from surgery. She was 80.

Marc Lipkin, director of publicity for Alligator Records, says Taylor died Wednesday at Northwestern Memorial Hospital after surgery May 19 for a gastrointestinal bleed.

Taylor was born Cora Walton on a sharecropper's farm near Memphis, Tenn. She and her five brothers and sisters played the blues on homemade instruments.

She moved to Chicago in 1952 with her soon-to-be-husband, Robert "Pops" Taylor. They frequented the city's blues clubs and Koko sat in with some of the bands. In 1965 she had a hit "Wang Dang Doodle."

Taylor won a Grammy in 1984 for a guest appearance on the compilation album "Blues Explosion." Her most recent album, 2007's "Old School," was also nominated for a Grammy.

NPR's "All Songs Considered" blog has this post on Taylor. Meanwhile, here's a link to NPR Music's artist page on Taylor.