Irma Thomas ranks among The Crescent City R&B's greatest and most enduring musical ambassadors. Although she never experienced the widespread commercial success of contemporaries like Aretha Franklin and Etta James, they nonetheless breathe the same rarefied air in the minds of many soul music connoisseurs as the undisputed Soul Queen of New Orleans—a title officially bestowed by local officials, no less. Irma Lee was born in Ponchatoula, Louisiana. As a young woman, she performed in a Baptist church choir and even went on a Specialty Records audition at the age of 13. She gave birth to her first child a year later, married the baby's father, had another child before the marriage ended and then had her second child. She remarried at the age of 17, this time to Andrew Thomas and had two more children before divorcing once more before turning 20. Thomas continued using her second ex-husband's last name and started working as a waitress at the Pimlico Club in New Orleans, occasionally playing with the band's leader Tommy Ridgley.
She was fired from the bar because she spent more time singing than serving patrons and Ridgley decided to help her get a record deal by setting up tryouts with the neighborhood Ronn and Minit labels. She released her naughty debut single, You Can Have My Husband (But Don't Mess with My Man) and it swiftly rose to the number 22 position on the Billboard R&B chart.
Her live schedule was accelerated. She opened the Lion's Den in New Orleans with her husband and manager Emile Jackson. She also went on tour in Europe, where her records were still worthy of regular broadcast.
The album After the Rain received a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Blues Album. On the Rounder Records album Simply Grand, Thomas performed in an acoustic environment with a variety of pianists, including Dr. John, Ellis Marsalis, Randy Newman and others..
How to hire Irma Thomas for an event
Learn how to hire Irma Thomas or research availability and pricing for booking Irma Thomas to perform at a corporate event, fundraiser, private party, social media campaign, fair or festival, tradeshow or conference, endorsement project, or hire Irma Thomas as a guest speaker, please submit the form to our agency.
Frequently Asked Questions about booking Irma Thomas to perform.
Many performers, actors, speakers and other talent like Irma Thomas in certain cases will consider virtual appearances via live streaming. They perhaps may accept lower fees too. If you are seriously interested in booking Irma Thomas or other talent shown on our site, we will research their desire and the specific fee for your live-streaming event or project request.
Irma Thomas's current work schedule and location in relation to your event's type, date, budget, and locality will play a primary factor in the acceptance of booking Irma Thomas for your party. As long as your funding is commensurate with the price range to book Irma Thomas, CTI will propose your event to the official agency representing Irma Thomas. After we consult with them, we will provide a personal and accurate quote that includes: final costs, availability, and actual interest in being hired for your specific event or party.
CTI can give you the accurate Irma Thomas booking price once we submit your event details to their camp. "How much does it cost to book Irma Thomas for an event?" is a frequent question we get. The final Irma Thomas booking price is contingent on many variables and the booking fee we may show is based on a range derived from our past experience with what will Irma Thomas charge for an event. An example fee to book Irma Thomas is in the starting range of $15,000-$24,999. However, any recent popularity change would cause a price fluctuation well beyond this example. Also, their speaking fee might be different than the fee shown for the cost to perform or to just appear. Popularity, career stage, along with current demand will cause fluctuations in their speaking price as well. The final booking price may be more than what is shown, but you should at least have a budget within that range for them to consider an appearance, performance or speaking engagement.
There is low probability to book Irma Thomas for a party with anything substantially less than the published booking cost price range. We will negotiate with the Irma Thomas agent on your behalf if your funding is in place. By not having funding ready then it will more difficult to book Irma Thomas, because they get many offers to work events that are at or above asking price. It is also important to consider the travel costs when researching the Irma Thomas booking fee, as additional expenses like this, as well as an entourage of staff and equipment, are not necessarily built-in to the booking fee range shown. If your budget does not factor that in, then there is no benefit for them to want to be hired. We do not personally speak for Irma Thomas, but in our experience in booking talent for over 25 years, this is generally the outcome of inadequate funding.
Blues, Female, Age Group-30's-50's, Age Group-60's+, African American