|Birth Day:||December 25, 1948|
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Clayton began her recording career in 1962, at the age of 14. She first sang on "Who Can I Count On? (When I Can't Count on You)" as a duet with Bobby Darin, on his album "You're the Reason I'm Living".
In 1963, she recorded the first-released version of "The Shoop Shoop Song (It's in His Kiss)", the same year that Betty Everett's version reached the Top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100. Early in her career, Clayton performed with Ray Charles (as one of the Raelettes). At the time, Charles was the only artist her father would allow her to see at a live performance.
In 1970, Clayton recorded her own version of "Gimme Shelter", and it became the title track of her debut solo album, released that year. Her solo version peaked at #73 on the pop charts. Her version would be the first of five singles under her name to crack the Billboard Hot 100. That same year, she performed a live version of "Lift Every Voice and Sing" for the soundtrack for the Robert Altman film, Brewster McCloud, and also contributed vocals to Donald Cammell and Nicolas Roeg's film, Performance.
In 1971, she co-wrote the song "Sho' Nuff" about her mother.
In 1972, she starred as the original Acid Queen in the first London production of The Who's Tommy.
In 1973, she featured prominently on Ringo Starr's "Oh My My", which reached Billboard's Top 10 the following year.
In the mid-1980s, Clayton was in the gospel group Brilliance, formed by Della Reese. The other members were O.C. Smith, Vermettya Royster, and Eric Strom. They released an album on Atlanta International Records in 1986.
In 1987, Clayton co-starred with Ally Sheedy in the film Maid to Order. That same year, Clayton also played the character "Verna Dee Jordan" in the final season of Cagney & Lacey.
In 1989, Clayton recorded a cover version of "Almost Paradise" with Eric Carmen.
In 1994, Clayton sang on backing vocals and also the bridge for, "Man with the Golden Gun" Tori Amos's hit "Cornflake Girl".
Clayton was married to jazz artist Curtis Amy from 1970 until his death in 2002. Her brother is the Little Feat percussionist Sam Clayton.
In 2006, Clayton provided background vocals for Sparta's album Threes, on the songs "Atlas" and "Translations".
In 2014, Clayton provided vocals for G. Love & Special Sauce's album Sugar.
On June 16, 2014, Clayton was severely injured in a car collision in Los Angeles, California. Both of Clayton's legs were later amputated at the knees due to her suffering "profound trauma to her lower extremities" as a result of the accident.
In 2015, Clayton was featured on two tracks of Coldplay's album A Head Full of Dreams.
On June 25, 2019, The New York Times Magazine listed Merry Clayton among hundreds of artists whose material was reportedly destroyed in the 2008 Universal fire.
Currently, Merry Clayton is 74 years, 1 months and 4 days old. Merry Clayton will celebrate 75th birthday on a Monday 25th of December 2023.
Find out about Merry Clayton birthday activities in timeline view here.