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Staples was born in Chicago in 1939. She began singing with her family, known as the Staple Singers, at churches and on local radio. Her father “Pops” was a friend of Martin Luther King, Jr., who wrote protest songs like ‘Freedom Highway’. The family often performed in support of the civil rights movement in the 1960s. Staples was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999 and in 2005, she and the Staple Singers were honored with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. She has recorded over a dozen albums, often crossing genres, notably Have a Little Faith, which won Album of the Year at the Blues Music Awards in 2005.