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Patti LaBelle, Auntie Patti, Ms. LaBelle, Lady Marmalade…whatever you want to call her, Patti’s name is synonymous with good music and big smiles. Born Patricia Louise Holte-Edwards in Philadelphia on May 24, 1944, her career spans over a half of century with awards, critical acclaim and a string of hits.

Recently, BlackDoctor.org sat down with Ms. Patti as she turns 71 years old and found out that she’s not slowing down anytime soon.

BDO: Your birthday is coming up, what are your plans?

Patti:  You know it just feels good to do nothing sometimes.  By doing so much (shows, appearances, etc), I’m looking forward to just relaxing and truly enjoy doing nothing.

BDO: How is that you have a knack for making everyone feel like family?

Patti: Thank you. It was really my dad. I grew up in a household where my mom and dad made everyone feel welcome.  My dad was real laid back and it’s just that sense of family that I guess was instilled in me.  That was the foundation that was laid for me and I’m just happy I received it.