Candi Staton facts: Singer's age, husbands, children, songs and career explained

15 June 2023, 16:06

Candi Staton in 2006
Candi Staton in 2006. Picture: Getty

By Tom Owen

Candi Staton is one of the greatest soul singers of her generation, and has been performing for over six decades.

Best known for her soulful hits such as her remake of Tammy Wynette's 'Stand by Your Man', and disco anthem 'Young Hearts Run Free', Candi Staton has also recorded gospel, house and country music, earning the title of 'First Lady of Southern Soul'.

Candi began singing gospel at a young age with the Jewell Gospel Trio, and toured with legends such as Mahalia Jackson, Sam Cooke and CL Franklin, Aretha's father.

In 1968, she launched her solo career as a Southern soul stylist, working with producers such as Rick Hall and Clarence Carter, whom she married and later divorced. In the late 1970s, she became a disco diva, scoring hits on both sides of the Atlantic.

In the 1980s, she returned to gospel music and became a born-again Christian. In the 1990s, she experienced a revival when her song 'You Got the Love' was remixed by the Source, and became an anthem for the rave generation.

Now in her 80s, she is still going strong and is playing Glastonbury in 2023.

  1. How old is Candi Station and where was she born?

    Candi Staton
    Candi Staton. Picture: Getty

    Candi Staton was born on March 13, 1940. She celebrated her 83rd birthday in 2023.

    She was born in Hanceville, Alabama. Her dad was a farmer and a coal miner, and her mother was a homemaker.

    Her birth name was Canzetta Maria Staton, and she had an older sister named Maggie and five brothers.

  2. How many times has Candi Staton been married?

    Candi Staton has been married six times.

    Her spouses were:

    • Joe Williams (1960-1968)
    • Clarence Carter (1970-1973)
    • Jimmy James (1974-1977)
    • John Sussewell (1980-1998)
    • Otis Nixon (2010-2012)
    • Henry Hooper (2017-present)

    Her longest marriage was with John Sussewell, a musician, for 18 years.

    She married her current, sixth, husband in 2017.

    Otis Nixon is a former professional baseball player, who played in various Major League Baseball teams including the New York Yankees and Cleveland Indians.

  3. How many children does Candi Staton have?

    Candi Staton has five children. They are:

    • Cassandra Williams-Hightower
    • Marcus Williams
    • Marcel Williams
    • Terry Williams
    • Clarence Carter Jr

    She had her first four children with her first husband, Joe Williams, whom she married in 1960 and divorced in 1968.

    She had her fifth child with her third husband, Jimmy James, whom she married in 1974 and divorced in 1977.

  4. What are Candi Staton's biggest songs?

    Candi Staton - Young Hearts Run Free 1976.

    Some of Candi Staton's biggest songs include:

    • 'Young Hearts Run Free' (1976), which reached number one on the US R&B charts and number two in the UK.
    • 'You Got the Love' (1986), which was later released in collaboration with the Source. It reached number four in the UK in 1991 and number 5 in 1997 as a different remix.
    • 'Stand by Your Man' (1970), which was a cover of Tammy Wynette’s country song and earned Candi a Grammy nomination for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.
    • 'In the Ghetto' (1972), which was a cover of Elvis Presley’s song and also earned Candi a Grammy nomination for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.
    • 'Victim' (1978), a disco hit that reached number 17 on the US R&B.