James funeral planned; Al Sharpton to eulogize

January 24, 2012 - 4:25 PM
Obit Etta James

FILE - In this April 29, 2006 photo, Etta James performs during the 2006 New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in New Orleans. James, the feisty rhythm and blues singer whose raw, passionate vocals anchored many hits and made the yearning ballad "At Last" an enduring anthem for weddings, commercials and even President Barack Obama, died Friday, Jan. 20, 2012. She was 73. James had been suffering from dementia and kidney problems, and was battling leukemia. In December 2011, her physician announced that her leukemia was terminal. (AP Photo/Jeff Christensen)

NEW YORK (AP) — A public viewing will be held Friday for singer Etta James, and the Rev. Al Sharpton will eulogize the late legend at a private funeral Saturday.

A statement from Sharpton's representative Tuesday said the funeral will include performances by celebrities, but those names were not announced.

James died last Friday at age 73 after battling leukemia and other ailments, including dementia. She was most famous for her classic "At Last," but over her decades-long career, she became revered for her passionate singing voice.

The public viewing will be held in Inglewood and the funeral will be held in Gardena, both in the Los Angeles area.

The family is asking that any donations be sent to the Philadelphia-based Rhythm & Blues Foundation.