Perhaps no song is more beloved in the wedding repertoire than Etta James' 1961 ballad "At Last." But today those unmistakable opening bars giving way to James' powerfully raw voice carry with them a note of sadness. James died just shy of her 74th birthday after a long battle with leukemia, leaving behind the legend of her landmark career.
"This is a tremendous loss for the family, her friends, and fans around the world," said James' friend and manager, Lupe De Leon. "She was a true original who could sing it all—her music defied category." Beyoncé portrayed the groundbreaking singer in 2008's Cadillac Records, also famously serenading the President and First Lady with her version of "At Last" during The Neighborhood Inaugural Ball in 2009.
Want to keep James' first-dance tradition alive with your own updated twist? Check out our list of classic wedding song remakes, including Jason Mraz's take on "At Last." Just remember, there will only ever be one original, and she will be missed. —Phillip B. Crook