NEW YORK (Reuters) - Jazz singer Abbey Lincoln, whose six-decade career included acting and composing, and who participated in the civil rights movement, died in New York on Saturday at age 80, The New York Times reported, citing her brother.
The Chicago-born Lincoln, who was often said to have been strongly influenced by famed jazz singer Billie Holiday, began her singing career in the mid-1950s with “Abbey Lincoln’s Affair...a Story of a Girl in Love” and performed until shortly before her death.
She also appeared in several films, including “For Love of Ivy” opposite Sidney Poitier in 1968, for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe, and “The Girl Can’t Help It,” a 1956 Jayne Mansfield vehicle about rock ‘n’ roll in which Lincoln sang.
During the 1960s, she was married to jazz musician Max Roach, and became a strong advocate in the civil rights campaigns of the era. They were divorced in 1970.
In the 1970s, Lincoln appeared on several hit television shows, including “All in the Family” and “Marcus Welby, M.D.”
Lincoln recorded more than 20 albums, including “Abbey Sings Abbey,” which was released in 2007 and featured her own compositions.
Reporting by Chris Michaud; Editing by Peter Cooney