Bonnie Lynn Raitt was born on November 8, 1949 Burbank, California, is an American blues singer-songwriter, born in Burbank, California. During the 1970s, Raitt released a series of acclaimed roots-influenced albums which incorporated elements of blues, rock, folk and country, but she is perhaps best known for her more commercially accessible recordings in the 1990s including “Nick of Time”, “Something to Talk About”, “Love Sneakin’ Up on You”, and the slow ballad “I Can’t Make You Love Me”. Raitt has received nine Grammy Awards in her career and is a lifelong political activist.
Raitt, the daughter of Broadway musical star John Raitt and his first wife, pianist Marjorie Haydock, began playing guitar at an early age, something few of her high school female friends did. Later she would become famous for her bottleneck-style guitar playing. “I had played a little at school and at camp”, she later recalled in a July 2002 interview.
Raitt’s web site urges fans to learn more about preserving the environment. She was a founding member of Musicians United for Safe Energy.
In 1994 at the urging of Dick Waterman, Raitt funded the replacement of a headstone for one of her mentors, Fred McDowell through the Mt. Zion Memorial Fund. Raitt would later finance memorial headstones in Mississippi for Memphis Minnie, Sam Chatmon, and Tommy Johnson through the Mt. Zion Fund.
Bonnie Raitt is a staunch liberal. In July 2004, she drew thunderous applause at the Stockholm Jazz Festival for dedicating a classic to sitting (and later re-elected) U.S. President George W. Bush. She was quoted as saying, “We’re gonna sing this for George Bush because he’s out of here, people!” before she launched into the opening licks of “Your Good Thing (Is About to End)”, a cover that was featured on her 1979 album The Glow. In 2002, she signed on as an official supporter of Little Kids Rock, a nonprofit organization that provides free musical instruments and free lessons to children in public schools throughout the U.S.A. She has visited children in the program and sits on the organization’s board of directors as an honorary member.
Raitt worked with Reverb, a non-profit environmental organization, for her 2005 Fall/Winter and 2006 Spring/Summer/Fall tours.
Raitt is part of the No Nukes group which is against the expansion of nuclear power. In 2007 the group recorded a music video of a new version of the Buffalo Springfield song “For What It’s Worth”.
During the 2008 Democratic primary campaign Raitt, along with Jackson Browne and bassist James “Hutch” Hutchinson, performed at campaign appearances for candidate John Edwards.
Raitt and actor Michael O’Keefe married on April 27, 1991, and announced their divorce on November 9, 1999