"The Empress of Soul"
Pro: Tristan MacManus
We know she can sing, but can the legendary Gladys Knight dance? We'll see soon enough!
Eight-time Grammy winner Gladys Knight has enjoyed #1 hits in pop, R&B and Adult Contemporary, and has triumphed in film, television and live performance. Georgia-born, Gladys began performing recitals at age four in the Mount Mariah Baptist Church. Three years later, in 1952, she won the grand prize on television's Ted Mack's Amateur Hour and the following year, she, along with her brother Bubba, and her cousins formed The Pips. They had their first hit in 1961.
In 1962, the group was renamed Gladys Knight & The Pips. With Gladys singing lead and The Pips providing lush harmonies and graceful choreography, the group went on to achieve an iconic status, having recorded some of the most memorable songs of the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.
Top 20 hits, like "Every Beat of My Heart," "I Heard it Through the Grapevine" and "If I Were Your Woman," set the stage for an amazing run in the mid-1970s, with Top 10 gold-certified singles like "Neither One of Us (Wants to be the First to Say Goodbye)," "I've Got to Use My Imagination," "Best Thing to Ever Happen to Me" and the #1 smash "Midnight Train to Georgia" established Gladys Knight and The Pips as the premiere pop/R&B vocal ensemble in the world.
All told, Gladys has recorded more than 38 albums over the years, including four solo albums during the past decade. This spring, she will release her newest album featuring the hit "I Who Have Nothing." Most recently, she appeared in the Tyler Perry film I Can Do Bad All by Myself.
A longtime Las Vegas resident, Gladys returned to the Strip this past year at the famed Tropicana Hotel for a special engagement that ran in the newly-named Gladys Knight Theater, making her the first African-American performer to have a venue named after her in Las Vegas. Hey, if she does well enough on Dancing with the Stars, maybe they'll name the ballroom after her, too!
Cast Bios - ABC.com