As The Bluebelles, and later Patti LaBelle and the Bluebelles, the group found success with ballads in the doo-wop genre, most notably, "Down the Aisle", "You'll Never Walk Alone" and "Over the Rainbow". After Birdsong departed from the group to join The Supremes in 1967, under the advice of Vicki Wickham, the group changed its look, musical direction and style and reformed as Labelle, in 1971. Their funk rock recordings of that period were cult favorites and they were raved for their brash interpretation of rock and roll and for dealing with subject matter that was not touched by black groups. Finally after adapting glam rock and wearing outlandish space-age and glam rock-adorned costumes, the group found success with the proto-disco smash, "Lady Marmalade", in 1974, leading to their parent album, Nightbirds, becoming a platinum success. They are notable for being the first contemporary pop group and first black pop group to perform at the Metropolitan Opera House.
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