The Pointer Sisters are a versatile female vocal group of siblings who have enjoyed a long and varied career, with chart successes in funk, jazz and pop. They emerged from Oakland, Calif., the four daughters of Rev. Elton and Sarah Pointer: Anita (b. Jan. 23, 1948), Bonnie (July 11, 1950), June (Nov. 30, 1953 - April 11, 2006) and Ruth (March 19, 1946).
Their 1973 debut album, “The Pointer Sisters,” included the driving funk remake of Allen Toussaint's “Yes We Can Can” and Willie Dixon's “Wang Dang Doodle.” The Pointers made their live debut at the Troubadour in West Hollywood.
The group's second album was 1974's “That's a Plenty,” with songs of soul and jazz, but also “Fairytale,” which crossed over into country, simultaneously reaching No. 13 on the pop chart and winning the Pointers an invitation to perform at the Grand Ole Opry. They appeared in the 1976 film “Car Wash,” and performed “You Gotta Believe.”
Bonnie and June left the quartet in 1977. Bonnie embarked on a solo career that scored a top-10 pop hit with 1979's “Heaven Must Have Sent You.” June returned in time for a cover of Sly and the Family Stone's “Everybody Is a Star,” and the Pointers released two albums as a trio to moderate success.
In 1980, the Pointers reached No. 3 on the pop chart with “He's So Shy.” In 1982 came the single “I'm So Excited,” a top-14 hit (later reaching the top-10 when reissued two years later). The group's biggest-selling album was “Break Out,” released in 1983 and included four top-10 hits, including the Grammy-winning “Jump (For My Love)” and “Automatic.”
Anita returned to the country charts in a duet with Earl Thomas Conley, “Too Many Times,” in 1986. Ruth sang “Streets of Gold" in the 1989 Disney film “Oliver & Company.” Ruth's daughter, Issa Pointer, became a fulltime member in 2004, replacing June, who died of lung cancer two years later.
The Pointer Sisters were awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1994.