Throughout her decades-long career, Gladys Knight has celebrated a ton of accomplishments. But while ringing in her 75th birthday with a lavish party in Los Angeles on October 20 — about five months after it actually took place on May 28 — the “Midnight Train to Georgia” songstress revealed why her latest milestone was an extra-special one.
“I feel blessed,” the iconic singer gushed to Closer Weekly and other reporters while celebrating. “Cause we just will never know the hour, the moment, the day, the time that we’re supposed to go.”
Although Gladys seemed to have no issues with turning the big 7-5, she offered some advice for those who are struggling to come to terms with their older age. “You should make the most of every moment because you’ve been blessed enough to come here first of all,” she explained. “And He,” Gladys said while looking up at God, “gives us all these gifts and talents. He gave you that you that, you are here for a reason and that’s the way I think about it.”
While there’s a long list of awards that Gladys has won, The Masked Singer star dished her most meaningful accomplishment isn’t actually an accolade. “I am most proud of the spirit that we’ve had along the way,” she revealed. “Not letting it take you over and take you somewhere else that He didn’t plan for you to go.”
The Charlie & Co. actress — who rose to fame after getting a start in R&B in the 1950s — also gave some insight for aspiring singers and actors who are struggling to break out in show business. “You gotta be ready to do the hard stuff, OK, in order to do get to the easy stuff,” she explained. “And it just doesn’t happen like that. So you should keep trying to improve yourself all the way, every time. And it’s a hard road.”
Gladys also offered some personal advice. “It may look just glamorous and all of that — and listen to your mentors. That’s what my mom and my family taught me,” she said. “They put the greatest people on this planet — Sammy Davis, Jr., Ella Fitzgerald, Jackie Wilson — all flavors of people in front of us to guide us. And that’s what we did. We listened and they were pretty tough on us, you know, ‘That’s not right.’ That’s what they used to do when we messed up.”
Gladys will always be one of Hollywood’s most inspiring stars!