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Kim Sledge of Sister Sledge remembers singing at Muhammad Ali’s historic “Rumble in the Jungle”: “He was, like, 30 feet tall


Michael Ochs Archives/Getty ImagesSister Sledge is planning a feature film about their lives and career based on Kim Sledge’s memoir, Life Song.  Kim recalls one of the highlights of that career was singing at the historic Muhammad Ali/George Foreman “Rumble In the Jungle” championship fight in 1974 in Zaire, Africa.

“I remember being in the elevator with Muhammad Ali and he was, like, 30 feet tall in my eyes,” Kim tells ABC Radio.

The sisters performed at the “Zaire 74” music festival promoting the fight. 80,000 people attended the three-day event, which also featured James Brown, B.B.King, The Spinners, and Bill Withers, as well as numerous African artists.

While the sisters loved being on the same stage with so many great performers, Kim remembers that the star of stars was the man simply known as “The Greatest.”

“Let me tell you, our eyes were like saucers everywhere we went because everywhere we looked there was another star,” Kim remembers. “James Brown was amazing to work with…but Muhammad Ali, oh my God.” 

The festival occurred one year before Sister Sledge released their 1975 debut album, Circle of Love, and Kim remembers it was a valuable learning experience.

“We met so many pros and for us, it was a real training ground as well,” Kim says, “So that’s a rich moment in our lives. It’s featured definitely in the film as well as in the book.” 

Kim’s memoir will be published later this year, followed by production of the film based on the book

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