Carol Fran, one of the greatest blues singers to ever come out of Lafayette, died on Wednesday. She was 87 years old.

Born Carol Martin on October 23, 1933, in Lafayette, Louisiana, she changed her stage name to Carol Fran after marrying a saxophone player by the name of Bob Francois. She simply abbreviated the last name.

Fran was a singer, pianist, and songwriter and was best known for her string of single releases in the 1950s and 1960. She relocated early in her career to New Orleans and spent the majority of her professional life there.

In 1982, she met session guitarist Clarence Hollimon, and they went on to marry a year later and relocate to Texas. Hollimon died in 2000 and Fran moved back to Lafayette.

It was not until 1992 she released her first full-length album and would put out a total of five over the last several years.

Fran appeared in the 2015 documentary I Am The Blues. She is also a recipient of the 2013 National Heritage Fellowship awarded to the National Endowment for the Arts, which is the highest honor in the folk and traditional arts in the United States.

Late in her career, you could find Fran on various stages across Acadiana. But it was the friendships she forged with so many in our music community that locals will forever be thankful for.

Tributes have been pouring on Facebook since the news of her passing.

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