With faith, perseverance, the support of loved ones and a positive perspective, Natalie Cole continues to travel diligently down life's path.
"Most of it is attitude. I'm so grateful for the gift of my voice. Many times I could sing myself happy," said Cole, during a recent telephone interview.
The Grammy-winning singer said music has definitely helped her through the devastating times of her life. After her kidney transplant in Spring 2009, and the loss of of her sister Carole "Cookie" Cole that year as well, Cole was back on the road by fall of 2009 bringing her music to the masses.
This past July, Cole endured another heartbreaking loss when her mother Maria lost her battle with cancer.
"It was quiet this summer (with no shows scheduled) so it gave me and my family a chance to grieve. I was able to enjoy the memories of my mother and spent a lot of time with my family," she said, adding she was there when her mother passed away. "It was quite extraordinary to be there with her and talk to her. It was quite something that whole transition. It's no secret that journey is an extraordinary one."
Cole, daughter of the legendary Nat King Cole and Maria Hawkins Cole, has never been one to wallow in self-pity.
While the singer has battled much heartache, many demons and losses throughout her life, she's long embraced hope and faith to get through.
The renowned vocalist brings her show to the Silver Creek Event Center in New Buffalo, Mich. on Oct. 19. She'll perform an eclectic roster of tunes, including music in tribute to her famous father.
"We mix it up," she said. It gives me a chance to have the versatility that I like to do. There will be songs from the Great American Songbook to my tunes from the 1970s," she said.
"And I have a unique surprise medley that I put together over the summer," she said. According to Cole, the music that fills the Great American Songbook is special and timeless.
"They are songs that make us feel good. We also get a lot of younger people in the audience and they love those songs too...People keep coming back to that style of music because it's so unique."
Songwriters today, she said, simply "don't write that way anymore."Cole said she and her siblings were greatly influenced in myriad ways by both her father and mother. Her parents met during the time her mother, who was also a singer, worked with the Duke Ellington Orchestra.
About her father Nat's influence, Cole said "it wasn't just his music but the way he carried himself and the way he felt about his music - the integrity as well as the versatility," she said.
"He was singing in different languages and for a black man at that time was unusual. He was a warrior and a pioneer."
Cole said she's planning to begin work on a new international album filled with Latin favorites scheduled for release sometime in 2013.
"It's the first time I'm back on Verve Universal," she said, where she's looking forward to working with her "good friend David Foster."