Kelly Rowland has paid tribute to Etta James, following her death earlier today (20.01.12).

The legendary singer - whose hits included 'Something's Got a Hold on Me' and rhythm and blues standard 'At Last' - passed away aged 73 after a battle with leukaemia and former Destiny's Child star Kelly took to her twitter page to express her gratitude to Etta.

She wrote: "CLASSIC. ONE OF A KIND. Pure Soul. ETTA JAMES! Thank You for gracing us with your incredible talent & presence! (sic)"

Black Eyed Peas star also paid tribute, by tweeting: "Showing respect appreciation and love for all the wonderful music and joy #ettajames brought to the world...#ettajamesforever (sic)"

Jessie J was another celebrity who took to twitter and said Etta had always been an inspiration to her and will continue to be one.

The 'Price Tag' hitmaker wrote: "Just been told the legend that is Etta James has passed. Thank you for your voice your dedication to us and your gift. Your voice is timeless and will forever live on. I will always look to you for inspiration. R.I.P (sic)"

Etta had been diagnosed with leukaemia in 2010, according to her long time friend and manager, Lupe De Leon, and died in hospital in Riverside, California.

Last month, Etta - who has battled dementia and kidney disease during the past few years - was admitted to hospital after experiencing breathing difficulties but was discharged on January 6.

Lupe said at the time: "She is at home with her husband and her family by her side. Her condition remains stable. We think it's best for her to be at home."

A conservatorship hearing over the singer's $1 million estate was conducted earlier this week with her singer's son, Donto James, asking to be conservator rather than her husband, Artis Mills.