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Margaret Whiting

Margaret Whiting

Margaret Eleanor Whiting (July 22, 1924 – January 10, 2011) was a singer of American popular music and country music who first made her reputation during the 1940s and 1950s.YouthMargaret Whiting was born in Detroit, but her family moved to Los Angeles in 1929, when she was five years old. Her father, Richard, was a composer of popular songs, including the classics "Hooray for Hollywood", "Ain't We Got Fun?", and "On the Good Ship Lollipop". Her sister, Barbara Whiting, was an actress (Junior Miss, Beware, My Lovely) and singer.An aunt, Margaret Young, was a singer and popular recording artist in the 1920s. In her childhood, Whiting's singing ability had already been noticed, and at the age of only seven she sang for singer-lyricist Johnny Mercer, with whom her father had collaborated on some popular songs ("Too Marvelous for Words"). In 1942, Mercer co-founded Capitol Records and signed Margaret to one of Capitol's first recording contracts.Recording careerWhiting's first recordings were as featured singer with various orchestras:"That Old Black Magic", with Freddie Slack and His Orchestra (1942)"Moonlight in Vermont", with Billy Butterfield's Orchestra (1943)"It Might as Well Be Spring", with Paul Weston and His Orchestra (1945)In 1945, Whiting began to record under her own name, making such recordings as:"All Through the Day" (1945, becoming a bestseller in the spring of 1946)"In Love in Vain" (1945)"Guilty" (1946)"Oh, But I Do" (1946)"A Tree in the Meadow" (a number 1 hit in the summer of 1948)"Slippin' Around", a duet with country music star Jimmy Wakely (a number 1 hit in 1949)"Baby, It's Cold Outside" (duet with Johnny Mercer, 1949)"Blind Date", a novelty record with Bob Hope (1950)"Faraway Places (With Strange Sounding Names)""Silver Bells" (duet with Jimmy Wakely, 1951)Until the mid-1950s Whiting continued to record for Capitol, but as she ceased to record songs that charted as hits, she switched to Dot Records in 1957 and to Verve Records in 1960. Whiting returned to Capitol in the early 1960s and then signed with London Records in 1966. On London, Whiting landed one last major hit single in 1966, "The Wheel of Hurt", which hit #1 on the Easy Listening singles chart. Her final solo albums were made for Audiophile (1980, 1982, 1985) and DRG Records (1991). Her distinguished conductors and musical arrangers through the years included Frank DeVol, Russell Garcia, Johnny Mandel, Billy May, Marty Paich, Nelson Riddle, Pete Rugolo, and Paul Weston.Television careerMargaret and Barbara Whiting starred as themselves in the situation comedy Those Whiting Girls. The show, produced by Desilu Productions, aired on CBS as a summer replacement series (in place of I Love Lucy) between July, 1955 and September, 1957.Margaret Whiting was a regular guest on variety shows and talk shows throughout the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, including Faye Emerson's Wonderful Town, when the musical series focused on Whiting's hometown of Detroit; The Big Record, The Bob Hope Show, The Colgate Comedy Hour, The Tony Martin Show, The David Frost Show, The Ed Sullivan Show, The George Jessel Show, The Guy Mitchell Show, The Jonathan Winters Show, The Merv Griffin Show, The Mike Douglas Show, The Nat King Cole Show, Over Easy, The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom, The Patti Page Show, The Red Skelton Hour, The Steve Allen Show, The Ford Show Starring Tennessee Ernie Ford, The Texaco Star Theater, The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The Virginia Graham Show, and The Voice of Firestone.In 1960, Whiting appeared as Vinnie Berkeley in one of the last episodes, "Martial Law", of the ABC/Warner Brothers western series, Colt .45. Paul Picerni was cast in the same segment as Duke Blaine.In the 2000s, Whiting was cast in several documentaries about singers and songwriters of her era, including Judy Garland: By Myself (2004), Fever: The Music of Peggy Lee (2004), Anita O'Day: The Life of a Jazz Singer (2007), Johnny Mercer: The Dream's on Me (2009), The Andrews Sisters: Queens of the Music Machines (2009) and Michael Feinstein's American Songbook (2010).MarriagesHubbell Robinson Jr., a writer, producer, and television executive (December 29, 1948 - divorced August 18, 1949)Lou Busch, a ragtime pianist known as "Joe 'Fingers' Carr" (divorced; one daughter, Deborah, born 1950)John Richard Moore, a founder of Panavision (married 1958 - divorced)Jack Wrangler (né John Stillman; 1994 – April 7, 2009; his death from emphysemaDeathWhiting died on January 10, 2011, aged 86, from natural causes at the Lillian Booth Actors Home in Englewood, New Jersey.


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