DCS: sister rosetta tharpe

Sister Rosetta Tharpe invented rock and roll. “What?” you’re probably saying to yourself. “Wait just a second! Little Richard invented rock and roll!” Or maybe you’re saying “Elvis Presley invented rock and roll!” Or perhaps you know that Chuck Berry invented rock and roll. (Maybe you’re saying nothing and just wishing I would get on with …

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DCS: lynn cartwright

The daughter of a US Congressman from Oklahoma, Doralyn Cartwright attended Stephens College in Missouri and later American Academy in New York with her sights set on a career in acting. At 30, she made her film debut in the Western Black Patch, alongside her husband, actor/writer Joe Gordon. Joe was a prolific character actor, …

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DCS: jeanne carmen

Teen-age Jeanne Carmen left rural Arkansas for New York City with dreams of becoming a star. She worked as a burlesque dancer and posed for pin-up pictures in the 1950s. She was also an expert trick-shot golfer. Jeanne and her manager would tour country clubs and hustle unsuspecting members, betting on whether or not this …

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DCS: betty wright

Betty Wright started singing as a child. She performed with her family gospel vocal group, Echoes of Joy, before switching to rhythm & blues. She was spotted by a Miami record label owner who signed 12 year-old Betty to a contract. She released a few songs that gained local recognition. In 1972, Betty released her …

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DCS: slim galliard

Slim Galliard’s early life is sketchy, as he offered different origin stories to different people. He did, however, serve in World War II as a bomber pilot, briefly interrupting his successful music career. He insisted that he worked as a hat maker in Greece and a hearse driver turned rum-runner in Detroit, but these are …

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DCS: pearl bailey

Oh boy! Did I love Pearl Bailey! She was a terrific singer and actress with a delightful personality. Pearl was deservedly honored with a number of awards during her lifetime, including a special Tony Award, a Daytime Emmy, the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award in 1976 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which she …

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DCS: peter tosh

Abandoned by his parents and shuffled around from family member to family member, Winston McIntosh never lost his sense of determination. Living in the Trenchtown section of Kingston, Jamaica, teenage Winston was fascinated by a street musician. He watched the man play his guitar for endless hours every day. Winston concentrated on the man’s intricate …

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DCS: fayette pinkney

In 1963, music impresario Richie Barrett was looking for the next “big thing.” He was responsible for discovering and promoting such popular and, more importantly, top-selling musical acts like Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers and Little Anthony & The Imperials. Barrett assembled a trio of Philadelphia teenagers and dubbed his new group The Three Degrees. …

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