Wednesday, January 12, 2011
A shining star in the singing firmament went out. Margaret Whiting has died at the age of 86.
When you read her obituary, you'll learn about her distinguished lineage and her long friendship with Johnny Mercer.
I became a fan of her work in the 1980s. She recorded for a label called DRG. I have many records from this company, including releases by Johnny Hartman and a wonderful set of Hoagy Carmichael songs with Bob Dorough and others.
My favorite album is 1982's Come a Little Closer. Such a smart lineup of songs from the familiar (Cy Coleman, McHugh and Fields,Porter) and the emergent (Rupert Holmes, Peter Allen)at that time. Everything is delivered with that incredibly warm tone that her voice had, and crisp and always well-stategized but deeply felt singing of the lyric.
This record is a "go-to" for me when I want to be moved and need to be inspired to sing.
Click to hear Margaret's duet with Dean Martin
Click to hear my favorite song from Come a Little Closer, "I'd Rather Leave While I'm in Love"