January 2, 2013
Singer Patti Page dead at 85
The 85-year-old, who recorded Tennessee Waltz, passed away on New Year's Day. The top-selling female singer of the 1950s, Page recorded 15 gold records and three gold albums.
She also reached the top of the U.S. charts four times and fronted her own hit TV variety shows. She also made several appearances on The Dean Martin Show, The Ed Sullivan Show, and The Steve Allen Show, before making her film debut in 1960's Elmer Gantry.
Born Clara Ann Fowler in Oklahoma in 1927, Page became a singer on a Tulsa radio show at the age of 18 and picked up her stage name from sponsors the Page Milk Company.
She was discovered by band manager Jack Rael in the mid-1940s and signed with Mercury Records in 1947. Page became the label's first successful female artist, thanks to hits like Confess and With My Eyes Wide Open, I'm Dreaming.
She recorded Tennessee Waltz in 1950 – the song became one of the biggest-selling singles of the 20th century and it is also one of only two official state songs of Tennessee.
The singer also scored a hit with children's tune (How Much Is That) Doggie in the Window, and she hit the charts with All My Love (Bolero), I Don't Care If the Sun Don't Shine, Back in Your Own Backyard and I Went to Your Wedding.
She was inducted into the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame in 1997 and will now be honoured posthumously with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammys next month in 2013.