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Born: May 6, 1950 in New York, NY, USA.
Debbie Lori Kaye was a diminutive singer and guitarist with a large voice who was born in New York, but grew up in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Her father was a disc jockey at CKCY and asked a local group, (Those) Rogues, to allow her to sing in the band. She and the band toured around Southern Ontario for nearly a year until she left to appear on the Tommy Hunter Show
Columbia Records took notice and signed the teenager to a long term deal. The country vocalist made her first showing on Canadian RPM Magazine charts with "Picking Up My Hat" in February 1965. It entered the Country singles chart at #1 on February 8 and stayed there until the week of August 23, 1965. It returned to number in December of that year until Columbia released her next single - a remake of The Shirelles' 1962 hit "Soldier Boy" - at Christmas time. She rode the RPM Top singles chart to the Top20 with the song in 1966 and the song remained in the Top 40 for 10 months.
In 1966 Columbia released "Baby, What I Mean", "Playground" and "Ride Ride Ride" (a Lynn Anderson song), none of which charted. But, she would return to the country charts in June 1968 with her next single "Come On Home" which made it to #12.
"Baby's Come Home" was released in May 1969 and managed to hit #13 on the RPM country singles chart.
She switched to the SSS International label in 1970 and entered the Canadian RPM chart in October that year with "Taste of Tears" which got to #16.
Kaye was nominated twice for a Juno Award in 1971 as 'Best Female Vocalist' and 'Best Counry Female Artist'.
Another label change found her on Polydor for her final chart action with "God Bless The Child" in January 1973 on the RPM Adult Contemporary chart. The song climbed to #15 by March 1973.
Kaye would make periodic appearances on CBC television variety shows including 'Tommy Common's It's A Musical World' (1975/76 season), 'The Tommmy Banks Show' and 'The Tommy Hunter Show' (1967-1969). She also appeared on the Willburn Brothers Show in 1966 and 'Music City USA' in the United States.
Kaye would later have her own one hour CBC variety show 'The Debbie Lori Kaye Show' featuring guitarist Frank Kitching as music arranger. Kitching was also guitarist in the band Parade with Kaye in the early 1970s that toured the US after her solo career had faded.
In 1994, RPM magazine ran a list of the Top Canadian Country artists to have charting hits that made it to #1. Debbie Lori Kaye ranked #22 on the list.
She was inducted into the Ontario Country Music Hall of Fame in 2005. Kaye now lives in Seattle, Washington and has spent many years rehabilitating after a bad car accident in 2006.
with notes from Frank Kitching and Stan Maupin.
Picking Up My Hat/What Makes You Do Me Like You Do (Columbia) C4-43295
Soldier Boy/Could That Be (Columbia) C4-43454
Every Song You Sing/You're Not There (Columbia) C4-43591
Baby, What I Mean/The Iron Cross (Columbia) C4-43730
The Playground/Lonely Clown (Columbia) C4-43999
A Legend In My Time/Sweet Georgia Brown (Columbia) C4-44142
Ride Ride Ride/Break My Mind (Columbia) C4-44311
Battle Hymn Of The Republic/Green (Columbia) C4-44394
Come On Home/Help Me Love You (Columbia) C4-44538
Baby's Come Home/It's Only A Daydream (Columbia) C4-44815
Taste of Tears/No Brass Band (SSS International) 810-M
God Bless The Child (Polydor) 2065-157
Hey Little One (Columbia) ELS-329