Why do I always remember the wrong parts of the conversation
December 16, 2010 12:19 AM   Subscribe

NPRfilter: Female singer (from the 50s?) mentioned on NPR in the last week. She was characterized by the music critic as never overdoing vocal tricks, sining minimally and "just the right amount". The singing sample had very little musical backing. She retired early at the height of her popularity after getting sick of the music business.

I believe the singer was African-American. This might have been on Fresh Air but I can't find it in the archives, nor those of All Songs Considered. The show/clip was a rapid-fire list of various female artists with distinctive vocal styles. I got distracted after driving home and forgot to look her up immediately. My google-fu fails -- nothing twigs my memory on the usual "top 10" lists of jazz or rock female singers from that era.
posted by benzenedream to Media & Arts (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I heard this too. The segment interviewed the author of a new reference book on the Great American Songbook.
posted by roger ackroyd at 12:30 AM on December 16, 2010

Maybe you could say where you are or what station you were listening to and what time it must have been when you were driving home? That could narrow it down to a show.
posted by pracowity at 12:31 AM on December 16, 2010

And here is the interview in question.
posted by roger ackroyd at 12:33 AM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]

posted by pracowity at 12:33 AM on December 16, 2010

"never singing more than necessary":

Jeri Southern
posted by roger ackroyd at 12:36 AM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]

crap. what happened to my link? Jeri Southern. She's the first singer profiled.
posted by roger ackroyd at 12:37 AM on December 16, 2010

I work at Fresh Air and am pretty sure it wasn't on our show. Our music historian's (Ed Ward) archives are here...
posted by melodykramer at 5:31 AM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]

I heard that interview, too, but I was more interested in Blossom Dearie - the singer who sang the SchoolHouse Rock videos. Turns out she really has that little girl voice and she was a jazz singer way before doing Unpack Your Adjectives.

What a great book/interview. I'll have to re-listen when I get home.
posted by CathyG at 7:41 AM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]

Thanks everyone! Southern's voice is fantastic -- I'm off to burn off some itunes credits.
posted by benzenedream at 9:40 AM on December 16, 2010

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