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Blossom Dearie

A distinctive, girlish voice, crisp, impeccable delivery, and an irrepressible sense of playful swing made Blossom Dearie one of the most enjoyable singers of the vocal era. Her warmth and sparkle ensured that she'd never treat standards as the well-worn songs they often appeared in less capable hands. And though her reputation was made on record with a string of excellent albums for Verve during the '50s, she remained a draw with Manhattan cabaret audiences long into the new millennium.

Actually born with the name Blossom Dearie in the New York Catskills, she began playing piano at an early age and studied classical music before making the switch to jazz while in high school. After graduation, she moved to New York and began appearing with vocal groups like the Blue Flames (attached to Woody Herman) and the Blue Reys (with Alvino Rey). She also played cocktail piano around the city, and moved to Paris in 1952 to form her own group, the Blue Stars of France. Dearie also appeared in a nightclub act with Annie Ross, and made a short, uncredited appearance on King Pleasure's vocalese classic, "Moody's Mood for Love." She recorded an obscure album of piano solos, and in 1954, the Blue Stars hit the national charts with a French version of "Lullaby of Birdland."

After hearing Dearie perform in Paris in 1956, Norman Granz signed her to Verve and she returned to America by the end of the year. Her eponymous debut for Verve featured a set of standards that slanted traditional pop back to its roots in Tin Pan Alley, Broadway, and cabaret. Her focus on intimate readings of standards ("Deed I Do," "Thou Swell") and the relaxed trio setting (bassist Ray Brown and drummer Jo Jones, plus Dearie on piano) drew nods to her cabaret background.

On her next few records, Dearie stuck to her focus on standards and small groups, though her gift for songwriting emerged as well with songs like "Blossom's Blues." She performed in solo settings at supper clubs all over New York, and appeared on the more cultured of the late-'50s New York talk shows. Her husband, flutist Bobby Jaspar, made several appearances on her records, notably 1959's My Gentleman Friend. After a recording break in the early '60s, Blossom Dearie signed to Capitol for one album (1964's May I Come In?), but then recorded sparingly during the rest of the decade.

Finally, in the early '70s, she formed her own Daffodil Records label and began releasing her own work, including 1974's Blossom Dearie Sings and the following year's My Favorite Celebrity Is You. She also performed at Carnegie Hall with Anita O'Day and Joe Williams, billed as the Jazz Singers. She continued to perform and record during the 1980s through to the early 2000s, centered mostly in New York but also a regular attraction in London as well. She retired from playing live in 2006 due to health concerns and died quietly in her Greenwich Village apartment on February 7, 2009. ~ John Bush
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Blossom Dearie

1. They Say It's Spring

2. Let Me Love You

3. Once Upon A Time

4. Little Jazz Bird

5. Bang Goes The Drum

6. Someone To Watch Over Me

7. L'etang

8. Give Him The Ooh-La-La

9. Rhode Island Is Famous For You

10. Tea For Two

11. The Surrey With The Fringe On Top

12. I Won't Dance

13. Down With Love

14. Dearie's Blues

15. Manhattan

16. The Party's Over

x

Track List: Give Him The Ooh-La-La

1. Just One Of Those Things

2. Like Someone In Love

3. Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea

4. They Say It's Spring

5. Try Your Wings

6. Bang Goes The Drum (And You're In Love)

8. The Middle Of Love

9. Plus Je T'embrasse

10. Give Him The Ooh-La-La

11. Let Me Love You

Comments

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We need more Blossom Dearie albums on Pandora. She is a special talent.
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More Dearie !!!
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My first exposure to Blossom was also through Schoolhouse Rock (Figure 8, Unpack Your Adjectives). . . a very distinct voice.
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My mom loved her so I grew up listening too her
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Refreshing
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prsfmail-man
Pandora: time to add more Blossom Dearie selections! two is not enough!
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New to me, love her voice......t o bad she has left us...way to soon. RIP
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bach1012
comforting voice !!
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Wow, love her voice!
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This song gets so close to my heart,becaus e of a women I am seeing.
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Blossom is amazing. I wish I could have seen her in person!
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jeanne57156
i am a frank sinatra fan, was a profesional musician, instruments and vocal for years and i only just discovered Blossom Dearie on Siriusly Sinatra! I love her voice, how did i ever miss out on her,i don't know. too bad, i've lost a lot of good years of listening to her!
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Lovely song,mental soothing.
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I love. This. Thank you.
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Beautiful voice and great gift to us! Thank you!
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'Thanks, Pandora' just doesn't fit enough my gratitude to you for introducing me to Blossom. So many of her songs touch me so deeply, some to even to tears. Thank you
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Remember attending her first performance at Mr Kellys in Chicago.
She possessed Impeccable timing, with the ability to draw you in with her incredible range of emotive skills.
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She could sing a lullaby to the world. No one like her...
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Love a lil Blossom on a weary work day.
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bostonsports f a n 7 4
School House rock instilling knowledge and good taste in music. Ty
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She also participated in Schoolhouse Rock. My first introduction to Blossom Dearie was her song Figure 8.
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shpos
Saw her a number of times in Manhattan clubs. Always an impeccable sense of timing. A memorable duet with Bob Dorough singing Baby, its cold outside.
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Thanks Pandora, for introducing me to this great talent.
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ldeleon337
I knew her for a period in my life. Love her style . Miss her
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dougmeek0
First time hearing Blossom for me also and was blown away!
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pp.laguna
Growing up in the 60's, my Mom used to play her music in the house. Listening to this delicious selection tonight brings back beautiful and sentimental memories of a bygone era. If you like Blossom Dearie, you will love Shirley Horn.
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Margrete Blossom Dearie (April 28, 1924 – February 7, 2009<1>) was an American jazz singer and pianist, often performing in the bebop genre and remembered for her light and girlish voice.<2> One of the last supper club performers, she performed regular engagements in London and New York City over many years.<2>
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My Diana Krall Radio just jumped into my heart on this Sunday evening and a Blossom came forth...So nice to finally meet her.
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Never heard of her until now - wow!
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Now that was nothing but sweet -to hear a true blossom--my first time hearing her--great-- I ' m putting her on my list
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richlook6
She was a regular at Reno Sweeney in NYC in the 1970's. I thought she was a most curious performer, so unlike the big belting mamas and the more strident of us other regulars.
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sandymason7
my favorite singer
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frank sinatra loved her act
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Me too
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I love her voiceNormaFa n t a s i a
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I remember her opening for Miles, she was great
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theworldofkc 1 0
I love learning about new artists and Blossom's voice is a treat!
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tj3506
I can't believe I've never heard of her. It's like coming upon a rare treasure that you want to keep all to yourself.
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dhudson306
To Keep my love Alive. . . . What a song! ! What a voice! !
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She is an amazing jazz singer. She has one of the most beautiful and calming instruments that I've ever heard. -Jazz Geek
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Cutest voice on earth...
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I miss her.
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....so nice, so refreshing.
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a flower
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walkingman71 7
Just like many of you, I had never heard of Blossom Dearie. I went on youtube and discovered several video clips of her performing live. Great talent. I think there were two sides to her - one I wouldn't want to tangle with.
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ericacsharp
Elle chant doucement!!
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Wow. Can't believe I'd never heard of her before.
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She has the sweetest voice. A jazz original especially singing Peel Me a Grape.
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What a gem to find. Good pick.
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kthg
love her sound...like a delicate flower.
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