Before animated Jessica Rabbit, there was Peggy Lee.
Speaking of animation, one the most beloved animated Walt Disney classics is Lady and the Tramp. The spaghetti dinner date love scene with the two dogs alone is better than some live action romantic comedies released theatrically this year.
James Gavin wrote a brilliant and extensively researched biography of the true show biz legend, singer/actress and civil rights activist Lena Horne. This book is a knock-out. I still feel that what Jim detailed about the complicated relationship between Lena Horne and her mother against the backdrop of Horne's groundbreaking career and a racially changing America could inspire a Broadway musical fable as strong as Gypsy.
The wicked stepmother Peggy Lee claimed to have survived when she told the tale of her life may not have been so wicked after all. This may have been fabrication. Lee lived in world of illusion. And the sexy blonde wooziness that Lee had onstage and on TV -- an attitude that came off as extremely sophisticated -- may have been the result of too much Valium.
Like Frank Sinatra and Doris Day, Peggy Lee was a 1940s band singer who proved to be a film actor doing work that delivered an Oscar nomination. She had hit records and popular albums. She was a key influence on Madonna. The MTV era pop diva covered Peggy's hit recording of "Fever."
Lee was one of the most celebrated and creative women in pop music. She was a singer, a songwriter, a hit recording artist and an Oscar-nominated actress. She was sexy. She had demons and quirks we didn't know about -- but we can read about them now thanks to writer James Gavin. Check out his new Peggy Lee biography, Is That All There Is?
Jim is available for TV and radio interviews. Contact him at James@JamesGavin.com.