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Famous Like Me > Singer > M > Jane Morgan

Profile of Jane Morgan on Famous Like Me

Name: Jane Morgan  
Also Know As: Florence Catherine Currier
Date of Birth: 25th December 1920
Place of Birth: t
Profession: Singer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

Jane Morgan (born December 25, 1920) was an American popular singer, specializing in traditional pop music.

She was born Florence Catherine Currier, in Newton, Massachusetts (in the Boston area), a relative of Nathaniel Currier, the 19th century lithographer. Her father was the first cellist for the Boston Symphony Orchestra and led an orchestra and string quartet in the months when the Symphony was out of season. At age five, she began training as an opera singer under her mother's guidance. However, her first professional role was not in opera, but in a melodrama in her brother's playhouse in Kennebunkport, Maine at age 7.

Her father died while she was still quite young, and her mother and she moved some years later to Daytona Beach, Florida. There sge entered musical competitions, winning a number of them. After finishing high school, she attended the famous Juilliard School of Music in New York City, studying opera in the day and performing at night in night clubs and at parties. The bandleader Art Mooney heard one of these performances and called her to invite her to sing with his orchestra, and decided that "Florence Currier" was too long to say on radio broadcasts. He gave her the stage name "Janie Morgan," but she preferred "Jane" to "Janie."

A short time later, a French singer, violinist, and orchestra leader named Bernard Hilda, planning to open a night club in Paris, contacted her. He told her that he could make her a star if she came to Paris, and though this meant she had to leave Juilliard, she was enticed by this promise. She worked for 4 1/2 years without a night off at Hilda's "Club des Champs Elysées" and other clubs in Europe. In Paris she made her first recordings with Hilda's orchestra, and some of these became big hits in France. In the summer, she performed in other European countries, and quickly became fluent in Spanish and Italian, as well as French.

At this point Jane was offered a chance to sing at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City. Though she was happy with her life in Paris, she wanted to be a success in her own native country and reluctantly left Europe to do singing engagements in many hotels and clubs. But Jane still lacked one thing, a recording contract.

Many years earlier, Jack Kapp had started Decca Records, which became a major company in the US (later being renamed MCA Records). In 1954 Jack Kapp's brother Dave decided to quit working for his brother Jack, and started his own company, Kapp Records. His first two contracts went to the pianist Roger Williams and Jane. Although Williams had a hit very soon with Autumn Leaves, Jane took longer. A jointly done recording with Williams, "Two Different Worlds," was a minor hit in 1956, but not the major-charting hit Jane needed to ignite her recording career.

In the summer of 1957, the movie "Love in the Afternoon," featuring Gary Cooper and Audrey Hepburn, came out, and an old French song, Fascination, was included in the film. Dave Kapp wanted to record an instrumental version of the song done by a group named "The Troubadors." Jane was invited to attend the session, and, not knowing what they were going to play, was surprised to hear Fascination, which she knew from her days in Europe, where the song was considered a standard. She found out from Kapp that there were some new English lyrics, which Kapp suggested she record with the Troubadours. The record was released with Jane's vocal on one side and a purely instrumental version on the other, and though many other recording companies released their own versions of the song, Jane's became the big hit version. With that hit behind her, her career took off and she was invited to play the biggest clubs and on television.

Later, Kapp released a version of The Day the Rains Came (originally a French song called "Le jour où la pluie viendra") with Jane singing it in English on one side of the record and in French on the other. While it was never the big hit that Fascination was, she loved the song so much that she sang it in performances in the US and Europe.

External references

  • Biography on Oldies.Com site
  • Biography on TV Tome site

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Jane Morgan