||A major contributor to this article appears to have a close connection with its subject. (August 2010)|
The daughter of a Baptist minister, she sang first in her father's church. Later she went to New York and performed in clubs. Around 1965, she was hired by organist Johnny "Hammond" Smith and recorded albums for Prestige Records, Roulette Records, & Twentieth Century Fox. She also cut a few 45rpm records.
Byrdie took a break from her career to raise her two daughters, Deborah A. Murray and Dardenella Braxton. Upon her return she performed at Carnegie Recital Hall, toured with the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra and before her death in February 2008, she was with the touring company of the Broadway play Black and Blue. Byrdie's health started to fade and she developed emphysema and was on oxygen 24 hours a day, and had to use a wheelchair. It was always her belief that she would sing again one day and that her heavenly father would make it happen, but she died before fulfilling this dream. She passed at St. Luke's Hospital on February 26, 2008, and was eulogized at Mt. Neboh Church in NYC on Saturday, May 3, 2008.
- The Stinger Meets the Golden Thrush (Prestige, 1966) - with Johnny "Hammond" Smith
- The Golden Thursh Strikes at Midnight (1966)
- I Got It Bad (1967)
- Sister Byrdie (1968)
45 rpm records:
"How Come" / "Tremblin'" (End 1117)
"Tremblin'"/ "Memories Are Made of This" (End 1122)
"Don't Make it Hurt" / "Magic of Your Love" (Hallmark 334)
"Get a Hold of Yourself" / "Don't Take Your Love from Me" (20th Fox 422)
"I Found My Place" (20th Fox 511)
"Through a Long and Sleepless Night" / "Tears" (20th Fox 567)
The Prestige label A discography (Compiled by Michel Ruppli) ISBN 978-0-313-22019-7