Betty Cody

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Betty Cody
Rita Francis Coté

(1921-08-17)August 17, 1921
Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada
DiedJuly 1, 2014(2014-07-01) (aged 92)
Spouse(s)Harold Breau (1940-19??; divorced); 4 children
George Binette (19??-2002; his death)
Musical career

Betty Cody (August 17, 1921 – July 1, 2014) was a Canadian-born country music singer. Her notable singles include the 1952 RCA releases "Tom Tom Yodel" and "I Found Out More Than You Ever Knew", and "Please Throw Away The Glass" released by RCA in 1954.[1] In 1979, Cody was inducted into the Maine Country Music Hall Of Fame.

Early years[edit]

She was born Rita Francis Coté to Alphonse and Albina Coté in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada, the sixth of 11 children. When still a child she moved to Auburn, Maine.[2]


In 1940, Betty Cody married Harold Breau, a musician who performed as Hal Lone Pine. The couple started performing together and she adopted the stage name of Betty Cody. Cody signed a contract with RCA Records in the early 1950s. In 1952 she had her hit in the U.S. country charts with "Tom Tom Yodel".[1] Her 1953 hit single "I Found Out More Than You Ever Knew" reached No. 10 on the Billboard country chart.[3][4] Slim Andrews, the chair on the board of directors of the Maine Country Music Hall of Fame called her "the number one country singer to ever go out of the state of Maine."[5]

Personal life[edit]

After splitting from her husband she gave up her career and worked in a shoe shop in Lewiston, Maine to care for her three younger sons. Betty and Harold eventually divorced. Her eldest son, Lenny Breau, who had lived with his father, later moved to California. Lenny became a noted jazz guitarist.[6] In 1984, Lenny Breau's dead body was found in a swimming pool. The death was ruled a murder and the case was never solved.[7] Another son, Denny Breau, is also a musician.[1]

Cody married, secondly, to George Binette, by which marriage she became stepmother to four children. Binette died in 2002.[8]


Betty Cody died from undisclosed illness on July 1, 2014, at age 92 in Lewiston, Maine.[9]


  1. ^ a b c "Acclaimed Maine country singer Betty Cody dies at 92". Portland Press Herald. July 3, 2014.
  2. ^ Forbes-Roberts, Ron (2006). One Long Tune: The Life and Music of Lenny Breau. University of North Texas Press. p. 6. ISBN 9781574412307.
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. ISBN 978-0-89820-177-2.
  4. ^ Clifford R. Murphy (November 13, 2014). Yankee Twang: Country and Western Music in New England. University of Illinois Press. pp. 59–. ISBN 978-0-252-09661-7.
  5. ^ "Maine Country Music Legend Betty Cody Dies". July 3, 2014. Retrieved February 4, 2015.
  6. ^ Charles Alexander (2002). Masters of Jazz Guitar: The Story of the Players and Their Music. Backbeat. pp. 62–. ISBN 978-0-87930-728-8. Retrieved February 17, 2015.
  7. ^ "Maine country singer Betty Cody dies at 92". The Boston Globe. Associated Press. July 7, 2014. Retrieved February 4, 2015.
  8. ^ Obituary Archived February 17, 2015, at the Wayback Machine,; accessed February 17, 2015.
  9. ^ Staff (July 3, 2014). "Betty Cody, a legend in Maine Country Music, dies". Archived from the original on February 17, 2015. Retrieved February 4, 2015.