Mindy Carson

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When The Big Show premiered on November 5, 1950, this ad showing NBC's full evening schedule ran in Sunday newspapers across the country. Here's how it looked in the Kingsport Times-News (Kingsport, Tennessee). Clockwise from top left: Mindy Carson, Jimmy Durante, Tallulah Bankhead, Fred Allen and Ethel Merman.

Mindy Carson (born July 16, 1927) is an American former traditional pop vocalist. She was heard often on radio during the 1940s and 1950s.

Early years[edit]

Carson was born in New York City and grew up in the Bronx, graduating from James Monroe High School.[1] After graduation, she took a position as typist and stenographer,[2] and she worked at a candy company.[3]

Radio[edit]

In 1946, while still in her teens, Carson won an audition to the radio program Stairway to the Stars. This gave her a chance to perform for eight months in 1947[4] with Paul Whiteman's band[5] and singer Martha Tilton, stars of the program. She joined the singing bandleader Harry Cool that year and made a number of recordings with him, one of which, "Rumors Are Flying", made the charts.

Although she failed to score a chart hit recording during the next four years, she did receive much radio exposure. She was heard on Guy Lombardo's syndicated program in the late 1940s and her own variety program which began on the CBS Network in 1949. She also had her own thrice-weekly program, sponsored by the U.S. Army, in 1950.[5] She was widely promoted as one of the guests on the November 5, 1950 premiere of NBC's The Big Show, hosted by Tallulah Bankhead.[citation needed]

Television[edit]

Beginning in 1949, Carson was a regular for two years on Florian Zabach's NBC television variety program. On December 30, 1952 she began the Mindy Carson Show, sponsored by Embassy cigarettes, on NBC.[6]

Recordings[edit]

By 1949 she had signed with RCA's record label, RCA Victor Records. Although her initial recordings for RCA failed to excite record-buyers, the success of Eileen Barton's novelty hit "If I Knew You Were Coming I'd've Baked a Cake" prompted the company to try a similar recording for Mindy Carson. Her recording of "Candy and Cake" was backed with "My Foolish Heart" as RCA catalog number 20-3681, and both sides became a two-sided hit. However, after a number of unsuccessful follow-up recordings, RCA dropped her in 1952.

When Carson moved to Columbia Records, her duet with Guy Mitchell, "Cause I Love You That's-A-Why", climbed on the charts to the top 25. She also guest-starred on ABC's 1957 series The Guy Mitchell Show. "All the Time and Everywhere", a big hit in the United Kingdom for Dickie Valentine, went nowhere for Carson and other U.S. recording artists. A cover of The Gaylords' big hit "Tell Me You're Mine" charted at #22, and a few others made the top 30 in 1952, 1953 and 1954.

Her song "Memories Are Made of This" with the Ray Coniff Orchestra was issued in 1955.[7]

In August 1955 she scored a hit when her recording of "Wake the Town and Tell the People" reached #13, despite the fact that the trends in popular music were moving to Rock'n'Roll and she was not generally a rock singer. Carson had a minor hit with "The Fish", the single prior to "Wake The Town...", which was a mild rocker based on a proposed dance craze. The record appeared in both the Cashbox and Music Vendor retail surveys. She had only one more hit, Ivory Joe Hunter's "Since I Met You Baby" in 1957. By 1960, her recording career was over.

Broadway[edit]

In 1958 she appeared on Broadway in The Body Beautiful by Sheldon Harnick and Jerry Bock, their first musical collaboration. Carson returned to Broadway in the 1960s in two comedies, Mary, Mary (1961–64) and Dinner at Eight (1966-67).[8]

Clubs[edit]

In 1949, Carson became the youngest performer to receive top billing at New York City's Copacabana nightclub. She also performed at clubs in New Orleans, Baltimore, and other cities.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Carson married music publisher Eddie Joy in September 1949. They had three daughters, Jenny, Jody and Cathy.[9][10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Heimer, Mel (August 28, 1952). "My New York". Las Cruces Sun-News. p. 4. Retrieved September 22, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  2. ^ Lanigan, Bob (August 29, 1951). "TV Review". The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. p. 17. Retrieved September 22, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  3. ^ "Ladylike Torch Singer". Life. 27 (13): 132–36. September 26, 1949. Retrieved September 23, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Mindy Carson's 5-Yr. NBC Pact". Billboard. August 20, 1949. p. 16. Retrieved 23 September 2015. 
  5. ^ a b "Army to Sponsor Mindy Carson On WIBA". The Capital Times. August 17, 1950. p. 28. Retrieved September 22, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  6. ^ "Mindy Carson's Radio, TV Schedule Jammed". Billboard. December 20, 1952. p. 6. Retrieved September 23, 2015. 
  7. ^ "Memories Are Made Of This". Bigfm.de. Retrieved 2015-11-05. 
  8. ^ "Mindy Carson". Playbill Vault. Retrieved September 23, 2015. 
  9. ^ Judson, Beth (April 15, 1954). "Speaking of Families". Long Beach Independent. p. 49. Retrieved September 22, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  10. ^ MacPherson, Virginia (October 3, 1949). "Mindy Carson Doesn't Like Playing Role of a Cinderella". Daily Capital Journal. p. 7. Retrieved September 22, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read

External links[edit]