|Born||Helen Patricia Freiday
August 4, 1921
Jefferson County, Idaho
|Died||June 21, 2016, age 94
|Spouse(s)||David Berwick Vinson, Jr.|
|Parent(s)||France Everett Freiday and Helen Katherine Abbott|
Friday was born Helen Patricia Freiday in Jefferson County, Idaho, the daughter of France Everett Freiday and Helen Katherine Abbott.
She was discovered by Bing Crosby when he heard her sing during an amateur night at the Victor Hugo cafe in Hollywood. She was performing there at the urging of her sorority sisters at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she was studying home economics. Bing was so impressed that he arranged to have her on his Kraft Music Hall show on May 25, 1939 where she sang “Begin the Beguine” and “Sing a Song of Sunbeams”. She continued on the show through the summer of 1939 with Variety commenting "As for the vocal department the program is well set for Bing Crosby's 13-week absence. The interim should do much to build Pat Friday, a schoolgirl, into major favor with the fans. Her voice is clear, lyrical and likeable, while the Music Maids, rhythm trio, contribute the right amount of salt and pepper to the show's vocal casserole". After that summer season, Friday then returned to college.
Friday was a "ghost singer" for Lynn Bari, but was never credited. She sang "I Know Why (And So Do You)", the original vocal version of "At Last", and "Serenade in Blue" in the Glenn Miller movies Sun Valley Serenade and Orchestra Wives. She also was heard as a singer on the radio in The Story of G.I. Joe (1945).
While still a student at UCLA, Friday was a singer on The Old Gold Don Ameche Show on the NBC Red radio network in 1940. A contemporary magazine article noted, "In order to attend rehearsals she has to cut Friday afternoon classes ... but she makes up by spending all the time she can in a corner of the studio, carefully doing her homework."
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- "Variety". June 28, 1939.
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- Big Band Buddies interview
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- "(untitled brief)". The Nebraska State Journal. Nebraska, Lincoln. December 15, 1940. p. 43.