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Andrews Sisters

Andrews Sisters

*Maxene Andrews

  D.O.B.: January 3, 1918 (Minneapolis, MN)

  D.O.D.: October 21, 1995

  Cause of Death: Heart Attack

  Location: Forest Lawn Glendale; Great Mausoleum

*Laverne Andrews

  D.O.B.: July 6, 1915 (Minneapolis, MN)

  D.O.D.: May 8, 1967

  Cause of Death: Cancer

  Location: Forest Lawn Glendale; Great Mausoleum

Biographical Notes:

The most successful female group of all-time, the Andrews Sisters will always be associated with World War II. Their most memorable songs, such as ''Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,'' ''Don't Sit Under the Apple Tree'' and ''I'll Be with You in Apple Blossom Time,'' were among the most popular during wartime.

Born and raised in Minnesota, the sisters began their professional career in 1933, touring with the Larry Rich vaudeville troupe. After the troupe broke up six months later, the sisters took whatever singing jobs they could get to earn a living.

In 1936, they finally landed a steady job with Leon Belasco's society orchestra. It was with Belasco where they first met arranger Vic Schoen, who would later become their musical director. In early 1937, Belasco cut a single with the sisters. It went nowhere. Their father finally convinced them to come back to Minneapolis and attend secretarial school. They were packing their bags when Schoen, who was then with Billy Swanson's orchestra, invited them to sing on a radio program. Decca A&R vice president Dave Kapp heard the broadcast and invited the sisters to his office. After a short audition, he signed them to a contract.

They made their first recording for Decca in October of 1937. Soon after, they had their first number one hit with ''Bei Mir Bist Du Schon,'' a novelty tune originally recorded as a B-side. Their unique vocal arrangements and tight harmonies quickly made them one of the most popular musical acts in the country, with a string of hits and regular appearances on radio.

During World War II, they performed often for servicemen both in American and abroad. After the war ended, their popularity began to wane, and they concentrated on recording duets with other well-known artists, like Danny Kaye, Guy Lombardo and Carmen Miranda.

In early 1951, they left Decca, and in 1953, split up, with Patty going solo. In 1956, they re-united and signed with Capitol Records, re-recording their old hits along with some newer material. In the early 60s, they recorded for Dot Records.

In 1966, Laverne left the group due to illness. The following year, she died from cancer.

Maxene and Patty continued working together until 1968, when Maxene retired and Patty resumed her solo career. They re-united in 1974 for the Broadway production Over Here. They both continued solo careers well into the 90s.

Maxene died in 1996.

 

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