Dinah Washington, born Ruth Lee Jones (Tuscaloosa (Alabama), 1924 - August 29, Detroit (Michigan), 14 december 1963) was an American blues-, R & Bandjazzsinger.

Biography[Edit][edit | edit source]

Dinah Washington moved with her family from Tuscaloosa to Chicago. Here she learned to play piano and had them at some point her own church choir. In 1942 , she began performing in the Garrick Stage Bar nightclub . Not long after she added joined the band of Lionel Hampton. It is about this time that she went under the name Dinah Washington occur. It is unclear who gave her the name. Some sources claim Hampton as the creator of the name, while others the owner of the night club after Garrick Stage Bar.

In 1943 , she began to include plates for Keynote Records and she released "Evil Gal Blues" out, her first hit. In 1952 she took as a first woman Tell me why on. In 1955she already had a long string of hits to her name, including some blues numbersstandards and even a cover of "Cold, Cold Heart" by Hank Williams. They also took some jazz with several jazz musicians, whose 1955 Dinah Jams with Clifford Brown is the most famous.

In 1959 she broke through at the larger poppubliek with the hit "What a Diff'rence a Day Makes", for which she the Grammy Award for best R & B recording won. The album was heavily criticized by jazz and blues critics, who felt they had made a genuflection to Commerce. The more pop-oriented music, however, was very successful, and Washington continued to despite the criticism focus on pop ballads. Many of her songs were arranged by a young Quincy Jones. One of her best known hits from that era was "Mad About the Boy" from 1961. This song was a hit again in 1992 , after it was used in a commercial for Levi's jeans brand.

Dinah Washington was married eight times in her short life, seven times divorced, and she had several lovers. She died in 1963 at the age of 39 after a slimming tabletsoverdose . Washington fought her entire life against overweight.

In 1991 she was inducted into the Alabama Music Hall of Fame.

Discography (selection)[Edit][edit | edit source]

  • Blazing Ballads, 1952
  • Dinah Jams, 1954
  • After Hours with Miss "D" ', 1954
  • In the Land of Hi-Fi, 1956
  • Dinah!, 1956
  • The Swingin' Miss "D", 1956
  • Dinah Washington Sings Fats Waller, 1957
  • Dinah Sings Bessie Smith, 1958
  • Newport ' 58, 1958
  • What a Diff'rence a Day Makes!, 1959
  • The Two of Us (with Brook Benton), 1960
  • Dinah, 1962
  • Back to the Blues, 1963
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