The Timeless Magic of Peggy Lee

Peggy Lee (1953) | Ormond Gigli

Peggy Lee, an American singer and songwriter, was born on this day May 26, 1920, in Jamestown, North Dakota. This iconic figure in the world of jazz and popular music is renowned for her sultry voice, which captivated audiences worldwide. As a singer, she developed a unique vocal style that enabled her to transcend the boundaries of genre and era. As a songwriter, Peggy Lee contributed to the creation of an impressive body of work that continues to inspire musicians today.

Throughout her career, Peggy Lee released over 50 albums and collaborated with some of the greatest musicians and composers of her time, such as Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, and Quincy Jones. She was a versatile performer, demonstrating her talents not only as a singer and songwriter but also as an actress in various films and television shows. Her most famous acting role was in the 1955 Disney film Lady and the Tramp, where she provided the voices for four characters and co-wrote six songs for the film’s soundtrack.

Beyond her work as a singer and songwriter, Peggy Lee was an influential figure in the music industry. She was one of the first artists to demand creative control over her recordings, pushing for the rights of musicians to have a say in how their music was produced and marketed. This pioneering stance paved the way for future generations of artists to assert their rights within the industry.

Peggy Lee’s impact on music is still felt today, thanks to her timeless recordings and enduring influence on contemporary artists. Her songs have been covered by numerous musicians across various genres, from jazz to pop to rock. In 1999, she was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame as a testament to her significant contribution to the world of music.

Peggy Lee’s legacy as a singer and songwriter is one that cannot be overstated. Her unique voice, innovative songwriting, and pioneering spirit have made a lasting impression on the music industry and continue to inspire musicians around the world.

Curated by Jennifer