Alma Cogan
English singer of traditional pop music in the 1950s and early 1960s
Alma Cogan
Alma Cogan was an English singer of traditional pop music in the 1950s and early 1960s. Dubbed "The Girl With the Laugh/Giggle/Chuckle In Her Voice", she was the highest paid British female entertainer of her era. Throughout the mid-1950s, she was the most consistently successful female singer in the UK.
Biography
Alma Cogan's personal information overview.
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Tyrannosaur, The Guard amongt Dinard competition titles - Screen International
Google News - over 5 years
British films receiving their French premieres at the festival include Joanna Hogg's Archipelago, Menhaj Huda's Everywhere And Nowhere, Malcolm Venville's 44 Inch Chest, John McIlduff's Behold the Lamb, Tony Britten's In Love With Alma Cogan and
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Norwich Fashion Week made my dreams come true - Norwich Evening News
Google News - over 5 years
Kris with actor John Hurt on the set of In Love With Alma Cogan, filmed in North Norfolk. Picture supplied. He also secured a contract to model for Norwich hair salon The Gallery Haircutters in the L'Oreal Colour Awards, at which The Gallery and Kris
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Fred West: a glimpse of extreme evil - The Guardian
Google News - over 5 years
At the time of our meeting, I had just written a new television drama, See No Evil, about the moors murders – a subject Gordon too had explored in his novel Alma Cogan. We discussed how these notorious crimes had come to have such profound resonance in
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Kathy Kirby fondly remembered - Stoke & Staffordshire
Google News - over 5 years
She was, as you say, taken over by Ambrose who ruined her career. I thought she was great and could have had a great future. What a waste. There were lots of good singers such as Lita Roza, Ann Shelton, Ruby Murray, Alma Cogan, Vera Lynn
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Camden museum celebrates Jewish people in showbusiness - JohnJohnSaidIt.com
Google News - over 5 years
From years gone by Marc Bolan, Sid James, Alma Cogan and Brian Epstein are also featured. Those with memories that go back further may recall singer Frankie Vaughan, with his trademark top hat and cane, and actor Leslie Howard, who played the part of
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Entertaining The Nation is a tribute to a Jewish gift - Evening Standard
Google News - over 5 years
The soundtrack as you walk around includes music from band leaders Joe Loss and Sid Phillips, through crooners Alma Cogan and Frankie Vaughan up to Amy Winehouse and Justine Frischmann. There are sections on impresarios including Larry Parnes and Simon
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Camden museum celebrates Jewish people in showbusiness - BBC News
Google News - over 5 years
Those with memories that go back further may recall singer Frankie Vaughan, with his trademark top hat and cane, and actor Leslie Howard, who played the part of
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The stolen African song ... composers died poor, heartbroken - The Southern Times
Google News - almost 6 years
More versions were done by Finnish group Kipparikvartetti, German James Last, Frenchman Alix Combelle, Soweto String Quartet, Southern All Stars from Trinidad and Tobago, Swede Lily Berglund and British Alma Cogan. Both Linda and Musarurwa never
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150mila sterline per il pianoforte di 'Yesterday' - Funweek
Google News - almost 6 years
Era il 1964 quando Paul McCartney, che non era ancora Sir (lo sarebbe diventato l'anno seguente con la nomina a Baronetto), si sedette al pianoforte verde a casa della cantante Alma Cogan e buttò giù quella melodia che gli ronzava in testa
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A subasta el piano en el que Paul McCartney compuso “Yesterday” - Tanaka Music
Google News - almost 6 years
Según los entendidos, el piano es un Eavestaff de estilo art decó perteneciente desde 1926 la familia de la cantante británica Alma Cogan y en el que no sólo McCartney aka Angela Lansbury puso sus manos, pues por ese piano “han pasado” otros artistas
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Yesterday, pianoforte venduto per 245mila $ - BintMusic (Blog)
Google News - almost 6 years
Si tratta di un piano Art Decò verde del 1926 che apparteneva alla cantante Alma Cogan e nella cui casa Paul McCartney iniziò appunto a comporre 'Yesterday', chiedendo alla cantante se fosse una melodia già ascoltata o originale
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Piano McCartney used to write 'Yesterday' sells for - TruthDive
Google News - almost 6 years
McCartney, 68, had sat at the 1926 Art Deco green miniature piano to compose the melody to 'Yesterday' at singer Alma Cogan's house in 1964, the Daily Express reported. The singer had famously told how he heard the tune in a dream and hurried to the
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"Вчерашнее" пианино Пола Маккартни ушло с молотка - Beatles.ru - новости
Google News - almost 6 years
Маккартни написал мелодию к «Yesterday» в 1964 году, когда гостил в доме у певицы Альме Коган (Alma Cogan). У нее стояло миниатюрное пианино зеленого цвета 1926 года выпуска. Пол услышал мелодию во сне - и как только проснулся, сразу же сел за
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205 mil dólares por un piano de ayer - Filmeweb
Google News - almost 6 years
Este piano es un Eavestaff de estilo art decó, que fue comprado en 1926 por la familia de la cantante británica Alma Cogan, amiga de Paul, y no solamente pasaron las manos de McCartney por el instrumento, pues también fue tocado por gente como Sammy
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McCartney vende piano de «Yesterday» - A Bola
Google News - almost 6 years
O instrumento foi comprado em 1926, pela família da cantora britânica Alma Cogan e já foi tocado por Sammy Davis Jr e Mick Jagger, durante a década de 60, ainda na casa dos antigos donos. Em 1964, Paul pensou na música «Yesterday» e foi a casa dos
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Books of The Times; A Real Singer Is the Starting Point for a Novel
NYTimes - over 24 years
Alma By Gordon Burn 210 pages. Houghton Mifflin Company. $19.95. The real Alma Cogan, known as "the girl with a chuckle in her voice," was one of Britain's most popular recording stars of the 1950's. England's answer to Doris Day, she sang and chirped her way through hits like "Bell-Bottom Blues," "I Can't Tell a Waltz From a Tango" and "Twenty
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THEATER; Great Balls of Fire! Britain Takes a Time Trip
NYTimes - over 25 years
According to Philip Larkin, "Sexual intercourse began/ In 1963/ (Which was rather late for me)/ Between the end of the Chatterley ban/ And the Beatles' first LP." As with sexual intercourse, so, too, was Britain "rather late" with pop culture. But those two symbolic acts -- the liberation of the past and the promise of the future -- marked the
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Alma Cogan
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  • 1966
    In early 1966, Cogan embarked on a series of club dates in the North of England, but collapsed after two performances and had to be treated for stomach cancer.
    More Details Hide Details In August, she made her final TV appearance on the guest-spot of International Cabaret. The next month, she collapsed while touring Sweden to promote Hello Baby, recorded exclusively for the Swedish market. At London's Middlesex Hospital, she succumbed to ovarian cancer on 26 October at the age of 34. In deference to family custom, her death was observed with traditional Hebraic rites, with burial at Bushey Jewish Cemetery in Hertfordshire. The novel Alma Cogan by Gordon Burn presents an imaginary middle-aged Cogan looking back on life and fame in the 1980s. It claimed to be based on true events and real people, except for her early death, and won the Whitbread Book Award in 1991. Partly adapted from this novel was the BBC Radio 4 series Stage Mother, Sequinned Daughter (2002) by Annie Caulfield. Cogan's sister Sandra felt that it misrepresented both Cogan and her mother, and tried unsuccessfully to get it banned. Eventually the Broadcasting Standards Commission ruled that the BBC apologise to Sandra for failing to respect the feelings of the surviving family members.
  • 1965
    Cogan tried to update her image by recording some Beatles numbers and a spin-off from The Man from U.N.C.L.E. ("Love Ya Illya"). But by 1965, record producers were becoming dissatisfied with Cogan's work, and it was clear that her health was failing.
    More Details Hide Details Her friend and colleague Anne Shelton attributed this decline to some 'highly experimental' injections she took to lose weight, claiming that Cogan was never well again after that.
  • 1964
    But after Lennon actually met Cogan on the TV pop show Ready Steady Go in 1964, they became close friends, so much so that Cogan's sister Sandra later claimed that the pair had a serious romance that had to be kept secret because of Alma's family's strict Jewish faith.
    More Details Hide Details After Cynthia Lennon died (in 2015), John Lennon's biographer published her previously unreleased quotes regarding Cogan: "John thought I didn’t know anything about him and Alma, and I never let on. Now that I think about it, with all the emotion gone out of it, I can see the attraction. Alma was about eight years older than John and very much the Auntie figure. Don’t forget that Yoko was also older than John by about seven years. Like Yoko in so many ways, Alma was a very compelling woman. You couldn’t really say that either of them was beautiful, could you, not in the conventional sense. When Alma died from ovarian cancer, aged only 34, John was inconsolable." Cogan was close to the other Beatles as well, especially Paul McCartney, who first played the melody of "Yesterday" on Cogan's piano; he also played tambourine on her recording of "I Knew Right Away".
  • 1963
    Cogan also wrote some of her own songs. Her 1963 record "Just Once More" was co-written by her (under the pseudonym of "Al Western") and her long-time pianist Stan Foster; and her 1964 record "It's You" was also a Cogan-Foster collaboration, although this time she was credited under her own name.
    More Details Hide Details Still she remained a popular figure on the UK show-business scene, being offered the part of Nancy in Oliver!, appearing on the teenage hit-show Ready Steady Go!, and headlining at the Talk of the Town. Cogan lived with her widowed mother in Kensington High Street (at 44 Stafford Court) in a lavishly decorated ground-floor flat, which became a legendary party venue. Regular visitors included Princess Margaret, Noël Coward, Cary Grant, Audrey Hepburn, Michael Caine, Frankie Vaughan, Bruce Forsyth, Roger Moore and a host of other celebrities. A teen-aged John Lennon used to mimic her savagely during his time at the Liverpool College of Art; Lennon's wife Cynthia recalled, "John and I had thought of Alma as out of date and unhip."
    She was especially disappointed that her 1963 cover of the Exciters' US hit "Tell Him" did not return her to the UK charts, according to singer Eddie Grassham.
    More Details Hide Details In 1964 Tennessee Waltz was recorded in a rock and roll ballad style by Cogan; this version was No. 1 in Sweden for five weeks and also reached the Top 20 in Denmark while a German language rendering reached No. 10 in Germany.
  • 1956
    The skirts seemed to be so wide – I don't know where they hung them up!" Cogan topped the annual NME reader's poll as "Outstanding British Female Singer" four times between 1956 and 1960.
    More Details Hide Details The UK musical revolution of the 1960s, symbolised by the rise of the Beatles, suddenly made Cogan unfashionable; in the 1991 BBC documentary Alma Cogan: The Girl with the Giggle in Her Voice, Lionel Blair said she was perceived as 'square'. Her highest 1960s chart ranking in UK would be No. 26 with "We Got Love", and most of her successes at this time were abroad, notably in Sweden and Japan, as she was good at singing in foreign languages.
  • 1954
    Many of her recordings would be covers of U.S. hits, especially those recorded by Rosemary Clooney, Teresa Brewer, Georgia Gibbs, Joni James and Dinah Shore. One of these covers, "Bell Bottom Blues", became her first hit, reaching No. 4 on 3 April 1954.
    More Details Hide Details Cogan would appear in the UK Singles Chart eighteen times in the 1950s, with "Dreamboat" reaching No. 1. Other hits from this period include "I Can't Tell a Waltz from a Tango", "Why Do Fools Fall in Love", "Sugartime" and "The Story of My Life". Cogan's first album, I Love to Sing, was released in 1958. Cogan was one of the first UK record artists to appear frequently on television, where her powerful voice could be showcased along with her bubbly personality and dramatic costumes. Her hooped skirts with sequins and figure-hugging tops were reputedly designed by herself and never worn twice. Cliff Richard recalls: "My first impression of her was definitely frocks – I kept thinking, how many can this woman have? Almost every song had a different costume.
  • 1953
    In 1953, while recording "If I Had a Golden Umbrella", she broke into a giggle, and then played up the effect on later recordings.
    More Details Hide Details Soon she was dubbed the "Girl with the giggle in her voice" (‘Giggle’ has sometimes been quoted as ‘chuckle’.)
  • 1948
    This led to her appearing regularly on the BBC's radio show Gently Bentley and then becoming the vocalist for Take It From Here, a British radio comedy programme broadcast by the BBC between 1948 and 1960.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1932
    She was born Alma Angela Cohen on 19 May 1932 in Whitechapel, London, of Russian-Romanian Jewish descent.
    More Details Hide Details Her father's family, the Kogins, arrived in Britain from Russia, while her mother's family were refugees from Romania. Cogan's parents, Mark and Fay Cohen, had another daughter, the actress Sandra Caron, and one son Ivor Cogan. Mark's work as a haberdasher entailed frequent moves. One of Cogan's early homes was over his shop in Worthing, Sussex. Although Jewish, she attended St Joseph's Convent School in Reading. Her father was a singer, but it was Cogan's mother who had show business aspirations for both her daughters (she had named Cogan after silent screen star Alma Taylor). Cogan first performed in public at a charity show at the Palace Theatre in Reading, and at eleven, competed in the "Sussex Queen of Song" contest held at a Brighton hotel, winning a prize of £5. At 14, she was recommended by Vera Lynn for a variety show at the Grand Theatre in Brighton. At 16, she was told by bandleader Ted Heath "You've got a good voice, but you're far too young for this business. Come back in five years' time." Heath would later say: "'Letting her go was one of the biggest mistakes of my life." But Cogan found work singing at tea dances, while also studying dress design at Worthing Art College, and was soon appearing in the musical High Button Shoes and a revue, Sauce Tartare. In 1949, she became resident singer at the Cumberland Hotel, where she was spotted by Walter Ridley of HMV, who became her coach.
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