LaVern Baker

Born Nov 11, 1929

LaVern Baker was an American rhythm and blues singer, who had several hit records on the pop chart in the 1950s and early 1960s. Her most successful records were "Tweedlee Dee" (1955), "Jim Dandy" (1956), and "I Cried a Tear" (1958).

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Browse recent news and stories about LaVern Baker.

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of LaVern Baker.


1929 Birth Born on November 11, 1929.


1946 16 Years Old Baker began singing in Chicago clubs such as the Club DeLisa around 1946, often billed as Little Miss Sharecropper, and first recorded under that name in 1949.


1951 - 1953 2 More Events
1955 25 Years Old Her first hit came in early 1955, with the Latin-tempo "Tweedle Dee", which reached number 4 on the R&B chart and number 14 on the national US pop chart. … Read More
1956 26 Years Old At the end of 1956 she had another hit with "Jim Dandy" (number 1 R&B, number 17 pop), which sold over one million copies and was certified as a gold disc. … Read More
1959 29 Years Old Baker and the comedian Slappy White were married in 1959.


1964 34 Years Old In 1964, she recorded a Bessie Smith tribute album. … Read More
1966 36 Years Old In 1966, Baker recorded a duet single with Jackie Wilson. … Read More
1969 39 Years Old After the couple was divorced in 1969, Baker signed on for a USO tour; she became seriously ill with bronchial pneumonia after a trip to Vietnam. … Read More


1988 58 Years Old 1 More Event
She remained there for 22 years, returning to the United States after the base was closed in 1988.


1990 60 Years Old In 1990, she made her Broadway debut, replacing Ruth Brown as the star of the hit musical Black and Blue.
1991 61 Years Old In 1991, Rhino Records released a new album Live in Hollywood, recorded at the Hollywood Roosevelt Cinegrill, and a compilation of her greatest Atlantic hits, Soul on Fire.
1992 62 Years Old In 1992, she recorded a well-received studio album, Woke Up This Morning, for DRG Records.
1994 64 Years Old She continued performing after both legs were amputated because of complications due to diabetes in 1994.
1995 65 Years Old Baker made her last recording, "Jump into the Fire," for the 1995 Harry Nilsson tribute CD, For the Love of Harry, on the Music Masters label. … Read More
1997 67 Years Old Baker died of cardiovascular disease on March 10, 1997, at the age of 67. … Read More
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