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Biography

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Overview (3)

Date of Birth 20 September 1924Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Date of Death 10 March 2016California, USA
Birth NameMyrtle Audrey Arinsberg

Mini Bio (1)

Gogi Grant was born on September 20, 1924 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA as Myrtle Audrey Arinsberg. She was married to Robert Gore Rifkind and Sherman Yettra. She died on March 10, 2016 in California, USA.

Spouse (2)

Robert Gore Rifkind (25 January 1959 - 2 March 1983) (divorced) (2 children)
Sherman Yettra (24 May 1942 - ?) (divorced) (1 child)

Trivia (11)

Is a jazz/pop singer with a string of hits in the 1950s, including "Suddenly There's A Valley" (1955), "The Wayward Wind" (Grant's first #1, which was also covered by Tex Ritter, and Jimmy Young), "When The Tide Is High", "Who Are We", and "You're In Love" (all in 1956), and "Strange Are the Ways of Love" (1958).
Has one daughter, Jeri, and one son, Joshua Beckett.
Appeared three times singing songs nominated for "Best Original Song" on the Academy Awards. At The 29th Annual Academy Awards (1957), she sang the Oscar-nominated song, "Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Que Será, Será)" (originally performed in the movie The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) by Doris Day). At The 32nd Annual Academy Awards (1960), Grant sang "Strange Are the Ways of Love", from The Young Land (1959). And, on The 34th Annual Academy Awards (1962), the nominated song was "Pocketful of Miracles", from Pocketful of Miracles (1961). None of the songs got Oscar's final "nod".
Voted "Most Popular Female Vocalist of 1956" by Billboard Magazine. Grant decided to retire from her singing career in 1967. In 1987 she made a brief comeback with the reissue by RCA in England and Japan of a 1959 US release titled "Granted ... It's Gogi" that was well received by music critics.
In 1957, she had a brief fling in Hollywood. She provided the dubbed vocals (singing for Ann Blyth) of vintage 1920s hits in the soundtrack of Michael Curtiz's biopic The Helen Morgan Story (1957). She also appeared as "Cindy Adams" in William J. Cowen's rock 'n roll quickie The Big Beat (1958).
In 1952, she began recording first as "Audrey Brown" and later "Audrey Grant".
At the age of 12, she moved to Los Angeles, where she attended Venice High School. In California, she won a teenage singing contest and appeared on television talent shows.
Her parents, Rose (Jacobson) and Alexander Arinsberg, were Russian Jewish immigrants.
At the age 12 in 1936, after moving to California, Myrtle Audrey Arnsberg won a teen singing contest. At age 27 in early 1952, initially using Audrey Brown as her vocal musical name, later, changed to Audrey Grant, made appearances on local Los Angeles television shows. A record producer renamed her Gogi Grant. She is best known for her 1956 hit "The Wayward Wind" and providing the vocals for the 1957 Warner Brothers Burbank Studios feature film "The Helen Morgan Story," staring Ann Blyth, Paul Newman and Richard Carlson. Although Ann Blyth had done her own singing in her other movie musicals, her trained soprano voice was judged too operatic for the role of Helen Morgan, and pop singer Gogi Grant's voice was dubbed in. Ironically, the real Helen Morgan's light soprano voice was actually closer to Blyth's in quality than it was to Grant's. Ann Blyth revealed to writer-producer John Fricke that studio head Jack L. Warner had insisted on an intense, belting, Judy Garland-type sound for the film's Morgan. This was Warner Bros. only 70mm feature film presented in black-and-white Cinemascope screen format. Warner Bros. released this as a double feature with the 1957 black-and-white 35mm academy ratio film "Johnny Trouble" starring Ethel Barrymore (her final film before her death in June 18, 1959 at the age of 75), Cecil Kellaway, Stuart Whitman and Carolyn Jones.
Gogi Grant had a devoted following of fans who packed the night clubs and theaters where she performed and purchased her 15 albums during her busy vocal career. Gogi took a 20 year hiatus to raise her son, but returned to rave reviews reflecting that her absence had no diminished effect on her vocal artistry. Gogi was an elegant performer who sang with an unmatched purity of tone and emotion. She was often referred to as "an American Piaf." A beautiful, kind, generous human being who was deeply loved. She is survived by her daughter Jeri Brown, her son Joshua Beckett and daughter-in-law Jennifer Beckett, and her granddaughters, Tina and Dalia.
The Warner Bros. "The Helen Morgan Story" was originally planned after the studio's two successful 1955 features "Love Me or Leave Me" starring Doris Day and "I'll Cry Tomorrow" starring Susan Hayward. The studio's musical star Doris Day was to perform the Helen Morgan role. This is one of the few planned projects that Day vehemently refused to play. She did not feel she wished to portray the sordid aspects of Helen Morgan and it would be totally different from her screen image. Others considered for the role of Helen Morgan were Judy Garland (who reportedly said about the part, "No more sad endings for me"), Susan Hayward, Jennifer Jones and Peggy Lee. Patti Page relates in her biography-book that she had tested for the title role of Helen Morgan wearing a dark wig before Warner Bros. cast Ann Blyth.

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