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‘Tennessee Waltz’ Singer Patti Page Dead at 85

Patti Page
Kevin Winter, Getty Images

The iconic voice of Patti Page has been silenced, as the ‘Tennessee Waltz’ singer died in Encinitas, Calif. on Jan. 1, 2013. Page was the most successful female singer of the ’50s with an astounding 100 million records sold, according to the Associated Press. The Grammy and ACM Pioneer Award-winner leaves behind two children.

While her recording career ended in the early ’80s, Page remained active as a touring artist until late last year, when she announced to fans that she’d be focusing more on unspecified medical problems. The news followed a resurgence; in 1998 she recorded a live album called ‘Live at Carnegie Hall: The 50th Anniversary Concert’ that went on to win a Grammy. She followed that with ‘Brand New Tennessee Waltz’ in 2000.

‘Tennessee Waltz’ was a surprise hit, having been released as a B-side to a Christmas single. It went on to top country, pop and R&B charts, and sold over 10 million copies. It is now one of two state songs of Tennessee. Page’s next most popular hit may be ‘(How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window.’ Others include ‘With My Eyes Wide Open I’m Dreaming,’ ‘Would I Love You’ and ‘Mockingbird Hill.’

Page focused on country music throughout the ’70s, charting over a dozen songs including ‘Hello We’re Lonely’ with Tom T. Hall. The singer — born Clara Ann Fowler — was a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame and was set to be honored with the Recording Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Award next month.

The native Oklahoman’s cause of death had not been revealed as of press time. Her husband, Jerry Filiciotto, died in 2009.

Next: See all of the Country Greats we Lost in 2012

Watch Patti Page Sing ‘Tennessee Wattz’

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