Hi, everyone. Welcome to another edition of Music Monday.
(Image found online. Original source unknown.)
This month marked what would have been the 73rd birthday for a women whose voice was gentle, clear and beautiful. Karen Carpenter was born on March 2, 1950 in New Haven, CT but moved to Downey, CA when she was a teenager . That is where she joined her brother, Richard, in his musical endeavors. That partnership eventually brought the siblings international fame as The Carpenters in the 1970’s for their soft rock, middle of the road sound, led by her smooth rich contralto voice.
Her distinctive range gave her the ability to hit every note gloriously, especially the low ones. She delivered each song perfectly in such an effortless way, which just underscored the true gift she was blessed with. It is hard to believe we have been without it for the last 30 years. She died on February 4, 1983, at the age of 32 as one of the first people to lose the fight against anorexia.
I have writen before that I wish life had given her more happiness than just that iconic voice. A rigorous touring schedule left her little time for much of a personal or social life, while her divorce robbed her of her dreams to be a wife and mother, as she reportedly longed to be. Luckily her successful career came with many of its own rewards and her talent as a female drummer made her a hero & inspiration to little girls everywhere, including me.
“Long ago and oh so far away
I fell in love with you before the second show
Your guitar it sounds so sweet and clear
But you’re not really here it’s just the radio“.
Left: Richard and Karen circa 1970. Right: The siblings behind their instruments of choice-Karen on the drums and Richard at the piano, circa 1971. (Images found online. Original sources unknown.)
The Carpenters: “Superstar” (1971, written by Bonnie Bramlett and Leon Russell).
Stay safe & well.