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LUTCHER, Nellie.

Signed 10 x 8 glossy publicity photograph.

c. 1959 Stock Code: 131155
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Attractive publicity shot of the singer and pianist credited as an influence by Nina Simone, inscribed boldly across the lower half of the image "Hello Alfred - thank you for your interest. Nellie". Nellie Lutcher (1912-2007) came from a musical background, her father was a jazz bassist and her mother a church organist. At age 11 she accompanied Ma Rainey and within a few years was playing and singing professionally. "Her career was a classic case of seemingly overnight success that actually took years to achieve. She had been performing in the Los Angeles area for more than a decade when a Capitol Records talent scout, Dave Dexter, heard her on a radio broadcast of a charity concert in 1947 and quickly signed her. Over the next two years she went from obscurity to stardom, with four records reaching the Billboard R & B Top 10. Her distinctively lively, lighthearted, mildly risqué approach, exemplified by her original compositions 'He's a Real Gone Guy' and 'Hurry On Down,' earned her an international following and a booking at the New York nightclub Café Society. But by 1952 a more rough-hewn brand of rhythm and blues was catching on, her sales were declining and Capitol released her... but In 1973 Barney Josephson, the former proprietor of Café Society, summoned Ms. Lutcher back to New York to perform at his Greenwich Village nightclub, the Cookery. That engagement was enthusiastically received and began a comeback that lasted two decades" ((NY Times obituary, retrieved 13.12.18). Whitney Balliett includes a lively portrait of her in his American Singers: Twenty-Seven Portraits in Song (2005).

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Original 10 x 8 glossy (255 x 205 mm) studio photograph, captioned Nellie Lutcher and Her Rhythm.


Neatly annotated in ballpoint pen and pencil on verso (dated 1959). Light creasing otherwise every good.


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