Steve Lawrence

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Steve Lawrence

Lawrence with wife Eydie Gormé.
Background information
Birth nameSidney Liebowitz
Born(1935-07-08) July 8, 1935 (age 77)
OriginBrooklyn, New York, U.S.
GenresBig band, swing, traditional pop music
OccupationsSinger, actor
Years active1957–present
 
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Steve Lawrence

Lawrence with wife Eydie Gormé.
Background information
Birth nameSidney Liebowitz
Born(1935-07-08) July 8, 1935 (age 77)
OriginBrooklyn, New York, U.S.
GenresBig band, swing, traditional pop music
OccupationsSinger, actor
Years active1957–present

Steve Lawrence (born July 8, 1935) is an American singer and actor, perhaps best known as a member of a duo with his wife Eydie Gormé, billed as "Steve and Eydie". The two appeared together since appearing regularly on Tonight Starring Steve Allen in the mid-1950s until Gormé's retirement.[1][2]

Contents

Biography

Personal life

Lawrence was born Sidney Liebowitz[2] in Brooklyn to Jewish parents,[3] Max, a cantor and house painter, and Anna (née Gelb).[4] He attended Thomas Jefferson High School.

Marriage

He and Gormé married on December 29, 1957 at the El Rancho Hotel[2] in Las Vegas, Nevada.[1] They had two sons, the younger of whom, Michael, died unexpectedly in 1986 of ventricular fibrillation resulting from an undiagnosed heart condition at the age of 23.[1][2] Their elder son, David, composed the score for High School Musical.

In the late 1950s, Steve Lawrence was drafted into the Army and served as the official vocal soloist with The United States Army Band "Pershing's Own" in Washington, D.C.[citation needed]

Career

with Carol Burnett (l) and Eydie Gorme on Carol Burnett Show tribute to Irving Berlin, August 1978

Lawrence had success on the record charts in the late 1950s and early 1960s with such hits as "Go Away Little Girl" (U.S. #1), "Pretty Blue Eyes" (U.S. #9), "Footsteps" (U.S. #7), "Portrait of My Love" (U.S. #9), and "Party Doll" (U.S. #5). "Go Away Little Girl" sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.[5] However, much of his musical career has centered on nightclubs and the musical stage. He is also an actor, appearing in guest roles on television shows in every decade since the 1950s,[6] in shows such as The Danny Kaye Show, The Judy Garland Show, The Carol Burnett Show, The Julie Andrews Hour, Night Gallery, Police Story, Murder, She Wrote, Gilmore Girls, and CSI. In the fall of 1965, Lawrence was briefly the star of a variety show called The Steve Lawrence Show, "the last television show in black and white on CBS".[2]

He and Gormé appeared together in the Broadway musical Golden Rainbow, which ran from February 1968 until January 1969. Although the show was not a huge success (a summary of this experience is chronicled in unflattering detail in William Goldman's 1968 book The Season),[7] the show contained the memorable song "I've Gotta Be Me." This song was originally sung by Lawrence at the end of the first act of the musical; Sammy Davis, Jr. would later record a version of the song that became a Top 40 hit in 1969.[8]

In 1980, Lawrence was introduced to a new generation of fans with his portrayal of Maury Sline in The Blues Brothers.

He played Mark McCormick's father, Sonny Daye, in two episodes of Hardcastle and McCormick. In 1999, he appeared as the much talked about, but never before seen, Morty Fine, father of Fran Fine on the final episode of The Nanny.

Awards

Lawrence received a New York Drama Critics' Circle Award and a Tony Award nomination for his performance as Sammy Glick in What Makes Sammy Run? on Broadway (1964),[1] and two Emmy Awards, one for production for Steve & Eydie Celebrate Irving Berlin (1978).

With Gormé, he has been the recipient of two Emmies for Our Love is Here to Stay, a tribute to George and Ira Gershwin; a "Best Performance By a Vocal Duo or Group" Grammy Award for We Got Us; a Film Advisory Board's Award of Excellence and a Television Critics Circle Award for From This Moment On, a tribute to Cole Porter.

The duo has also won a Las Vegas Entertainment Award for "Musical Variety Act of the Year" four times, three of them consecutively. They have been honoured with a lifetime achievement award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame,[9] and in 1995 were the recipients of an Ella Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Singers,[1][9] a non-profit organization that helps professional singers with counseling and financial assistance.

Single discography

YearSingleChart positions
USUS
AC
US
R&B
UK
1952"Poinciana"21-
1953"How Many Stars Have To Shine"26-
1957"The Banana Boat Song"18-
"Party Doll"5-
"(The Bad Donkey) Pum-Pa-Lum"45-
"Can't Wait For Summer"42-
"Fabulous"71-
"Fraulein"54-
1958"Uh-Huh, Oh Yeah"73-
"Many a Time"97-
1959"(I Don't Care) Only Love Me"62-
"Pretty Blue Eyes"9-
1960"Footsteps"7-4
"Girls, Girls, Girls"--49
1961"Portrait of My Love"9-
"My Clair De Lune"6813
"In Time"9419
"Somewhere Along the Way"6716
1962"Our Concerto"107-
"The Lady Wants To Twist"120-
"Go Away Little Girl"1114
1963"Don't Be Afraid, Little Darlin'"2612
"Poor Little Rich Girl"2711
"More"117-
"I Want To Stay Here"†2883
"Walking Proud"26-
"I Can't Stop Talking About You"†3514
1964"My Home Town"106-
"A Room Without Windows"120-
"Everybody Knows"7218
"Yet...I Know"7715
1965"Bewitched..."103-
"I Will Wait For You"113-
"Last Night I Made a Little Girl Cry"126-
"Millions of Roses"10611
1966"The Week-end"13124
"The Ballad of the Sad Young Men"-36
1967"The Honeymoon Is Over"†-14
"Sweet Maria"-23
"I've Gotta Be Me"-6
1968"The Two of Us"#-33
"Runaround"-27
1969"Real True Lovin'"†11920
"The Drifter"-14
1970"Mama, a Rainbow"-38
"(You're My) Soul & Inspiration"†-21
"Groovin'"-25
1971"Love is Blue/Autumn Leaves"†-37
1972"Ain't No Sunshine/You Are My Sunshine"-24
"We Can Make It Together (featuring the Osmonds)"†687
1973"Feelin'"†-31
"The End (At the End of a Rainbow)"-46
1975"Now That We're In Love"-16
1979"Hallelujah"‡-46

Code:
† Steve & Eydie (Steve Lawrence & Eydie Gorme)
‡ Parker & Penny (Steve & Eydie)

References

  1. ^ a b c d e Biography from Las Vegas Online
  2. ^ a b c d e 2003 Interview with Larry King, from a CNN website
  3. ^ A Treasure You May Be Overlooking
  4. ^ Steve Lawrence profile at Film Reference.com
  5. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 147. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  6. ^ Steve Lawrence at the Internet Movie Database
  7. ^ William Goldman, The Season: A Candid Look at Broadway, New York: Harcourt, Brace and World, 1969. p. 310. ("Harnick shook his head sadly and said, 'The trouble with washing garbage is that when you're done, it's still garbage.' This was the story of Golden Rainbow, as we shall see.")
  8. ^ AllMusic.com, "I've Gotta Be Me." (Davis' version peaked at number 24.)
  9. ^ a b Official website of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé

External links