Sylvia Syms (singer)

Sylvia Syms (December 2, 1917 – May 10, 1992) was an American jazz singer and actress.

Sylvia Syms
Sylvia Syms
Sylvia Syms
Background information
Birth nameSylvia Blagman
Born(1917-12-02)December 2, 1917
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
DiedMay 10, 1992(1992-05-10) (aged 74)
New York City
GenresJazz
Occupation(s)Singer, actress

BiographyEdit

Syms was born Sylvia Blagman in Brooklyn, New York. As a child, she had polio. As a teenager, she went to jazz nightclubs on New York's 52nd Street and received informal training from Billie Holiday. She made her debut in 1941 at Kelly's Stable.[1]

In 1948, performing at the Cinderella Club in Greenwich Village, she was seen by Mae West, who gave her a part in a show she was doing.[1] Among others who observed her in nightclubs was Frank Sinatra who considered her the "world's greatest saloon singer." Sinatra conducted her 1982 album, Syms by Sinatra.

She was signed to a contract by Decca Records, having her major success with a recording of "I Could Have Danced All Night" in 1956, which sold over one million copies and was awarded a gold disc.[2] Syms made regular appearances at the Carlyle in Manhattan. At times, impromptu, while enjoying a cocktail in the bar of the Carlyle, she would walk on stage and perform with the cabaret's other regular, Bobby Short.

Syms had a lung removed around 1972. The operation did not stop her from performing as Bloody Mary in the musical South Pacific at the Chateau de Ville Dinner Theater.

She died of a heart attack while on stage in the Oak Room at the Algonquin Hotel in New York City.[3] She was 74 years old.[4][5]

On June 25, 2019, The New York Times Magazine listed Sylvia Syms among hundreds of artists whose material was reportedly destroyed in the 2008 Universal fire.[6]

DiscographyEdit

Year Title Label
1952 Songs By [10" version] Atlantic
1954 After Dark [10"] Version Records
1954 Sylvia Sings [EP] Atlantic
1955 Songs By [12" version] Atlantic
1956 Sylvia Syms Sings Decca
1957 Songs of Love Decca
1959 Torch Song Columbia
1961 That Man Kapp
1964 Fabulous 20th Century Fox
1965 Sylvia Is! Prestige
1967 For Once in My Life Prestige
1968 In A Sentimental Mood Movietone
1970 Love Lady Stanyan
1976 Lovingly Atlantic
1978 She Loves to Hear the Music A&M
1982 Syms by Sinatra Reprise
1984 A Jazz Portrait of Johnny Mercer DRG
1989 Then Along Came Bill DRG
1992 You Must Believe in Spring Elba
2004 The Columbia Years Columbia

FilmsEdit

TelevisionEdit

  • Eddie Condon's Floor Show – 1949
  • The Tonight Show – 1954
  • The Tonight Show – 1955
  • The Tonight Show – 1956
  • The VIP Show of the Year – Sep 9, 1956
  • The Tonight Show – October 1956
  • Stars of Jazz – Dec 17, 1956
  • Art Ford's All-Star Jazz Party – 1958
  • Playboy's Penthouse – Sep 23, 1961
  • Playboy's Penthouse – Apr 21, 1962
  • The Merv Griffin Show – 1962
  • The Merv Griffin Show – 1963
  • The Tonight Show – Sep 17, 1963
  • The Mike Douglas Show – 1965
  • The Merv Griffin Show – Jun 29, 1966
  • Donald O'Connor Show – Oct 21, 1968
  • The Merv Griffin Show – 1969
  • The Mike Douglas Show – 1969
  • The Mike Douglas Show – Aug 9, 1970
  • The Tonight Show – Aug 6, 1972
  • The Mike Douglas Show – Aug 11, 1974
  • The Merv Griffin Show – 1974
  • The Tonight Show – Feb 25, 1975
  • The Merv Griffin Show – 1978
  • The Dick Cavett Show – Nov 16, 1978
  • Dinah! – Nov 17, 1978
  • Over Easy – Nov 24, 1978
  • Over Easy – May 23, 1980
  • Glenn Miller: A Moonlight Serenade – Dec 1, 1984
  • American Masters: The Long Night of Lady Day – Aug 3, 1986
  • Buddy Barnes Live at Studio B – 1986

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "People". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. 1979-08-26. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  2. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 87. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  3. ^ "Sylvia Blagman Syms | Jewish Women's Archive". jwa.org. Retrieved 2018-10-21.
  4. ^ "| Archives | Chron.com - Houston Chronicle". Chron.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  5. ^ "Sylvia Syms". Jamesgavin.com. 1992-05-17. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  6. ^ Rosen, Jody (June 25, 2019). "Here Are Hundreds More Artists Whose Tapes Were Destroyed in the UMG Fire". The New York Times. Retrieved June 28, 2019.

External linksEdit