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Bobby Darin Biography      

Robert Walden Cassotto was born in 1936, but despite being an impoverished child of the Depression, Bobby Darin rose to the heights of stardom in the 1950s as a singer, performer, and actor. The son of an Italian immigrant, Darin’s father left his mother shortly before his birth, and Darin was an adult before he learned that his sister Nina, who was 19 years his senior, was in actuality his mother.

His upbringing on the Bronx streets provided him with a musical foundation for success, but poverty was unable to provide the proper nutriment and medical treatment needed to be a healthy child At age 8, a bout with Rheumatic Fever left his heart seriously damaged. This early illness led Darin to a lifetime of unyielding health issues.

Despite unsuccessful records early on, Darin’s career exploded into the mainstream after penning the song "Splish Splash," which he wrote as a wager to see if he could begin a song with the words splish splash. An instant hit, Darin soon released a second song, "Dream Lover," that made him into one of the biggest stars in music.

With financial worries accounted for, Darin demanded more control over his career. On his follow up album, despite warnings from his friends and business associates, he recorded "Mack the Knife," which immediately rose to #1 on the charts, selling several million copies and propelling Darin into a household name after he won Grammy Awards for “Best New Artist” and “Record of the Year” in 1960.

But success is relative, and Darin’s goals were yet to be achieved. He began his acting career by staring in a teenage romantic comedy with Sandra Dee, whom he later married. Now an Actor, Darin was not content to capitalize on his teen pop success in the movies. Films such as 1962’s Pressure Point won Darin respect among the critics and the public, earning him the Golden Globe for “Most Promising New Male Artist,” and an Academy Award Nomination for “Best Supporting Actor.”
By 1964, Darin had become one of the leading nightclub entertainers on the Las Vegas stage, but as the 1960’s came into fruition, Darin evolved with the times and drifted far from the pop music he was famous for. After divorcing Dee, Darin became active in Robert Kennedy’s 1968 Presidential Campaign, and was profoundly changed after the death of Kennedy. He recorded two Folk albums, including the hit, If I Were A Carpenter, which marked the beginning of a more politically and socially conscious chapter in his career.

In 1971, Darin had the first of many surgeries to fix his ailing heart. Unable to continue the rigors of pop stardom, Darin took his talents to the small screen, hosting a variety show for NBC. The show lasted until 1973, when Darin finally succumbed to the health problems that had afflicted him since his childhood. Bobby Darin died on December 20, 1973, during surgery to repair a heart valve.

The consummate performer, Bobby Darin’s life and career were undisputedly cut short, leaving his legacy, music, movies and memories to the hordes of adoring fans and admirers.
Linda Ronstadt Biography
Born in Tucson, Arizona in 1946, Linda Ronstadt’s background is as diverse as her music. The daughter of a Mexican-German father and a English-Dutch Jewish mother, Ronstadt was exposed to a wide array of cultures and people in her childhood, instilling an open minded mentality that has lasted throughout her career.
While a student at the University of Arizona, Ronstadt and guitarist Bob Kimmel formed the band The Stoned Poneys, and after finishing school, became the biggest name in the Los Angeles folk scene in the 1960s. In 1967, the band released the single "Different Drum" and Ronstadt became a rising star in the recording industry.
As Ronstadt’s reputation began to grow, she became increasingly comfortable leaving the folk-country background she had achieved her fame perfecting, and started branching out into the world of Rock N’ Roll. She released a number of successful singles, and in 1974 her career exploded after releasing the album Heart Like A Wheel. A platinum success, Ronstadt followed it with two other platinum albums, Simple Dreams in 1977 and Living in the U.S.A. the following year. Although music was the main attraction, Ronstadt’s reputation as a sex symbol and tabloid celebrity began to grow as well. In 1976, a racy Rolling Stone magazine cover created a buzz that grew even louder when it was discovered she was dating the then Governor of California and Presidential Candidate, Jerry Brown, and later Star Wars creator George Lucas.
In the 1980’s, Ronstadt refocused her attention on music, releasing an album of New Wave cover songs. Already pushing the envelope, Ronstadt continues to diversify her musical portfolio, releasing numerous experimental albums including everything from Mexican canciones to Rock lullabies. In ‘83, she co-stared with Kevin Klein in The Pirates of Penzance, a motion picture version of Gilbert & Sullivan’s famed opera. Four years later, Ronstadt, along with Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris, released the critically acclaimed and Grammy winning album Trio.
Ronstadt has been a Rock and Country icon for last four decades. With financial and personal success achieved, the famously shy megastar prefers to stay mostly out of the public’s eye, still performing, but rarely touring or promoting albums. All in all, Linda Ronstadt is credited with selling over 30 million records, has won 10 Grammy Awards, and is one of the most well respected female musicians of all time.
Tom Jones Biography
Known in his hometown of South Wales, U.K., as “Jones the Voice,” in 1964 Tom Jones moved to London and signed a recording contract with Decca, where he released “Chills & Fever.”  The single flopped, but Decca went ahead and released a follow-up effort “It’s Not Unusual.” By year’s end, the song had not only reached #1 in the UK, but was a Top Ten hit on the America charts as well. Tom continued his success with a string of international hits, including "Delilah" and "What’s New Pussycat," as well as staring in the This Is Tom Jones television series. In addition to having sold over 30 million records by 1971, Tom’s real fame and distinction came from his electrifying stage presence that has captivated audiences around the globe throughout his entire career.
Sonny & Cher Biography
Salvatore Bono & Cherilyn Sarkisian La Pierre were one of the 1960’s most memorable Pop duos thanks to a string a hit singles and a hokey, wisecracking persona that captivated audiences through the mid 1970s.
Before meeting his counterpart in 1964, Sonny had already found success in the music industry, penning hit songs like "Koko Joe" and "She Said Yeah."  Bono became the protégé of legendary producer Phil Spector, and while working a session for his mentor, Sonny met the young singer, who would not only help propel him to the heights of international stardom, but become the love of his life.
Bono attempted to record Cher singing on numerous occasions, but Spector saw little in Cher and the attempts proved frivolous. However, after a chance studio experiment, having Sonny sing alongside Cher produced spectacular results, the couple formed, Caesar & Cleo. Soon after, Bono wrote the classic "I Got You, Babe" and within the year, the two dropped their moniker and became known as Sonny & Cher.
A string of hits followed, but audiences fell in love with their playful relationship and stylish dress as much as their music. By the fall of 1965, Sonny & Cher had six top 40 hits and hordes of adoring fans. But success left as quickly as it had come. As the psychedelic 1960s set in, the witty and playful antics couldn’t keep up with the new culture, and despite 1967’s "The Beat Goes On," and Cher’s solo "You Better Sit Down Kids," the couple was left behind.
After a string of unsuccessful movie attempts, and now in debt to the IRS, the faded Pop stars hit the local lounge and club scenes. Although their music never truly caught the mainstream’s attention again, the couple’s folksy, banter-filled shtick resonated with audiences of the times, especially with Cher as a liberated, blunt, and wise-mouthed woman. Soon the two were performing their routine in Las Vegas, and shortly thereafter on the CBS television network in “The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour.”
Despite their newfound success, problems behind the scenes were affecting the couple. In 1974, they separated, prematurely ending the hit show. Now divorced, their battles and disagreements became fodder for tabloid journalists, ironically propelling Cher to a higher level of stardom. But the demands of a solo career proved to be too difficult for Cher, and in time, she reached out to Sonny to rejoin her on TV. Sonny did return, forming “The Sonny & Cher Show.” 
By 1979, the separation had become a finalized divorce, and a variety of relationships with rockers such as Gene Simmons and Gregg Allman kept Cher in the headlines. However, the 1980s were kind to both Sonny and Cher individually. After a break out performance on Broadway, Cher went on to appear in numerous films and won an Oscar for her role in Moonstruck.  She reinvented herself with the times again, first catching the end of Disco, then as a leather-bound rock singer, and finally again in the 1990’s as a mature Pop singer.
Sonny started the decade playing roles on film and in television series such as Fantasy Island and Airplane II. After a frustrating attempt at opening a restaurant in Palm Springs, he successfully ran for Mayor of the California town, spearheading a new pro-business government and founding the Palm Springs Film Festival. After an earlier unsuccessful run for Senate, in 1994, California elected Bono to the US House of Representatives; a position he maintained until a tragic skiing accident prematurely took his life in 1998.
Despite her continued success and their rocky relationship, a distraught Cher delivered the eulogy at her late, former husbands funeral, reunited the infamous couple one final time in the eyes of the adoring public.
Jim Croce Biography
James Joseph Croce’s career in music was foreshadowed at age 5 when he learned to play Lady of Spain on his accordion. But the path to success was long and hard for Croce.  After performing with various bands at Villanova University, Croce moved to Philadelphia, hoping to break into the industry. He found a job at an R & B radio station transforming commercial messages into soul jingles. Increasing frustrated, Jim quit and worked as a summer camp guitar teacher and even enlisted in the military for a short period.
A Catholic at birth, Croce converted to Judaism when he married Ingrid Jacobson. The couple moved to NYC in an attempt to find success as musicians, even releasing an album called Jim and Ingrid. However, the closest the couple came was recording backing vocals for larger acts.
Discouraged by city life, the couple moved back to Pennsylvania upon the birth of their son, Adrian. Ingrid worked canning fruit and baking bread while Jim earned money as a construction worker and selling off his collection of guitars.
Despite his humble beginnings, when Croce’s first album, You Don’t Mess Around With Jim, was released in 1972 it was an instant success. Three singles, "Operator," "Time in a Bottle," and "You Don’t Mess Around With Jim" all climbed the Billboard charts. His second album, Life and Times, featuring the hit "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown," was equally successful.
Sadly, Jim Croce died in a plane crash after the pilot suffered a heart attack just days before the release of his highly anticipated third album, I Got A Name. Renowned for his friendliness and the sincerity of his performances, Jim Croce’s memory is implanted in the masses of fans that saw Croce not only as a pop star, but as the charming and understanding voice from next door.
Kenny Rogers Biography

Having spent over 100 weeks atop the charts, Kenny Rogers is one of the true icons in the world of music. His career began in the 1950s as a member of the doo-wop group The Scholars. More then a decade later in 1967, Kenny Rogers and three other members of the group The New Christy Minstrels, left the group to form The First Edition.  Success came quickly to them, chalking up a string of hit songs such as "Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)." 
Despite the vision most people hold of Rogers today, he began his career with long brown hair, an earring, signature pink sunglasses, and a smooth vocal style that lent itself well to the times. But in 1971, Rogers’ hair grayed, he rapidly gained weight, and he developed the raspy voice that helped him better relate to a larger number of fans on both the pop and country charts with songs such as The Gambler and Lucille.

Like many stars of the time, Rogers also garnered success at the box office in films such as Six Pack. A man of many interests, Kenny opened a restaurant chain, Kenny Rogers Roasters, became a published photographer, and founded a real estate company. Rogers married five times and has 5 children which include twins born when Rogers was 65 years old.

In the 21st Century, discontent to rest on the laurels of a record-breaking career, Kenny climbed to #1 the country charts again with "Buy Me A Rose." Showing no sign of slowing down, with more then 25 #1 hits and more then 60 top 40 singles, Kenny Roger’s diverse and illustrious career is still going strong, much to the surprise and delight of his fans around the globe.